All Hail The Mother’s Gut

We all see things from a different perspective. 

But for a mother, after bringing a child out from the depths of her own body, in a fierce combination of her blood, muscles, and cells, their reality is a little more enmeshed.  

The child will separate from her, but never truly, completely. 

Her heart still stands on edge when her child is not right. Her brain still can’t relax when her child is storming inside. Her deeper senses claw at her to open her eyes. Internal alarms ring. Go look, they pester her, look again. Look closer.

What do we do with these deeper intuitive secrets being whispered throughout our body? 

Maybe I’m overreacting. Maybe I should just stay quiet and wait,” we tell ourselves. 

We doubt our intuition. We desire to silence our rambling, agitated inner voice.

Be scientific, we goad ourselves. Be practical. Be impartial. Be impressive.

And yet talk we must.

Two years ago, my bulging pregnant self was eyeing my midwife skeptically as she measured my contractions at forty weeks. 

“Five minutes apart ! Three centimeters dilated ! Congratulations, ” she informed me, “I’ll see you at the hospital tonight.”

I smiled uncertainly. Really?

I actually felt nothing; I had no idea my body was contracting. I continued to be “in labor” for two more weeks, contracting without my conscience awareness.

My midwife eventually gave up on predicting. She let go of the machines and listened to me, when finally the night came that I called her and said, “Now. Now it’s happening. Now I’m ready. I’ll see you at the hospital tonight.”

Gather round the pregnant mama as she directs them to the orchestra playing unabashedly within.

All hail the mothers gut.

“I’m ready to go to the hospital,” I told my husband. “Call a cab.”

But when it came, I realized I couldn’t get in.

“We need to call an ambulance,” I firmly informed my husband, waving the cab apologetically away.

My husband looked at me incredulously, but did as my laboring-self demanded.

The ambulance man also thought I was overreacting.

“Trust me,” I told him as he helped hoist me inside. “I’m a lot farther along than I appear.”

Once the sirens were on, the contractions escalated.

“They’re one on top of the other!” the formerly skeptical ambulance man shouted to his volunteer, as my water exploded and the birth’s descent matched our speed down the vacant Brooklyn highway.

“Imminent delivery!” I heard the same man frantically bellow as he wheeled me straight into the hospital room, bypassing any triage room or check in area, where I gave birth to my Naomi ten minutes later.

…..

Two years after that triumphant birth, I was back in the hospital, this time in the ER, with asthmatic Naomi.

“She’s good to go,” confirmed the doctor on duty after some treatment.

I hesitated. Naomi giggled and danced around us.

“No child with respiratory distress dances like that, ” the doctor assured me.

“I really feel like she’s still having trouble,” I pressed. I was afraid to push her, but more afraid of the butterflies still in my stomach, feeling Naomi’s discomfort as my own.

“Ok, ” the doctor acquiesced, “Let’s look again.”

As I held Naomi, the doctor’s eyes changed while looking closely at Naomi’s stomach and neck muscles.

“You’re right,” she resigned, humbled. “She’s still in distress.”

After an hour more of intensive treatment, Naomi finally was back to normal and we were discharged. 

I was flying on the cab ride home, filled with incredible awe and gratitude at my daughter’s restored health and the power of motherly insight.

Sometimes it scares me, my increased sensitivity. That I can notice things that other people don’t. That while looking at my children, I’ll be hit with a feeling of subtle unease, knowing something is off, while everyone else only sees the most surface level, cheerfully beaming back at my kid’s smiling faces, oblivious to anything else happening.

“Am I just crazy?” we ask ourselves, struggling to find the courage to voice our deeper intuitions. 

Yet you must remind yourself that you have been given a special gift from Gd- a mother’s gut-and nestled in your womb, your responsibility is to expose how it trembles and digests.

Your voice is your guide; part magic, part earthly dirt, mixing together subtle knowledge that falls below the radar level and more tactical realities. A tapestry of ancestral wisdom passed down through the bloodstream, binding past and present indiscriminately. 

Your feelings add to the music of the experience, the cushioning and expansion of perspective. 

You might fear being half wrong. You may fear the repercussions of emptying your mind. 

Speak out anyways.

The culpability for losing out on the full breath of the conversation and the possibility for cataclysmic advancement by combining heaven and earth, surface and depth, has been handed over. The onus is not on you if the listening party disregards it.

Give over the words and insights that Gd has breathed into your sensitive, pulsating womb. 

Be brave by sharing your fears.

Be courageous by divulging your intuitions.

Be bold by offering your own solutions, no matter your degree of expertise. 

Own your sensitivity. Own your power. Own your deeper knowledge.

Be fearless by being soft.

We are women, born and bred from malchus. 

Born and breeding creations into this world.

So speak, holy women, speak.