#4thtrimesterbodiesproject

MOST RECENT

I wanted to share a message I just received because it’s been a long while since one like this has come through and I think it’s important to address. Not because I’m defensive but because I am incredibly protective of this space...
I’ve spent the past 5 (almost 6) years entrenched in the world of postpartum people and their bodies. And the thing that I love most about my life and work is that it’s taught me that “typical” does not exist in the ways that people want it to when they’re looking at others through a lens of judgement. -
I photograph postpartum people and their bodies as they come to me. Some are fit and slim, some may even to an outsider look like our societal standard of “beauty”. Some are soft and smooshy. Some are plus-sized. Some stretchmarked and scared. Some belong to those with able bodies, others to those with disabilities. Cis/het parents, GNC parents, trans moms and dads. Birthing people, foster parents, adoptees. -
I welcome all humans, all sizes, all genders, all colors, all parents, regardless of how they’ve come to parenting. They all are worthy of representation. They all have stories to tell. -
At this point, after photographing over 2,500 families for this body of work around the world I can assure most people that if they look closely they will see themselves - their body, their story echoed somewhere in our archives. -
But if you don’t - instead of judging , instead of suggesting that the brave and beautiful humans and their bodies that choose to share themselves here are somehow “undermining the mission” of the project - dive in. Look further, and if you still don’t see what you’re looking for, please step forward. I’ll be here with open arms and ears, camera in hand, ready and willing to share your beauty, power, and truth with our community and the world. I don’t work in “typical” but in truth. -
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#4thtrimesterbodiesproject #fourthtrimesterbodiesproject #4thtrimester #fourthtrimester #postpartum #breastfeeding #childbirth #bodypositivity #stopcensoringmotherhood #motherhood #bodypositive #4thtribodies #pregnancy #feminism #feminist #selflove #bodylove #fourthtribodies #postpartumbody #postpartumcare #postpartumsupport

Smoosh | sames -
Another personal share from @ashleedluna while I catch up on edits. Lacrosse / @birthfit_wisconsin images are live this week. Miami is next, followed by Minneapolis. Then I’ll officially be clear and ready for 2019!!!
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#4thtrimesterbodiesproject #fourthtrimesterbodiesproject #4thtrimester #fourthtrimester #postpartum #breastfeeding #childbirth #bodypositivity #stopcensoringmotherhood #motherhood #bodypositive #4thtribodies #pregnancy #feminism #feminist #selflove #bodylove #fourthtribodies #postpartumbody #postpartumcare #postpartumsupport

🍃
"Never tell me
I can't do it.
To me, I danced
With two hearts.
And I breathed
With four lungs.
To me, I've been ice
Fire and wind.
I've taken
In my belly
The weight of two worlds,
And I have born
Life is screaming.
That I embraced
To sadness without fear.
And I cried smiles.
Don't tell me
That I'm not capable
Of something.
Or everything."
🍃
- Eva López Martinez (art by Enric Hugyet)
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#Repost @4thtribodies
• • • • •
🍃

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Note: We're giving away a free organic sunscreen from @soleoorganics with every Countdown bought copy - see the free gift packs in the magazine aisle. 🍃

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#4thtrimesterbodiesproject #fourthtrimesterbodiesproject #4thtrimester #fourthtrimester #postpartum #breastfeeding #childbirth #bodypositivity #stopcensoringmotherhood #motherhood #bodypositive #4thtribodies #pregnancy #feminism #feminist #selflove #bodylove #fourthtribodies #postpartumbody #postpartumcare #postpartumsupport

Katie Warner (32), Liam (4), and Skyla (7.5 months old)⠀

West Salem, WI⠀

Katie shares - ⠀

“My first postpartum journey went from 100 to 0 really fast. I had about 3-4 months of riding high in my bubble of baby bliss, but then I went back to work only to quit my job a few weeks later. I felt like a complete depleted-sleep-deprived-waste-of-an-education-sucking-at-motherhood & life failure. ⠀

