Friday, January 4, 2008

Fascinating Belly

In addition to feeling the baby move/kick/punch (I still can't differentiate between the different movements), I can now see the movements if I happen to be staring at my belly during an active period. It doesn't look anything like how I expected - there isn't an outline of a foot violently trying to make its way out. It looks more like a small muscle spasm, or perhaps the movements of your eyelids when you are in REM sleep.

I am feeling the movements all the time now. The baby is most active in the evenings (9pm to 11pm) and right after I eat, but there is activity in there nearly constantly. It doesn't hurt or feel like s/he's practicing karate or the can-can as some other moms have reported (though that may change as the third trimester approaches).

Chris has felt the movements a couple of times now - the first time was on Christmas Eve - and last night he was able to see them as well. We were lying in bed and he had his face right near my belly, talking away to his child. S/he really reacts to the sound of Chris's voice, which makes both of us really proud and excited. It's amazing how fascinated we can be with tiny movements in my belly - imagine how absorbed we are going to be when the actual person emerges?

I am still happy to have people touch my belly, stare at it, or acknowledge its size and appearance. I have not yet become jaded towards this, though I admit I've had no unwanted attention from strangers. In some ways, in fact, I feel like a pregnancy ambassador. On Christmas Day, we had dinner at Chris's mom's place, and good family friends whom I've met several times were there as well. After dinner, I was lying on the couch relaxing (and recovering) and asked the daughters - who are 19 and 23 years of age - if they wanted to feel some kicks, or if they thought that was gross. They were thrilled and jumped at the chance, laying their hands on my belly and patiently waiting until they felt something. It was very cool.

I have also noticed that when I see people I haven't seen in a while - such as these family friends, or those I saw when visiting in PR - the first thing they do is check out my belly. I seem to have entirely skipped the stage of my life when men would talk not to my face, but to my breasts, so it is amusing that now both men and women glance quickly at my face to say hello, then direct their eyes right at The Belly and can't look away. If I'm within reaching distance, they usually reach out to touch it, like they're shaking hands or hugging hello, and then they pull back as if remembering that such contact is not always welcome, at which point I reassure them that I don't mind at all.

Having a magnetic belly is a lot of fun.

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