You’re six months pregnant with identical twin boys, do you feel like a mum already?
I do now. Before feeling them kick, it was hard to imagine them in there and feel that connection.
How has your relationship with your body changed with pregnancy?
You start to think, “What the hell is happening to my body?” But I keep saying, “We are so incredible. We are amazing.” I’m only just starting to enjoy my pregnancy. I was shocked, I thought I would love it and it has been really difficult due to how ill I was [with morning sickness]. I look at my body and think, “Oh my god, my boobs are huge.” I have my first stretch marks and they’re on my boobs, not my stomach, which is where I thought they would come.
I like my stomach – it’s cute – but I probably won’t like it when I am huge! My stomach has always been my problem area. I’ve never liked it, so loving it now is awesome. But I am worried about my boobs getting even bigger!
Do you feel like you want to look after yourself more?
Definitely. I was sick through to 21 weeks. I lost 7kgs and if I could hold down food it was always just bland carbs, and I couldn’t do any exercise. I felt really bad, because I want to be fit, healthy and strong for them when they arrive. I just felt so incredibly guilty that I possibly wasn’t giving them the nutrition they needed.
Do you think guilt is a problem for Kiwi women?
There are a small amount of people who look in the mirror and like what they see. I think people can accept others, but not themselves!
Are you hard on yourself?
I’m really hard on myself. I’m always moaning about my weight. My husband Jay says, “You look great to me, but if you’re not happy, fix it!” I was that girl who could eat pies, and ham and cheese croissants at school. But when I was 22, my metabolism changed and I had bad eating habits. My whole body shape changed when I was 23 and over a few years I put on 10kg. I wasn’t fat, but I didn’t like my new body shape because I wasn’t used to it. I’d never had to diet or exercise to have the shape I wanted, which had made me lazy.
Did alopecia knock your body confidence when you were growing up?
Totally. You don’t think you’re beautiful, you think you’re weird. I always say I look like an alien without my wig and my eyeliner. You’re different. You see the normal ideals of what’s beautiful and you don’t fit those molds. When I started modelling, it kind of rewired my brain to think that you don’t have to fit in the box to be beautiful. Sometimes it’s still hard.
Did you get bullied at school after losing your hair?
Oh yeah. Heaps. But I love talking to other people who struggle with it now and help them through it. Modelling really gave me my confidence back to stand up for myself.
How would you describe the real Kiwi woman?
Strong. We’re feminine, but we’re rough around the edges in a good way. Kiwi women can deal with a lot. We’re built tougher, we can handle tough situations. We’re quite robust.
About Kelly Bertrand
“I started at the Weekly after a two-week internship in 2011, which was part of my journalism studies. Basically, I hung around and annoyed people long enough to land a job as a staff writer, and I’ve been here ever since. I’m lucky enough to get to write stories ranging from the Kardashians through to the Queen, but my real passion is telling the stories of New Zealand’s sporting stars. Sometimes I can’t quite believe it’s my job to hang out with All Blacks and Silver Ferns! I absolutely love working at the Weekly, and feel really privileged to be part of this 83-year-old Kiwi institution. I’m also fond of Instagram, coffee and animals dressed as humans!”more of this author