Miscarriage Awareness Month: Alyssa Brooks

As I write this I don't write this with ease but with difficulty. It is difficult because although the Lord has brought me a long way on my journey to healing there still exists the pain of loss. Yet, I continue to write because there is hope. I continue to write because I am not where I once was. And although sometimes I still experience pain I have hope because Jesus Christ is by my side every step of the way on my journey toward healing. And I continue to write because I know that God can use every experience both good and bad, both joyful and painful for someone else's healing. In fact, I believe that God has given my pain purpose. So I write for the one who has experienced loss whether it be due to miscarriage or giving birth to your still born baby. I write for you. In hopes and belief that God can use my story to encourage you and give you that bit of hope to keep going. To look forward to the future. Whatever it may hold. So with no further delay here is my story:

My name is Alyssa Brooks. I am currently 24 years old and my husband and I will celebrate 5 years married this January 7, 2017! Praise be to God. 

We got married in January of 2012 at the young ages of 20 and 22 years old. We were truly just kids but we knew that God has purposed us for one another. We knew that our desire to get married was God given and we knew that we loved each other unconditionally. And God opened door after door for us to get married so we stepped in despite the nay sayers and those that looked down on us because we were young. 

We both shared the same love for family and shared the same dream of getting married and having a family of our own. After all for us family is probably one of the greatest gifts that God can bestow upon us. But we did agree that we had time before we wanted to start having children. We wanted to dedicate the first few years of our marriage to just us. After all once you have children you can't go back. We also wanted to give ourselves some time to get more established. So when we found out that we were pregnant about 2 years into our marriage it was definitely a surprise. 

I remember the date! It was December 29, 2013. My period had been late and so my husband and I decided it was a good idea to just take a pregnancy test and make sure that I wasn't pregnant. We were not expecting anything to come of it because I had been late for my period before and nothing ever came of it. My cycle would change quite often. I remember going to take the test and going back to check after those long awaited 3 minutes. To our surprise and great joy the test was positive! My goodness we were so filled with joy! We weren't planning but man we couldn't help but to feel this excitement. I was so elated and overwhelmed with this immediate love for the being dwelling in my womb that as I showed my husband the test I began to cry and we just embraced one another in shock and joy. 

During my pregnancy things were not so easy going. Before I became pregnant I suffered heavily from insomnia, anxiety and depression. All three monsters continued to rear their heads into my spirit during my pregnancy. I was concerned that it would affect my baby but the doctor didn't raise much concern. Throughout my pregnancy my baby had a strong heart beat and there were no major complications. The only concern that was ever raised was that my baby seemed smaller than the time period of gestation. At that point they actually determined the baby to be younger in gestation and pushed my due date further back than the original estimate. Other than my own struggles mentally, emotional and spiritually with anxiety and depression there were no major physical issues or symptoms suggesting that anything was wrong with my baby. In fact, my baby was my source of hope and motivation to keep fighting against those feelings of depression that weighed heavy on me. My baby gave me a reason to be joyful and to keep pushing on. 

On April 11, 2014, about 18-19 weeks into, my husband and I went to the hospital for a special sonogram during which we were told we could find out the sex of the baby. Unfortunately, we found out that our baby didn't have a heartbeat instead. I can say this was the most devastating and painful moment of my life. I had never experienced loss. I've never had to deal with the loss of someone close to me or the grief that came with it. I didn't know what it was like to have my heart shattered in pieces and then have to figure out how to keep living. I was so unfamiliar with miscarriage. I was so confused. So overwhelmed. So distraught. So overcome by despair. I mean this was a Friday and I had just been in for a check up with my regular doctor that Monday in which my baby's heartbeat was fine. What happened? How did this happen? There were no signs. I didn't bleed or even have a cramp. Nothing was out of the ordinary. Was it my anxiety? Was it my stress from insomnia and depression? Endless questions and a complete sense of helplessness ran through my head.

My doctors explained to me that sometimes miscarriage occurs and they don't know why. They couldn't tell me why this happened. They told me that it wasn't my anxiety or depression. It was just simply inexplicable and very unfortunate turn of events that happens much more often than I realized. 

