The Stretch Mark Identity

On Fridays the Gypsy Mama blog ( hosts Five Minute Friday. She picks a topic word and challenges her readers to throw caution to the wind and write about it for just five minutes, unscripted and unedited. This week's word was Identity, prompting this blog that one daughter described as disturbing, and another daughter described as awesome. Which kind of proves the point of The Stretch Mark Identity, (which I only edited a little, and only took slightly longer than five minutes to write). 

Having children changes everything.

Not just your previously smooth stomach and your clothing size, but deeper change more jarring than the striae roadmap on your abdomen and a muffin top spilling over the waist band of your jeans.

The stretch marks on your mind and your heart are the ones that change you the most. These are the scars from stretching your soul to include someone else in your nights, your days, your every decision, your every thought. This is the permanent adjustment of the shape of your solar system to include the revolution of a new planet. These are the marks that your children’s pain and struggles will leave on your heart forever.

Those are the biggest changes, the change that can never been undone, no matter how old your children grow. It is the stretch mark identity.

Being a parent will stretch you like nothing else in this life does. It will leave its mark on you. You will not be as attractive afterwards. But you just might be a better person, stretch marks and all.

I know I am.


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