Being pregnant with Charlotte was one of the best times of my life.  I felt more beautiful when I was pregnant than when I walked the stage at Miss America in the best shape of my life living out a dream.  Perhaps it was the added confidence and maturity in my 30s or perhaps it was the wiggle of tiny feet and sweet flutters of baby hiccups in my ever-growing belly, but it was honestly pure bliss (even despite morning, noon and night sickness). For once, my usually dull hair was gloriously shiny and my dry skin was naturally sparkling.  So, I admit I feel disheartened when I hear a beautiful, glowing woman say she looks overweight and disgusting while she is pregnant.   There's a gorgeous glow about every pregnant woman, even if she doesn't know it.  I hope that even one small tip here may help a mama-to-be out there feel more confident and beautiful!  I also want to note, you don't have to spend a small fortune to look and feel great while you're pregnant.  As you'll read on below, I should have bought fewer items; I wore my essentials over and over again (and, yes, still wear some of the most comfortable options...)!

Here are the topics included below:  The Sweet Secret, The Blossoming Baby Bump, The Beautiful Baby Bump, Mama & Baby, Mama with the Most, and Forever Beautiful.  These are the distinct phases I went through as my body changed.  

Sweet Pregnancy Style

Sweet Pregnancy Style by sweetonstyle featuring a vintage black dress

Just as you are each beautiful and unique women, the same goes for pregnancy.  Every pregnancy is different and every woman is different in such incredible ways.  I wish I'd considered that fully when I first found out I was pregnant.  It's easy in everyday life and in pregnancy to compare yourself to other women and society's standards.  As you'll read on below, at first, I grew extremely nervous comparing myself to the standards in the vast array of pregnancy books out there.  And the ironic overall message of many of those books?  Do not be nervous (and consult your doctor for everything anyway)!   So, that is exactly why I didn't group these inspiration boards as trimesters or weeks - because everyone is different at each week/month.   Through the week, I'll explore these topics:  The Sweet Secret, The Sweet Little Baby Bump, The Blossoming Baby Bump, The Beautiful Baby Bump, Mama & Baby, Mama with the Most, and Forever Beautiful.  Along the way, if you have any questions or requests please don't hesitate to contact me at!

The Sweet Secret

Some of you may not have kept or will not keep your eventual pregnancy a secret for long while others may hide behind your sweaters and pocketbooks trying to keep the sweet baby bump a secret for a longer time.  Whether you're currently pregnant, have had children, or hope to in the future, this is likely the sweetest little secret you'll ever keep; I know it was for me :) 

Pregnancy Style

Pregnancy Style by sweetonstyle featuring peasant tops

A few tips on keeping this wonderful secret:
1) Place the emphasis off your stomach.  DO:  Wear patterns, wear *slightly* looser clothing (but not so loose you give the secret away). Think about dresses without a defined waistline, wear bold statement necklaces.  Also, you can try A-line dresses that are fitted a bit above the waist and loose around your stomach. TRY TO AVOID:  Wearing a bright belt that attracts attention to your waistline, wearing skin-tight clothing or again, wearing clothes uncharacteristic of your style that appear too loose or look like the stereotypical maternity style.
2) Wear Color & Dust Your Cheeks.  I say this only because my skin color looked ashen for at least my first trimester.  Several people said they had suspicions just based on my pale face.  My sweet Nana and Aunt Kim even bought me a beautiful, bold pink scarf to brighten my face.  So, I started pulling out all the colorful items in my closet and dusting my cheeks with some bright blush.  The other thing that gave away my pregnancy?  My hair!  I had several people in the same day say, "There is something different about your hair!"   I thought, my hair? :)  They were correct; however, it was gloriously glossy.  I even had one amazing friend guess I was pregnant just upon looking at me and my new hair.  