Goodness, if I thought I was depressed before I had another thing coming to me. After my miscarriage, I fell to the lowest, darkest, most hopeless place of my life. I was drowning in a sea of grief. I was trying to hold on to the Lord but I was so angry. I asked him why he did this to me. I asked him why did he let this happen. I was so frustrated, angry and confused. I had been praying and praying and praying for breakthrough from my battle with the anxiety and depression that was beating down on my spirit. Instead, I felt like he answered me with more pain and hopelessness. I was having a hard time finding joy as it was and now this? Why? I questioned God. How could you call yourself good? I wrote him many nasty letters. I was so torn because I knew I needed Him so desperately for He was my rock and my refuge yet I was so mad at him for allowing this tragedy to happen to me. Although I was angry I kept pressing in to talk to Him because I knew that as much as I wanted to harden myself to Him I knew if I did I would only make it worse. I would then truly be alone. Because he was and is my rock and refuge. Who else can I give my deepest pain to? Who else loved me like He did? Who else could heal me from this? 

Let me tell you, I am so grateful for my God! He truly is faithful. He is truly the lover and healer of my soul. I am so grateful for how patient He was with me even in my anger, how he loved me through my sorrow, how he kept me, how he has healed me. I know for a fact it was God because it is inexplicable. I have no idea how I made it through that dark storm except that God brought me through. He listened to every groan, every cry. He dealt with me blaming him and questioning him. He loved me through the pain. He brought people into my life like my Pastor Maria Durso to walk with me through the storm; to listen to my pain, give me guidance, to help me understand, to pray with me and to help me adjust my perspective. He gave me Pastor Becky Holmes who also experienced miscarriage to come along side me and encourage me and give me hope. He showed me so many people who I knew had been through what I had been through. He showed me that I wasn't alone and that He cared for me. I want to make it clear that it was not easy to overcome the depression, despair and hopelessness that I experienced but I didn't walk through it alone. Psalm 23:4 says “Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.” Though during the time I didn't feel this way, in retrospect I realize that my Father was with me every step of the way. He held on to me when I felt I couldn't hold on anymore. If it were not for his love and faithfulness I would not be where I am today.

After the miscarriage, my heart was heavy with the desire to have a baby. I desired to become a mother and to experience the wonder of having a baby. However, I did not want to move forward with the endeavor unless it was the Lord's will and done in his timing. I also wanted to give myself time to heal not only physically but most importantly spiritually and emotionally. I knew that having another baby would not replace the baby I had lost and I did not want that to be my motivation in having another child. In addition, I debated as to whether I should go a k to finish school or pursue my retail career and just focus on getting established. After about 5 months and much time pondering over the decision my husband and I decided we wanted to try to have a baby. Although finances and school are very important priorities, I believe the right decision for my life was to pursue my heart's desire. I believe it was a God given desire and as I said before God used that decision to aid me along in the healing process by giving me hope. We started trying in September of 2014 and by October I discovered I was pregnant!  

On June 3, 2015 I gave birth to a beautiful and healthy baby boy! His name is Corey Anthony Brooks Junior, after my husband, but everyone calls him CJ. He is just about 17 months old now and he is so full of life and personality. He is handsome, funny, very intelligent and very feisty! He is the greatest gift that my husband and I could have ever been given. And He is definitely giving my husband and I a run for our money. But I absolutely love being his mommy! I love waking up to his beautiful face every single day. My heart is so completely filled with love for my son and my life would not be complete without him. He is the pride and joy of our lives and The Lord has used him to bring great joy and healing to our hearts! 

Can I tell you that I am in awe of God? I am taken aback by his love and awestruck that He desires to grant me the desire of my heart. Something I always struggled with was why God loved me. I could not understand it. I would look at myself and see mess up after mess up. I would see my disobedience and my failure. I would allow guilt and condemnation to over take my mind. I had the wrong perspective of who God was. I always thought He was angry at me and couldn't fathom why He would want to bless me. In fact, I always felt like needed to suffer or be miserable because there's no way God could want for me what I want for me. Yet God proved me wrong yet again(but that's a story for another time). He is the God of grace! He is the God of unconditional love. And he desires to prosper us and not to harm us as he promises in Jeremiah 29:11. He heard the desire of my heart loud and clear. He not only gave me the desire of my heart, he expedited it! In no way did I ever expect to become pregnant that quickly but with Jesus Christ nothing is impossible. Nothing is too difficult for Him. He is faithful to His promises. 

