I am but one among the countless number. I notice pregnant women everywhere now, at the store, walking by, in church—and this is only on Prince Edward Island, a dust mite on the map. Closing my eyes, I picture the telltale swell beneath a vibrant sari, an exposed black belly gleaming beneath the sun, the bump betraying a princess’s secret, or the hidden package of a frightened teenager curled up in a bathroom. Whether by surprise or not, we are all carrying what may seem ordinary, given its universality, but is truly extraordinary: new life.
When I first heard my child’s heartbeat, I was the first woman in history to receive tangible proof that another human being is nestled inside me. Diya in India, Maha in Africa, Kate in London, Jaden in America—we are all the first to be pregnant, because something this beautiful never grows obsolete or stale or banal. Like that first tender blossom on the bush beneath the kitchen window (the very bush that has been there for decades and never fails to bloom in spring), new life renews the face of the earth every time. Our breath is ever stolen by that which has lit the dreary landscape—or at least we should be so delighted.
When I look inward to my child, sleeping in my womb, I see vellum flesh too delicate yet to touch, but what I sense is the immensity of creation. Who am I that I should carry a blossom that has never before grown in the garden? I may have prepared the soil, and my husband planted the seed, but neither he nor I decided that roots should shoot forth and leaves unfurl. We merely tend what has been given to us. Yes, rain or shine, our child is gift.
We too have given a gift. Young we may be, yet we have taken part in the greatest feat we can or will ever achieve: creation. A name echoing into eternity, a handprint set into the Creator’s heart, this is what our humble love has given God—another soul to nourish with His own boundless love. This is what we have given the world—yet another extraordinary blossom.