Monday, February 14, 2011

A Second-Trimester Love Letter

Dear Baby,

It's your mommy again. By this time, you are more aware of me around you, and I have felt your little kicks and punches for weeks now, mostly when I am very still. It is always a comfort to me, every time I feel the little popcorn tumbles within.

Second trimester is somewhat of a honeymoon period for both of us. You still have room to swim, and I still have room to breathe. These are the months sandwiched between the sickness and dry cereal, and the swollen ankles and unsightly waddle. You are behaving more and more like you will in the outside world -- swallowing and blinking and sleeping for long periods -- and I can take great pleasure in this miracle, while still able to put on my own socks.

As your taste buds form, your little memory will begin to store away the flavors that you will later recognize while perched in your high chair. Sometimes I look at your sister and brother and wonder if their wild love of bananas stems from my daily intake of the lovely yellow fruit, or if their stubborn refusal to eat plain white rice was born of my preference for potatoes.

I hope that you will not only absorb a taste for all the foods that I love, but also a love for food in general. For your sake, I will eat a thousand different things so you will have an experienced palate coming into this world. The first time your sister tried lamb, wrapped in a warm pita and drizzled with tangy tzatziki sauce, she devoured it like she'd eaten it every day of her life. Your brother, first presented with scrambled eggs, could not get them in his chubby little hands fast enough.

It won't be long until I am too big to fit anything in but juice and applesauce. Until the third trimester arrives, though, your early culinary education will continue to include courses in French, Italian, Chinese, Mexican, Mediterranean and American. When you are old enough to eat such things on your own, when the days of rice cereal are over, I will be sure to look for the gleam of recognition in your eyes the first time you taste a spoonful of lamb ragout and hope, just maybe, that you will fall in love with it, too.

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