Tuesday, January 15, 2008

To the Lady in the Megamart


I don't know if you remember me, but I remember you. We met only once, in the summer of 2001. I was grocery shopping after work, having brought my husband along for company and protection. You see, I was very, very pregnant with my first child, and the last few times I'd been shopping I left the store in tears after one too many unwanted comments/stomach fondlings. (And it was almost always a retirement-age man touching my belly. What is with that? Not that I'd expect you to know.)

Anyway, we saw each other several times weaving in and out of the grocery aisles, the pharmacy aisles, and I caught you looking at me each time we met. I hid behind my husband and whispered, "That woman keeps looking at me!" Inevitably, we met in the toiletry section while my husband was somewhere else. You reached out to touch my arm. As I braced myself for a comment I was sure I didn't want to hear, you said, "Excuse me. I just wanted to tell you how lovely you look in that shirt. I'm sorry I've been watching you all through the store, but it is just such a flattering color on you."

Thank you.

I think of you often. When I am pregnant and besieged by unthinking comments, yes, but especially when I catch myself looking at a pregnant woman. I remember your kind words, and I try to pass them on.


  1. I love this story. Some people just seem to GET IT, while other DON'T. I try to be one of the ones who DOES.

  2. Great story! It's nice when you're that far along and people can see beyond the tummy - most can't. The thing I hated most about being pregnant is that the pregnancy became my identity. Even at work, I couldn't go to a meeting or even walk through the halls without getting some kind of pregnancy-related comment.

  3. That's such a lovely story.
    I've never been that freaked out by people touching my pregnant stomach, but I GET that some people REALLY find it creepy. I don't see why it's a mystery to so many people.

  4. What a wonderful reminder of how important it is to reach out and say things that might brighten someone else's day - thanks!

  5. I hated having strangers reach for my belly or guess what the sex of the baby was. Ugh.

    Hooray for the lady in the megamart and other wonderful people who just get it.