My Experience:  
A Late Discovery & Breaking Morning News

I can honestly tell you I didn't feel the need to keep my pregnancy a secret until after I was 8 weeks pregnant because I didn't know!  I had two doctors tell me it could be rather difficult to get pregnant, so I really thought I wouldn't become a mother for months or maybe even years.  It wasn't until I started getting sick, I realized behind the nausea and dizziness, something beautiful could be happening.  I'll never forget the look on my husband's face!

We told our immediate family the wonderful news with our first ultrasound picture from our first doctor's visit.  However, we wanted to wait to tell other close friends and family until three months.  And to complicate things even more, at the time, I was a morning news anchor.  I didn't want to let my viewers in on the secret until I'd had my more comprehensive check-up.  We waited to break the exciting news until I was almost five months pregnant.  So, this is why I thought it necessary to create a "Sweet Secret" section.  I felt it was a challenge to keep my secret because of my growing baby bump and my sickness.  I was so sick, I actually lost weight the first three months I was pregnant.  I would have given anything to be gaining weight.  I was incredibly nervous about this in comparing myself to other women and reading about the usual pregnancy standards, but my doctors assured me I was fine.  Getting myself ready and to work for 3 a.m. was like a mini-Olympic competition.  Many days, I started out lying on the bathroom floor after getting sick, trying to gather the courage (and stomach) to face the day with a smile, but somehow, I did it!  I honestly think that's what made me so confident through the rest of my pregnancy.  I was just so thrilled to already be the mama of this little person that I wouldn't let anything get me down - not morning, noon and night sickness and not a 2 a.m. wake up call!

The Sweet Little Baby Bump

I think pregnancy was the only time in my life I looked down and rejoiced in seeing more weight on my belly!  It was thrilling to finally see evidence of a tiny baby growing each day.  So, during my personal time (not professional, as you read above), I wanted to show my new sweet bump.

DO:  Wear some of the tighter-fitting longer tops you already own to show off your new baby bump.  Invest in a great camisole and pair of maternity pants, if your pants no longer fit.  Wear more form-fitting dresses that show off your sweet little baby bump!  Lastly, if you can still wear heels safely - wear them now!  Once my sweet baby bump started growing more, I could no longer wear heels safely.  I actually just returned to wearing them once in a while now that Charlotte is 18 months!  Everyone is different, but I just didn't have the stability to wear them.
(Tomorrow, I will go over the basic maternity clothes to invest in.)

Pregnancy Style: The Sweet Little Bump

Pregnancy Style: The Sweet Little Bump by sweetonstyle featuring splendid tops

The Blossoming Baby Bump

The most comfortable time during my pregnancy was when my beautiful baby bump really started to blossom or when I officially started to "pop."  Finally, the secret was out to everyone, people could clearly see I was pregnant and I was finally past the morning, noon and night sickness!  I felt absolutely amazing!  From this time until the end of my pregnancy I felt like a supermodel.  I was on Cloud Nine jetting off to Babies R Us and catching some rays on the "beach" - 20 minutes of sleep on the couch honestly felt like a tropical vacation.  I actually felt even more confident during this part of my pregnancy than I did even walking across the stage at Miss America.  Yes, part of it was maturity, but most of it was the incredible adrenaline of feeling this sweet little girl kick and dance around and grow stronger every day. 

Pregnancy Style: The Blossoming Baby Bump

(Just a note:  These items are meant for inspiration and ideas. I love looking at the colorful spiked flats above; they make me euphoric!  However, I wouldn't dream of spending $700 on a pair of flats.  I've got some far less expensive options here on Sweet on Style if you like those.)

