Mom and musician Kimberly Henderson gained a following back in December after her gorgeous lullaby cover of Whitney Houston's "How Will I Know" went viral.
Seven months and countless media appearances later, Henderson is back in the spotlight for a different reason. On June 19, the mother of four shared a selfie that shows off her "imperfect" stomach -- stretch marks and all.
"I decided to upload this pic and leave my belly 'unedited' 'unphotoshopped' because I used to struggle with accepting my body after kids," she wrote in the caption. "I used to have a six pack before my babies.. And now even though I work out I know its not going to make my loose skin tight.. Or my stretch marks disappear ever lol and I'm ok with that because everyday I get to wake up to four beautiful smiling faces and I'm reminded that they are worth this flabby belly and they are worth these stretch marks."
Henderson also opened up about her body image struggles as a young mom comparing herself to other girls her age. "I'm not trying to say I have it worse than anyone else," she said, adding that she just wanted to share an empowering message with her fellow moms: "[Y]our body is beautiful... BECAUSE we ARE moms and we ARE superheroes and we freakin ROCK and in my opinion that is sexier than any six pack!"
As of Wednesday afternoon, the Facebook post had over 110,000 likes and thousands of comments. Henderson told The Huffington Post that she was touched by the large influx of positive comments, especially seeing "so many women and MEN lifting each other up about their bodies," she said.
The musician said she was inspired to post the photo in response to the many comments she often receives from fans and friends about how "perfect" her post-baby body was. "Because of my thin figure people don't think I have imperfections or insecurities," she told HuffPost. "I wanted to show other women that I am just like them -- stretch marks, loose skin."
"I can embrace that because to me being sexy is being confident in your own skin," she continued. "A mother's body is beautiful and we all have insecurities."
After years of struggling with body image and refusing to wear anything but a one-piece bathing suit to the beach, Henderson said she's finally reached a point of being content with her appearance. "I realized that being 'perfect' is being imperfect. I wanted to empower other women to do the same!" And, she added, she now proudly wears bikinis. "If I hide [my stomach] that means I'm ashamed and I have nothing to be ashamed about."
The singer, who will be going to London, Los Angeles, Nashville to work on new music this summer, hopes she can help her fans feel more confident as a show of gratitude for all the support they've shown her as she pursues her dreams in the music world. "And I hope I can be someone REAL they can look up to as an musical artist, a mother and a person."
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