Olivia Harvey
Updated Oct 06, 2017 @ 1:41 pm
Image of Elise Raquel's post-baby photo
Credit: raisingyoungloves / https://www.instagram.com/p/BZuplinnGl3/?taken-by=raisingyoungloves

Just like average, everyday bodies, postpartum bodies vary in shape and size. Some women can snap back to their pre-pregnancy shape in a matter of weeks. For others, the pregnancy weight never goes away. All of these bodies are beautiful. With this in mind, one woman decided to share a photo of her post-baby body just hours after giving birth, and her message about handling her postpartum looks has caught a lot of attention from fellow mothers.

Hours after giving birth to her daughter, Willa, Elise Raquel had a photo taken of her in her “rawest and most vulnerable state.”

Raquel wrote that although she wanted to get back to her pre-baby body in no time, like many celebrities seem to do, she couldn’t and never did. She continued,

Even though she covered up for a while after giving birth to her children, Raquel finally learned to not be ashamed of her body anymore.

She called upon fellow mothers to celebrate their postpartum bodies and to be proud of where their bodies have gotten them.

Her July post collected over 2,000 likes as well as a myriad of kudos and questions about why she decided to share such a personal post. Raquel reiterated that she felt as though she had done something wrong when she left the hospital still looking like she was six months pregnant.

Tabloids and society had taught her that she needed to spring back quickly, but for many that is not plausible. She wanted to be the voice of reason and support for women experiencing the same post-baby feelings about their bodies.

Raquel is pulling back the curtain hiding what real postpartum bodies can look like. By sharing her story, she’s hoping other women will go easier on themselves post-pregnancy as they learn to love their body for what it has given them, rather than for what it looks like.