One of the most magical experiences that a person can have is becoming a parent. It's an experience that many of the best women in WWE history have had on multiple occasions. Even if it's an experience that in many instances, the women definitely were not planning to engage in. This includes Maryse and Mike Mizanin who were left blindsided with the knowledge that they were going to become parents. Mickie James and Maria Kanellis also weren't expecting to add to their family, but they've definitely made the best of it. And while Christy Hemme may have planned to get pregnant for a 2nd time with her husband, there is no way that she was expecting to be pregnant with quadruplets. Though if the 4 of them ever have a feud they can pair off into tag teams and have her other child step in as the referee!
But at least Maria Kanellis and Maryse received proper support from the company when they announced their news, including taking maternity leave. This is something Vince may have made sure of, as when Dawn Marie was fired when she was still expecting, she handed the WWE a lawsuit for wrongful termination that they definitely weren't expecting!
While you may be used to seeing these women flash their toned abs in the ring - or in some cases, show a little more than that outside of it - that's not what you'll be seeing below. Instead, we've tracked down 15 of the rarest photos of WWE Women when they were still eating for two.
15 Stacy Keibler
If you were thinking of what Stacy Keibler's most popular relationship was, it may be when she won over the affections of the former Batman, George Clooney. I mean, sure, he was like the worst Batman, but Clooney still can say he's been the caped crusader. But while the two spent several years together, the two never tied the knot. That wasn't the case for the next man that Keibler won over, Jared Pobre, who had previously been friends with Keibler. Do you think Clooney was ever jealous of how close the two seemed?
The two have been married since 2014 and as you can tell from this photo, have started a family together.
Keibler gave birth to a daughter, Ava, back in 2014. While many women elect to have their child in the hospital and with the assistance of various drugs, that wasn't the case for Keibler "When I was pregnant, I did concurrent care with both my OB-gyn and midwife because I wanted to compare the journey. I concluded that there was no doubt that I wanted to have a home birth with no medication." She may have had second thoughts about that plan after her labor lasted 19 hours though! (Source: EOnline).
14 Eve Torres
One of the most difficult things for a woman to try and achieve is to adjust to their body after giving birth. When you consider WWE athletes live their life under the public eye and are constantly putting their body through the ringer, that pressure may be even more for them to overcome. When discussing with US Weekly how she felt during her own pregnancy, as well as her feelings after giving birth to her son, Raeven, in 2015 she stated "As someone whose profession relies heavily on physical activity, I definitely felt extra pressure to get back to my pre-baby shape. But the truth is, I don’t know a mom who doesn’t feel the pressure to bounce back after giving birth.”
If that wasn't inspiring enough, she also went on to state “Exercise (when your body is ready), eat for health, love yourself & your child, and let your body do whatever it’s meant to do after the amazing feat of creating a human.” We are sure there are many women out there who need to read inspirational things like this from women they respect like Torres. Credit also goes to Torres' husband Rener Gracie, for clearly creating an environment where she feels loved and supported.
13 Christy Hemme
Christy Hemme definitely had to beat some pretty unlikely odds to come out on top of the 2004 WWE Diva Search. But credit where credit is due, Hemme did have a reasonably long career in the industry before officially retiring in 2009. But if you want even crazier odds, you won't believe this next entry. Christy Hemme and her husband Charley Patterson who got married in 2010 first got pregnant and gave birth to a girl, Charlie Rose who she gave birth to on January 6th, 2015.
When talking about her first pregnancy, Hemme stated "We have always known we wanted to have kids, but we also wanted to have at least five years for us to travel and enjoy each other. We have now been together for six years and really feel like we took the time to create a solid foundation for children; a foundation that will show them we are committed to one another and to them. We want to show them each day what true love looks like." In September 2017, Hemme and Patterson announced they were pregnant but this time with quadruplets. That's still not the crazy part. When Hemme eventually gave birth - to 3 boys and 1 girl - IT WAS ALSO ON JANUARY 6th. As if that birthday party wasn't big enough for the 4 of them? (Source: FitPregnancy).
