During pregnancy, everything in life is changing rather quickly. Your baby bump is blossoming (which some ladies confuse as getting fat). While others experience skin conditions and body swelling. As a model, It’s hard to accept all these involuntary bodily changes. Knowing that for the next 9 months you have no idea what your body will decide to do can be disheartening. For me, not knowing,… made me nuts!
As my wardrobe became smaller and my pregnant belly expanded, I experienced a feeling of hopelessness. Every day I’d think about how powerless I was. I had no choice. There was no turning back. I couldn’t reach in my pockets and pull out my unborn baby. I had to put in my time. This feeling put me in an automatic panic mode. I was a working model from the age of 14 years old,… for crying out loud! I’m supposed to be skinny and fit! This was my profession. How would I make ends meet?
I decided to continue doing the things that brought me joy! I live for ballroom style Salsa and Hustle dancing. I should have gone pro but it was my hobby and joy, and still is. My pregnant bump wasn’t going to stop me from my happy place called dance. Most of my male friends were cool and danced with me, while others backed off and could barely look at me. I grew quite large and everyone was used to seeing this massively fit, in shape women. This situation was just too odd for them. In hindsight, I smile because I bounced back into better shape, in fact, tighter and smaller than ever! My post- partum body took a while to return, but with hard work, it did come back! After all I had made a decision to have a FIT PREGNANCY!
I was once at a hustle dance event in NYC at Lincoln Center. This was one of my favorite events that was held once a year and I was very pregnant! I almost decided not to go, had nothing to wear, bla-bla-bla, but then decided to give myself loving BUMP ADVICE which today I can freely share. I had been dancing and exercising throughout my entire pregnancy so I was probably in better cardio-vascular shape than I am today! Much to my amazement, all the spectators at Lincoln Center were amazed by my style, grace and cardiovascular ability! I received so many thumbs up, tons of smiles and I felt their sense of admiration. This was during a time where most women would not come out and play, it wasn’t the norm to embrace your bump through the art of such a sensuous dance. I wasn’t going to soften my edge and dance differently. This particular dance is passionate and very sexy. This dance is a hard sport and requires being in tip top shape! I still find it the most challenging dance and performed it well with my third trimester BUMP!
As a pregnant women, you must continue doing the things in life that bring you joy. Remember, every single person on this earth has a mother that gave birth. We are not alone in this journey. When feeling blue, channel your feelings, acknowledge them but don’t let feelings define you. Get up, move on and get along with your day. It’s a beautiful time and one day you’ll look back and admire your own courage!
Today, women get to be strong! No matter what changes are happening in the world, women have rights. It’s your birthright to be happy during pregnancy! Being a new mom comes with countless rewards. Nothing in life is easy so embrace yourself and remember this is but a teeny tiny part of your life. Remember to be continue kind acts of generosity. You can do it! Your heart has more love to share than you an imagine!
Dedicated to Eric, Devon and Talia
To all the powerful people who have the courage to parent a child!