Comedian Amy Schumer gave birth to her son Gene in 2019, but ever since her pregnancy she's had a talent for talking about motherhood in a way that acknowledges both the struggles and the joy without being overly-dramatic or saccharine. Most recently, Schumer posted a picture of her C-section scar on Instagram with the simple caption "Feeling like my c section looks cute today! #hotgirlwinter#csection" and fellow moms are here for it.
The comments section of the post is full of cheers from other celebrities, moms, and celebrity moms. "Whatever transported Genie on this planet is to be relished," Jessica Seinfeld replied (before describing Schumer's body with flame emojis which, incidentally, were bountiful in the comments). "It took me awhile to make peace with mine, now I LOVE it," replied @Traycee1242, echoing the sentiments of many other moms in the comments.
Schumer has been very open about many aspects of motherhood on social media and in the press, including her diagnosis of hyperemesis gravidarum (HG) — a condition of extreme, persistent nausea and vomiting during pregnancy that can lead to dehydration, weight loss, and electrolyte imbalances — for which Schumer was hospitalized. In an interview on Late Night with Seth Meyers, about six weeks before giving birth, she said, "It's been pretty tough, I didn't know that pregnancies could be such a bummer." Her pregnancy and birth were the subject of the docuseries Expecting Amy on HBOMax last year.
It's an openness that has continued over the past nearly two years. Five weeks postpartum Schumer posted a picture of herself pushing a stroller in hospital issue mesh underwear — an item many moms look on fondly in spite of its hideousness (they're so comfortable).
Her C-section, complicated by her HG, is an issue she's discussed as well. Though she'd initially planned a birthing center, People reports, she felt that a hospital birth and a C-section were ultimately her best option. Since then she's shown her scar on a number of occasions, including to photographers in front of her New York apartment and on Instagram, including in a year-old post in which she discussed the pain of IVF.
Despite the fact that C-sections account for almost 1/3 of births in the U.S., according to the U.S. Centers for Disease and Control (CDC), C-sections don't get a lot of visibility. Birth in media — TV, film — is almost always vaginal. Perhaps this contributes to the sense of guilt or shame many moms feel after having a C-section. According to a 2018 study, women who'd had an unplanned C-section were more likely to feel sad, traumatized, and angry than women who'd delivered vaginally. An unfortunate 15% reported feeling like a "failure."
Hopefully, sharing images like Schumer's will help destigmatize the procedure (and its scar) and normalize this already common aspect of motherhood.