November 4, 2010

A week in reflexes

The long awaited 14-week is upon me and I’m starting to feel better. The baby is now three and half inches long and all his organs are in place. The biggest accomplishment this week is reflexes, a sign that his nervous system is slowly developing. He can frown, squint and grimace while making fists with his tiny hands and curling his toes. Thanks to these reflexes he is now kicking up a storm even though I can’t feel it yet. I read somewhere that if I poke my belly he will move away from it. The umbilical chord is working hard now. One vein carries oxygen rich nutrients and two arteries carry the blood away. He’s just started producing urine in his kidneys, which will soon be excreted into the amniotic fluid. He will swallow the fluid and excrete it again, a process he will keep up until birth. His liver starts producing bile now, a sign that it’s doing its job right.

The other day as I laid down for a nap and my dog curled up next to me, I realized that my fascination with watching my dog sleep will soon be transferred to watching my baby sleep once he arrives. There is something magical and highly intimate about it. Piki is almost 14 years old, and has a deeper sleep now. His hearing is not what it used to be and so to watch him sleep and squint and twitch with his eyes closed gives me a better idea of what he looked like when he was a new born puppy and I swear I can’t stop smiling.

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