The Lord made me a promise when I was pregnant with my baby in heaven (as I call him or her since we did not get to find out the sex of the baby). He had used someone in our ministry to tell us that God said that he or she was going to be a mighty seed! When I had my miscarriage I was so confused by this. What did that mean? How could my baby be a mighty seed if he or she wasn't here to be planted? However, my vision of this promise was not God's vision. Sometimes his fulfillment of His promises don't look like how we imagine them. But the Lord kept his promise to me. My baby in heaven has truly been a mighty seed in the spirit. God has used my precious baby in heaven to be the seed of vision, hope and desire for a family that I didn't have before. My baby in heaven has been the seed that grew perseverance, strength and maturity in my spirit. My baby in heaven is the seed that grew and solidified God's will for my husband and I to have a baby. My baby in heaven is the seed that has grown the tree of purpose in me. I believe that God has given my life and my pain purpose because now He will be able to use me to speak into someone else's life who may be going through the same storm that He brought me out of. My baby in heaven is the seed that blossomed compassion and understanding for others' suffering that I did not have before. And each and every day that I am on this journey of healing God reveals to me how he has used my baby in heaven to be that mighty seed that  He called him or her to be in my life. There are days where I miss my baby so much and wish that I could hold him or her in my arms but I am glad to know that he or she has been such a blessing in my life. My baby in heaven holds a unique place in my heart and so he or she is always with me. And I know that one day I will see that baby boy or girl in heaven and I know for a fact that my baby is in heaven right now surrounded by the peace, joy and absolute love of the Father. What better place to be? 

Well my sisters and/or brothers we have finally made it to the end. If you're still reading I want to thank you for sticking with me through this long read. I pray that it blesses you, brings comfort, encouragement and or hope. In fact let's pray right now: 

Dear Heavenly Father,
This is for my sisters who are suffering and struggling in the aftermath of loss. This is for the one who is crying right now. This is for the one whose heart is broken. This is for the one that can't see any light on the midst of the darkness. This is for the one who can't see a way out of their pain. Father your Word says in Psalm 34:18 "The Lord is close to the broken hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit." Jesus I declare that over my sisters who need to hear that right now. I believe it for the ones who are struggling to believe it themselves. But Lord I pray that you would empower them to have even the faith of a mustard seed to believe and know that you are with them. Jesus right now I pray that you would flood them where they are at right now as they read this with your love. Wash over them like a wave of peace and comfort. Father your presence is like a shelter to us. So I pray you would fill them up with your presence so that you might cover me and hide them in your refuge in the midst of their storm. Jesus I pray for healing over their hearts and for hope to rise up. I pray against the voice of the enemy, the evil one who would want to fill them with hopelessness and lies that say that you don't care for them. Silence the lies that say that you can't make a way for their healing and for their heart's desire. Jesus have your way! Jesus I thank you in advance for the answered prayers. For the ways that you will heal your daughters. For the ways that you will show yourself faithful and good on their lives. I pray Lord for where my words lack would you make up in the moans and groans of the Holy Spirit. I speak life over your daughters even now Lord in Jesus' matchless name Amen! 


These Are My Confessions

Being a mom has truly opened my eyes to the ugly that is dwelling in my heart. Everyday I strive to be an example to Jaxen of how to love, forgive, and live a life of kindness.

Being on this journey to better myself for the sake of him has really shown me some of my true colors. I mean for the most part I would say, and hope that others believe that I am a nice person, but there is always room for improvement no?

While reading Romans today, I was brought to a halt. You know how you read something that is trying to pierce your heart but you think "Who me? Haha, nah God I'm not like that!" Well I had one of those moments for sure.

Romans 2: 1-2 (MSG) 
Those people are on a dark spiral downward. But if you think that leaves you on the high ground where you can point your finger at others, think again. Every time you criticize someone, you condemn yourself. It takes one to know one. Judgmental criticism of others is a well-known way of escaping detection in your own crimes and misdemeanors. But God isnt so easily diverted. He sees right through all such smoke screens and holds you to what you've done. 

Hot dog, hot dog, hot diggity dog. 

Now I am pretty sure that unless you have never judged anyone a day in your life, this scripture hit you like it hit me.

If I am completely honest, I can be super judgmental. Thoughts of what other people do with their children, their lives, the way they conduct themselves, all fall right under my judgement meter on a daily basis.

"Oh I would never do that!"
"You would never catch me wearing that."
"How can she speak to her children that way?"
"I would never, I would never, I would never!!"

Everyone makes mistakes. We all have struggles and sin differently. So who am I, who are we, to judge others. Who am I to place myself on a high horse and look down on others? The last time I checked my name was Jo, not God. 

