My Body Is a Big Fat Temple

Alena Dillon

Every two minutes a woman dies due to complications of pregnancy and childbirth. Every Mother Counts is changing that by improving access to basic and lifesaving maternity care. Alena Dillon and Woodhall Press will donate 10% of profits of copies purchased on Monday, Tuesday (pub day!), and Wednesday of this week. Please, help us support this cause. Thank you. (Shop local, and submit your purchase information here.)

My Body Is A Big Fat Temple, a memoir of pregnancy and early motherhood, follows a writer as she debates having children, miscarries, faces morning sickness, uncertainty, physical impairments, labor, breastfeeding, the “baby blues,” the heartache of not loving her son as she thinks she should, parenting through a plague, until finally (basically, mostly) blossoming into her new identity.


Creating life is a primal phenomenon. It requires grit, resilience, and a lot of bathroom breaks. There are dry heaves and darkened nipples, crotch lightning and brain fuzz, milk stains, sleep regressions, and equal amounts of despair and joy. It's a complicated magic. The undertaking is airbrushed to preserve the ideal of motherhood, and exacerbated by a culture that dictates what women can do and how they should feel. We don’t get the full story, so mothers with unromantic experiences feel like aberrations, and worse, alone. This is why the voices of women matter. The voices of mothers matter. Here’s one to keep you company, and to remind you to do your Kegels. (They’re really important.)

We're donating 10% of profits to Every Mother Counts, October 11-13!

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"Alena Dillon is one of my favorite writers and to read her journey through pregnancy is a great joy and heartbreak."

-Amy Schumer

About the Author

Alena Dillon is the author of Mercy House, a Library Journal Best Book of 2020, which has been optioned as a Paramount+ television series produced by Amy Schumer, as well as The Happiest Girl in the World, and My Body Is A Big Fat Temple, a memoir of pregnancy and early parenting, forthcoming from Woodhall Press October 2021.

Alena’s work has appeared in publications including LitHub, River Teeth, Slice Magazine, The Rumpus, The Doctor TJ Eckleburg Review, and Bustle.

She teaches creative writing and lives on the north shore of Boston with her husband, son, black lab, and lots of books.

Learn more at alenadillon.com

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