During any conversation about pregnancy, someone will inevitably mention cravings. The running joke about pregnancy cravings involves Rocky Road and Kosher dills that send some poor father-to-be scurrying into the night to retrieve them. My cravings have never been that eccentric, yet. I can appreciate the urge behind them, but find myself wondering what causes expecting moms to yearn for specific food items.
Some physicians believe that pregnancy cravings are signals your body sends to get needed nutrients. For instance, a craving for steak may stem from an iron deficiency or an urgent need for ice cream may be signalling a calcium need. Cravings don't stop at edible items. Some women yearn for strange items like gasoline, cigarrette butts or laundry detergent, a condition doctors refer to as pica. Even inedible cravings can point to nutritional deficits.
Other physicians think cravings are a load of bunk, citing that pregnant women probably just need a hug. Those physicians are obviously single, childless men. I would interpret a hug as an attempt to restrain me from fufilling a need. Besides, most pregnant women have become unwilling martyrs when it comes to indulgences, forced to give up every vice or fun activity in order to gestate safely. I realize I am doing this for the most wonderful reason, but I still long for an icy cold beer, a triple espresso and a satisfying roller coaster ride. There are some cravings in which pregnant women don't indulge, so why not treat the one vice left: food?
My cravings have ranged from ice cream to steak (not rare mind you, that is a no-no) and from Mexican to Chinese. Sometimes they are general in nature (BEEF!!!) other times they are incredibly specific (Vlassic Mini Dill Pickles spread with Philadelphia cream cheese and rolled in a slice of Sara Lee Slow Roasted Corn BEEF!!!) I do crave strawberries and crab legs. In fact, Dan can create cravings by merely mentioning an edible item. I sometimes think he steers me to cook, by dropping subliminal craving messages.
Dan has been a champ through both my pregnancies when it comes to helping satisfy cravings. He is trained to call home before he leaves work, to get my craving list. I am living every pregnant woman's dream, married to a man who manages a grocery store. Besides bringing home my eccentric requests, he also happily eats whatever strange concoction I prepare. He is a hostage on the craving train. So am I. I believe The Deuce is the conducter on this train, pushing the buttons from her cozy womb with no view.