Style Tips:
-Flaunt your blossoming baby bump:  This is the time to accentuate weight gain on your body! 
-Invest in flats: If you don't already have a great pair, this is the time to find the most comfortable pair of stylish flats on the planet.  I still live in my ballet flats.  There are many women who are perfectly comfortable in heels all 9 months but I was not one of them.  My balance was off during and after pregnancy.
-Accessorize & have fun:  Explore bolder jewelry choices.  Pregnancy was the first time I felt confident enough to wear statement jewelry.  Now, I realize the accessories weren't that bold after all; I just needed to step outside my comfort zone.  Plus, these items will still fit you after you give birth :)  Also, experiment with belts!  You can even use your existing belts.  They'll start to migrate higher and higher every day, but they're a great way to accentuate your beautiful baby bump!
-Wear ruffles/panels now:  If you have any maternity dresses with any kind of paneling or ruffles, they will look great on you now and they should fall the way they are supposed to.  However, I found out the hard way, they may not look as great once your baby bump really shows at 8 and 9 months.

Maternity Clothing Essentials

Another reason the "blossoming baby bump" is a wonderful time is you're not at the stage yet where you ache from the extra weight and some of your maternity clothes start to get really, really tight.  I remember asking, "Are you sure this will fit me at 9 months?"  It didn't seem possible.  Some items stretched remarkably well and then I had to laugh when other items stopped fitting or looking anywhere near appropriate around 7 months.  So, that brings me to today's added topic, which is maternity clothing essentials.  

I remember seeing lists of maternity "essentials" and thinking, 'I am supposed to live in just a few items for the remainder of my pregnancy?'  No.  Pumped with lots of adrenaline, I went shopping and I went overboard.  Two pairs of dress pants?  I needed five.  Two dresses?  Nope, I needed 10.  Analyzing what I actually wore; however, yes, I would advise buying fewer items.  Here is what I wore the most:

Pregnancy Style: Essentials

Camisoles (White & Black) & Colorful Tanks:  I wore camisoles every day during my pregnancy for added support, to extend the length of some shirts, and to slightly conceal my bulging belly button.  I also wore them constantly once Charlotte was born.  And I still wear them often under shirts that are slightly sheer.  I also still wear the colorful tanks under jackets and sweaters.  They are the best investment I made.  

Leggings:  There are people out there who will tell you leggings are not pants.  Try telling that to a pregnant woman or a brand new mama.  Guess what?  I didn't care what the Style Gods classified them as; they're incredibly comfortable!  I had two pairs of black leggings and I wore them with longer fitted tops to show off my blossoming baby bump.

Jeans: One or two pair(s). I'd invest in a great pair.  I realize now it's just like my regular wardrobe; I don't need five or 10 pair of jeans when I only wear one or two high quality pairs.

Skirt:  Jean/White and Black:  Charlotte was due at the end of July, so I constantly wore skirts.  My favorites included a black skirt and a jean skirt.  I continued to wear them after my pregnancy. I bought other skirts too, but just didn't wear them as much.

Dress Pants:  One or Two Pair.  A basic black (or your preference) pair to match tops, sweaters and jackets is really all you need.

Dresses:  Find a well made basic black dress that you can style differently for a multitude of looks.  Beyond that, it really depends on what you do for work.  If you routinely wear dresses at work, you may consider several other dresses - solid bright color, color block, patterned, etc. that you can also style differently.  

Coat:  Find a coat that you can dress up or dress down with various scarves or faux fur collars, etc. That will give you multiple looks for one coat.

Swimsuit:  I dreaded finding a maternity swimsuit.  Many of them just looked horrible to me.  I actually ended up buying much larger bright blue Juicy Couture tankini top on clearance and matched it with a hot pink pair of maternity swimsuit bottoms.  It was my style and it actually fit really well.  I wasn't brave enough to wear a two-piece while I was pregnant, but if you are, the more power to you!

Existing Clothing:  Make use of the clothing that still will fit (doesn't need to be buttoned) such as sweaters and jackets for work.

