…I realised that my body was bloody incredible. The same body that I had spent years abusing with diets, starving or overeating, verbally abusing and hiding from the world.

More than a decade I had spent telling my body it wasn’t good enough, sexy enough, small enough, smooth enough. I had completely based my worth in the world on what I looked like and all the parts of the physical me that didn’t quite match up to the worlds expectations. Then I had a baby. A whole, real life human. I grew her inside this body, this 5’2 body that I hadn’t even looked at in the mirror for years because I was too ashamed and here I am in absolute awe of what it is doing – what it has just done.

I realised that I needed to give myself some credit, that this body that was once told it was too fat, too scarred and too imperfect was actually too beautiful for words. I realised that if I was going to let my daughter know hers was precious then I needed to let myself know first.

I fell in love with my physical self.

I learnt that I was perfect just the way I was because how could my body create something so perfect if it wasn’t awesome? I learnt that every curve, every dimple and every pound I carried made me who I was and from my hair follicles to my toenails my body had just done something that my mind still struggled to comprehend. A baby? I had created a baby with 10 perfect toes and fingers – she even had eyelashes and a tooth (I know my baby was born with a tooth! Weird right?)

It seemed impossible that I could erase years and years of conditioning that had taught me my body was wrong and somewhat needed changing to fit into the world, to earn words like beautiful, pretty, sexy, perfect but here I was with my nipples red raw, leaking milk and swinging somewhere near my belly button and said belly button currently sitting on a bed of pink and white lines that scattered over my stretched stomach but I couldn’t have been prouder.

For years I had told myself so many lies. I had convinced myself that I couldn’t be who I wanted or do what I wanted because of what I looked like, but I was wrong.

When I became a mother, I realised I was invincible and that I was so worthy of love, worthy of good and that my body didn’t define my greatness, but it was a great body regardless.

Jess Jones is a blogger, writer, motivational speaker and mum of two.

In the run up to Mother’s Day and to celebrate the launch of The Unwind Package, we’re giving away three packages worth up to £50 each chosen at random from anyone joining in our #whenibecameamother campaign on Instagram. To enter:

1. Post a picture on your own Instagram account and include a caption about what you learned, or something you felt about your own experience, when you became a mother.
2. Include #whenIbecameamother in your post
3. Include the sentence ‘I am posting this to enter a @dontbuyherflowers competition’ at the end of your caption.

Entries close on 23rd March at 11.59pm. Winners will be drawn at random. Prizes can be delivered to UK and ROI addresses only.