Beyoncé’s Great Twin Pregnancy of 2017 Will Be the Stuff of Legend

Once upon a time, circa the 1950s, pregnancy was all about modesty—and muumuus. When Lucille Ball dared to get pregnant while starring on I Love Lucy (so many moons before Lean In), she wasn’t allowed to say the word “pregnant” on-air; she and Ricky even slept in adjacent twin beds. The presumption was that pregnancy was a weird health condition meant to be literally and figuratively kept under wraps.

If only Lucy could see Beyoncé.

She, queen among women, is having the best, most thoroughly modern pregnancy in recent memory: Since announcing she is pregnant with twins (while veiled, beneath a lush floral arch, in a photo posted on Instagram—how else?) in February, she hasn’t covered up, slowed down, or otherwise muted her shine in any way, per the old (though, at times, still lingering) expectations of a woman with child. The evidence, of course, is all on Instagram: The Great Twin Pregnancy of 2017 is the stuff of legend.

Beginning with the reveal, Beyoncé sent the clear message that pregnancy isn’t an inconvenience (even in her nonstop life) but cause for celebration. As someone who was uncomfortably and hugely pregnant on the reveal day, I can vouch that Bey provided a temporary, although much needed, shift in mind-set: Pregnant women, she reminded the world, are meant to be worshipped like the goddesses they are. Pregnant women are still cool (perhaps never cooler than that day).

Shortly thereafter, Beyoncé not only blazed on with her scheduled Grammys performance, but also delivered a truly epic show, replete with golden bikinis, crowns, and that gravity-defying tipping chair. The performance was wholly inspiring: Pregnant or not (with twins or not), one can still slay at work.

Beyoncé has also made serious strides in rebuking other pregnancy clichés. There’s no need to park it on the couch for 40 weeks, to gorge on ice cream and pickles, to balloon beyond recognition, and to say farewell to our former selves. (Recall the mom-shamers who notably came for Chrissy Teigen for going out to dinner weeks following the birth of her daughter.) For Beyoncé, pregnancy is a party and she’s been living out loud, including Snapping courtside with Blue Ivy, supporting Kelly Rowland at her book release party in Los Angeles—in thigh-high Louboutin boots, because why not?—and hitting the town in a flower headdress (the Beyoncé version of a flower crown, people) at a charity event hosted by her beloved mom, Tina Knowles.

“She likes to have fun,” Rowland told ET of Beyoncé’s pregnancy m.o. “So we’re not treating her like a pregnant lady!” Yes, Beyoncé has shattered that crusty old expectation. It’s been said that through this pregnancy, Beyoncé has created an unattainable ideal for the rest of us, but, in fact, Beyoncé has created a bright new standard, in which being your fierce self is the only rule.

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