Wednesday, November 19, 2014

My butt: The beauty of the before and after

Goodness, there has been an awful lot of stripping down going on lately by mothers. From the Dutch model Lara Stone, who posed nude post-baby for System Magazine, to Kim Kardashian’s greased up Paper cover, there is definitely no longer a need to pay for a Playboy subscription.

The Daily Mail UK says Kardashian explains, “As a role model I'm not saying anyone else should do that, but for me it was an art project and it taught me to do what you want to do.”

You can’t argue that point; it is good to feel empowered enough to act on your own desires and to not be shamed by others’ morals.

I used to do just that.

Before: Back in my modeling days

Then I got older and--wiser? I hid my body away. I covered up. I got more conservative as befits a mother, or so I thought.

And I lost some of my sense of self. I lost some sense of myself as a beautiful, sexual woman. I lost connection to a certain part of myself.

I've watched with interest as celebrities and everyday women claim empowerment through posing nude; it's made me ponder my stance and realize where I stand.

This past week, I've seen the expected parodies and responses to Kim Kardashian's butt: Chelsea Handler has been doing her own selfie-versions as part of the conversation and there’s even a Princess Jasmine version of the butt shot.

This whole posing-in-the-nude-to-make-some-point just might be getting oversaturated.

Of course, maybe that could be part of some kind of solution to how women are portrayed in media. If we see everybody and their mother (literally) in the nude, maybe we’ll get to the point as a culture where we’ll say, who cares?

Maybe we’ll get to the point where nobody will say, “Oh! But you’re a mother! You shouldn’t pose nude!”

After: 23 years and three children later
Maybe we’ll get to the point where we really will get to see the diversity and beauty in all different shapes and sizes and ages of bodies.

Maybe we’ll get to the point where every nude image of a woman doesn’t have to be sexualized and presented for a male gaze, but can just be a photo of a female celebrating her body.

Maybe we’ll get to the point where what we choose to do or not do with our bodies will be our decisions to make alone and no one will judge us for those decisions.

And hey, maybe the fathers will get in on the act, too. And we can all live in a happy-ever-after world with lots of different naked people all getting along and loving each other regardless of how perfect (or not) our bodies are.