Hunter McGrady has always been an advocate for body positivity. But the model has found herself put to the test since becoming a mom to son Hudson last June. The 28-year-old recently took to Instagram to share a raw post about finding the strength to accept her postpartum body and acknowledge that it's been a struggle.
“As I was giving my son a bath last night, I was looking at his sweet soft body and was thinking about how that is his body and skin that will grow with him, the same body that was there since Day 1,” she wrote. “The body and skin that was formed inside my womb. The body that will take him through every milestone, the body that will fall and get back up, get scratched, bruised, the body that will reset itself at every stage of life, and the sweet body that will be with him forever.”
McGrady added, "I thought how much It would break my heart if he ever thought negatively of it or if he ever thought that body that his mama and daddy revered so much was wrong or needed to be different. Then this morning, as I was getting dressed, I looked at my body and was surprised at just how different it looked to me. I had more stretch marks than ever before, somehow. They all came postpartum. My stomach wasn’t as tight as it once was, my boobs weren’t sitting so high, and one seemed to droop much more than the other, and I began to point out all these things that didn’t look right to me."
But before going down a rabbit hole of self-criticism, an image popped into the SI Swimsuit model’s head that changed her whole attitude. “Then my son sitting in that bath last night flashed in my head, and I remembered, this body made his,” she said. “So I took a photo to remember how much I need to appreciate this body today.”
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That image was one of McGrady in Calvin Klein underwear, showing off everything she described. Plus, she posted another picture: a close-up of her stretch marks.
This honest assessment comes after many candid posts about her motherhood and body struggles. Last summer she took a selfie just 12 days after giving birth wearing a bra and underwear, and explained the process of getting comfortable with her body.
“I’m just a girl, standing in front of a mirror, 12 days postpartum, with breast milk stains, Depends diapers, pure exhaustion, asking herself to learn to love this new body,” she wrote. “To give herself grace, to feel the gummy-ness of her new tummy and the loose skin and remembering that this body not only created life, but housed it for nine months, went 45 hours into labor, and is now feeding it daily, all with one vessel. I feel so grateful for this body today.”
The podcast host also recently opened up to Health, explaining how she needed to appreciate her body differently. “Maybe it’s because of the way society treats pregnant women. All of a sudden, people say you’re glowing and fabulous,” McGrady said. “And then postpartum happens, and everyone asks when you’re going to lose weight — there’s that whole bounce-back culture.”
She added, “You’re not sleeping; you don’t even know your name — you can’t think about bouncing back. It made me realize that throughout life, you have to meet yourself over and over again because your body does change—and that’s what’s beautiful about it.”