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Zoe and her husband, NRL player Benji Marshall welcomed their first child together, Benjamin Fox Marshall, in February 2018 and a few weeks ago Zoe announced she is expecting the couple’s second child.
“It’s really bloody hard for me to keep a secret. That’s why I’ve hardly been on Instagram or sharing stories because I don’t trust myself that it would just slip out,” the 36-year-old shared to Instagram alongside an ultrasound image.
“It’s time. I’ve been incredibly sick and isolated for the last 11 weeks because of this little monkey,” she continued.
“I look forward to being honest and sharing the good, bad and really ugly bits of this time with you all. Mini Marshall due day before my birthday (god help me another Gemini) June 2021.”
Continuing with her promise to share her pregnancy journey, Zoe’s latest Instagram post deals with pregnancy weight gain and how her body doesn’t feel like her own.
“This was me 8 months pregnant with Fox. I felt comfortable in my body. Healthy and fit. I also started 6 kilos lighter than my normal weight because I had been fasting with a Chinese herbal program. I still put on 20 kilos in that pregnancy but I felt great! How different a second pregnancy can be,” Zoe captions a throwback image of herself laying on a sofa in black underwear.
“My body has changed so dramatically in such a short time. I’m almost 18 weeks and my body doesn’t feel like my own. My undies are so tight. I can’t wear any bras. No clothes fit and the weight is piling on.”
Zoe recently celebrated her eight wedding anniversary with her NRL star husband, Benji Marshall.
Zoe goes on to list the other pregnancy health issues she’s experiencing.
“My pubic synthesis is creeping in and I still feel sick after I eat. Skin tags, getting really itchy, reflux- all my new mates. This is all normal for so many of us. I totally get it. But this is something women shy away from, sharing how odd it is to be so out of control of your body. My hunger is ferocious even after I eat a full meal. My body is tired even when I wake up after 8 hours. My boobs and butt are so round and big. My legs and arms soft and womanly. I’m a whole lot of woman. Yes once again so normal. And beautiful (says my husband).
“I’m blessed to have a healthy happy baby. I want to stress how GRATEFUL I am. So grateful. But let’s be honest, for some of us it’s still super weird to feel so out of control of our bodies and the way they function. Seeing super glamorous pregnant women (especially wearing heels) have to be muted. I feel the least glam or sexy I’ve ever felt. Yes all normal. So what am I going to do? I can be bothered or I can surrender. They’re my options. This baby and my body are way smarter than me. I have to trust exactly what is happening and follow it’s lead. Without judgement. Is this possible?”
Zoe finishes the post asking for advice from her followers: “Tell me how you feel/felt and how you made peace with the constant changes?”
The podcast host’s post was quickly flooded with comments from women sharing their pregnancy stories and offering up some beautiful advice.
“I’m 11 weeks and I’m a little worried about the weight gain that will be upon me. But leaning into this little miracle and trying to remind myself that this is what I need to create this lil babe 💛💛💛💛 can’t wait to watch your lil rainbow turn into the most beautiful bump ever and then into a beautiful human 💛💛💛,” writes one follower.
“My first pregnancy was twins and I loved it! Second pregnancy was a singleton and I was heavier and bigger than with the twins! Was really hard to get my head around. Still bloody grateful tho,” shares a mum.
“I stopped weighing myself, I tried to just trust the process and lean into it and surrender. I bought some new undies and a pieces of new clothing that made me feel great and didn’t take notice of the sizing I cut off the tags 😀 I also got into the habit of a morning walk to start the day even if it was a short one that helped aswell as sometimes just having a lazy day 😴 💗 your body is working so hard growing a human and also taking care of a toddler your amazing 💗,” advises another mama.
Zoe with husband, Benji and their almost three-year-old son, Fox.
“I just remember a woman saying: ‘There’s nothing in there.’ I was just so floored… and so upset. There were no signs of it. And I just felt so betrayed by my own body.”
The podcast host decided to share her story in the hope of helping others.
“When this happened I was desperately seeking answers and finding none, I needed someone to normalise what was happening, that could tell me what had helped them,” said Zoe.
“I stumbled through this, even calling a pregnancy loss helpline and getting no answer. It felt hopeless.
“This isn’t a hunt for sympathy this is the start of a conversation – I would like to hold a virtual women’s circle for those of you who have experienced pregnancy loss in whatever form that takes. I am no expert. I am just one of the many that lose babies every day.”