WWE Wrestlers put themselves in dangerous situations on a regular basis where they always need to be sure they're being safe. But for Maryse and Mike Mizanin, their safety should have perhaps continued on when they engaged in cardio that resulted in a little Miz. The Miz was clearly flabbergasted with the news (as he recalled they weren't trying for a child) when Maryse not only let him know she was pregnant but did so while filming an episode for Total Divas. But hey, it makes good TV right?
At least the two were in a loving relationship and already married at the time of the revelation or the news may have been a lot more awkward!
When describing her first moments with her daughter, Monroe Sky, who was born back in March, Maryse stated “I will never forget the first little noise she made. Hearing her … that sound of her tiny cry will never leave my memory. This little girl is everything.” The Miz also had a touching story about when he first truly felt like he was a Dad, “It became real for me at about 2 a.m., when Monroe was crying and I picked her up, put her in my arms and rocked her in the rocking chair. I was so tired, but she stopped crying and just stared at me with those beautiful blue eyes that melted my heart. I love her so much.” (Source: People, People (2)).
11 Rosa Mendes
Rosa Mendes may not have put together a career worthy of a spot in the Hall of Fame, but she still achieved her dream of being in the WWE. But when she sat down with the company to talk about why she was stepping away from the ring, she talked about her daughter that came from the bump you see above, "I just feel like as you get older, your dreams evolve. For years, my dream was to become a WWE champion. And, now that I’ve brought a life into this world, and I’m with the man of my dreams, it’s different." The man that Mendes is talking about is Bobby Schubenski, who Mendes has been engaged to since 2015. Mendes gave birth to her daughter, who she named Jordan Elizabeth, back in February 2016. While we're sure they've taken some steps towards marriage, perhaps watching their little girl take steps of her own has been more important to them.
Though Mendes did admit in her exit interview that she did miss being a part of the reality TV show, Total Divas "I loved being on reality TV, I loved getting followed around by cameras and everyone staring at me… I gotta say, I just loved the attention [laughs]." (Source: WWE).
10 Candice Michelle
Candice Michelle had many moments in the ring that surely caught your attention, but nothing happened in her career that was perhaps as eye-catching as when she elected to appear in famous magazines. One person who was a huge fan of the decision was her husband, Ken Gee, who to his own credit is a very accomplished chiropractor. The two had met in 1999 and were married in 2005.
When Ken was asked about Candice posing in the issue, he replied "This has been a dream of hers since before we met and now that it has manifested it just shows all the hard work she has done. Candice has always wanted the cover because they typically only give it to celebrities. I guess she is a celebrity now, pretty weird, she’s the same girl I fell in love with years ago, she just spends more money!" Thankfully landing photo deals with magazines would have allowed her to have more of that income to spend! That being said, thinking of the girl from the magazine cover and seeing how pregnant Candice looks in the above photo may definitely be jarring! Michelle and Ken have 3 children together, AkiAnne (born 2010), Ryumi (born 2012) and Aloha (born 2015). (Source: PlanetChriopractic).
9 Maria Kanellis
Maria Kanellis knows that people are always going to be critical of some of her talent when it comes to the wrestling industry. But Kanellis was definitely not having it when people started to get upset at her for getting pregnant, only shortly after making her reappearance in the WWE, "I signed a contract with WWE in March and had no plans of getting pregnant until my contract was up. So, yes I have only been signed for a few months this time but, I worked for WWE before. For 5 and a half years. I've also been working in wrestling for 13 years. AND I've been working since I was 12. I was a bus girl for my first job. Thus, I have been working for 23 years."
She didn't stop her rant there, going on to say, "I CAN get pregnant. I can even stay home while pregnant and have a job because WWE thinks I am important and this baby is important enough to do so. After 23 years of work, do I deserve maternity leave? I think so and so does WWE." Maria and her husband, Mike Bennett, welcomed their little girl Fredrica Bennett into the world this past April. It is their first child. (Source: WrestlingInc).