The bible says that every single time that I allow myself to judge others situations and circumstances, I am condemning myself. How would life look for all of us if we thought of our judgmental ways as not just a thought, or a simple statement made to one another, but as condemning ourselves?

If I could just remind myself of this daily, I am almost positive I would see a change in the way I think about others. 

"It takes one to know one." 

That line made me chuckle. Who knew that a catch phrase that I threw around as a kid was actually biblical, and a line that carries a lot of weight. Being completely transparent, I am sure that there is a little bit of me in everyone who I am so quickly to judge. My fingers barely wanted to type that. 

It can be hard to take your eyes off of others flaws and actually examine your own heart and your own life.

But God isnt so easily diverted. He sees right through all such smoke screens and holds you to what you've done. 

To some this may seem a little harsh, but when I read it, I instantly thought of grace. God's grace. You see it's just like a parent with their child. Because I love Jaxen so much, I am not going to allow him to do and act however he wants to. I am going to call him out and hold him accountable for his actions, because I want him to be the best that he can be, and I love the fact that God is the same way with us. 

I am learning every day to be a great wife, mom, follower of Christ, and although it is not easy, I am learning to look at the plank in my own eye before I so easily assess the plank in someone else's. 

I am completely guilty of being judgmental, but I am extremity grateful for this little reminder to get off of my horse and acknowledge that not only do I have junk, but the very junk that I am judging in others might very well be the same junk that is in me. 

Prayerfully this allowed you to open your eyes to the not so cute that lives inside of  you, and encouraged you to live a life of love. Let's try to take on this challenging task together, one day at a time.



Put Some Respek On My Name

Disclaimer: My goal is to empower women. In no way, shape or form is this post dissing the working mom. 

I have heard a lot of things that make me cringe and roll my eyes since I've had Jaxen, but this statement is probably in the top three statements that makes me want to snap my finger & place the person speaking in my shoes. This statement has been made in a variation of ways, & I am sure that most stay at home moms have heard most of theses listed below...

"Oh you stay at home with the baby? How cute."
"Wow lucky you, you just sit home and play all day."
"Oh haha, I would do anything to have it as easy as you and stay home."

Let me just say that I am extremely grateful to be able to be a stay at home mom. I enjoy watching Jaxen do new things, and change right before my eyes. But come on please, please do not belittle my job.

For starters, everyday is a new experience. Just because Jaxen took a two hour nap, and I got to write a little and read today does not guarantee that tomorrow I will be able to do the same. As a matter of fact, sometimes Jaxen wants to do nothing but be in my arms all day.

What does that look like?

I put him down to eat, he screams. I put him down to do laundry, he screams. I try to take down chicken... I'm sure you get the point by now.

Being a stay at home mom is a 24/7 kind of job. Again I am not saying that moms who go to work and then come home and take care of their babies do anything less. What I am saying is stay at home moms are not home playing with their thumbs, overdosing on netflix, and sipping a glass of wine all day.

My son loves to be entertained. Which means I am constantly reading, singing, going on walks, talking, dancing, and performing my butt off.

In between that I am doing his laundry, our laundry, taking down food for dinner, paying bills, and making phone calls.

Being a stay at home mom is a fast paced lifestyle. Especially if you are trying to do anything like blog, sew, read a magazine, or anything for your benefit.

I remember when I first had Jaxen. My husband would come home from work and see me exhausted on the sofa. Some days the house would a complete wreck, and I could tell by the look on his face he was wondering "What the heck do you do all day? He's just a baby."

I knew that he would not understand unless I put him in my shoes! He ended up having two weeks off for vacation; except it didn't end up being the vacation he thought it was going to be.

Every two hours when Jaxen woke up to eat, I woke up my husband. Every time he cried, I allowed my husband to tend to him. If Jaxen wasn't crying because he was hungry, I allowed him to meet his needs and figure it out.

Well let me tell you, by the time the first week was up my husband was bragging to anyone who asked. The conversation went a little something like this.

Tom: "Hey bro, how is it with a newborn? How are you Jo?"
Marq: "Yo bro, my wife is super woman. I don't know how she does it. She really is a super mom bro."

Nothing made me happier than this. Although it bothers me that others think being a stay at home mom is a piece of cake, affirmation from my husband is really all I needed.


A lot of moms don't have that. Everyone around them is wondering what the heck they are doing at home. So for all of you moms out there busting your butts for your kids and household, if no one ever has, I salute you. I honor and thank you for being so selfless. You are a gem. In the words of my husband, you are SUPER WOMAN!

