Celebrating my bday at home with Chris... the gifts were all family-friendly and family-themed.
The "pregnancy, week by week" emails include two things consistently: a produce size comparison of the fetal growth and suggestions for how the pregnant person should be bonding with the fetus. Chris's (and my) favorite part about these emails is the former. I find myself generally ambivalent when it comes to the latter.
I understand the purpose of these bonding tips is to try to make more "real" what is otherwise a fairly abstract and surreal existential state. But I am not sure that I'm ready to be singing songs and reading stories to my abdomen. I guess I am skeptical that doing so would produce a more "bonded" maternal identity. It isn't that I feel a disconnect either. I just find the suggestions to be bizarre (and politically unnerving) in their subtextual assumptions about personage.
The increased feelings of fetal movement have made far more real my experience of (an otherwise fairly low symptom) pregnancy than anything else. Those brief encounters of sight and sound in earlier weeks were helpful too.
I have heard women describe pregnancy as a feeling of being haunted (by a presumably friendly spirit). Being haunted wasn't my experience early on, when I was having dizzy spells and couldn't drink coffee. That felt much more like an enduring hangover. But lately there is a feeling of something abstract and omnipresent that stays with me. I find myself unconsciously resting a hand on my abdomen. And I'm discerning with ease my stomach's own grumblings from the "quickening." I may not be reading books or singing songs but I catch myself communicating psychically and occasionally aloud to that looming presence. It feels silly to admit that on some subconscious level my brain thinks that a psychic connection is possible but because the fetus is internal to me, I guess it makes logical (albeit irrational) sense.
Wait, do I actually believe a fetus is capable of reading thoughts the way I have presumed a ghost (or at times in my life when I was feeling spiritual, a higher power) could? This doesn't jive with so many of my actual (rational) beliefs. Pregnancy is so weird.