So far, while I have posted “bumpdates” every four weeks or so, I haven’t really written a heartfelt post. I’ve been avoiding it because of the triggers it may cause others, especially those who are still deep in the infertility trenches, those who have had miscarriages, and even those who might have micropreemies and didn’t make it as far as I have in their pregnancies. But I’d be doing myself and Skipper a disservice by not acknowledging some of the amazing things that are happening inside my body.
I’m currently 27 weeks, 4 days, so there’s a bumpdate coming soon. Ten days ago, I traveled cross-country for the last time this pregnancy (this baby has traveled more than 16,000 miles before she’s even been born!). It was definitely the toughest trip of the pregnancy. On the way back, my legs blew up. I could literally feel my ankles all the way up through my calves expanding on the flight back. By the time I got home, my ankles were more than three times the size they are supposed to be. Just this morning, my body finally released the last of the fluid being held there. It was at least two pounds of fluid (that’s how much I lost… that doesn’t count for the amount of fluid that was replaced by baby weight gain in that timeframe, either!). It feels much better.
But anyway. An amazing thing happened on the trip there. Two amazing things, actually. I had just turned 26 weeks and read that baby could respond to stimuli (consciously) and that it was even good for her development to engage her once a day or a few times a week. How do you engage? By poking/prodding.. or shining a flashlight, or something. Anyway, I was on the plane and hadn’t felt her move that day (it was still relatively early in the morning) and so I started poking at her. About five seconds later… she swiftly kicked back. I did it again… and she again kicked me back. We did this several times back and forth before I decided it was enough stimulus for her. You guys… I played with my daughter for the first time ever. It was the most amazing feeling. I started crying silent tears on the plane.
Not too much later, I was in the bathroom (ok, this is about to get real) needing to pee. Skipper was hanging out on my bladder and I find that when she’s doing that, in order to properly empty my bladder, it’s best to hold my belly up to get the weight off of it. While I was doing this, she moved and squirmed. She was laying such that I could feel her on both sides of my belly, so I think she was transverse… and basically in my hands. I felt my daughter in my hands… it felt like I was holding her squirming body in my hands. I’m so excited for the time that nothing separates us, even my body, and I can hold her and kiss her. I hope she waits until at least late February to come, though.
I have a daughter. And she’s developed enough to play with me… at least in a very basic sense, even though she doesn’t understand the concept of play yet. I basically held her (even though I know my body carries her every day). Holy. Shit. I’m so incredibly grateful for this opportunity and know that I’m incredibly luck to be here and have gotten this far. I realize this and I cherish ever minute of it.