Early on in my pregnancy I started to rub my belly, not because I had any real sense of attachment to the growing bub yet (he was still quite alien looking at that point) but because my swelling tum could easily be mistaken for flab and short of wearing a shirt that said “Not fat, pregnant” it was the best thing I could think of to make myself feel less frumpy. I'd lean back, stick out my tum and rub it, hoping that the people walking past didn't think I was nursing a stomach full of Hungry Jack's (in reality I'm sure no one walking past looked at me or even cared).
As time wore on and I could no longer be mistaken for a prize heifer the belly rubbing became affectionate. Most of the time I wouldn't even realise I was doing it. It became second nature to place my hands on the little shelf that had developed and give it a little pat, even talk to it. I was bonding with Tricky (even if he didn't know it) each time I did it. When Hubby would touch my belly I would love it, especially if he could feel Tricky's kicks or hiccups.
But now? Tricky is out and the majority of the tum is gone, but there is still quite a bit of jelly belly action going on - and I don't mean the yummy flavoured jelly bean variety. This itself is not my problem – I'm fully aware that it can take a looong time to get back in to your pre-baby jeans and some women never do. The problem is the habit of rubbing it is still there so I am now affectionately rubbing my verandah of stretched skin. Highly attractive. I'm just waiting for someone to ask me when I'm due... “No I'm not pregnant, I'm just patting my own flab.”