And ladies and gents, lets be kind to each other. Let's not be so quick to judge and make assumptions about people who may not have the same lifestyle as you. Stay at home moms do a lot more than you think.

So the next time you encounter a stay at home mom, please don't ask her what she does all day.
& if you ignore my advice
Please don't be offended by her response!

Being a mother, working or non working, is one of the most amazing opportunities on earth. Let's respect each other. & my stay at home mamas, don't be afraid to tell everyone to

Put some RESPEK on your name!



Miscarriage Awareness Month: Nina Young

It took me a while to find a way to share my story. No matter which way I write the words, no matter how this story ends there will never be an easy way to relive it. I have found comfort in the possibility that my testimony may possibly inspire someone who may be struggling with infertility or who has gone through something similar and are waiting for their silver lining.

I was told once by a doctor that I would not become pregnant and also told by another doctor I can only become pregnant through IVF. I always tried to hold on to God's promise, he had revealed to me years before that I would be a mother. But after the first and second year of trying I grew extremely weary. And by the third I was losing faith. There was a lot of doubt that came with our struggle with infertility. It was like having a dark cloud over us. I remember hearing that voice telling me "it's never going to happen".

Everyone was telling me that once I stopped obsessing about having a child, that it would happen. But when you want something so bad, it’s nearly impossible to stop thinking about it. I remember specifically asking God, one day; as I cried hysterically in the shower, to take the desire of having kids away, because the disappointment that came with, not being able to have any, was unbearable. Two weeks later I find out that I am pregnant and one week after that I find out that I'm pregnant with twins.

The day I miscarried was the day of my gender reveal appointment. Although in my heart I already knew I was having two boys I still had a little hope that it would be a girl and a boy. As soon as I found out they were boys, I named them right away. My pride and joys, the love I had for them was something I never experienced before. They were everything I dreamed of and I was getting to share this journey with the love of my life (my husband). But before I even got a chance to call him to tell him the wonderful news I was being rushed off to the doctor, who determined that I was having a miscarriage. She asked me if I wanted to give birth to them or have them removed. Have them removed??? What? Everything else after that was a whirlwind and a bit of a blur so much happened within those 5 days in the hospital. Much of it I still struggle with till this day. The one thing I remember vividly and I could still feel it in my bones is when I walked out of that hospital empty handed. I had envisioned that my husband would walk out the hospital door with both car seats in his hand and that I would be wheeled behind him gleaming with joy. But that feeling when i walked out with nothing but a broken heart , and bruises all over my body, I never felt so robbed , violated and defeated. I watched as couples were discharged with there babies , I heard in the rooms next to me as babies were being born the cries of life in there lungs as they made their entrance into this world. And what I had was a rose hung up on my door to let everyone know that I had a miscarriage.

I gave natural birth to both boys and my husband and I were fortunate enough to spend a little time with each of them. Telling them how much we love them, taking in how beautiful they were. I was really surprised at how developed they were. We were even able to get little footprints. It was hard to say goodbye. And I think it's still hard not having them around. But we manage well through the hard days, and often speak of them and imagine what they would be like. We try to keep their memory alive. It helps us cope.

I knew that I would try right away to have another. I struggled with not wanting to "replace" what I lost and still having that longing for a child. I felt I didn't have another three years to spend trying to have a baby and since I just had given birth my body was still fertile, four months later we were pregnant again with another baby boy! But I didn't feel the same joy I did with the twin pregnancy. In all honesty I was terrified.

It wasn't until my third trimester that I began to warm up to the reality that I was having a baby. I spent most of the pregnancy on pins and needles, haunted by doubt and fear. I had to get my cervix stitched closed at 17 weeks with this pregnancy, because I started to dilate. I was 18 weeks when I lost the twins. So one could understand my uncertainty. I spent the rest of my pregnancy on bed rest. It wasn't the greatest time. But I did always feel blessed. And towards the ending I made a conscious decision to embrace it. Because either way it was in Gods hands.

March, 11th, 2016 at 4:30 pm. My husband and I welcomed a healthy baby boy into this world we named him Ethan Knight. And he is absolutely the light of our lives. Sometimes we both just stare at him while he is asleep in awe. And every once in a while a sadness creeps in. Not because we aren't grateful for what we have. But naturally we wonder what could have been. When I look at Ethan I don't see my first born. I see a little brother, I see our third son. Deep in my heart we are a family five, it may not look that way or feel that way to others looking from the outside in. But I was a mom before Ethan was born. He is our rainbow baby as they say. Because he came to us after the storm. He is our little promise from God.

