Tuesday, 27 August 2013

The pregnancy belly rub

I had a flash of awareness yesterday – I’ve officially started the pregnancy belly rub!

I’ve always been intrigued by women you see walking about rubbing their bellies. Some do it in a circular motion, others do it in an up and down motion and others do it in frenzied motion. I always wondered if women were conscious of the fact they were doing it and now I know – the answer is no!

I have a sense I’ve rubbed once of twice in the past week or two. When I caught myself doing it yesterday, I had no idea why. Today, it was in response to a cramp. But to me, that was different to a rub because I was trying to apply pressure to relieve it.  

If you read online blogs, women give a variety of reasons for doing it – bonding with the baby, trying to make sense of their expanding belly and itchy skin. All of these reasons are plausible. I’ve started talking to Sticky more in the past week given she can now hear. I guess I’ve been rubbing my belly more when I do that as my way of connecting with her. I am so desperate to hug her that I guess a tummy rub is the closest I can get for the next 4 months.

At night, I lay in bed rubbing my hand over my whole stomach. I trace the curves of my belly to feel the difference. I also do it when I lay on my side to get an idea of how much I’m expanding. Sometimes, I run my hand over the shape of my belly in the air, imagining my belly being there soon. I think it’s a way of understanding how my body is changing. I must admit, when I felt the overhang of my stomach for the first time this week, I was ecstatic!

I don’t have itchy skin yet but I’m sure that’s another reason. Although to it makes more sense to scratch it, rather than rub it. But this doesn’t appear to be the case in pregnancy. My lower abdomen is already starting to get hard and take on that basketball feeling so I no longer have the same sensations I use to. I can scratch my stomach but I don’t feel the scratch.

So I guess the belly rub is just one of those things that’s part of pregnancy. It’s like sore feet, tiredness and maternity clothes – a part of pregnancy that every women will experience. I also hazard a guess that it could be a way to signal to the rest of the world “baby in here.” It’s like a universal sign language that lets everyone know you’re pregnant. Maybe it’s for protection, or to let people know to get out of your way, or to stand up for you in the train. But then again, maybe it’s nothing more than a loving Mum  who’s counting down the days until she gets to hold that baby in her arms – 142 days to go!

Image courtesy of www.psychology.wikia.com

1 comment:

  1. I've noticed I've been rubbing my belly lately too. I think for me it's about trying to process all that's happening there. My stomach is slowly expanding and my baby is in there. I think part of it's also because I'm still in that inbetween stage and I want others to know I'm not just eating too many cookies. Haha

    It definitely started without me being aware but I feel like now I'm doing it more and more sometimes aware and sometimes unaware, either way I'm becoming less embarrassed and more proud of my growing belly.



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