My Favorite Looks:

My favorite maternity shirt!  I actually still wear this
Rosie Pope shirt.  It's really well made and didn't stretch out. I also

wore these black pants constantly!
Leggings!  I wore these black leggings
This sweater dress was not actually in the maternity section.
It was stretchy enough to grow with me!
One of my favorite colorful summer
dresses.  Didn't fit well after 7 months though :(

The Beautiful Baby Bump

At this phase, there is no questioning whether you're pregnant or not!  Your beautiful baby bump seems to expand by the day.  You can't see your feet anymore and putting on shoes (forget even tying them) is an Olympic feat.  Hopefully, you are filled with adrenaline (yes, exhaustion too) and lots of hope!  It is an exhilarating time! There are, of course, challenges when you have a beautiful baby bump - back aches, exhaustion, leg pain, rib pain and you name it.  But just like in the blossoming baby bump phase, I still felt like a goddess and I hope you do too.  There is just something about a glowing, gorgeous pregnant woman.  I loved that my usually dull, hay-like hair was glistening, my skin still sparkled, my cheeks were full and bright with color.  My beautiful baby was getting ready for her grand arrival in this world (little did we know, it would be very grand; she kept everyone, including me, guessing because it was very late and very long).  I experienced all I could and more of the beautiful baby bump phase;  Charlotte didn't make her entrance until 41.5 weeks!  

Style Tips:
-Comfort is key here.  But you can still look stylish and not suffer for fashion.  The key is super soft and stretchy cotton clothing!  Heels? I didn't dare.  I applaud you if you can handle heels at this phase, but I would have fallen on my face.  I lived in flats and my size 9 feet were growing even larger.

Maternity Work Styles for Winter

Winter / Work:  Cotton-blend dresses with cotton leggings and boots or tights (I didn't find the maternity tights or nylons to be very comfortable).  If you can still fit in your maternity pants, I also applaud you; most of mine stopping fitting after 8 months.  

Pregnancy Style: Smart Casual for Winter

Winter / Casual:  Cotton-blend tops with black leggings or pants and flat boots was a pairing I found very comfortable!  You can still (as above) pair a non-maternity jacket over a shirt, if you need more of a dressy/casual look.  With accessories you can wear many of the same shirts over again.

Pregnancy Summer Styles

Summer / Work: Cotton-blend dresses, skirts and tops are really comfortable. If you have to wear nylons to work, I am sorry!  This is why I also included a pant option.  I loved my cotton-blend dresses.  

Pregnancy Style: Smart Casual for Summer

Summer / Smart Casual: At this point, many of my shorts and some of my dresses also did not fit, however.  (See the pictures below, you'll understand why!) I lived in a denim super-stretchy maternity skirt and a cotton-blend tank top. 

My Experience

Looking back, my one main piece of advice to any mamas-to-be with a beautiful baby bump is to try to relax and cherish the amazing moments in this phase.  Too often, we rush things.  'I can't wait until the baby is born, I can't wait until she learns how to crawl, I can't wait until she learns how to walk...' It's, yes, easy to say, but take a second and really savor those sweet moments, because they go by incredibly quickly and then they're gone.  Enjoy receiving those little (or big) kicks, feeling hiccups and hearing your baby's amazing little heartbeat.  I couldn't get enough of the moments when I could feel Charlotte's tiny legs or arms give me a little push, as if to say, "Mama, are you ready for my arrival soon?"  And it was even better when I could see the ripple of an arm or leg moving. I could tell Charlotte was going to be a feisty and strong one just by her swift kicks to my stomach.  (One of the reasons I first loved the name Charlotte is because in some translations, it means strong.)   
I also secretly loved the comments from other people because they made me laugh incredibly hard, "When are you due? Oh, not for another month?  That is a big baby.  You are going to deliver early..."

I also changed into a Super Type A, which is a little scary to be honest.  Every piece of our clothing and our baby-to-be's clothing was washed and pressed (this hasn't happened again since) and neatly folded in the appropriate drawers.  The floors sparkled and the closets rejoiced in their new streamlined look.  I should have really enjoyed this while it lasted!

This was me at 8 months pregnant!

