Mom's 6-Pack Selfie a Week After Her C-Section Proves Everyone's Postpartum Body Is Different

chontel duncan
chontelduncan/Instagram

Australian personal trainer Chontel Duncan -- whose baby belly comparison photo went viral last year -- recently posted some selfies just one week after giving birth showing how pregnancy effects everyone's body differently. While many women have trouble even standing up straight a week after a C-section, Duncan's not just up and about -- she's showing us washboard abs with not a steri-strip or swelling anywhere to be seen. However, the point of her post isn't to brag about her unexpected postpartum body or to put others down who might have had a different recovery experience.

  • She gave birth to her second child, a son named Swayde, on September 20 via C-section.

    A week later, she posted some photos showing her trademark six-pack was back. Abs of steel or not, like any new mom, she knew putting her body out there could lead to some not-so-kind comments. "Now before anyone jumps down my throat saying anything negative, think before you type," she wrote. "Everyone is unique and different in their own special way. There is no 'one' journey or one way, this is my 'normal.'"

    More from CafeMom: Mom Shares Drastic Side-by-Side Photo to Show How Different Your Pregnancies Can Be

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  • She's owning her new mombod. "If your instant response isn't positive, I challenge you to see beyond your negativity and find the kindness within."

    It's easy to look at Duncan's body with a jealous eye, especially if you had a rough C-section recovery yourself. Personally, it was weeks before the swelling went down enough so that I could even see my incision, and I'm still waiting to see my abs.

    But the truth is that all bodies are different. No two surgeries are the same, and diet and exercise -- as well as genetics -- play a part in how our bodies look after giving birth. If body positivity means embracing women who still look like they could be pregnant a week after giving birth, we also need to rally behind moms like Duncan who look like they could walk a runway a week after having a baby. All bodies are beautiful.

  • Duncan says she was very lucky to have a full-term, healthy pregnancy with no major complications.

    "I was blessed to conceive, blessed to experience no sickness," she wrote. "I did experience discomfort & tiredness, but overall I had a very enjoyable pregnancy. Could not be more grateful." Swayne was a healthy 8 lbs at birth.  

  • She plans to get back to her fitness training routines as soon as she gets the all clear from her doctor.

    Duncan says she'll focus on good nutrition before starting to walk and then eventually returning to high intensity interval training to keep those abs rocking. For now, she's enjoying quality snuggles with her new little man, and reminding us that postpartum bodies come in all shapes and sizes.