A short (true) story:
I arrive with my new patient paperwork in hand. I hurriedly take a seat in the waiting room. I’m overrun with emotion when sitting here as the place is PLASTERED with photos of pregnant women and there are children’s books and parenting manuals on the table. So I’m sitting there, practicing my deep breathing, and waiting for my turn when a mom and her daughter come out of one of the rooms. The little girl is unbearably cute. Probably 2.5, if I had to guess. As her mom pays she plays with books in the waiting area. All the while making eyes at me. I think she is encouraged by me looking back at her and pretty quickly the gorgeous toddler launchs into a quick string of questions. Most of it’s pretty normal little kid things…
“What’s your name?”
“Do you like this book?”
We had a pretty good convo going when she says, not even breaking the flow, “What’s the baby’s name?” … I pause. The book she’s holding has a baby on it. I say, “I’m not sure that baby’s name. It’s just a picture for the cover.” She sighs, almost dramatically, you know how annoyingly dense adults can seem to a two year old. “No, the baby.” She stresses. “What’s the baby’s name?” and then points at my stomach.
My heart launches into my throat and for a minute I can’t decide if I’m going to pass out or burst into tears.
Instead, I recollect myself quickly and respond. “I don’t have a baby.” She looks dissatisfied and says, again, “Baby’s name?” So I said to her “Do YOU have a baby at home?” She smiles and nods –yes. I ask her what HER baby’s name is and if the baby is older or younger than her. Then her mom finishes paying. She turns around and… is enormously pregnant.
The logical, has worked with kids forever, part of my brain goes “AHH. She is still at the age where every woman is just like mommy. I MUST have a baby inside me like she does. I’m a woman.”
The illogical, more hippy-dippy, hopeful side goes “Yeah, but children that young sense things adults don’t. Maybe she knows more than me. Maybe this is going to work. Maybe my baby is with me even now. Waiting.”
I’ve had that sense before. That our child is waiting in the wings. Almost close enough to touch. Willing us to keep going. I allow myself to linger in that thought for a moment. Allowing myself to imagine that this child’s intuition is right.