I was always immune to baby fever, even during pregnancy. In the end, I caught the bug from a surprising source… tiny baby socks.
Socks are every-day mundane objects. They’re certainly not unique seeing as you get two every time. Yet socks can mean so much more than they do on the face of it. This is what I discovered, three months pregnant, on a wet October afternoon.
Not a ‘baby person’, I stood in the supermarket anxiously trying to come to terms with waves of nausea and extreme hunger. Worse was the terrible panic that I had no feeling for the bean-sized bundle of cells growing in my belly. I felt as though something was wrong with me. Indeed, I had never even held a baby. Nor had I spent much time around young children though people had always insisted one ‘would look good on me’. How on earth would I cope with one of my own?
Scratching my head and sweating under the unflattering lights of the noisy store, I found myself loitering by the kid’s clothes department. I wandered in, mystified by the forest of different racks of hats dungarees and dresses. I parked myself on a stool, and tried to remember what the hell I’d come into the supermarket for in the first place. Staring into space, I found myself face-to-face with some bunches of socks.
They were no ordinary socks. They were so impossibly small, so soft and perfect. Soon, hopefully, they would be filled up with a pair of equally small, soft and perfect feet. For the first time the doubts and hollowness faded. I picked up a pack of the simple white socks and secretively put my other hand over my baby. It was the first item of clothing I bought for my son, and the first time I thought of myself as a mother.
My son, born June last year, is growing bigger every day. As the months go by I pack his clothes carefully in boxes and take them to the attic. His little socks always make me stop and think of that fall day, as I stood worrying and unsure, lonely but no longer alone.
What makes us broody? Research shows that both men and women can feel strong urges to have children, and the impulse is biological, as you might expect, but also social and financial. Take a look at this article from Phys.org for information.