Genuine images of motherhood

Mar 1, 2014 at 12:00 p.m. ET

Moms in the media are well-dressed, made up and picture-perfect. In real life, moms don't fit into cookie-cutter ideals. We asked mothers to share real images that express the identity of motherhood. What does being a mom mean to you?

Real mothers
Real Moms | Sheknows.com

Tired of seeing the same sanitized images of motherhood over and over? We looked past advertisements and stock photography to find real photos of moms, from hectic moments to heartfelt embraces. Find out why these women chose the photos they did.

Writing a new narrative

Brittany Gibbons | Sheknows.com

"Prior to becoming a mom, all my parenting narratives were shaped by June Cleaver and Maria Von Trapp. I'm seven years in, and I've come to realize, it's the pants off, make-it-up-as-I-go Dick Van Dyke and Lucille Ball moments that count the most," says Brittany Gibbons. "They're the most fun."

Carrying the weight

Rebecca Bahret | Sheknows.com

"Because of my husband's work, I spend most of my time mothering alone, carrying the 'weight' of both boys however I can," says Rebecca Bahret. "I may not always do it gracefully, but it always gets done — and we usually have fun along the way."

Getting strong

Jasmine Bank | Sheknows.com

"I am a fit for roller derby because it is a continual challenge, it is all about female athletes displaying their power and a girl has to have an outlet at the end of the day," says Jasmine Banks. "Why not smash into people?"

Bonding

Brooke Randolph | Sheknows.com

"This is from our first family photos just barely more than a month after meeting my son in Samoa where he was born," says Brooke Randolph. "I hadn't planned on being photographed too but I'm so glad my friend insisted."

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