“To flip or not to flip: this question drew a line in my mind that every pregnant person must cross at some point. My baby has an independent nervous system. I can feel his presence, but I cannot feel his pain – or pleasure for that matter. And he can’t feel mine.”
Two landmark experiences during my pregnancy last year – swimming in the YMCA pool and hiking in New York’s Adirondack region – taught me that my son is a being separate from me and will be for the rest of his life. I wrote about it, and the wonderfully specific journal Sport Literate published my essay “Flip Turns” this winter.
Now that Paul is in the world (6 months now) and growing every day, he travels a little farther from that unified center we started from. A simple lesson, but profound. One I didn’t think of until I became a proto-parent, then a mother.
The essay doesn’t have pictures, but here are a few bits of bonus material for readers of my blog!