8 Brie Bella
There is no question that Brie Bella has put her body through a tremendous amount of punishment when she was making a name for herself in the wrestling industry. But when she was discussing how her pregnancy was making her feel with E! News, taking a tussle in the ring may definitely seem preferable "Pregnancy has kicked my butt I will admit. I was like, 'Whoa, I feel like I'm going through WrestleMania every day!'" Don't worry though, Brie did make sure to mention one part of her pregnancy that really stood out as being a positive "The nice thing is that right now I can take naps and not feel guilty."
Brie and Bryan Danielson welcomed their daughter, Birdie Joe Danielson, into the world back in May 2017.
It definitely won't be the last addition for the family, as when talking to E! News, Brie revealed "I have to make a comeback to wrestling before [having another child]. I miss that ring. But I told Bryan, I was just like, listen I want a second one…because he's like let's do it when Birdie's nine months! I was like, ‘Whoa. You're not the one who gets pregnant and goes through the labor. So no.'" (Source: Upi, lifeandstylemag).
7 Beth Phoenix
Adam "Edge" Copeland's career in the WWE definitely didn't end in the way he had hoped, with injuries sending him permanently to the sidelines. But we're sure in hindsight he'd be pretty amazed at how his life has been going as of late. This includes being married to the former female superstar, Beth Phoenix since October 2016. The two have welcomed two little ones into the world, both daughters, one named Lyric who was born in December 2013 and Ruby who was born in May 2016. With parents like that, you definitely shouldn't be surprised if either (if not both) ladies take up an interest in the world of professional wrestling. Especially with so many amazing role models in the company that they can look up to for inspiration. Let's just hope they listen to Dad's advice to probably take a lot fewer dives from the top of the ladder.
Despite Copeland's busy career after wrestling, including a stint on the television series Vikings, he also always goes out of his way to be a strong Dad, saying in an interview with ESPN "I read to my kids every night. Not a missed night. If I'm in Ireland [filming 'Viking'], and with the time difference, I will film myself reading a book for that night and send it to Dropbox so Beth can still play it for them. So even while I'm sleeping or working, they still get our nightly routine of dad reading them to bed." (Source: ESPN).
6 Taryn Terrell
Taryn Terrell spent some time in the WWE, but she's one of the many examples from over the years of someone who couldn't quite get her footing. She did, however, manage to put together several years in TNA which means that even if you don't remember her time under Vince, that she may still be the source of some fond memories for you. Terrell and her husband, Joseph Dryden, whose career includes working as a stuntman, have 2 children together. Their first was a daughter who they named Emerson and was born in March 2014.
Though in an interview with Fanatix, she admitted that her child was not all good news, “Of course [there were some mixed feelings], every day I’m working towards being a better wrestler. I’m never satisfied; I’m always striving to be better. And then I have to take this time off. It’s scary coming back – thinking is my body going to be able to handle this, am I mentally going to able to handle being back out on the road – because my mind is on my baby all the time, she’s my world.” Their 2nd child was a son, named Rhett, who Terrell and Dryden welcomed into the world back in December 2016. While Terrell won't be pulling off any more suplexes anytime soon, as she stepped away from the ring in October 2017, let's hope that she feels just as confident in entertaining her children. (Source: Diva-Dirt).
5 Mickie James
There are many instances out there where starting a family ends up becoming a big strain on the relationship. But for Mickie James and her then-boyfriend, Nick Aldis, James giving birth to their son - Donovan - in September 2014 just pushed the two of them closer together. They got engaged not long after James gave birth and ended up being married in December 2015. When talking about becoming pregnant, James admitted that it wasn't exactly planned, “I was working on so many things at the time, I was already working on a bunch of different projects like a reality show. I was back in the [music] studio, and I wanted to talk to WWE about going back there or taking a position as a trainer. All these thoughts were there."
Thankfully though, James ended up having positive thoughts on the ordeal.
She said "Initially, we thought, ‘What are we going to do?’ It was a blessing in disguise. This is a great thing because I was at a point where I wasn’t nailed down to anything at that moment to where I had to say, ‘I have work to do and this and that.’ It was the perfect opportunity for me." (Source: MiamiHerald).
