Look But Don’t Touch?

shutterstock_158237738The news last week reported another uprising, this one over a woman’s right to keep people from touching her baby bump.

At the end of her patience rope, the woman in question and many others like her are crying “Foul!” over the perception that a pregnant woman’s growing belly is fair game for anyone with a desire to reach-out-and-touch.

If it happened to me today, I’d want to smack the stranger too. I’m a grandmother and this “bump” was hard-earned with potato chips and brownies. “But I felt it kick,” the stranger might say. I’d level my best don’t-mess-with-me-stare and confess, “That was last night’s burrito, buddy. Now, back off.”

Then there’s this scene:

“Aww. How precious. Do you mind if I touch it? When are you due?”

“The baby’s six weeks old.”


So, I get it. I understand why some women find it uncomfortable to let others put a hand on their baby bump belly. But I have a theory why the compulsion to do so is so strong that perfectly well-mannered humans would override their natural impulse to stick to their own business and instead ask, “Do you mind if I…?” while already stroking the baby bump.

They’re reaching for a miracle.

Miracles fascinate. Few more profoundly than the miracle of life growing inside a woman.

In the ordinariness of life, our heart reaches out for a connection with the Divine, a reminder that miracles still happen.

I’ve watched the images of the Embrace Grace baby bumps. Most make me cry. Such exquisite beauty.

A secret, a lie, a deception, a shadow, a broken promise, an unguarded moment, a risky decision, a harsh attack, a rebellious act, a dumb choice may have tainted the genesis of it. But the bump unmistakably represents the miraculous. Life. The creation of a human being already dreaming, snuggled into the embrace of the woman carrying both scars and evidence of a miracle.

The bump is bigger, bolder, brighter than the scars and regret. The bump compels us to reach out and touch it, because the human heart is desperate to know miracles still happen, that underneath the bulging skin of our choices beats a steady rhythm of hope.

cynthiaAuthor and speaker Cynthia Ruchti tells stories of Hope-that-glows-in-the-dark through her novels, novellas, devotions, and nonfiction. One of her recent releases—the novel When the Morning Glory Blooms—celebrates hundreds of baby bumps over three whenthemorningglorybloomsdistinct eras told through the voices of women dealing with the aftereffects of unplanned pregnancies, including one thread told through the eyes of the mother of a teen mom. The stories are fiction. Or are they? Maybe your story reads like one of the characters’. Maybe your hope reads like their hope. You can connect with Cynthia at www.cynthiaruchti.com or www.facebook.com/CynthiaRuchtiReaderPage.


One thought on “Look But Don’t Touch?

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