A pregnant Mary Rose Somarriba writes a reflection on Lent, Easter and the “congratulations” she has been getting lately:
To overlook the trials is to miss the full picture—indeed the very richness and beauty of that new life. We are myopic if we celebrate the joys of Easter while overlooking the tragedy of Good Friday. So too are we missing the full picture if we downplay the hardships of life in celebrating its joys. You can’t have the sweet without the bitter.
For how can we truly rejoice in the Resurrection without first humbly stopping to acknowledge at what huge cost it came—the cost of our innocent Savior carrying the weight of our sins on the Cross and giving his life for ours?
And how can we truly rejoice in new birth without first humbly stopping to acknowledge with awe and gratitude that someone—some woman—took this sacrifice to bring each of us into the world?
So in some ways the lady who sent the pregnancy greeting is onto something whether she knows it or not—that pregnancy is worth pausing and acknowledging for the journey that it is. Perhaps we should acknowledge the sacrifices of pregnancy more—even if it’s not quite the congratulatory moment. The congratulations given in pregnancy are rightly ones of expectant joy for the baby’s birth to come—indeed the baby’s life that has already started growing in the womb. Just as when people say “Happy Easter” before the Triduum, they say it with hope—in expectant joy of the Resurrection to come.
And thank God for that hope. It’s what makes pregnancy, like all our crosses in life, more than worth it to carry.