I had been taking pole dancing lessons for almost six years, when I became pregnant with my first child. More than just learning cool tricks on the pole, this particular class focused on embracing your feminine beauty and loving all of your curves.
Of course, this wasn't such a problem when I was young, twenty-something and in the best shape of my life. Now, I was first-time mom-to-be, with an ever-evolving body which was no longer just my own. I wondered if I would still feel sexy moving in such a sensual way. Would I feel awkward, self-conscious and clumsy? Would I still be able to do all the tricks I so loved?
Pole dancing while pregnant was different. My growing belly made certain floor work impossible, and fear coupled with a bit of fatigue and nausea kept we from doing all of those amazing inversions pole artists are known for. And, while there are many other pregnant pole dancers who soar and climb with the best of them, my destiny was to be grounded.
In that beautifully rooted space is where I found peace with my body. My heavier belly naturally pulled me down into deep squats and moved me to undulate my hips more. I discovered new ways to get myself off of the floor, and alternative ways to use the pole without going upside down. I found myself moving more slowly, more deliberate and with more awareness. I felt alive in my body because of the very life building inside me.
Surrounded by a tribe of women, all there to embrace and encourage one another, I never felt more beautiful. I felt invigorated. I felt sexy.
Pregnancy is an other-worldly experience, which often leaves us feeling out of control of our own bodies. Pole dancing helped me reclaim some of that ownership and gave me a deeper appreciation of the glorious work I was doing.
I continued pole dancing after my son was born and kept on going right through my second pregnancy. I am now a mom of a five- and three-year-old who still finds time to pole dance and embrace the beauty of my postpartum figure.