Mama & Baby:  My Delivery Story

Each pregnancy post here gets more exciting.  The day of my baby's birth was the best and by far the most challenging day of my life, as I imagine it will be for you too or already was for you!  Somehow, with the help of my wonderful husband, amazing family and nurses and doctors, I made it through what I thought I could not to see the most precious face I could have imagined.  It's because my life changed forever in that one split second I heard Charlotte cry.  I became a mother and whether I knew it yet or not, a strong, protective, smart mother, as you already are or will be.

(Note:  I have included my tips on packing and becoming a new mama within my story.  If you'd like the shorter version, feel free to scroll down to the inspiration board!  But I wanted to share my personal journey with you. I am a former journalist and I am used to sharing other people's incredibly personal stories.  Now, I have the honor of sharing my own with you. Some of you may have much harder experiences and some of you may have much easier experiences, which I hope is the case.)

Rewind to my final days before I met Charlotte.  It was the end of a very hot July and I was on the edge of my seat (except in this picture)!  I was nine days overdue when I had my sweet daughter.  I had tried all of the little suggestions hoping one of them might push the labor process into gear  - acupuncture, massage, pedicures, long walks, throwing a basketball, spicy foods.  None of them worked for me.  I stopped at castor oil.  No way.  It was my birthday and as I was having a stress test, the doctors told me I was having mild contractions.  I didn't even know it. I thought, 'Wow, these are contractions?  Pregnancy will be a breeze!'  Little did I know... Those mild contractions went on for another day.   

It was now July 31 and I was preparing to check in at the hospital the next afternoon to be induced.  I was nervous; this wasn't the plan I had.  I thought Charlotte would arrive a week or two early and would enter the world rather quickly.  I'd had my hospital bag packed for nearly a month now.  I went to bed that night excited and nervous.  However, I couldn't sleep.  The contractions started to gradually intensify.  I set up camp in my living room.  I tried to balance myself on a bouncy ball eating popsicles while I watched Michael Phelps gracefully swim to the finish line to become the most decorated Olympian in history.  At 5:30 a.m., my husband drove me to the hospital where I thought perhaps Charlotte might make an entrance by noon so I could have some lunch!  

At 6:30 a.m., I resumed watching the Olympics on a bouncy ball in my birthing room.  I still felt great!  Hours passed and nothing happened.  At around 10 a.m., a mid-wife broke my water and suggested I go for a walk outside.  Sounded like a good idea to me.  I hate hospitals.  I hate doctor's offices.  I had a horrible experience at a hospital as a child and ever since the slight smell of a hospital makes me dizzy and makes my heart race.  My trip outside was wonderful - fresh air, warm sun.  However, not long into my walk, the contractions started to intensify in a major way.  I found myself holding onto the stakes of a fence for dear life holding back from screaming at the top of my lungs.  I honestly thought I could have torn one of those stakes out of the ground and waved it around.   

I spent the afternoon eating blue popsicles with finally duller contractions thanks to an epidural.  I don't like needles, but I was as thrilled to see that needle as I was to see a 50 percent off clearance sign on a Michael Kors rack at a Bloomingdale's outlet store.  After the epidural, hours went by and Charlotte just didn't want to make her entrance.  At 8 p.m., the doctor informed me I'd have to have a c-section; I had no other choice.  I was devastated.  I begged for more time. My favorite nurse piped up and told the doctors to give me some time with my husband.  I sobbed so loudly, I think everyone on the maternity floor heard me, including the patients and nurses who knew me as the former morning news anchor.  Wonderful...  I was unbelievably terrified of having a c-section.  I was so filled with anxiety at that moment, I thought about having the doctors put me to sleep for the procedure, but I couldn't do it; I just had to see Charlotte's sweet face right after she made her entrance in the world.  I had to stop being so afraid and be her mom.  I just had to muster up some courage.  I think it was the combination of courage and sheer exhaustion, but a wave of calmness swept over me.  I listened to every word the anesthesiologist told me even though I didn't want to hear any of the details of what would happen.   I breathed in and out and I talked about Coach bags with my favorite nurse while I waited to meet Charlotte in the operating room.  All of the nerves and all of the pain were well worth it when I heard her cry and saw her beautiful face.   My husband, Ben, left with Charlotte and I spent another 40 minutes in the operating room.  It was honestly the longest 40 minutes of my life.  I just wanted to hold her and stare at her in pure amazement.  Finally, that moment came.  It was like a dream.  I was on Cloud Nine and it wasn't because I had just been pumped full of more pain killers.  Fortunately, none of them affected my ability to truly grasp the wonder of that moment.  Charlotte fit perfectly in my arms.  We fit in each other's arms.  Ben and Charlotte and I were finally a family now.

