Contrary to the URL of this blog, I am not one of those women who's "in tune" with her body. I feel as though my spirit and flesh have a connection that is tenuous at best--I do my own thing, and my body troops along for the ride, usually a willing passenger and mostly compliant companion. I blame this somewhat weak connection between spirit and flesh for my poor proprioception, slow reflexes, lack of coordination, and complete disconnect concerning anything remotely kinesthetic, but I also feel I reap some benefits.
My body treats me well--I don't often get headaches, rarely get sick, have very minor allergies. I can take nearly any medication without side effect, eat just about anything, and put myself through abuses of long hikes I'm not in shape for without repercussion. My body took to pregnancy like a slightly bloated fish to water: initial exhaustion, a few minor bouts of nausea and general ickiness, some back pain, but, all in all, it's been a pleasant walk in the park.
Sometimes my body is a bad influence on me, though--like when I crave cookie dough and Jay, who is wearing his newly gained paternity like it's a tailored suit, walks into the kitchen and catches me with spoon in hand, guilt and sugar-drunk smile on my face. Did you know pregnant women are not supposed to eat raw eggs? Jay does. I have told him several times that I am willing to sacrifice cold cuts, roller coasters, and litterbox clean up on the altar of maternity, but not cookie dough--I just can't. To assuage my guilt, though, I finally looked it up online. Turns out that while cold cuts can carry bacteria that poison the baby across the placenta, raw eggs just carry a risk of salmonella, which, while no fun at all, will only make me sick while baby happily bumps around in her water world. (Okay, it's not smart, but it's a risk I am willing to take.)
Another side effect of being detached from my body is that I haven't felt much of a connection with the little dancing teddy graham inside of me. Yes, my shape is definitely changing (my coworkers see fit to remind me of this daily), but every time I go to the doctor and see that funny little black and white silhouette or hear her whooshing heartbeat, I'm pleasantly surprised all over again: there's still a baby in there! Jay thinks I'm crazy and paranoid, and he's probably right: pregnancy isn't a condition that comes and goes, but I tend to feel mounting disbelief between doctor appointments that I'm still pregnant.
I always thought it was funny that pregnant women could confuse baby nudges for gas and vice versa--after all, a baby and gas bubbles are two very different things. Let me tell you though, folks, it's a true story--one of my coworkers swears she could feel her baby move starting at 10 weeks; I didn't feel anything until at least week 19. I finally had one day a couple weeks ago where I was sure it was the baby I was feeling and not just my digestive processes--she bumped around inside me like a little pinball for a couple hours.
I had a hormotional day last week where I started freaking out because I hadn't felt the baby move in a week or so. I almost called the doctor's office and asked if I could please come in just so I could hear my baby's heartbeat, but I thought better of it. When I got home that night, I lay on my stomach on the hard floor (with Jay practically screaming "child abuse" and threatening to turn me over to CPS) until I felt enough protesting nudges that I could 90% convince myself that, yep, there's still a baby in there. (And before you say I should have called the doctor, she was moving the whole time but I just didn't concentrate hard enough to feel her--my body and I are out of touch, remember?)
I may have done it again the next night, too--not because I had nearly lost it at work several times like I had the day before (cringe), but because I (sadistically?) liked the feeling of my baby's nudges as she was pushed into me. This time, Jay just rolled his eyes a little and then came over, knelt next to me on the floor, and put his hands under my stomach. We stayed that way for several minutes, sharing our daughter's little quickening movements together.