New Mothers

I pull into the designated parking space at the supermarket. My vehicle is idling. This is what you call “touchless” grocery shopping.

This pandemic has brought a lot of heartache and misery. But, let us never forget, this pandemic also brought us touchless grocery shopping, wherein store employees magically fill your car with groceries while you listen to Willie Nelson on the radio. It’s quite wonderful.

My back passenger door opens.

“Can you pull forward a little, sir?” says the happy young woman in the surgical mask.

Sir. I hate it when people call me sir. Especially young people. It makes me feel like Fred Mertz.

I inch my vehicle forward until she says stop. She is late twenties, long dreadlocks, and the personality of a cherub. “You just want them in the back seat, sir?”

“In the back will be perfect,” I say.

She gets busy loading. “You having a good day so far, sir?”

“I’m alright. How about you?”

“Oh, yes, sir. I’m having maybe my best day ever.”

“Best ever? You only get one of those.”

“Well, I’m pregnant,” she blurts out. And I get the feeling she just needs to tell someone. “I just found out a few hours ago, before work. My boyfriend and I are gonna have a baby. I’m so happy.”

She loads several more bags onto my floorboards. I am observing her through my rear view mirror. I can tell by her squinty eyes that she’s smiling.

“Congratulations. You must be so excited.”

“Oh, you have no idea, I wasn’t supposed to be able to get pregnant. I was told I’d never be pregnant. I have a bunch of medical issues.”


She bear hugs a sack of dog food that weighs about as much as a government helicopter. I suddenly wish this pregnant woman wasn’t lifting such heavy things. My reflex is to lift these things for her, but she instructs me to stay put; store policy is for customers to stay in their cars.

“Congratulations,” I offer again, simply because I don’t know what else to say.

“Thanks you, sir. I turned twenty-nine this year, and my boyfriend and I were thinking about adopting, but now… Well, I’m so excited.”

She loads a five-gallon container of kitty litter that weighs more than a pallet of wet cinder blocks into my backseat. This girl has more upper arm strength than the late Sonny Liston.

“I’m a little nervous,” she says. “Because, I miscarried once. That was how come the doctor told me I couldn’t have kids.”

“Wow. A miscarriage. That must’ve been hard.”

“Oh, it was. I grieved. It killed me. And there wasn’t nothing I could do but give my baby a name and funeral.”

The young woman walks to the other side of my vehicle, swings open the door, and loads more heavy groceries.

“What did you name her?”


“The baby you lost. What was her name?”


“Abigail. That’s lovely.”

“Yeah, it means ‘my father’s joy.’ Because even before she was born, Abby made me and my boyfriend so happy.” She pauses. I watch through my mirror. If I’m not mistaken she has something stuck in her eye.

I ask the young woman if she’s announced her pregnancy to her friends yet.

“Well, I told my mom, and—oh, my God—it was funny, ‘cause she started screaming on the phone. I mean, literally, screaming. She’s so excited. I’ve already had a hundred texts from everyone my mom has told.”

She lifts more bags. “I know my mom is hardcore praying for this baby to be healthy and strong, so I just bet she’s already called everyone and told them to start praying too. She probably has half of Georgia praying for this child.”

“Is that where you’re from?” I asked.

“Yes, sir.”

I wish she’d quit calling me that.

She lifts an enormous sack of potting soil and slams it into the back. It makes me want to cringe. It’s hard watching an expectant young woman swing heavy things around in a manner akin to a professional wrestler.

I say, “Aren’t you concerned about lifting all this heavy stuff, now that you’re… With child?”

“Nope,” she says. “Know why? Because today is my last day. My boyfriend and I decided that I was gonna take some maternity leave. Can you believe it? Me. I never thought I’d live to see the day.

“Already broke the news to my manager. He offered to transfer me to an easier job, but I said no, I wanna take care of myself and give my baby every chance it can get.”

“I understand.”

She closes my back hatch. She is finished loading groceries. The young woman comes around to the driver’s window to give me a copy of my receipt. She is out of breath.

I try to give her a tip but she holds her hands upward and says, “No, sir. We ain’t allowed to take no tips.”


“But God bless you anyway. Give that money to someone who needs it.”

“Well, I just wanted you know how happy I am for you. That’s all.”

“Thanks. You know, it’s been such a bad year. But it just goes to show you that everything can change in a couple seconds. Like when I woke up this morning, I was just another girl, waking up and going to work, but now… I mean. Now I’m not just another girl anymore, I’m a real mom. And it just doesn’t get any better than that, now does it?”

No, sir.

No, sir, it doesn’t.


  1. Greyn - March 12, 2021 12:09 pm

    Wish her the very best. That child faces a warm welcome and good mothering, I suspect.

  2. Leigh Amiot - March 12, 2021 12:18 pm

    I’m so thankful she can take time off to care for herself and the little one growing inside her. And I’m glad to hear someone using “sir” still. I’m 57, and I still say yes ma’am and no sir at the appropriate times. Glad my mother taught me to respect people with a title, glad to know this little baby-in-the-making will likely carry on that tradition.

