This is Mel Watts. Veteran mom.

She documents life with her kids on Instagram and her blog, where she keeps it pretty real about what it can take to raise children in 2017.

She also just recently added a new baby boy to the brood.


Just four days after the Caesarean birth of her son, she shared a photo on Instagram that captured the remarkable resilience of the female body.

The raw photo shows her belly before and after the delivery.

Recovering from a c-section is tough; it's a major surgery after all. And while the incision was fresh, and the pain likely was too, Watts wanted to take a minute to appreciate her body for everything it'd been through.

Fair warning: This photo doesn't pull any punches.

📸 Top photo 30 weeks pregnant Bottom photo 4 days post Caesarean section. Wow. Honestly it's no castle or bloody piece of art. Sure it's filled with stretch marks and dimples. But this body, this one the one I own gave me another life. Another small human to love and to hold. It held onto him for 9 months and sheltered him, protected him and prepared him for the day he was born. So many times I've doubted my body, so many times I've pinched and pulled at sections that I didn't like. In reality this body has done everything I'd ever want it to do. Sure it's not magazine or swimsuit worthy to some. But to me and my husband, it's the place that grew our babies. It's the place that everything we love most started. And that's all that counts right?! We feel as though we need to follow society's stigma on what we should look like when in fact we should just do what we feel works for us. No body has the same body And every body has their own body. Enjoy it.

A post shared by M E L W A T T S - MUMMA LIFE (@themodernmumma) on

She wrote:

"Wow. Honestly it's no castle or bloody piece of art.
Sure it's filled with stretch marks and dimples. But this body, this one the one I own gave me another life. Another small human to love and to hold. It held onto him for 9 months and sheltered him, protected him and prepared him for the day he was born.
So many times I've doubted my body, so many times I've pinched and pulled at sections that I didn't like. In reality this body has done everything I'd ever want it to do. Sure it's not magazine or swimsuit worthy to some. But to me and my husband, it's the place that grew our babies. It's the place that everything we love most started. And that's all that counts right?! We feel as though we need to follow society's stigma on what we should look like when in fact we should just do what we feel works for us.
No body has the same body. And every body has their own body. Enjoy it."


The response to her brave photo was swift and powerful.

It racked up thousands of Likes on Instagram, and other women's stories have been pouring in via the comments section of the post.

"I have struggled with my C-section area for SEVEN YEARS. Why have I not been embracing it for that long?" wrote one woman. "That's where the most cherished life called home before she was born. Thank you for helping me finally seeing this in the right light."

"Thank you for posting this and stamping in my brain that this is the body that grew 3 humans and that's definitely more important than a flat tum!" wrote another.

The circumstances of every birth can vary by choice or by medical necessity — surgical or vaginal, natural or medicated, induced or not.

But none of that changes the end result: a new human being grown, nurtured, and brought into the world.

That's a monumental feat, whether the mom is back on her feet and back in the gym in a matter of days, or whether she's scarred and sore for weeks or months after.

The female body is an amazing thing. In the midst of "bikini season," let's just take a moment to remember that.

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