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Just passing through

March 2nd, 2004 · No Comments

He Passes Through My Body wrote Halley Suitt [excerpt]:

It was a neat trick. How eight years back, I was the size of a woman wearing a tight tee shirt and equally snug blue jeans on a late fall morning, wore my pelvis just right in those days, still slightly girlish myself and then in a spark, his dad and I conceived of a boy, not just a baby, but the idea of a boy. The idea of whole live boy. At first, he was simply the idea of a baby boy. It was an idea that took only nine months to render. Some sort of mad morphing, passing through my body.

I was me.

I was me with him inside, not showing.

I was me with him inside, showing.

I was me (a mess of me) with him in my arms, showing him off.

A very pretty mix of his dad and me. We were mad for the boy. We had a baby. Happens every day.


But as each day goes by, as if stepping through a door frame, he is in fact, passing right through me. My silhouette and sides only a slight ghostly perimeter larger than him at this point and through me he originated and if all goes well, will walk way beyond me, leaving me in the dust. Yes, I invite him to make dust of me and walk on in this world, way beyond me. And on the day I yield this world to him, it will still be a mystery I do not pretend to understand.

In this piece, Halley Suitt captures the mystery of maternity.

How it is that one day I know I am pregnant but I don’t feel it at all. The test, the two blue lines, told me something small inside me is growing. But I can’t feel anything different. Maybe something is wrong. Maybe the test was wrong.

Now years later, I look into the eyes of my daughter, this baby I birthed. She lies on my lap, her legs as long as my jeans, already too tall to snuggle beneath my chin. She is starting to read, opening books and opening worlds for herself. She wants to know how yeast reproduce, how the presidency operates, how physicians diagnose disease. I know if something happened to me, if I disappeared from this world, she would continue to exist. She has her own life. Those cells dividing inside me became a baby, grew into a girl, becoming someday a young woman. Once our lives connected through a crucial cord of flesh and blood, intertwined, but now her life goes on independent of mine. How it all happened, I’m not sure. Miracle. Mystery. Maternity. I’m grateful I got to be the one to carry this child – all my daughters – to hold her within me for a moment of time, before she went through me.

Halley Suitt’s words captured it well He Passes Through My Body

Tags: motherhood