Within weeks I was bedridden & in the depths of the worst depression I’d experienced. I sought help, grasping at any hope to pull through because my husband & baby needed me. Talk about adding more guilt to an already difficult situation. ⠀

I sought help, began to feel better, & finally became a functional human again. I became involved in the BIRTHFIT community & a local MOPS group, each outlet bringing support in motherhood in a way that allowed me to be honest and encouraged. ⠀

I have had two postpartum seasons now, & each one has been marked with the heartbreaking decline & death of my father-in-law & then my own father, each to cancer. No number of squats or meditations on childbirth can prepare a person for losing your dad. Even as I write this, my throat has become tight because it’s so damn painful to reflect on. It's been four months since my dad died. I’ve wondered why our children have to grow up without a grandpa & have been so angry over the nature of their suffering in their final time on earth. ⠀

I want to remember this moment - three days prior to my 33 rd birthday & 7.5 months postpartum - as one that my body or spirit will not be crushed by walking the hills and valleys of this life. While it is messy, I will openly & honestly own my story so others may see light in their darkness, especially my kids.”⠀

Full story at 4thTriBodies.com

Resharing from my personal account this morning ... -
7 weeks postpartum. -
The fullness of my belly still looks quite pregnant, only softer. Milk leaks from my breast as if they’ve never done this before, eager, plentiful. Clothing is a challenge - that space between maternity items no longer feeling comfortable and coming to terms with the fact that muscles and meat and bones have shifted in such a way, my old clothes will likely never fit again. I haven’t stepped on a scale in months and I don’t plan to anytime soon.
-
There are waves of discomfort. Frustration. Coming to terms.
Remembering this smoosh and this skin is an anchor to what was home for this human. It’s purpose now continuing to nourish, comfort, and protect. This morning a soft shelf to sneak their toes in as they learn to stretch and jump, this afternoon a perfect cushion for cuddles. -
And so, I’m purposed to appreciate every extra roll for at least as long as I marveled over this same body for growing and getting them here. This is the same body. The same vessel that possesses the blossoming womb that protected them. The primal strength that birthed them. The one that continues to sustain them. -
So often we forget the process and the purpose this side of things. And how could we not when the hashtags are filled with unhealthy, unrealistic, unattainable images people more like predators are selling as reality. When society says otherwise. -
Fuck that. Seven weeks postpartum and I’m more determined than ever before to stop looking back, to instead embrace, dare even to celebrate, this evolution. -
#postpartumbodyimage #sevenweekspostpartum #4thtrimester #postpartum #thisispostpartum #4thtrimesterbodiesproject #breastfeeding #bodyimage #bodypositivity

7 weeks postpartum. -
The fullness of my belly still looks quite pregnant, only softer. Milk leaks from my breast as if they’ve never done this before, eager, plentiful. Clothing is a challenge - that space between maternity items no longer feeling comfortable and coming to terms with the fact that muscles and meat and bones have shifted in such a way, my old clothes will likely never fit again. I haven’t stepped on a scale in months and I don’t plan to anytime soon.
-
There are waves of discomfort. Frustration. Coming to terms.
Remembering this smoosh and this skin is an anchor to what was home for this human. It’s purpose now continuing to nourish, comfort, and protect. This morning a soft shelf to sneak their toes in as they learn to stretch and jump, this afternoon a perfect cushion for cuddles. -
And so, I’m purposed to appreciate every extra roll for at least as long as I marveled over this same body for growing and getting them here. This is the same body. The same vessel that possesses the blossoming womb that protected them. The primal strength that birthed them. The one that continues to sustain them. -
So often we forget the process and the purpose this side of things. And how could we not when the hashtags are filled with unhealthy, unrealistic, unattainable images people more like predators are selling as reality. When society says otherwise. -
Fuck that. Seven weeks postpartum and I’m more determined than ever before to stop looking back, to instead embrace, dare even to celebrate, this evolution. -
#postpartumbodyimage #sevenweekspostpartum #4thtrimester #postpartum #thisispostpartum #4thtrimesterbodiesproject #breastfeeding #bodyimage #bodypositivity