I may never understand exactly what went wrong, I may not know the "what's" and "whys" And maybe a part of me may never truly accept losing my first sons. But when I look at Ethan I see a real life testament of hope. He is a miracle. Right before my eyes. When I look at my husband I see a true partner someone who I will forever be tied to and not only because of marriage but because of something so traumatizing we endured together. And I feel blessed. That sense of loss will always find its way to my heart because I am a mother who has lost two children. That I carried , and that I birthed.

When I became pregnant with Ethan my high risk doctor went over the autopsy of the twins with me. And she told me that I could of either died or have my uterus removed, due to underlying complications with the twin pregnancy. Of course that meant little to me when I held it up to my yearning to have my boys with me. But the fact that I am here today, holding a smiling, bouncy baby boy. Is truly a blessing. That I do not take for granted.


Beauty After Birth

"Your body isn't ruined. You are a tigress who has earned her stripes." - Unknown

Beauty after birth.

The above quote is so inspirational to me. It is so easy after birth to look down and to truly not be happy with what you see. I am praying that this post will inspire you to rock the crap out of your stripes. Love your body girl!

Lets face it, every mom is concerned with how they are going to look after gaining weight, getting stretch marks, swollen feet, and my worst enemy... The SWOLLEN nose. It can be especially hard watching celebrities that we love, or love to hate sporting their 2 week post birth 120 pound bodies.

I will keep it "a buck fifty." Although my bounce back was always a concern, it did not stop me from eating my ice cream, cookies, fried foods, and my occasional Pepsi. Now for all you healthy mommies and daddies out there, pick your jaw up off of the floor, its ok. I commend you for fighting the urge to binge (daddies have pregnancy binges too) but as for me, I had little to no self control (only when my healthy husband wasn't around, which was hardly ever.)

Before I was pregnant I weighed a whopping 170. Now that may not mean anything to you, but for a girl who weighted 120-125 for most of her life this was a little heartbreaking. By the end of my pregnancy I was 220 pounds!!

A little side not that makes me feel better about the situation... I was filled with water weight. When I was three months pregnant, I looked about five, and by the time I was five months people were asking if I had passed my due date! Eventually I started saying "Yes, yes I have" even though I had 4 months left.

Although I gained weight quickly, I took pride in showing off my stomach which at the time had zero stretch marks! The pregnancy God's had blessed me (so I thought) and I was going to return to my stretch mark free body when my pregnancy was over.


So lets fast forward to the end of my pregnancy. Not only was I an African American Miss Piggy, but stretch marks found their way to the middle of my stomach. They even had the nerve to make a design around and under my belly button. Disrespectful!! 

I was devastated. I pretended that it didn't bother me but all I could think about was how bad my stretch marks would look after I had Jax, and how I could never wear a bikini because of them. I worried and worried myself dry about the weight that I had gained. What would people think of me after I had the baby and had no "excuse" to be fat?

Well I can honestly and proudly to say that  after pushing out a watermelon from a hole the size of a quarter, those shallow thoughts no longer concern me. Don't get me wrong it is great to want to get back in shape after having a baby, but the worrying and feeling ashamed, oh no mama that has to go.

Instead we should be holding our heads high and strutting our stuff after birth! I mean hello, do you understand what your body just did? Ladies we (and for you future moms) GREW a human inside of us,

We went through war with nausea, weight gain, being uncomfortable, the list goes on, and on, but we came out victorious! (insert fake audience applause here.) 

So why is it that we are ashamed of the results of this war?

Whatever your reasons may be, today we are kicking them to the curve!

When I look at my stretch marks now, I feel empowered. I feel tough. I have earned my stripes, and bragging rights. And so have you!

Listen, having a baby is a full time job. Do not push yourself to hit the gym to satisfy others, and to fit what society says is beautiful! Allow yourself time to heal. Enjoy your baby. Look in the mirror and find beauty in yourself. Admire the fact that whether you had a c-section, a natural birth, or a hospital birth, you are a warrior.

When you feel up to working out, do it for you. 

SO ladies lets get in formation, and tell the world that what they consider fat, is actually your resilient bodies extra skin that protected your baby. And those stretch marks that may be considered ugly to others are our reminder that we did the damn thang!

Yes, at the end of the day this was a power rant, but I look forward to rocking my stripes on the beach next year with all of you. See you there hot mamas.


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