This post was written by Friday blogger Stephany Aulenback, who subsequently founded Crooked House.
Speaking of imaginary children, a couple of weeks ago I asked people to email me with nicknames for fetuses — actual nicknames that people have used more than once to refer to their children when they were still inner. Almost immediately I was deluged with email. Who knew that this would be a topic of such interest to so many? Unfortunately, I was almost immediately stricken with a series of terrible headaches and I have not yet written to thank all those who wrote in. Respondents included Caroline Leavitt, columnist for The Boston Globe and novelist (her latest is Girls in Trouble), Andi Buchanan, author of Mother Shock and managing editor of Literary Mama, and many others to whom I am very grateful.
Click through below to view, in no particular order, the list so far. (My apologies if I’ve inadvertently left your suggestion off — I’ll do my best to add it next go round.)
Actual Nicknames for Fetuses
The grain of rice
The human bean
Cletus the Fetus, Flo the Embryo, The Pissed Blastocyst (same family; three different fetuses)
Poppy, Chicken, Pinchy the Cervical Elf (same family, two different fetuses)
The button, The buttonette, El Guapo (same family, two different fetuses)
The stranger within
Fuzzy, Jellybean (same family, same fetus)
Toon (as in Cartoon)
Cheyenne Henry, Hawkeye,Tertius (same family, three different fetuses)
Tot, Super Tot, Mega Tot, Mega Tot 3000 (same fetus, as pregnancy progressed well past due date)
The tapeworm, Jackie Chan (same family, two different fetuses)
Siggy (short for “pregnant with significance”; fetus belonged to two graduate students in English Literature)
I have not yet compiled a list of actual nicknames for babies but intend to do so soon. If you know of any good nicknames, either for fetuses or babies, please do email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.