Dia Dipasupil, Getty Images
Continuing her reign as Queen of Body Celebration, Ashley Graham posted a pair of nude selfies to her Instagram this weekend in celebration of her postpartum body—and defended her choice to describe herself as “big.”
In the first image, Graham poses naked in front of a mirror (with the Instagram-appropriate coverage in place), along with the caption "nakie big girl."
Graham received overwhelming support from her followers in the comments section; but, as is so often the case in nude-selfie world, that support was not universal: Some commenters took issue with Graham’s use of the word “big” to describe her body, conceiving of it as hurtful or derogatory. As InStyle reports, one commenter suggested she replace her caption with the phrase “nakie *normal* girl.” Another wrote, "I hate that this is seen as 'big girl.' I see nothing but a beautiful, naturally curvy woman in all her glory... super sexy and womanly."
Graham responded to those commenters with the gentle reminder she doesn't consider “big” a derogatory term—quite the opposite, in fact.
"I hear what you're saying,” Graham wrote. “But if you look at 'big' as a positive and love then you can see it like I do. I love my big strong beautiful body."
Later, Graham offered just one more reason to love her body exactly as it is: It gave birth to a whole entire human! A few hours after her mirror selfie, she posted another semi-nude photo to mark the 9-month anniversary of the birth of her son, Isaac, and the “amazing women” (including a midwife and a doula) who facilitated the birthing process.
“Can’t believe Isaac is 9 months today! 9 months in, 9 months out 👶 Thank you to this phenomenal team for making my labor and delivery so smooth. We are so lucky to have the support from these amazing women!,” she wrote in the caption.
Obviously, a person doesn’t need to give birth in order to recognize their body’s inherent beauty and strength, but Graham has been especially vocal about her body-acceptance journey throughout her pregnancy and after giving birth. (See: Her recent Instagram video showering love on her postpartum stretch marks.) Mothers or not, we’re continually inspired by how comfortable Graham feels in her skin, and her unapologetic willingness to display that confidence to the world.