After I went to sleep late that night, I woke up in a dreamlike state early the next morning. I heard Charlotte's cries coming down the hall around 4:30 a.m.  I knew it was my baby.  My favorite nurse came through the door in what seemed to be a fog and handed Charlotte to me.  A perfectly swaddled 9 pound 2 ounce baby Charlotte just sat in my arms calmly for hours as if to say, 'Mom, I've been waiting for this time with you.'  It was more perfect than I could have ever dreamed it would be.

When I think back to all of these precious, unforgettable moments, there are really no 'things' that were most important in getting through that day.   It was, of course, the people who got me through that day.  My incredible husband who held my hand the whole time and encouraged me before I was wheeled into the operating room, my parents who patiently walked and waited with me all day long, the nurse who piped up and stood up for me.  

However, there were, yes, certainly things that made me more comfortable. I was in a huge amount of pain when I woke up the next morning.  I couldn't even fathom sitting up and getting out of bed, which is what the staff had me do.  I could barely walk but I pushed Charlotte ahead of me which was a huge motivator.  

One of my most wonderful family friends had originally said 'Why not have "comfortable, familiar and beautiful things to help you through if they will make you feel even a tiny bit better?'  She was right.  That is what I had obsessed about for weeks in my nesting phase.  What would I need?  What wouldn't I need?  Here are a few basics that made me feel even a tiny bit better in some of my most challenging moments and some of my most precious and cherished moments: (And needless to say, despite my initial terrible fear of the hospital, I didn't want to leave.  I was still in a lot of pain and I was comfortable there and well cared for.)

Pregnancy Style: Hospital Essentials

Hospital Comfort Essentials:
-Your Own Bathrobe: After my long delivery process, I just wanted my own bathrobe from home!  It was soft and it smelled good and I wanted it. Bottom line.
-Soft PJ's and Slippers:  I didn't feel well after the c-section and even the little things like having a soft pair of PJ's to cuddle up with Charlotte made me feel better.
-A Loose Sweater:  Hospitals (even in the summer) can be cold sometimes.  I had a wrap sweater with me I wore constantly.  
-A Tank Top:  This cotton tank top was at the top of comfort.  I still wear it!
-A Pair of Liz Lange for Target Maternity Pants:  I just wore these again last night.  I brought two pair with me and I wore them the entire stay during the day. These are the most comfortable pants I have ever owned.  After a c-section I needed something incredibly comfortable that could sit below the incision.  These were absolutely perfect.  Plus, they are made of the softest cotton imaginable.
-Beyond this, I packed a Boppy nursing pillow and nursing cover (below), several outfits for Charlotte and my usual toiletries.  But these were the key things I used.  At first, Charlotte liked to be swaddled, so my mom also rushed out to buy pre-wrapped Swaddles and she loved them.

On my first afternoon home with Charlotte after five days in the hospital, we cuddled right up!  I still had on my black ultra-soft maternity pants here. And I thought this hot pink shirt would be looser :)  But I was swollen from all of the fluids post c-section and I didn't factor in that most of the weight wouldn't just come off post-delivery...  My feet were more swollen after the c-section than they were at the end of my pregnancy!  I didn't expect that.

