Now that I’ve got your undivided attention, you can close your mouth. I’m not physically pregnant at forty. But in all other ways–emotionally, mentally and spiritually–I feel like I am pregnant. I’m pregnant with my novel. To honor this feeling, I’m posting an excerpt of an article I wrote for a regional magazine a decade ago. No, I’m not having weird food cravings, but I can still relate to much of what I wrote when I was pregnant with my second child. I hope it inspires you.
Adventures of a Pregnant Goddess ©2003
It starts with a moment of pure, passionate ecstasy and ends with a moment of absolute physical relief and ecstatic joy. Ah yes, the journey of pregnancy. By the time you read this, I will undoubtedly be a mother for the second time, complete with the new mommy smile framed by dark circles under my eyes and diapers up to my armpits.
You’ve heard all the stories before, or experienced some of it yourself. The morning sickness that should have been named “all day sickness”–this is the point when you know the face of the toilet better than your husband’s or child’s. Leg cramps that could wake the dead. Heartburn–because your stomach and lungs end up sharing the same 3 inch space. Backaches and sore ribs. Peeing every 5 minutes. Hormonally induced emotional moments, some of which you hope to forget, and hope the people that were on aisle 5 will also forget. Oh and the cravings. Cravings for things you can’t believe you would eat—chop suey, mashed potatoes and a chocolate shake please. Oh and some fish, no, make that raisin bran. I’ll just have spaghetti. Oh and a side of waffles with maple syrup. Yep, what a journey it is.
There are days that I look in the mirror and just feel humongous. Usually followed by a visit to the OB/midwife office that feels more like a cattle roundup. I waddle into the open, expansive office so a medical assistant can weigh me and then announce proudly on my behalf, “Oh you gained 2 more pounds!” to which I respond, “Can we just write it down please?” This is usually the day my gorgeous husband comes home and tells me how beautiful and sexy I am. But that is just the physical stuff. There is so much more to it. The spiritual aspect is so much deeper. There are other days when I feel so blessed, not just because I have close friends who would do just about anything to conceive a child, but because creating a human life within your body is so miraculous. How amazing it is even now to watch my two year old playing on the floor and think, “That human being came out of me, came from the joining of my spirit with my husband’s”. There is a sense of having a special connection with the part of me that is the Goddess, the divine feminine.
During this pregnancy I have become taken with the Goddess in many forms. After reviewing Marianne Williamson’s A Woman’s Worth, I have felt soul level restoration, a sense of true divinity within myself that I have never quite felt in this way before. It is like a special secret that only I get to be in on, because every pregnancy is different, even for the same woman.
What is the secret? Well, it is a knowing that I am not second class, that I am not the centuries old perpetuated belief that a woman is not part of divinity, not as worthy as a man. It is knowing that whatever my childbirth experience is, I am not somehow paying for Eve’s transgression in the Garden. It is knowing my childbirth experience is my own, and nobody else’s. It is knowing that my body will stretch to the limits and then gradually change back, and all I have to do is be in it—I do not consciously have to grow my baby, it just happens naturally. It is knowing and living the Circle of Life. The rest of the secret is just for me to know, as my motherhood experience unfolds, and not for sharing with the world.
Pregnancy is a wonderful illustration for some of life’s universal laws. First there is Deliberate Creation, a deliberate act that will have a direct effect. Then there are months of Expectation, knowing the effect will sooner or later make itself known. During those months there can be moments similar to the dark night of the soul, a feeling that the end result will never get here and that the journey is too difficult and the misperception that you have been abandoned by the Goddess to go it alone. There can also be moments of pure joy, reveling in the changes taking place and how quickly it seems to be passing by, and how beautiful you feel. Lastly, there is the Birth process, the moments in which you feel the limits of your strength tested, and yet somehow you just do it automatically. Later you realize the Goddess was there all along, and when that baby is handed to you, for a moment you see the Goddess in everyone’s eyes, a Love light that awes at the miracle no matter how many times a person has witnessed it.
I have been heard saying I feel like a “human hotel”–complete with room service at 3 am. I have told people I am not one of those women that enjoy the physical part of pregnancy, that I am not very good at being taken hostage in my own body. I have even momentarily felt like slapping other women who have exclaimed gleefully that they just loved being pregnant and never experienced morning sickness. But honestly, if you are asking me about the spiritual journey, and the adventure of it all, I do love it. There is absolutely nothing like it. I heard Celine Dion say in an interview that she felt like she was reborn when her child was born. I agree. So, here I am, anxiously waiting out the last weeks of this crazy wonderful journey, anticipating the inevitable experience of childbirth. Embracing the blessing of a closer than ever relationship with my husband and releasing my fears of the unknown, knowing I AM the Goddess. Like so many women before me, I will be a stronger, better person afterwards. So when you see me with toddler, infant and diaper bag in tow, you will hopefully also see a big smile on my face that comes from knowing I AM the Goddess known as Mother.