  3. joan moore - March 12, 2021 12:31 pm

    I’m going to be praying for that young woman who is going to be a wonderful Mother, yes sir!

  4. Martha Kelley - March 12, 2021 1:34 pm

    What a wonderful story!!!

  5. Robert Smyth - March 12, 2021 1:46 pm


  6. Jo Ann - March 12, 2021 1:50 pm

    Another story that’s good for the soul. Thanks, Sean. I prayed that she have an uncomplicated pregnancy, a smooth delivery, & a perfect baby. Blessings to her, her boyfriend, their baby, & you, Sean.

  7. Jan - March 12, 2021 1:59 pm

    Tears and prayers! Lots of prayers for this young woman and her precious new family. Thank you for sharing this joy, Sean.

  8. Debbie g - March 12, 2021 2:05 pm

    Prayers from Tennessee for that beautiful mom pandemic is nothing next to her news !!! Thanks for sharing prayers for your family also. And it’s a glorious day. Let’s include the world in our prayers ❤️❤️❤️❤️

  9. Dean - March 12, 2021 2:21 pm

    So proud she can take leave and be careful while she is pregnant. Congratulations to her

  10. Connie - March 12, 2021 2:50 pm

    Dang Sean. Now I have something in my eye. I hope all goes well for that young lady. I know how it expanded my heart when my beautiful and much loved granddaughter announced just before Christmas that she is pregnant and due shortly after she finishes nursing school. It’s been a weird and unsettling year but God has a way of keeping the beauty and wonder alive.

  11. cat718 - March 12, 2021 3:37 pm

    You’ve done it again, Sean. 😢💕What a blessing to hear her story!
    God bless her and her bundle of joy.
    As a childless favorite aunt, I have grown to love hearing about new babies. I am blessed with a pile of nieces and nephews and am grateful to be able to squeeze my two youngest great-nieces and hear them call me “Yaya”. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

  12. Christine - March 12, 2021 3:43 pm

    Congratulations to the young couple. Pray she has a wonderful pregnancy and easy birth.

  13. Rebekah - March 12, 2021 3:58 pm

    Now I’m pretty sure I have something stuck in MY eye.

  14. Shelton A. - March 12, 2021 4:48 pm

    Prayers for a happy, healthy baby. And for parents who will drive their friends crazy with stories of the little one’s latest stories. God bless them and watch over Mom and baby. If it’s a girl, Dad will go nuts. I speak from experience.

  15. elizabethroosje - March 12, 2021 5:48 pm

    Oh God bless her! I pray that she has this baby and that she and her boyfriend are very blessed and upheld! lovely narration of the story Sean!

  16. Christopher Spencer - March 12, 2021 5:59 pm

    Prayers for this young mother, her boyfriend and their baby. May it be a full term pregnancy with no problems and may the baby go on to live a full and happy life with her/his parents.

  17. Linda Moon - March 12, 2021 6:36 pm

    Abigail is one of our family’s baby-names. I’m very sorry baby Abigail was lost for the young grocery-store working woman, and I’m glad she’s taking some time off while waiting to become a mother. Being a mom was my happiest time….when the babies were little and then the growing-up years. Now they are wonderful and creative adult children with children of their own, including Abigail and a couple of guys who are a lot like you, Sir!

  18. Lana Reigart - March 12, 2021 7:20 pm

    It takes a special person to have the compassion to ask the girl the name of the baby she lost. God bless you, Sean.

  19. christina - March 12, 2021 7:25 pm

    Bless this real mom and her baby! I’m going to carry her joy with me throughout the day

  20. Chasity Davis Ritter - March 12, 2021 8:01 pm

    I cried first then I prayed for this nee little momma to be.

  21. Emily - March 12, 2021 10:14 pm

    I will keep her in my prayers just like so many did for me when I found out I was pregnant last year in May after 6 years of not being able to conceive and being told it wasn’t possible…last year was hard but a blessing..I know she will do wonderfully.

  22. Suzanne Moore - March 12, 2021 10:16 pm

    Wonderful post, Sean. I am praying for the young lady. I know that God knows her name.

  23. Maryann Root - March 12, 2021 10:50 pm

    This brought me to tears – happy tears for that young woman. I know what that’s like. My lovely daughter had 2 horrible miscarriages, until she had a beautiful, healthy baby girl last November. That baby is making up for all the sadness that couple experienced. It’s wonderful to watch!

  24. Julie - March 13, 2021 1:23 pm

    MOM…the very best title a woman could ever have❣️
    Whether young or old, first baby or last, and everyone in between…God Bless Them All🙏
    “If you bungle raising your children, I don’t think whatever else you do matters very much”…Jackie Kennedy

  25. Lucinda Gentry - March 14, 2021 3:12 am

    How wonderful. I pray everything will be perfect for her and her baby💕. And Sean remember yes Sir is a sign of respect. She was raised right😊


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