I've been missing this weekend and for that I'm sorry. I have just stopped nursing Dax and honestly I never thought it was going to be a hard transition. I always thought I would be excited to be done but I'm sad. .
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Guys, I'm really sad.
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I think back to how much I fought my clothing so that I didn't have to completely undress every time he had to eat. But now after this long journey I look at this photo and I see my own transformation from a struggling, frumpy mom to a confident mom. A mom who was ready to take on the challenge to put herself first. A mom who fought the style status quo for nursing moms. A mom who LOVES her postpartum shape whose not afraid to hide. Double tap if this next year is the year for YOU!
pc @sarahemoorefield
#pregnancy #motherhood #breastfeeding #childbirth #momlife #newborn #baby #pregnant #4thtrimesterbodiesproject #bodypositive #fitmom #selflove #bodylove #maternity #everybodyisbeautiful #newmom #prenatal #postnatal

'Wrapping' up the work week in style!
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Postpartum belly binding has been practiced around the world for centuries...but never quite like this! Our Couture Belly Wrap combines medical grade compression with a stylish black lace print!
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✔️Covered in a super-soft lace printed fabric
✔️Features our exclusive, latex-free Power Compress Core
✔️Up to 9" of adjustability so you can continue to tighten the wrap as you size down
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#bellybandit #bellywrap #bodyafterbaby #selfcare #postpartumcompression #bodypositive #lookgoodfeelgood #realmommoments #momlife #pregnancy #postpartum #postpartumsupport #postpartumbody #coresupport #cesectionmama #csection #diastatisrecti #postpartumlife #gamechanger #inthemoment #motherhood #realmomrealresults #childbirth #4thtrimester #4thtrimesterbodiesproject #newmom

Erica Boland (31), Terryn (11), Canon (8), Laken (6), and Maclin (2)⠀

West Salem, WI⠀

Erica shares - ⠀

“I experienced a miscarriage shortly before I become pregnant with our third son, Laken. It rocked our world. It wasn't something that had ever even crossed my mind for us and the next weeks, even months were a whirlwind. I wanted to hide and I wanted to blame but mostly I just wanted to know why.⠀

There are valleys and peaks; days when I look in the mirror with awe and pure love and days when I feel my body no longer belongs to me. This pull between what I know and what society tells us all to think. It is a continuous journey of going within to listen to what my soul needs in order to step into and embody who I am; fully.⠀

My birth and postpartum journey with my first son has brought me to where I am and is the fire lit within me to help empower others. At 19 years old I did exactly what "they" told me to do. I was unconsciously incompetent. After cutting an episiotomy and assuring me she would "add a few more stitches for my boyfriend" with just a few minutes of skin to skin my son was whisked away to the NICU for "precautionary purposes." ⠀

In reflection, it felt like I had no choice in any of our care. No one told me what to expect for myself, for my relationship, for our new family. No one told me how to heal my body and nourish my soul or suggested that I become intimately comfortable with myself before doing so with another. The 6 week "all clear" standard was and still is bull shit. We deserve more. We deserve to be educated and empowered to the amazing power of our bodies from a young age and break down barriers of shame. Now, as a mother of four I am beginning to see the isolation that can occur in the double standard of being a career driven, passionate mother. There is much work to be done to break down these barriers.⠀

I love the connection that occurs near and far when a group of humans on a similar mission come together to create change. Change is created in the way we connect with the world.”⠀

What’s Normal After Birth

Birth to 6-8 Weeks After Delivery
You’re tired and generally not feeling like your old self yet.
Stitches and tissue damage/tears may feel tender.
Your post birth bleeding should have ceased.
You may be a little fearful of or cautious when performing bowel movements.
You may have difficulty straightening up/standing tall especially if you birthed via C-Section.
Your C-Section scar is still healing and may be tender. You will have to modify getting up and down from the sitting and lying down positions.
Your pelvis might be feeling very unstable and loose or conversely you might feel a general tightness in your pelvic region.
Your abdominal may feel loose and unsupported.
Your muscle may be tight and achy especially around your hips, shoulders neck and backs of your thighs.
You may have some degree incontinence – urinary, gas or fecal.
You may have difficulty mentally connecting to your Pelvic Floor muscles.
You might be experiencing some neck, bicep and shoulder pain and general tightness in your upper body due to the demands of breastfeeding