Pregnancy Style:  Mama with the Most

As I started to write this post, I heard Charlotte's cry from down the hall in her crib.  She needed me.  She wanted to be picked up and held tightly.   In that moment, I knew I had to change what I was initially going to write.  All of my life, I have wanted to do something that matters.  Something that makes a difference in someone's life and is a position of great responsibility and power.  That is exactly why I loved my work as a news reporter and news anchor.  Every single story I did mattered to someone.  And every moment I opened my mouth to deliver the news, I had a huge responsibility to inform people honestly and accurately.  I felt the same way about working as an adjunct professor of journalism and communication.  Now, I feel the same way about this blog; I hope to inspire other women who may have had the same style frustrations I have had.  So, in that late night moment, I suddenly realized regardless of the work I am doing, I have achieved a lifelong position that makes a difference and carries great responsibility and power - I am a mama!  Everything we do matters to our babies or children - every smile, every laugh, every hug.  It carries incredible responsibility and power.   So, I have to smile and think, "I am mama, hear me roar."  And I can now truly say and believe, I am the Mama with the Most to my sweet Charlotte, as you are to your own babies.

Mama with the Most: Confidence

After giving birth, few of us feel confident and beautiful; however, we have just performed our most amazing task in this life - bringing another life into the world.  No one said it would be easy.  I was in a purely blissful state every time I held or even gazed at my beautiful Charlotte.  I was euphoric over my gorgeous daughter.  I wish I could have said the same about myself.  If there ever was a time to gather some confidence, this was it.  But, I just couldn't do it.  I didn't expect to still look 8 or 9 months pregnant when I walked out of the hospital.  And honestly, this is another reason I adore Kate Middleton.  A day after giving birth, she walked out of the hospital to face the entire world proudly displaying her post-baby bump.  I wish I had so proudly embraced my post-baby bump; I was a new mama and that was the evidence of bringing this wonderful little person to life. No one expects us to go back into our previous size the day after - except ourselves (I certainly did).  That being said, my tips focus on how your clothing can help you feel more confident and put together (I definitely needed that!) and shed some weight just with clothing choices.

Each of us are different, so we each drop the weight very differently.  A month after giving birth, I had a few people ask when I was due.  It shattered my confidence.  I went through a very difficult time finding clothes and facing the task of getting dressed every morning.  I no longer wanted to wear my maternity clothes and my regular clothes certainly didn't fit.  I bought a few key things in various sizes in an effort to feel somewhat human.  So, here are some of the things I learned.  I hope they can help someone else out there because I had such a difficult time and my confidence suffered enormously as a result. (I will write much more about this topic when I have more time because I think it's incredibly important.)

Pregnancy Style: Mama with the Most

Comfortable Fabrics:  Cotton and cotton blends are your best friend here.  You've just been through a lot and your body is healing.  I was in significant pain for quite some time, so I didn't want anything that wasn't comfortable and soft.
Wear Colors You Love:  I can usually trick myself into feeling at least a little bit better with a color I love.  Hot pink usually at least gives me some more color in my cheeks and reminds me of a lovely summer day.
Emphasize the Neckline:  Draw the eye up to your neck and face!  Accessories are the most loyal item in your closet - they always fit!  Have some fun with them!  I used another trick in pictures.  I held my precious Charlotte right over my baby bump. Clearly, everyone would focus on her and not even see my bump!  Seemed to work every time :)
No Defined Waistline:  You may want to do the opposite you may have done during pregnancy - take the emphasis and focus away from your baby bump.  So, try to avoid wearing any form-fitting dresses or fabrics.  You want slightly looser tops and blouses and straight-line dresses.  (You don't, however, want clothing so big it makes you look frumpy or larger than you really are.  Plus, you want to hopefully wear some of this again.)   

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