Hunter McGrady posts about embracing her stretch marks: 'I need to appreciate this body'

·4 min read

Hunter McGrady has an important message about appreciating one's body.

The model, who gave birth to her first child in 2021, took to Instagram on Wednesday to share a photo of herself in a Calvin Klein underwear set. In a second slide, she pointed the camera closer to reveal her stretch marks.

"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 captioned the post. "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 shared that it would break her heart if her son ever thought "negatively" of his own body, or thought that it "needed to be different." However, she said that she had different feelings when reflecting on her own image. What helped was recalling her thoughts about wanting her son to appreciate his body.

"This morning as I was getting dressed I looked at my body and was surprised at just how different it looked to me," she explained. "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. Then my son sitting in that bath last night flashed in my head and I remembered, this body made his. So, I took a photo to remember how much I need to appreciate this body today."

McGrady received lots of praise in the comments section for her honest post. Fellow model and mom Tess Holliday wrote, "My body changed more after having Bowie then when I was pregnant. Definitely went through a grieving process before I realized what you said, we were grateful enough to grow them. Sending you love mama."

McGrady’s sister Michaela added, "Love this and love you so much sissy."

The Sports Illustrated alum has previously spoken about feeling uncomfortable with comments about her pregnant body. She told Katherine Schwarzenegger on her Instagram Live show BDA Baby that people would often ask her if she was worried she wouldn't "look" pregnant, because she has a larger body. McGrady stressed that it was time to change the narrative around what a pregnant person should look like.

"I didn't look pregnant until probably my late, late second trimester, beginning of third trimester, and for me, again, society has such a way of making us feel bad already as women," she said. "And then, being pregnant on top of it, because you only ever see the 'perfect' pregnant woman. She is just belly, she's glowing, her skin is amazing, her hair is long and flowing. When you're not that, you're like, 'Is something wrong with me? What is going on?' And I was not that. I gained weight everywhere. I had terrible acne. My hair was falling out. It wasn't what I imagined it, and again, it was because I was fed the lies that I had to look a certain way. A lot of women feel that way, no matter your size."

She also shared a candid message on Instagram 12 days after giving birth, writing that she was dealing with "breast milk stains," "diapers" and "pure exhaustion." McGrady said that she was working to give herself "grace" as she embraced the "gummy-ness" of her new stomach and "loose skin" that helped house her child for nine months.

"I feel so grateful for this body today," she wrote at the time. "Leaky breasts, bloody diapers (on my end) new stretch marks, gummy tummy and all."

Want lifestyle and wellness news delivered to your inbox? Sign up here for Yahoo Life’s newsletter.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting