I've noticed that pregnancy is an easy conversation-starter in any awkward social situation. It's like I'm suddenly part of this club and I inherently know the secret language. Sure, pregnancy talk is usually less than sparkling. And it's almost always the same thing over and over... and over again. But hey, it's a connection with another person that I probably wouldn't have otherwise had. And any woman who trusts me enough to tell me stories about gas, hemorrhoids and swollen vaginas is alright by me. It's like we just bonded.
It seems that ever since I've been noticeably pregnant, every woman I pass by with a child under the age of 5 gives me a weird glance and a smirk as if to say, "This is only the beginning, my friend." Okay, maybe that's all in my head. Maybe they're really just giving me a weird glance as if to say, "Stop staring at my kid, you weirdo." But still...a connection.
I do tend to stare at mothers and their children lately wondering what I might look like in the near future. I hope not to be that grouchy, screaming, ogre-of-a-mother I seem to see way too often. I always wondered why there always seem to be so many of those. Are these crazy-looking mothers normally sweet, caring individuals who are simply having a "moment" where their patience is being tried? Are their kids really just horrible monsters? Do they secretly hate their children? The thought of suddenly turning into "that person" scared me out of ever having kids for a while. I thought, "If that's what I'll turn into, I'll pass." But I've since met completely normal, patient mothers with normal, well-behaved children, and that gives me hope.
Sometimes when I see a mom pushing a shopping cart full of groceries and a couple of kids, talking on her cell phone and ruffling through her purse to find her car keys I think, "No wonder she has no patience." She can't even concentrate on what's right in front of her. Maybe if she just put down the phone and lived in the beauty of the moment - even if it is just grocery shopping - life would seem less stressful and more enjoyable.
I often have to remind myself of that when I try to do too many things at once. How many things do we miss because we just aren't paying attention? We only get so many moments, why rush them?