People often ask me if I’ve had any cravings in pregnancy and, knowing they are referring to food cravings, my response has always been, “Actually…not really.” Although this is true when it comes to food, what I don’t mention is that I have had many cravings, just not culinary ones.
I’ve tried to listen to these cravings, nonetheless. Some are new and some are not surprising, but I trust them inherently and have tried to hold a sense of curiosity about where they will lead.
I have craved…
...water. I hardly ever swim, but I went to the pool a couple times a week in my second trimester. There was something about immersing myself in water that felt natural and soothing and I couldn’t ignore it. Sometimes I wouldn’t even swim. I would just float, look up at the sky, and appreciate the water encompassing me. Staying in my family's cabin on our pond has been a major bonus.
…books. I spend some time in the mornings and evenings reading, and usually some stolen moments throughout the day. Although this isn’t so unusual, I have sped through more books than normal and can’t help but buying more!
…pottery. I haven’t thrown pottery since high school and even then, I took only a couple of classes. But for some reason, I’ve badly wanted to get my hands on some clay and mold it into a form. I finally found a pottery class at a local high school and although the teacher isn’t very enthusiastic about helping a newbie and I’m the ultimate novice, my craving is being fulfilled. The first class left me frustrated and I thought twice about going back, but this week I tried to let go of expectation and just focus on the feel of the clay, the spinning of the wheel, and how the form changes under the pressure of my hands. Being present in it was somewhat hypnotizing and it was just what I wanted.
…breath. I catch myself wanting to breathe deeply. The best way I can explain it is I have wanted to drink in air, even to chug it!
…knitting. I finally picked up knitting again for the first time in years and I carry my projects with me nearly everywhere I go, sneaking in a few stitches or rows in car rides, during coffee house chats with friends, and while watching TV or listening to a podcast.
Call me crazy, but I find these cravings as strong as I’ve heard other women explain their food cravings during pregnancy. I’m as ravenous about finishing a book as some women are about a peanut butter sandwich with pickles. Instead of sending my husband out at midnight to pick me up something from Taco Bell, I stay up half the night just to complete part of a knitting project.
I’m not sure what will happen to these impulses once the baby comes, but I have appreciated the opportunity for the creativity and health they have brought into my life during this season.