"I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain."

Being pregnant during periods of anxiety, grief, and anger can be complicated. We know that the stress that we experience in pregnancy is also experienced by our babies. Cultural traditions worldwide recommend that pregnant women not look at or think about upsetting things. Unfortunately, that's not the reality that we live in, or that of many of our sisters around the globe.

We are the canvas for our beautiful struggle. This holds true outside of birth as well, it's just how we live our lives, changing in increments or in great leaps all the time. It's good to have someone else tell us that we're beautiful, not only for our beautiful and strange bodies, but for bearing and wearing those struggles, too. It's better to be able to tell ourselves, again, not only in appreciation, but out of respect for what we've carried.