Up until this year I had never felt a baby kick. I've had family and family friends who've been pregnant, but every time they'd grab my hand and hold it to their belly and look at me with this sense of amazement and ask, "did you feel that!?" I had no idea what they were talking about. To be polite I'd smile and say "yeah!" and think to myself, what are they talking about? I feel a belly.
I'm also not a touchy feel-y person. I think it's a little strange that pregnant women's bellies sort of become public property and everyone and their mother think they can come up and rub like a Buddha statue in China Town. So I don't automatically reach out to touch bellies and feel kicks unless I've asked first. But a few months back my best friend was pregnant and I had just gotten the news that we were expecting too. We were at work when she told me to feel her belly and I actually felt the little guy kick me. It was pretty cool, and as a newly expectant mother I was pretty excited to finally "get" what everyone was talking about. I was so excited to meet her little guy. He'd kicked me and I felt a connection. I knew what it was like to feel baby kicks.
Boy, was I wrong.
Baby kicks from the inside are a completely different thing. My placenta decided to place itself in the front of my belly, which meant that feeling little 'flutters' that everyone talks about were non-existent. I don't remember the moment I first felt a kick, but I do remember that I had no idea what I was feeling. At 22 weeks, we'd only just found out we were expecting a little boy, and suddenly I was feeling little bumps? bubbles? pulses? They were kicks, and they're not like anything you've ever felt before.
Your baby boy is in there.
At first they were all internal, meaning, the only thing I could imagine is that he was tap dancing on my bladder and my intestines. Not what you imagine baby kicks to feel like when you've only got everyone's smiling reactions to compare it too. I get what they mean when they say you can mistake them for gas bubbles. Sometimes it felt like I had to run to the bathroom, I'm not going to lie.
But now when he kicks, 25 weeks and growing strong, I can see my belly bump up in places. I know that when I wake up in the early morning and lay on my left side, he'll say good morning with a few jabs of his sweet little foot. I know that walking around rocks him to sleep, but when I finally sit down at a computer to chart during a busy day at work, he'll kick and say, "hey, I'm here Mama!" (he also says, "feed me!" about every 2 hours). I know that when I finally rest on the couch after a long day he starts to wake up again and do his dance. He takes after his daddy and his grandpa.
I know that I could spend all day laying down and feeling those little bumps. The word "kicks" make them seem like they'd be forceful and harsh. But they're the sweetest little love taps. Baby boy is reminding me that he's there with me all day, and my heart aches for the rest of the world because they can only feel a little tap from the outside. They don't feel the little rumble that comes before the kick, or the way it almost echos on my skin after it's done. They might feel them from the outside, but those kicks are mine all day. My baby boy is in there and I love him so. I can't wait to kiss the sweet little feet that give me those perfect little baby kicks.