Ashley Graham Celebrates Her Postpartum Body With Nude Photoshoot

“It’s such a beautiful thing to be able to give birth, but I didn’t realize it until afterward."
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By Nehal Aggarwal, Editor
Published August 4, 2020
personality and influencer Ashley Graham
Image: Ashley Graham via Instagram

Ashley Graham has always been an advocate for celebrating all the shapes and sizes women’s bodies come in—and now she’s celebrating her own postpartum body.

The model, 32, recently posed nude, while breastfeeding her 6-month-old son Isaac, for a photoshoot conducted by her husband, Justin Ervin, and published in Elle’s August digital issue.

In the interview, Graham, interviewed by actress Kristen Bell, discusses how she views her postpartum body as a way to commemorate her journey to motherhood.

“When I look at my new stretch marks and the changes that my body went through, it reminds me that, as women, we’re all superheroes,” Graham said in the interview. “I’m always reminded that our bodies were built to do this. It’s such a beautiful thing to be able to give birth, but I didn’t realize it until afterward.”

She continued, “When I got pregnant, I had to reimagine my relationship with my body with this creature inside me taking over. I was gaining weight so rapidly. Then, to get stretch marks on my stomach, that to me was like, ‘Oh, my gosh. I can’t believe this happened.’"

Graham, who recently showed off her stretch marks in a campaign for Swimsuits For All, said that meeting Isaac in January changed everything for her—including how she viewed her body.

“At first (the physical changes) felt devastating, and then when I met Isaac, I said, ‘No, this is exactly what every woman has talked about for ages,’” she recalled. “‘This is not just a battle wound. This is something that has changed my life forever, and I’m going to celebrate my new body.’”

Graham and Bell also spoke about the challenges of parenting during a pandemic. “I’ve had to learn how to be creative and how to live under one roof with my mom, her boyfriend, my husband, and my son,” Graham said, adding that her family has been doing a lot of affirmations.

“The silver lining in all this is that I gave birth just before quarantine, so I’ve been able to watch Isaac grow up before my eyes,” she said. "Experiencing every single moment with him has been a dream come true.

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