They made it look so easy. Happy pregnant women, bright shiny babies.
Can't you just tell from these pictures that once you get pregnant, you learn to do yoga?
And of course, I knew I would be bathed in that soft dewy glow lighting all the time.
But you know what? I'm not glowing. I don't look dewy. I look mostly a bit uncomfortable, which by the way I am. But still, as weird as it sounds, I love this. I love growing a baby and being a mom. It's what I've always wanted to do.
I have been re-reading a book about modern Paganism that talks about Feminism, Witchcraft, and power. Some Feminist Witches interviewed for the book saw motherhood as a powerful thing. Others saw it as the source of a woman's oppression. I have to say, the second idea made me kind of sad. If Pagans see in the Goddess the three faces of womanhood, Maiden, Mother, and Crone, how can one of those faces be the source of our oppression?
Maybe then, women were thinking that motherhood really wasn't all it was made out to be. But they were still recovering from the 50s when we had been so far removed from our natural state of being. Everything from the birth experience to parenting a child had been changed for us. Put women in twilight sleep and take away their power in childbirth. Tell them to formula feed for convenience and have them miss out on the bonding (and anti-depressive benefits) of breastfeeding. Begin introducing devices so that they don't have to hold their babies so much. Maybe by the late 60s and early 70s women had a reason to be disconnected from the power and potential of motherhood and to think that the brochures they were given, were a big pack of lies.
But I embrace this phase in my life. I see the Magic in every day that I carry my baby. I see it in the way my body provides for him. Even after birth. I see it in how a mother's milk changes based on the gestational age of her baby, providing more nutrients for a premature infant. I see it in the face of my baby, asleep on my chest in a sling, or cradled in my arms in bed. I feel that magic every time one of my children has a milestone and learns something new. I am raising a whole generation of new people who will go out and change the Earth in some way. How can there not be power in that?
So, while I'm not good at yoga, and I'm not sitting around the beach in billowy dresses, staring out at the ocean (and didn't even when I lived in California), I know that I don't need a brochure to explain to me how amazing it is to have a baby. And thank the Gods for that. Because honestly, sometimes pregnancy is not fun. Not by a long shot.