Joanna Venditti is a proud mother of four beautiful children: Holden, 5; Beau, 4; and 7-month-old twins, Mia and Everly. She also writes about her personal adventures of being a mom on her blog, Nesting Story.
At the beginning of the month, her post “What Having Four Kids (Including Twins) Has Done To My Body and Confidence,” went viral. According to Yahoo! Parents, it has been shared over 8,000 times on Facebook and received more than 100 comments.
The post was a candid look at the thoughts and feelings Venditti has gone through as an expecting mom, particularly about her body image. With it she also posted photos of herself before, during, and after pregnancy. She also shares something very refreshing — Venditti honestly feels that facing her struggles has given her more confidence:
“I am so much more confident with my body than I ever have been before. Anytime I start doubting my new curves or war wounds I look around the room and ask myself, how many other people in this room grew two people inside their body at once? I am trying to wake up every morning to work out before everyone else is up. Most days I succeed and I am actually starting to see my body come back. But it has been through a war," she wrote in the post.
Instead of letting negative feelings stop her or frighten her, Venditti started to be kind to herself during and after her last pregnancy with twins:
“I made the decision to be kind to my body from now on. Eat healthy foods, indulge here and there and not beat myself up about it. I also wanted to get in shape again, especially knowing I was finished having children. I would take my time. But this time is different. I have simple goals that are for me and no one else.”
By sharing her untouched and very real photos, Venditti hopes other mothers will be inspired to feel proud and unashamed of the person they are now.
“When I found out I was expecting twins I couldn’t wrap my mind around how enormous I was going to get. I was already well known for having huge basketball size bellies whenever I was pregnant, but growing two babies at once??? To be honest, I was kind of freaking out about it.”
Venditti has received some backlash for her post. Critics claim that she is merely “replacing the need to turn heads by now feeling important that [she has] twins.” She not only points out that she does have other “singletons,” but also that she has “admiration for every mother and their body's sacrifice.”
In fact, responding to such criticism has only made her a stronger parent:
“Although I don’t have any pearls of wisdom or tricks on how to deal with cyber bullying, I can honestly look at my children and tell them that I have experienced it. I have had to process hateful anonymous words and be able to let them go. It’s okay to feel it, address it and defend yourself when necessary and find a way to move on,” she wrote.
Now, seven months after her twins were born, Venditti is on the way to the post-baby body she wants — and she's doing it on her own time, in a healthy way, and with confidence.