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Getting a kick out of pregnancy

Written by: Suzanna June 13 2011 Some women hope their children will grow up to become doctors or lawyers. Me? I’m counting on Baby Palmer being a star kicker in the NFL—at least that’s what I’m sure he has been practicing for the past few weeks. At first his movements started out as sweet nudges...

Written by: Suzanna

Some women hope their children will grow up to become doctors or lawyers. Me? I’m counting on Baby Palmer being a star kicker in the NFL—at least that’s what I’m sure he has been practicing for the past few weeks.

At first his movements started out as sweet nudges to remind me that he was alive and, well, kicking. Now, they are strong enough to catapult me out of bed at night, clutching my stomach in pain. I have officially been initiated into the school of hard knocks. I had no idea it would be this tough.

The other night while my husband and I were on vacation, I got my first clue that the little guy must have the legs of a Clydesdale. (I now get these not-so-gentle reminders at least 47 times a day.) It was nearing 1 a.m., and both of us were exhausted. I climbed into bed, where I was set to stay for at least the next 14 hours. But Baby Palmer had other plans. Almost immediately, I sprang off the mattress with a yelp that would put a laboring woman to shame.
Despite my banshee yell, my husbanded continued to sleep peacefully. Or so I thought. Turns out, he was faking it. He admitted the next day that he had considered turning over to console me but realized he had only a few precious months of sleep left until the baby arrived, and so he figured he had better “take advantage” while he could. Smart (a**) guy.

Fortunately, he’s much more interested when it isn’t 1 a.m. The first time he felt the baby kick was a memorable moment for both of us. I’ll spare you all the gushy details and share the funnier one instead. When I asked him later what he thought about his first experience “interacting” with the baby, he had this to say: “It was weird to feel that there was something alive inside of you. It was kind of like that Alien movie. You know, the one where the hand pops out of the girl’s belly.” Come to think of it, he did bear a striking resemblance to an extra-terrestrial creature during those first ultrasounds.

While all this may sound like one giant complaint masquerading as a blog post, I really don’t mind it so much. Apparently, there are benefits to your internal organs getting the Bruce Lee treatment. I’ve heard that babies who are more active in the womb become mobile more quickly. (Wait? That’s a benefit?) All I can say is that if his constant movement is any indication of how active he’ll be once he’s not confined to my uterus, Lord help me. Of course, as soon he doesn’t have unfettered access to my insides, he’ll be free to move and kick as he pleases, as long as he stays away from my shins and the family dog. (Other people’s shins and dogs? Not such a big deal.)

Until then, I’ll be singing my new pregnancy anthem, borrowed from Annie: “It’s the hard knock life for [me}. It’s the hard knock life for [me].”

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