4 Sara Lee
Sara Lee's biggest claim to fame from the WWE came when she was announced as the winner of the 6th Tough Enough. But her time in the company came to an end in 2016 and not long after, Lee took to Instagram to share some new news with the wrestling world. That her, alongside her partner Wesley Blake - who still competes in NXT - were going to be welcoming a little one to the world, "Yes, I am indeed preggers and couldn’t be more excited. Everything happens for a reason right?! Little baby in there has been kicking my butt for the last 13 weeks but I’m starting to get my energy back and about to head to the gym! Oh and yes @thewweblake is the daddy”
Perhaps it's not the most surprising that Lee wasn't going to allow her pregnancy to slow down her fitness routine!
She gave birth to their daughter, Piper, in May 2017. And while Dawn Marie's termination that happened around her pregnancy was a huge source of controversy, as we'll talk about, an insider for PWInsider reported that the reason Lee was let go from her contract was that she was unable to succeed in the ring. Seems like a pretty legitimate reason to be fired. (Source: SportsKeeda).
3 Trish Stratus
Trish Stratus has accomplished a tremendous amount during her time in the WWE and inspired many future performers. But one of the biggest accomplishments that Stratus has is the fact that she has managed to be in the same relationship since High School. While her and her husband, Ron, have surely had some difficulties in the past, it is seriously impressive to be with someone for that length of time. The two have two children together, a son named Maximus (born in 2013) and a daughter named Madison-Patricia (2017).
When Stratus was once asked by ParentsCanada as to what advice she would pass on to women out there who are expecting, she replied "I cannot stress enough the importance of eating well and exercising throughout your pregnancy. You have total control to create an environment that is nourishing for your baby. Be as educated as you can about the whole process." Trish's 2nd pregnancy definitely did not go as smoothly as her first one. Unlike with Maximus, Trish and Ron struggled with infertility issues; including Trish tragically suffering a miscarriage at one point. When talking about why she shared her story with ParentsCanada, Trish stated "At the time, I didn't hear about it, I didn't talk to people who were going through this. That's why I want to get out there and share my story and tell people you're not alone." (Source: ParentsCanada).
2 Dawn Marie
Dawn Marie definitely wasn't done expressing her passion for the wrestling industry when her contract was ended in 2006. But her then-recent pregnancy was definitely a factor and Marie ended up going after the company for wrongful termination as she was let go while she was still expecting. When discussing the matter with SLAM! Magazine, Marie explained "I love the business, I miss the business, and I never really finished. I had some weight issues after the pregnancy, but I'm trying really hard, I've been working out really hard, and hopefully (I'll be back) soon. Don't get me wrong, I'm loving being a a mom. But I'm getting antsy, and want to come back."
Marie may have had the passion, but sadly for her, nothing about the back half of her career lived up to her expectations and she never entered a WWE ring again. While the terms were not released, she ended up settling the lawsuit with the company back in 2007. You'd hope it was enough to at least make sure her daughter can live comfortably or go after the career path of her dreams. You can also imagine that Vince McMahon can consider himself pretty fortunate that a potential scandal of this magnitude didn't end up blowing up his company; as it may if the same thing happened in 2018. (Source: Slam, WrestlingInc).
1 Stephanie McMahon
Stephanie McMahon definitely seems to be in a great mood in the above photo. Which means that while she may have been more than happy to smile for, logically, Paul Levesque (aka Triple H), there is probably a pretty good chance she never expected this photo to see the internet. Judging by the medical supplies that are behind her, it definitely looks like Stephanie was perhaps only moments away from giving birth. Or at the very least was going in for one of her last check-ups because she is definitely heavily pregnant. Good thing she'd have Triple H around to help with all of the potential heavy lifting!
The family has 3 children together, all daughters. Their first was born in 2006, another in 2008 and their 3rd in 2010. They named them Aurora, Murphy, and Vaughn. When talking about if they were interested in the sport, McMahon stated "They do watch it, my oldest and youngest in particular. My oldest [then aged 10] would love to be the women’s champion and my youngest [then aged 6] wants to marry John Cena – so she needs to hurry up because he and Nikki Bella are now engaged. It is conflict resolution and the only difference is ours are settled in the ring in some great live action.” Which also means Vaughn may have been happy at the news that they split! (Source: SportsKeeda).