Seems like everywhere I look lately, there’s a pregnant woman, which just makes me ridiculously happy. Today I was wandering around the West Village with a good friend (who also happens to be a Labor and Delivery nurse), and we both caught ourselves staring at a gorgeous woman walking right towards us, with a proud, ripe watermelon belly. She was wearing a creamy lemon yellow tank top over it and she just looked like pure sunshine. If I had to guess, I’d say she was about 36 weeks, give or take a few, although I’ve worked with enough pregnant women by now to know that size of belly is only a very rough predictor of gestational age. The point being, she was beautiful.
It was about five summers ago, right around this time, that I first began to notice that there seemed to be pregnant women everywhere, and I found that I couldn’t take my eyes off of them. I just stared and stared—they absolutely captivated me. I couldn’t explain it, but I was inexplicably drawn towards them. I wanted to touch their bellies (although I never did). I wanted to introduce myself and ask them all about their pregnancy, and what they were most looking forward to about birth, and whether it was a boy or a girl, and how did it feel to have a baby in there squirming around, etc. etc., but I was often too shy to do so. So I just stared, and pondered pregnant thoughts. Something had clicked. It was as if a switch had been turned on inside of me; I was at a crossroads anyway, and definitely ready for a new direction. Once I discovered midwifery, I never looked back.