Your best actions: REST AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE, no lifting anything heavier than your baby, begin gentle stretching, get a specialist Post Natal massage and nourish your depleted body through OPTIMUM NUTRITION, homecooked good food! Ultimately , start reconnecting gently to your body especially your Pelvic Floor gently but also let Mother Nature Do Her Job too!

8+ Weeks Post Delivery
Your Post Natal bleeding should have stopped or the flow reduced considerably and the colour of your discharge become very light. If this isn't the case, please seek advice from your Health Care Professional.
You should be generally pain free but your C-Section scar might be tender or be painful if you over exert yourself. The area around the scar might also be numb.
Your bowel movements should be easier and have returned to a normal rhythm, if not take a few teaspoons of Linseeds soaked in hot water before bed to help re-establish a good rhythm.
Your pelvis may still be feeling very unstable and loose or conversely you might feel a general tightness in your pelvic region.
Continues in the comments 👇👇

Just because I wanted this more than anything doesn't mean i don't struggle. Postpartum is hard and it feels like nobody irl acknowledges it. Being thrust into a new identity that you cannot possibly prepare for is really overwhelming at times. .
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@Regran_ed from @4thtribodies - Postpartum is so hard, y’all. The number one struggle our participants echo is the chasm that comes when the baby arrives and all the attention and energy shifts. We need to SEE mothers, fathers, parents, and continue supporting them in the 4th Trimester more than ever. -
Original source @alexandrasacksmd
#4thtrimesterbodiesproject #fourthtrimesterbodiesproject #4thtrimester #fourthtrimester #postpartum #breastfeeding #childbirth #bodypositivity #stopcensoringmotherhood #motherhood #bodypositive #4thtribodies #pregnancy #feminism #feminist #selflove #bodylove #fourthtribodies #postpartumbody #postpartumcare #postpartumsupport - #regrann

'Wrapping' up the work week in style!
.
Postpartum belly binding has been practiced around the world for centuries...but never quite like this! Our Couture Belly Wrap combines medical grade compression with a stylish black lace print!
.
✔️Covered in a super-soft lace printed fabric
✔️Features our exclusive, latex-free Power Compress Core
✔️Up to 9" of adjustability so you can continue to tighten the wrap as you size down
.
.
.
.
.

#bellybandit #bellywrap #bodyafterbaby #selfcare #postpartumcompression #bodypositive #lookgoodfeelgood #realmommoments #momlife #pregnancy #postpartum #postpartumsupport #postpartumbody #coresupport #cesectionmama #csection #diastatisrecti #postpartumlife #gamechanger #inthemoment #motherhood #realmomrealresults #childbirth #4thtrimester #4thtrimesterbodiesproject #newmom

Even after 4 pregnancies, I’m still amazed by how women’s bodies can go through such drastic changes in such a short amount of time. What amazing creatures we are. #2WeeksPostpartum




#postpartum #pregnancy #birth #4thtrimester #postpartumbody #momlife #mombod #baby #4thtrimesterbodiesproject

Erin Hansen (29) and Eden (18 months)⠀

Reno, NV⠀

Erin shares -⠀

“I had a miscarriage at the beginning of this year, in early January. The pregnancy wasn’t planned and we were still spinning from the news. My partner and I had a child who was barely a year old at the time and were having a hard time envisioning starting the process all over again. ⠀

It was just a day or two later that I started bleeding. I had shared the pregnancy news with so few friends that I didn’t know what to do - so I went to work like normal and bled while I massaged and taught a fitness class. I have friends and clients that have had losses at much later stages in pregnancy and because I hadn’t announced to anyone yet that I was pregnant it felt like I couldn’t really mourn the loss. I also felt guilty that I felt a bit relieved as well. Those contradictory feelings of sadness and relief were a lot to feel at the time. ⠀

