I am not one of those women who can tell you that the love I have for what my body has done overrides my disappointment when I see my sagging boobs, stretched-out belly, and developing jowls staring back at me when I look in the mirror. “Good moms” are supposed to view their scars and not-so-elastic body parts as proud badges that reveal a hard-earned passage into motherhood. And that’s fine, but it’s not me. I want cosmetic surgery, and I want it yesterday.
The thing is, though, I want more than just perky tits. I want a total body reinvention — a “mommy makeover” as many like to refer to this postpartum suck, lift, tuck business. I’m a strong-willed, highly opinionated, tough-ass feminist woman, and until I had kids, I was also swimming in my sexuality, which my husband and I both loved.
These days, I’m totally turned off because I just plain don’t feel that sexy. I’m not insecure. I just want my boobs to go back to their proper home. But saying that out loud? Apparently, like Madonna said recently, this makes me a “bad feminist.”
Those arguments that women don’t need makeup, or slim waistlines, or fancy panties to feel sexy are kind of bullshit to me. I understand that objectifying women is terrible, but I am not objectifying myself. Pointing at celebrities like Beyoncé with her insane abs and sexy legs, or Jennifer Lopez with that ass that won’t stop, and calling them out for setting ridiculous beauty standards makes my eyes roll so hard that you can probably hear them scraping my skull as you read this.
Why not enjoy the many ways in which the female form is sexy AF? C-section scars are gorgeous to some women. Tattoos are a beauty standard for others. For me, it is about a strong physique. I’m not using the male gaze here, folks. I’m choosing to aspire to what I think is sexy.
Wanting to lose the baby weight and get into shape à la Jillian Michaels (who is also sexy AF, by the way) is cool because she represents a healthy lifestyle. Wanting that detox vegan plant-based lifestyle because it makes you feel energized? Cheers! Shoot that wheat grass right down your cute little gullet. Me? I want a tight ass and perky, perky boobs. And the way to get that will be a long road of working out, eating right, and probably going under the knife at least once.
Being a modern feminist means being able to make our own choices about our bodies, but many people still harbor this antiquated idea that a woman cannot possibly be feminist if she wants things that are considered oppressive, like being a stay-at-home-mom, or — gasp — wants to alter her body via surgical enhancements. I say: Wrong. If a woman chooses to do these things, including shelling out thousands of dollars for a porn star ass then she is just as feminist as Rosie the Riveter. It’s all about the freedom to choose.
The choices I make every single day help model for my kids what feminism can look like. I chose to stay home when my kids were babies. I chose to rejoin the workforce last year because I wanted to pursue my passion for journalism, and I wanted my kids to know that you are never too old to chase your dreams.
When I chose to get a tattoo at 37, my kids saw me owning my body and expressing myself in an artistic way that makes me happy. If I choose to get a tummy tuck, that will not convey to my kids that I am some insecure bimbo with no self-respect. It will demonstrate once again that I have autonomy over my body, and I get to choose what it looks like.
Women have had to fight hard, and the fight rages on, to be heard and valued as individuals. Individuals who can make our own decisions, on our own timeline, and at our own discretion. You might see my desires as vain or trashy or a waste of money, but that’s OK because my boobs are going to look amazing, and I do what I want.