feeling beautiful during pregnancy with Danielle | Philadelphia Maternity Photographer

I think in general woman feel insecure about their bodies especially when pregnant. Your body goes through so many changes and of course as the months go by the “bump” gets bigger. For some women it is hard to embrace these changes as beautiful. I want to help woman celebrate their body and the beauty of being pregnant. I am starting a blog series on the struggles of feeling beautiful during pregnancy and hopefully through showing woman how beautiful they truly are help them gain confidence in loving themselves at this moment in their lives.

Before the photo shoot with Danielle I had a vision of what I hoped to achieve. I wanted to capture Danielle surrounded by nature. When I had shown the first image to Danielle I asked her what her initial reaction was, she had this to say: “I was so excited and a bit nervous to see my picture for the first time.  For me, it’s such an unknown of what I “really” looked like – especially being pregnant.  When I saw the image I was so proud of my belly!  I LOVE LOVE LOVE the picture and of course couldn’t wait to “show it off”!”

I was able to interview Danielle and after hearing her answers I had the chills and almost cried. Knowing I was able to help her “see” how beautiful she truly is made me so happy!

What has been your biggest struggle with how you feel during your pregnancy?

My biggest struggle is self-image.  This is my second pregnancy and it has been very different from my first.  With my first son I was sick and didn’t want to eat – this time I want to do nothing but eat!  Also I worked full time with my first pregnancy (teaching children’s fitness) so I was extremely active for 9 months.  This time I am home and not nearly as active.  It’s made a difference in many areas.  I feel more tired and I just feel bigger!  Sometimes I hate to think about going out to dinner or any kind of function where people will say “look at your belly”!  I struggle to embrace the belly and be confident with it.

Do you struggle to feel confident with your new body?

I will say I have good days & bad days with my body.  Sometimes I can’t stand to even look in the mirror.  I question, who is that person staring back at me?  Especially being pregnant in the summer!  Normally, I am at the pool with a nice tan and rocking a two piece!  Now I’m just begging my son doesn’t ask me to take off my cover up so we can swim in the big pool.  I am a confident person, but the pregnant body just causes so many mixed emotions about everything!

What have you enjoyed most with the changes of your body?

The thing I have enjoyed the most is also the thing I struggle with the most and that is the belly!  I am definitely a woman who mostly stays the same everywhere else – just has a very large belly when pregnant.  It’s been known to even startle people who don’t expect to see a pregnant belly when they are looking at me from behind.  Part of me is really just in love with my belly – especially when my son kisses it and says “I love you baby”.  Yes, as pregnant women we are exhausted, we hurt everywhere, we lose our sense of self – but we are carrying new life and that is just amazing to me!

Is capturing your pregnant self-important to you?

Honestly, before I had this picture done my answer would have been no.  Now, seeing how special and just plain amazing the pregnant body is I say YES!!  Yes, it’s important – and why didn’t I see that before!  Never before did I want any kind of picture of myself pregnant – but this experience and photo has completely changed my mind.  Just like each child is different so is each pregnancy and I am so thrilled to have mine captured in such a special way.