For me, much of my pregnancy thus far was almost abstract. Yes, I felt like utter crap, and yes, I was being notably emotionally volatile, but I had a hard time connecting all my symptoms to the concrete idea of a baby. However, the last week has brought the pregnancy to an almost perfect focus. I started feeling the kid move around, and we had our first ultrasound this week, where we saw the baby for the first time and found out its sex. I say sex, because I subscribe to the belief that gender is mental, and sex is physical, and the two may not match up. The decision to use even this simple wording is one I’ve seen send people into screaming freak-outs on pregnancy boards, so of course I want to use it as often as possible.
I’m hard-pressed to identify what’s made the baby more real to me: feeling it respond to my actions (kiddo really gets moving when I eat or when the cat sits against my belly and purrs), or seeing him for the first time. And oh my, was he ever a boy. We were convinced it was a girl, everyone we knew thought it was a girl, but after three cups of coffee pre-ultrasound, he was energetic and active during the ultrasound, and there was no denying that I’m carrying my son. Legs spread, fists pumping like half-price drinks night on Jersey Shore, lil’ dude was having his own party as me, my husband, my mom, and the ultrasound tech watched. I admit there was a brief moment of disbelief when I saw we had a boy, but more importantly, we saw that his brain is developing normally, his heart has four strong chambers, and his limbs and organs are developing appropriately.
Lil’ Dude (or Lil’ Ron Burgundy, or Dudebro) has gone from an idea to a person in my mind, a person who hears me curse in traffic, who loves it when I sit down to watch TV and pet the cat, who is currently flipping around because I ate a burrito for lunch. The combination of seeing and feeling him makes him undeniable to me. For the past five months, he’s been a silent part of my life, but for the rest of my life, he’ll be an undeniable part of it.