Not Alone by Cristina Cole

It’s moments like now when your little hand or foot pokes me
That I’m reminded that I’m not alone
I’ve grown used to sitting awkwardly, sleeping with strategically-placed pillows
And not eating hotdogs because the heartburn is unbearable
Waking up frequently is now a part of my routine
And stopping to take a breath halfway up a flight of stairs is the usual
Shopping for groceries has changed too;
When I see a baby in a cart with a tired mommy pushing them along
My eyes instantly water
My heart feels like it’s melting
And then the familiar panic comes:
Will I be able to do this?
Will I be able to give you all that you need?
Will my body and mind be able to withstand the exhaustion?
Will I be a good mother?
But before my mind reaches a high peek of panic a shopper will ask me when I’m due
Men tell me I have “that glow”
Women chat about the discomforts they remember… but always end with: “It’s all worth it”
Elder women look at my swollen belly as though taking measurements
And tell me, with conviction, whether I’m having a boy or girl
Just a little longer until we meet you, and I’ll know for sure
But as my body stretches more and more to make space for you
The world outside you is also shifting
We’re preparing for your arrival and anxiously waiting
Our lives will revolve around you
When we eat, when we sleep, when we sit down to watch TV, or outside in the garden with the pets…
You’ll be with us
But for now, you’re still inside of me
Moving, poking and wiggling
Responding to my touch when I rub my belly
And shaking with me when daddy makes me laugh so hard
Although I complain lately about the discomfort, the heat, the aches and pains
I know I’ll miss this; these moments when you kick me to remind me that I’m not alone.

© Copyright – All rights reserved – Cristina Cole

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