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I have heard the following line in the Narcos TV series:

Naty, no te preocupes. Cada bebé viene con un pan debajo del brazo, ¿cierto?

Context: Naty is the wife of a young man who is hired by the Medellin cartel to record a conversation in an airplane. However, the recorder is in fact a bomb and he unintentionally explodes it when he turns on the recorder, killing everyone on the plane. After his death, his wife, scared and without money, goes with their baby to the house of a friend and asks for help. Then, her friend says the line above.

What does "cada bebé viene con un pan debajo del brazo" mean? According to https://breadandonions.net/?p=2169, it represents the feelings of good fortune and happiness typically associated with the birth of a child. However, I am not sure how it applies to the hard situation which Naty is going through.

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    It sounds like the speaker is reassuring Naty that things will work out, because babies bring their own luck with them into this world. That would be my guess. – aparente001 Dec 23 '19 at 4:33
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    That's exactly it. The saying seems to be rather common; it's something I've heard since time immemorial in Argentina. – pablodf76 Dec 23 '19 at 10:29
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It has the exact meaning you found:

In this day and age, the figurative bread in this expression represents the feelings of good fortune and happiness typically associated with the birth of a new child.

As read in el origen de la expresión "nacer con un pan bajo el brazo":

El origen lo encontramos en la fortuna que para las familias más pobres significaba el nacimiento de un hijo varón principalmente, pues suponía un par de manos más para trabajar y llevar dinero a la casa a los pocos años de su nacimiento.

That is: in the old times, a new kid, specially a boy, meant an extra person to work for the family and get some money home.


In the context you describe it is the same: the woman has lost the father of her child-to come, but her friend tries to soothe her pain focusing on the new life that is to come, that may bring some good.

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  • I watched this series and remember the scene. Not going to spoil what happened next :) – fedorqui 'SO stop harming' Dec 23 '19 at 8:29
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    Sumado a la frase de la pregunta en Colombia decimos "el único que se muere de hambre es al que se le cierra el tragadero" y también "donde comen dos comen tres" por eso cuando una persona está preocupada por la llegada de un bebé porque aparentemente no tiene dinero para alimentarlo se le dice esa frase porque de una forma u otra aparecerá "el pan" para alimentar al bebé. – DGaleano Dec 25 '19 at 20:32

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