BirthMarkings – creative short film on accepting the body’s changes after giving birth

The International Museum of Women is, as the organizers say about the project, “an innovative online museum that showcases art, stories and ideas to celebrate, inspire and advance the lives of women around the world.” They are a museum without walls, and they give voice to women who are (all too often) unheard.

On this portal I found a video that is only 20 minutes long but it  touches on an interesting subject in an original way. The short film “BirthMarkings” explores women’s bodies after giving birth, and the self-image change that usually follows. Should these stretch marks be called scars? Why is no one talking about them, yet these are things that almost all of us have seen on our mothers’ (or on our own) bodies? Is this something to be ashamed of or is it something natural? The film raises these and other important question about (healthy) body image, motherhood and the (Western) concept of beauty. Margaret Lazarus, the film’s director only focuses on women’s tummies, and that I mean literally: the camera only shows the abdominal regions, and we only hear the women’s voices, but we never see their face.

As someone who has not (yet) given birth, I must admit I am afraid of all that lies ahead of me, of the ways this will affect my body (and soul). So I consider this shock therapy for myself: a lesson on starting to already get accustomed to the thought and learn to deal with it, as this will be something I have little control over. One of those things that affect so many women, but is rarely discussed openly.

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