Sunday, May 27, 2007

Describing the indescribable

Off and on for the past few weeks, I've noticed a strange feeling in my abdomen that's very difficult to describe. It mostly happens at night during my most animated moments at the office — eating dinner and rushing to make deadline.

At first, I convinced myself it was gas. One of the less glamorous side-effects of pregnancy is the increasing inefficiency of the digestive tract, which often results in constipation and its partner-in-crime, flatulence.

But it didn't quite feel like gas. After all, I have almost three decades of experience in that arena, and this was different somehow.

While trying to explain it to Jerry and my mother, I likened the feeling to period cramps, but not quite that offensive. It wasn't debilitating and didn't make me want to curl up in a ball on the floor and curse my lady parts.

Of course it also had me worried. If there's anything that can crush my eternal optimism, it's concern about this baby. It's so easy to assume something is wrong when you can't summon X-ray vision and peek into your uterus. It takes every ounce of willpower not to call my obstetrician every 27 seconds of every day, but somehow concentrating on the date of my next appointment helps get me through.

Yesterday, thankfully, my mom clued me in.

"I was thinking more and more about it, Kelly, and that's the baby," she said. "You're just feeling the baby move."

All of my books say that many women start to feel fetal movements around week 15, but only those who have had children before will be able to recognize it. Most of the literature I've read describes it as "tiny flutters," but I'm not sure I would use the same term. "Flutters" reminds me of the feeling I had when I was waiting for my prom date. Or getting dropped off at college. Or the first day at a new job.

No, this isn't fluttery. It's more, well, squirmy. Maybe a little whooshy even.

After the brief conversation with my mother, I concentrated on taking in the feeling when it happened later that night. Without a doubt, that weird worrisome abdominal movement I've been noticing for the past few weeks is the baby.

Because I've been brainwashed by Jerry, the most fervent "Rocky" lover of all time, I envision our fetus re-enacting the scene where Rocky punches at slabs of cow ribs.

Only instead, it's my uterus.

And maybe if it had been described like that in even ONE of my books, I would've recognized the feeling sooner.

19 comments:

Lewis said...

Aw, that first kick. That's what I always liked most about my sister's pregnancy, getting to feel the baby kick.

Oh, and Rocky*. :D

Sarah said...

Aww yay! I'm glad it's nothing to be concerned about!

Teme said...

That's very cool! My son kicked so hard in the last months that it was visible through my clothes. People could stand there and watch my dress jump. It felt and looked like I was harboring a conga line.

Rachel said...

That's great! and I never felt flutters, more like jabs or pressure. My husband was able to feel the kicks at 18 weeks if we were patient. It really puts you in contact with the baby and helps put your mind at ease that everything is ok. Have a nice holiday!

Jerry said...

Adrian punching meat? That's like saying Paulie killed Apollo Creed in Rocky 4. My love, we need to watch those movies again to refresh your memory.

aahcoffee said...

I always likened it to a butterfly flying across the inside of my stomach...I could feel the wings touching inside. I felt them with my daughter (first pregnancy) around week 12. The hard hits and kicks and jabs came not too long after. :) Enjoy. That is what I miss the most about being pregnant.

Tiffany said...

Awww :-)

The Sunday Plainsman said...

'You know' Kelly, this is hardly the first time that your keen journalistic gift of observation combined with your skill with the written word has givin voice to things not generally known.

(I hope you have a good literary agent!)

"Jerry said...
Adrian punching meat?"

So the baby will be named Adrian?

Diane said...

Awww...
I think I just became even more envious! ;-)

Gabriela said...

I think it's just me but the thought of my baby kicking me when I get pregnant scares me. I don't know why. Heh, this site has some funny shirts and from what you said about forgetting things, this one might be perfect for you.

http://www.2chix.com/shop/Scripts/prodView.asp?idproduct=88

There are also some funny shirts for guys.

jsi said...

It is so neat that when you are able to finally define it, to acknowledge that now you know what it is, you can backtrack these past 10 days and see the progression of what you felt. How it felt.
For me, I felt like I had swallowed 5 live goldfish who were not being digested but continued to swim around.
I would love to simply eat an apple and them wait for the entertainment to begin. Baby in utero would kick Dave out of bed or make so much movement it would wake him up out of a dead sleep...but with the bigget smile on his face.

Chelsea said...

Awww! I was reading your baby ticker on the site and it says its time for that!

Marina said...

Wow.. that must be crazy. Does it hurt? At first "the baby kicking" sounded like kind of a painful thing to experience, but I guess babies don't have all that much strength. So forget that question. Haha.

Emilee said...

Congratulations! That must be so exciting!

Tiger Babble said...

Yeah, I wouldn't describe it as "flutters" either. It is definitely more like a squirmy feeling in the beginning.

Just wait though!!! By your third trimester, you'll want to tranquilize the kid or knock yourself out just to escape the constant rippling and kicking.

Soon you'll start noticing the baby move at certain times of day like about 10 minutes after you eat and stuff like that... It's neat to learn little "quirks" in your baby like that before you even know what they look like!

adifferentkindofbeautiful said...

^.^

Anonymous said...

Well I'm glad to hear (read) it's just the baby letting you know that he/she's there. And as for the baby hitting the uterus like Rocky hitting the the ribs of cows, "What I wouldn't give to see that sight up close in the uterus!"

"WATCH OUT BABY'S IN THE RING PEOPLE!" ;o)

Take care, Kelly.

*Marilynmonroe4u2nv from Xanga.*

Candi said...

I also think flutters is the wrong word. I never felt "flutters." I was looking for feeling him move, so to me it kinda felt like he was rolling around and his little elbows and knees were rubbing the walls of my uterus.

diane said...

I have read almost half of your new blogs about your baby. I am also pregnant and it's my 10th week. I just had my first ultrasound and was thoroughly delighted when I saw my baby and its heartbeat. I can't wait to experience the kick now that I have been forewarned. :)