We all get very excited when we know that a new member is to arrive in our family.A baby to come brings in so much excitement and thrill.The joy of knowing that a new life is to come and be a part of us makes everything pleasant.The anticipation,needless to say,is at the highest. For a mother to be, it is a period of change in so many ways....physically she undergoes so many changes and emotionally she has to be prepared. Today by Gods grace we have ample of technology,that aid us in getting minute to minute information...we have scans and periodical check up that help us to know what the baby looks like,its movements,its development and its health...everything can be monitored.In case there is a disorder or abnormality,it can be detected at its primal stage.But one can't comprehend what would go through the mind of the mother to be when she hears an unexpected diagnosis. I had the privilege to be with two friends from whom I've learnt a little about what they go through during this time.Its changed my perspective on carrying a child. My first friend was from my workplace,needless to say we shared a lot and it was nice to be around her during the most important phase of her life.We used to discuss about the baby daily.I was touring for a week and I told her that once I am back I would go with her for her check up. Unfortunately; on the third day of my tour I came to know that the doctors found that the fetus was not developing and was dead.She had to undergo an operation so that it could be taken out.When I returned,I expected to see a friend whose hope was shattered and heart was broken.What do I say to her...how do I tell her anything? Surprisingly as I came to her desk,she was smiling...I said...."I'm sorry I couldn't be here and....I know its hard but there is something good in future so don't give up hope"... She smiled and looked and said.." I know its for our good...if its not meant to be ,so be it.....I'm thankful that the baby did not have any abnormality,what if it was born with some defect,I  would not be able to look at my child's life in long suffering...its better that the baby went in peace....I enjoyed my time with the baby no matter how short it was...I am not so strong.....but you all will help me out..I know that ! "  I was dumbstruck...and I felt I ran out of words.....all I could say "You are strong and smart...God will make a way" A year later she conceived again and today she is a proud mother of a healthy baby boy!  My second friend had paid a visit to her doctor few days ago.Its her second trimester and there are three more months to go.The doctor diagnosed some abnormality in the baby nasal passage and told her that her baby was having a defect....She was disturbed for sometime and said she would come for the check up again.She said she refused to believe that report.The doctor agreed to take another scan in few hours to prove that something was wrong. She was narrating her experience to me and said.....within those couple hours while she was praying she felt how feeble is man's faith.She said "When a baby is with the womb,its mine....if its beautiful its mine,if its normal its mine..I would have accepted it with an open heart....but if its having a defect,will the baby be any less to me...its still my baby...its mine....whatever it is ....Its just mine...why can't I just accept."....I again marveled at the thought. .....Thankfully things turned out to be normal. As a friend I have gained immense respect for the strength these women have.Many would have broken down or lost hope. They have taught me what it is to acknowledge and enjoy the blessings we have,no matter how short or in what form they are.They have taught me to respect life about what it is there at present instead of moping around of what could have we got instead.They have taught me to be strong in the worst moments and not to give up hope. We as friends in such situations feel that nothing can be done,which is not true.....however little,but we can do a few things for mothers to be. 1.Encourage them: Talk encouraging words,help them to gather more information about their condition. 2.Talk to them: Keep talking to them about how they feel and support them. 3.Support them : Keep telling them they are strong,they have the strength to get through any situation. 4.Listen to them: There are times when they are low or frustrated,you can help them by just listening to them...no matter how long,just listen so that they can calm  down.   I realised that amongst all anticipation and excitement,a woman needs a great deal of emotional strength...for herself...for her baby,she needs friends whom she can trust and depend on as well. I know that everyone of us have someone going through the early phase of motherhood....its not easy and we can do little...so do your bit and just be a friend!

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