Becoming a mom has made me feel a whole new confidence in myself. I know I was meant to be a mom and Eden brings me so much joy every single day. She wasn’t a planned pregnancy, we had a planned homebirth that didn’t quite go as planned either, and then at 2 weeks old Eden got RSV and we had to be hospitalized. It was such a rough introduction to parenthood. ⠀

Taking the time to process these events has made me realize how truly supported I am in this parenting journey—by my partner, by my family and by my community. I think wading through the hard stuff shows us how strong we are. Despite a lot of moments where I felt like I was floundering and doing it all wrong, pregnancy, birth, and motherhood have made me feel strong and capable. I started teaching group fitness classes to moms this past year and that’s what I hope they see in themselves—that they’re already so strong even before they step into my class.⠀

I wanted to participate in this project because growing up I don’t remember a single woman in my life saying positive things about her body. Now that I’m raising a daughter I want to set an example to take pride and pleasure in your own body”⠀

Full story at 4thTriBodies.com⠀

It's easy to look at photos of myself and be repelled by all of the things I don't like about my appearance. Hair too short, eyes too small, baby belly still hanging around...Oh but look at that boy! He loves me simply because I am. I will continue to step in front of the camera with him and for him. To leave him with evidence of the moments he is too young to remember. Double tap to commit to the same for your babies
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📸: Rae Marshall Photography
@pensacolabirthphotographer #nataliezeppphotography #nzplifestyle #pensacola #pensacolaphotographer #pns #pensacolafamilyphotographer #momlife #mom #motherhoodunplugged #maternity #mommylife #mother #letthembelittle #childhoodunplugged #thatsdarling #toddler #momsofinstagram #motherhoodthroughinstagram #motherhoodrising #postpartum #stopcensoringmotherhood #bodypositivity #fourthtrimesterbodiesproject #4thtrimesterbodiesproject #selflove #bodylove #everybodyisbeautiful #empower #bodypositive #fourthtribodies

Stephanie Ohayon Flak (38), mother to Julien (12), Eve (11), and Sophie (12 weeks) and bonus mom to Gavin (14) and Charisma (11)⠀

Quebec | Reno, NV⠀

Stephanie shares - ⠀

“My daughter Eve was two when I realized that my first marriage was over. My ex-husband and I had managed to check all the boxes. We fell in love, got engaged, and got married. We had a son and then a daughter. Check, check. We bought our first home. Check. Everything was the perfect fairytale... until it wasn’t. Major fail. I found myself in my late twenties getting divorced. My family was broken. I no longer fit into societies expectations. ⠀

I met my husband, Haakon, not long after. We randomly met in a bar only to walk into the same day care two weeks later. Our kids already knew each other! At first we decided we weren’t going to have anymore children. 4 was more then enough. But 8 years in we changed our minds. ⠀

Sophie was born at the end of May, she has been such an incredible experience. Instead of having a child because we were expected to (checking a box), we did because we wanted to. So we made the effort to appreciate every little step. We had fun telling the kids we were pregnant, right as they were taking off on a roller coaster. We took the whole gang to do a 3D ultrasound and our two girls got to witness the birth of their baby sister. The girls even got to trim the umbilical cord back together. ⠀

Pregnancy at 38 includes the diagnosis of “advanced maternal age”. It almost feels like some big stop sign. “Don’t do it! You’re too old to have kids.” Clearly that is not the case, but it did give us a good laugh. A lot of people told us we were crazy for starting over but I’m so glad we did. Having a child in my late thirties has made me appreciate things so much more. Especially when the epidural failed and I got to feel what childbirth really is like. Wow, what an experience. Also, successfully breastfeeding my third child because I’m not hung up on stigmas. Realizing my choices has given me a sense of empowerment and I feel like I’m a better version of myself because of it.”⠀

Full story @ 4thTriBodies.com⠀

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