From Blueberry to Baby

Text and photography by Elodie Bellegarde

Picture this. A welcome rainy Saturday afternoon in Singapore during which my 5-year-old son and I were on our way to a workshop. As we stepped into a taxi, a familiar smell seemed to emanate from the uncle’s car. It was an odour that, until that day, I would have hardly believed could be found in a taxi in this part of the world. It was the smell of home back in France, the smell of my grandparents’ farm during my childhood, the smell of Christmas with all its trimmings. It was the smell of foie gras.

Sure, it might not have been foie gras per se; perhaps it was simply a product of my imagination and temporarily carnivorous mind. But to the delicate and at times extra-keen sense of smell of a hungry, 20-week pregnant woman, it really did smell like the French delicacy. It smelt divine!

This, as we know, is one phenomenon that expectant mothers (along with their supportive partners) are likely to have experienced at some point: cravings. They come in many shapes and intensities, with some common (ice cream, pickles, chips) and others more obscure (cigarette buds or laundry detergent, which is associated with a condition called Pica). As one of my friends recalled, popcorn and raw cabbage, both at the same time, were an odd combination that seemed to feel just right at a particular time. Sending a compassionate husband to the local shop to get a midnight fix seems common practice. However intense cravings may be, they are one interestingly fun side effect of pregnancy—as long as they can be satisfied.

Read more in The U Press N˚12 (Singapore edition).