The Quote Garden

 I dig old books.

 Est. 1998

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Quotations about
Pregnancy & Childbirth


I think that carrying a baby inside you is like running as fast as you can. It feels like finally letting go and filling yourself up to the wildest limits. ~Author unknown, quoted in Ourselves and Our Children: A Book by and for Parents, Boston Women's Health Book Collective, 1978

Instead of wishing away nine months of pregnancy and complaining about the shadow over my feet, I'd have cherished every minute of it and realized that the wonderment growing inside me was to be my only chance in life to assist God in a miracle. ~Erma Bombeck, 1979

Life is always a rich and steady time when you are waiting for something to happen or to hatch. ~E. B. White, Charlotte's Web

The shamans are forever yacking about their snake-oil "miracles." I prefer the Real McCoy — a pregnant Woman. ~Robert A. Heinlein

I begin to love this little creature, and to anticipate his birth as a fresh twist to a knot which I do not wish to untie. ~Mary Wollstonecraft, letter to husband William Godwin

What does the woman sing to the love-seed under her heart?
      "Oh, my beloved, unborn,
      Oh, lips in the darkness that yet shall be kissing my breast:
      I send my life-blood into you,
      And great love upon you:
      Hushed in the pool of the dark you blossom in me!..."
Thus sings the woman: this is the song of all women:
So sang a woman to me.
~James Oppenheim, "The Mother," Songs for the New Age, 1914

A Ship under sail and a big-bellied Woman,
Are the handsomest two things that can be seen common.
~Benjamin Franklin

God's interest in the human race is nowhere better evinced than in obstetrics. ~Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)

It seems an insult to nature and to the Creator to imagine that pregnancy was ever intended to be a sickness. ~Eliza Bisbee Duffey, What Women Should Know: A Woman's Book about Women, 1873

Anna was five months into the pregnancy when Polly Jean started to kick. She kicked hard... and she kicked constantly... She drummed on the walls of the womb like a madman pounds on a padded door. ~Jill Alexander Essbaum, Hausfrau, 2015

I admire the female sex. The life makers. It must be amazing to have a body that can carry an entire creature inside. ~Garth Stein, The Art of Racing in the Rain, 2008

You should never say anything to a woman that even remotely suggests you think she's pregnant unless you can see an actual baby emerging from her at that moment. ~Dave Barry, "25 Things I Have Learned in 50 Years," Dave Barry Turns 50, 1998,

If Nature had arranged that husbands and wives should have children alternatively, there would never be more than three in a family. ~Laurence Housman

He plough'd her, and she cropp'd.
~William Shakespeare, Antony and Cleopatra, c.1606  [II, 2, Agrippa]

The woman about to become a mother, or with her new-born infant upon her bosom, should be the object of trembling care and sympathy wherever she bears her tender burden, or stretches her aching limbs... God forbid that any member of the profession to which she trusts her life, doubly precious at that eventful period, should hazard it negligently, unadvisedly, or selfishly! ~Oliver Wendell Holmes, 1843

It was also Jacque who told me that children didn't come out of their mother's tummies. As she put it, "Where the ingredients go in is where the finished product comes out!" ~Anne M. Frank, letter, 1944

...the fantastic sloppiness of one's coming into existence... one's senses in the radiant and raw stuff of howlingly sore and unexplained registry in the new everywhere, immensely unknown... actual light... the breath crouched in me and then leaping out yowlingly: this uncancellable sort of beginning. ~Harold Brodkey, The Runaway Soul, 1991  [of birth —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]

All natural birth has a purpose and a plan; who would think of tearing open the chrysalis as the butterfly is emerging? Who would break the shell to pull the chick out? ~Marie F. Mongan, HypnoBirthing

Helpless, cruel hours of waiting in the night; lying on the left side the heart is smothered; turning on the right side, still no comfort; finally lying on the back; always a prey to the energy of the child, trying with one's hands pressed on the swelling body to give a message to the child. Cruel hours of tender waiting in the night. What seems countless nights passing like this. With what a price we pay for the glory of motherhood. ~Isadora Duncan, My Life, 1927

In achieving the depersonalization of childbirth and at the same time solving the problem of pain, our society may have lost more than it has gained.  We are left with the physical husk; the transcending significance has been drained away.  In doing so, we have reached the goal which perhaps is implicit in all highly developed technological cultures, mechanized control of the human body and the complete obliteration of all disturbing sensation.  ~Sheila Kitzinger, Women as Mothers

The instant of birth is exquisite.
Pain and joy are one at this moment.
Ever after, the dim recollection is
so sweet that we speak to our children
with a gratitude they never understand.
We speak to our parents with a sorrow
unfamiliar until the day they are dying.
~Madeline Tiger, Birds of Sorrow and Joy

For far too many, pregnancy and birth is still something that happens to them rather than something they set out consciously and joyfully to do themselves.  ~Sheila Kitzinger, The Experience of Childbirth

[My mother's] feeling is, we were made to do this work, and it's not easy, and it's inherently painful.... Pain and pleasure are a continuum, and without the pain, there would not be the pleasure. We wouldn't have a place to slide around, and that this is just an intense experience of pain. It's also an intense experience of pleasure, and joy and hope.... I would say that the pain is part of the glory, or the tremendous mystery of life. And that if anything, it's kind of a privilege to stand so close to an incredible miracle. And that there's pain involved because it's such a tremendous event... it's like living in a different dimension briefly. And that it's a painful process, because it's like two worlds colliding. ~Simone Taylor, on childbirth, quoted in Blessed Events: Religion and Home Birth in America by Pamela E. Klassen, 2001

During labour, the pain is so great that a woman can almost imagine what a man feels like when he has a cold. ~MissPriss, on, 2016

The childbirth class neglected to teach you a critical skill. How to swear, breathe and count all at the same time.  ~Linda Fiterman, From Colic to College: Chuckling Your Way Through Parenthood

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published 2002 Mar 8
revised 2021 Sep 26
last saved 2023 Feb 22