This morning as we as we were getting dressed she stopped me.
“I want to hug my favorite belly,” she says.
This has been a thing, ever since she was old enough to talk.
My favorite belly.
She comes over, wraps her tiny arms around my waist, nestles her head into my midsection.
“I love this big belly,” she whispers, so softly I can barely make out the words.
She whispers without judgement, without knowledge that big can sometimes mean bad.
To her my belly is simply big in comparison to hers.
“This is my favorite part of your body, mama,” she says gazing up.
“Oh?” I respond. “Why is that?”
“Without this belly I wouldn’t be here. It was my home, and I love it,” she states.
Matter of fact.
As simple as that.
I look down, seeing through her eyes.
The stretch marks.
The subtle roundness.
The fact that I haven’t achieved the elusive (and highly prized) flat-abs-post-baby, even though my baby is almost 6.
The autoimmune disease that brews just beneath the surface.
The miscarriages and cysts and infertility.
She sees none of it.
And looking down I can let that all go, too.
To see a body that carries battle scars and struggle, but also beauty and love.
Real, pure, unadulterated love.
Thank you my girl.
Thank you belly.
You’re my favorite, too.