You might know me well enough to have crinkled your brow a bit when you saw that post title on my blog. If you don’t know me well enough, here’s a little about me: I don’t have kids, so I don’t have a post-baby body.

But I recently had a realization: not having kids doesn’t stop a person from aging.

Of course, I knew this all along, but it became real in a new way the night I told the girls from my high school Bible study I was driving them home in a year 2000 model car only to realize that my car is as old as they are. And then my husband had the realization that he’s worked at his current company for just two years less than his newest coworker has been alive.

So, we’re aging, and I can tell you from experience that pregnancy isn’t the only way a few extra pounds can find their way to a tummy. (It’s just arguably the most rewarding.) Having kids also isn’t the only way to end up with stretch marks (or other “unsightly” scars), fine lines, and gray hairs.

This is why I relate to Ludavia in this week’s Beauty Rewrites post when she writes, All too often, I look in the mirror and think, “I need to lose weight. I can’t wear a two-pieced swimsuit; because, everyone will see my stretch marks. How embarrassing. I have to wear loose clothing; so, no one sees the leftover pudge.”

Kids or no kids, we become pros at camouflaging the signs of the life we’ve lived in our bodies. But here’s the thing: we are living lives in these bodies, and that’s nothing to be ashamed of. These bodies enable us to feel joy and pain. They carry us to friends and to waterfalls. They allow us to move and connect, and they eventually show the signs of it.

We can unhappily fight this, or we can embrace and care for our bodies, appreciating what they do for us, and ensuring they’ll be able to continue living and exploring and enjoying life for as long as possible.

For perspective on shifting your focus off of your body’s flaws, whether you’ve had kids or not, hop on over to read Ludavia’s post on!

PS- This post is part of the 12-week series Beauty Rewrites featuring Christina Hubbard of Creative and Free, Ludavia Harvey of Nifty Betty, and myself. I hope you’ve been as encouraged as I’ve been as we’ve examined and rewritten some of the common struggles we have with our bodies and our perception of beauty. Only two posts remain! If you’ve missed any, check out the full list of Beauty Rewrites posts here.

Stop fighting the signs of age and start embracing and caring for your body – via @novelwritergirl @niftybetty