In the era of social media, posting a precious family photo on social media soon after giving birth is practically a requirement. I actually packed a little makeup bag when I went to the hospital to deliver in anticipation of that first photo, which I knew would haunt me for life if I looked as bedraggled as I really was just after my son was extracted from my body. But North Carolina mother Amanda Bacon is a lot braver than me, and that's why her postpartum "motherhood uncensored" photo is going viral. Rather than posing all snuggled up in a hospital bed with her baby and partner, hair and makeup on point, the photo shows dad holding the baby while giving the camera a thumbs-up, and mom in the background wearing nothing but mesh underwear and an enormous maxi-pad.
"I'm sharing this picture because it's real," Bacon captioned her post. "This is motherhood; it's raw, stunning, messy, and freaking hilarious all rolled into one." For those who've never given birth, or had a really honest conversation with someone who has, the "giant mom diaper," as Bacon refers to it, is standard issue maternity ward fashion. One of the nightmare side effects of pregnancy that women are seldom warned about is the six-week period that follows birth.
Bacon's post not only serves as a warning about the dreaded diaper, but a reminder that it's normal.
Motherhood isn't always magical and beautiful, and mothers should be honest about that. But Bacon also encourages mothers to embrace the shocking, gross moments, and laugh about them, because really, what else can they do? The full caption:
I'm sharing this picture because it's real. This is motherhood; it's raw, stunning, messy, and freaking hilarious all rolled into one. Having a baby is a beautiful experience, and the realities of postpartum life aren't spoken enough about. And definitely not photographed enough. Some people probably find this uncomfortable, but why? I seriously don't get it! It's probably because this part isn't talked about. We all should try and educate, empower and embrace every aspect of childbirth, including moments like this. And do it while having a sense of humor. Nothing says welcome to motherhood like an adorable squishy baby, and a giant mom diaper.
Bacon later edited the post to clarify that her husband didn't share the photo against her will; she posted it herself. This is Bacon's second child; according to the Daily Mail, baby Pierson joins older sister Kaelyn. And the "mom getting real" thing wasn't a one-time shot for Bacon; she's also posted advice on how to "take a dump alone with a toddler and newborn" and a breastfeeding photo where she remarks on her hair that "can grease a pan" and being "constantly covered in every bodily function imaginable." Amanda Bacon, I hope you never change.