Strong & Surprising Reaction to Video
As I watched, tears pooled behind my eyes. I recognized Ali (and baby Jack) immediately from our shared S Factor history at retreats and immersion workshops. The exhaustion and stress of the playground melted away as Some Nights by Fun filled my ears. As Ali’s joy filled my screen and Jack’s curious gaze erupted into a gleeful giggle a huge grin spread across my face.
As they began to play together on the pole, for a moment, I wanted to join in the fun. Then I realized even if I could pop into the video, I wouldn’t interrupt this playful and tender moment of joy and love between mother and son.
Afterwards, I smiled at my memory of Ali’s dances while pregnant at a retreat in Monterey. The first in a flowy short white dress, her movement gentler than I’d witnessed before. I hadn’t even known she was pregnant until seeing her baby bump as she surrendered to the floor. And then later in the weekend, the mother and pregnant daughter mirror dance that left not a dry eye in the room from the precious display of shared love.
I brushed away the single tear that had fallen, grateful for this virtual connection. For getting to meet a moving version of Jack and witnessing Ali glowing with playful sensuality and motherly love.
Surprisingly, there was no underlying shred of sorrow piercing me from my own heartbreaking trio of miscarriages. Over a decade ago, when the pain was raw and new, it over-shadowed my ability to celebrate pregnancies and births. Then for a time I’d feel both—true joy for friends and deep sadness for my husband and I. The hurt eventually faded to a twinge, like a little sliver reminding me of the joys of motherhood I’d never know. Watching this video I felt pure joy.
“While the arrival of Jack was one of the most joyous moments of her life, the manner of his arrival was Ali’s most devastating body experience. Like many new mothers, Ali had prepared herself for the expected hardships of motherhood such as lack of sleep, loss of certain freedoms, and difficulty breastfeeding. She was prepared for motherhood to be hard as a parent, but she was not prepared for it to be hard as a woman. Ali was not prepared to feel loss of sexuality, sadness, anger, and resentment toward her feminine body.”
I love my son Jack deeply. He is the sweetest, most patient, curious and funny little boy and I wouldn’t trade him for anything. However, my arrival into motherhood left me feeling lost, helpless, and alone, even with the wonderful support of my husband. I was desperate to reconnect with myself and to find some semblance of joy I had felt in my body as a woman before I became a mother. – Ali Kozoll
Ali’s story is universal in it’s emotional arc. Every woman I know has lived through one (or more) devastating body experience. Has felt betrayed by her body and resentful it let her down. We’ve all lost our embodied joy, our body bliss at some point. And likely will again as we age. Yes, our bodies are imperfect. They’re also wonderful. They feel. They express. They dance. Thank you for sharing your story, Ali. You are not alone. You are beautiful and sexy!
All women deserve to feel sexy. Mothers. Wanna-be mothers. Childless women by choice or circumstance. We all deserve to feel at home in our bodies. Imperfect. Beautiful. Sexy.