#WomenCrushWednesday~Deauna

Women crush everyday of the week! To honor and share stories of women who are crushing it either on the body front or the mama front, I am featuring short interviews of women who are crushing it, hence the title #WomenCrushWednesday. So without further ado, let me introduce you to Deauna!

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How has your view of your body evolved over the years?

I didn’t have the bounce-back body most women had. After my son, I had a road map of stretch marks. When I had my daughter four years later, the road map was now drawn on what looked like a tricycle tire that no amount of cocoa butter or crunches would make go away. What also bothered me was in my mind I was smaller, but my clothes told a different story. I’d obsess about beating muffin top and belly fat into submission.
As I approached 40 I realized I needed to change how I looked at myself and life. I earned a couple of pounds and deserved peace of mind.
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How do you think women should feel about their bodies?

Embrace her body at whatever size it is right now. Buy clothes that accentuate features she loves. Walk by mirrors and feel herself sometimes. Say yes to that piece of cheesecake. The Universe didn’t put cheesecake here to be ignored. Life is too short to worry about not having Michelle Obama’s arms or Serena Williams’ whole lower half.

Why do you do what you do?

This is a two-fold answer. I have a 16-year-old daughter who already has some body image issues and I want her to love and accept herself the ways she is. I don’t want her waking up at 36 and thinking she needs to be anyone other than who she wants to be.
I’m going through a life change and it’s just good for my peace of mind. Writing on my blog helps me navigate this growth and find out how I want to experience life after 40. I realize that my body is actually pretty spectacular and I’m more focused on health than how I look. It also reminds me that I’m human and the only moment I have is right now. Right now, the tricycle tire and stretch marks remind me I grew and birth two humans I love and watched grow into interesting people.
Check out Deauna’s blog, Honesty’s Protegee!
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#WomenCrushWednesday~Paulette Leaphart: A Mama With a Mission

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This #WomenCrushWednesday is a little different. I haven’t met this woman and she hasn’t answered the three questions I generally pose, but she is crushing it nevertheless and so I have to give her a shoutout! You may have heard of Paulette Leaphart by now. She was featured in Beyonce’s “Lemonade” video album, has been on multiple news broadcasts and also has her own documentary, “Scar Story”. For those of you who aren’t as familiar with her story, she is a mother and breast cancer survivor who is walking 1,000 miles to Washington D.C. to demand a cure for cancer and an improved healthcare system.

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I have a deep admiration for this mama because she represents the epitome of strength, resilience and activism. Before even being diagnosed with breast cancer she was a determined mama who not only raised and cared for her own children but raised multiple foster youth as well. Now, having survived breast cancer and finding herself homeless as a result of paying for her cancer treatment, she is walking topless to Washington D.C. to push for systemic change. I don’t have the resources and ability to meet her this Saturday, June 25th but if you do, I encourage you stand with this woman. She already survived breast cancer, she is walking, fighting and sharing the most vulnerable part of herself to the world so that all of us can have a better chance of being cancer free.

With that said, thank you mama Leaphart. I am inspired and in awe of you! You are a MyPostBabyBody shero! I could go on and on but I’ll close by simply saying, “You slay!”.

Here is her story in her own words:

#WomenCrushWednesday~ Ryan

Women crush everyday of the week! To honor and share stories of women who are crushing it either on the body front or the mama front, I am featuring short interviews of women who are crushing it, hence the title #WomenCrushWednesday. So without further ado, let me introduce you to the multifaceted, multi-talented amazingly awesome, Ryan!

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How has your view of your body evolved over the years?

I became very aware of the power (both physically & socially) of my feminine features encased in a muscular frame when I started running track in high school, and ever since I have worked to maintain some semblance of the balance of strength and grace inherent in being a girl athlete.  I have more creaks and pains than ever, but am constantly impressed by how strength shifts over time.  I used to be able to jump from tall heights without so much as a wince.  Now I only jump when I see spiders.  But in my youth I could never fathom that this body could withstand giving birth, and now I’m fearlessly considering having a second child.  Strength shifts indeed.

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How do you think women should feel about their bodies?

I think how a woman feels about her body is entirely subjective.  Me imposing my ideas of how a woman should feel about HER body, is no better than a man telling me what I should do with mine.  There are enough presumptive ideas and objective opinions about women’s bodies.  It’s yours…feel about it as you wish.
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Why do you do what you do?

I call myself the 4-A: Artist, Athlete, Actress, Activist.  I have every appendage in whatever thing I am interested in.  Overall, I am fiercely about liberating black folks, and I use whatever talents and resources God has given me to do such.  Check out my polymathy at www.msryannicole.com 
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