Written September 4, 2009
Today I found out that we are going to have a baby.
This is not at all how I imagined this moment to be. I didn’t want a baby, haven’t dreamed about the pitter patter of little feet, and I don’t care to know how I am going to look with a monstrous belly. I have never been one of those empty vessel women who has dreamed of one day being filled up with babies. I don’t want to fill my living room with toys and exer-saucers, nor do I want to watch Bob the Builder videos. I’m genuinely not exited about any of the other things that happen to your body when a baby comes to live inside it. I don’t want to get fat, have swollen ankles, or be filled with milk, like some hormone-pumped-cankle-cow. I have other stuff to do besides waddle around and squirt lactation from my udders.
I feel like my body has betrayed me. It’s like all of my life I have been telling my body what to do, and all of a sudden my womb decided to have a mutiny and inserted a little pink alien in there to suck out my life. I’m five weeks right now, so the baby is just a conglomeration of cells and nerve endings that don’t work yet and goo. It’s about 2 cm long. Amazing how a 2 cm little goo ball can change a life so much. My life will never ever be the same.
I thought I was pregnant last week (which I was, it turns out) and I took a test and it was negative so we had a “Celebrate that Laura is not pregnant” party with some friends. Bad idea. I thought things still weren’t right, so I went to the Dollar Tree and picked up three more pregnancy tests. Chris came home right at the same time I did, so thankfully we were together for the momentous occasion. I peed in a cup, used the straw thing to put the pee on the test, and watched as the pee absorbed into the test strip. First one line showed up automatically, and that one line stayed there alone for a minute or so. I was just telling Chris, who gets faint when someone just says the word pregnant, “See- only one line- I’m in the clear”, and as I picked up the test to show him, there it was. The faintest second line. I blinked. The line was still there. I held the test further away from my eyes- the line was there, and a little darker. I gasped. Chris, in a panicky voice said, “WHAT??”
“There are two lines.”
“Yeah- two lines but one is really faint.”
“So what does that mean?”
“I don’t know.”
“Are you pregnant?
“I don’t know- one is really faint, but it is there.”
Then Chris went and laid down on the bed. He didn’t move for a while, and when I came over to make sure he wasn’t dead he said, “Do you have another test you can take?” I nodded. “TAKE IT.”
So I peed in another cup, and squirted it on the test. A few minutes the same faint second line appeared. By this time, we were both crying. A baby was definitely not on the schedule for either of us. I decided to call my doctor to have a more official test taken, because I just didn’t trust the Dollar Tree tests.
An hour later, we were sitting in some nurse’s office and she is saying, “Good news! Your test was positive and you are going to have a baby in May.” I immediately started bawling. Chris stuck out his hand and I grabbed it. The nurse was still talking, but I didn’t hear a word she is saying- she sounded just like the teacher from Charlie Brown. She handed me a white bag and I grabbed it with my hand, which had suddenly started to act like a robotic claw. Then she took out some horrible piece of paper and pointed to words on the paper and said, “Waaah-wah-waaaaaah-wahh-wah”. I nodded. She asked me if I had any more questions. I said, “What the heck are we going to do with a baby?” and she, suprised, smiled like Mona Lisa and said,”Oh… well, waaaah-wah-waaaahhh-wah”.
We shuffled out of the room and I was still crying profusely. People were staring. They probably thought, “What a pity- another unwed teenage mother. If she were married, she would be happy because married women apparently all want to have litters of babies”. I was still crying as we stood in line and made an appointment to see the doctor. The nurse asked me if I wanted a glass of water. I said no. And, just like that, with my robotic claw clutching the white bag and horrible paper, we were sent out into the world. With an embryo. I looked at Chris, who looked a little different to me now that a part of him was living in my uterus, and he was not crying, which was a relief to me. He did, however, look like he might throw up. I thought I might throw up too. We got in the car and sat for a second. He tried to pull out of the parking spot while the car was still in park. The engine revved and he made a confused face. Then he grunted, and shifted to reverse. We were off. We showed up as two. We left as three.
How could I have known when I woke up this morning that my life numbers would change forever today? When you get married, and go from one to two, there is plenty of time to get used to the idea. There are bachelorette parties to celebrate the one, and wedding parties to celebrate two. You know ahead of time which day you will go from one to two. You send out invitations to the event. You have premarital counseling to make sure your transition from one to two is as smooth as possible. It’s easier to swallow that way. Getting pregnant is a much more drastic change. You wake up a two, expect to go to bed a two, but no. You all of a sudden become a three. You’re forever a three from this moment on. Some people may think that the three doesn’t officially being until the baby is born, but that is a crock of poo. I feel completely different now, like I have been on a long journey that I can never come back from. Three is now. And the three in this equation is a little helpless blood sucking alien goo creature.
I never liked math anyway.
Even if something happens and the baby isn’t actually born, I am still forever changed. I can never go back to the world of the fruitless wombs. I’m in the club of mystic womanhood. The club where alien goo creatures suck your blood, you boobs make food for other humans, and you are forced to trade your current wardrobe for what resembles rain ponchos and boat sails.
So that’s it. Today was the day to change all days. I woke up a two, and here I am, a three. Forever. I am not sure what people do from here on out. Order copies of What to Expect when You’re Expecting ? Start eating pickles and ice cream? Read consumer reports on baby monitors and car seats?
Or maybe,for the next few days, I will thank God for the alien. And for his timing when nothing seems like it makes sense. And for the disappointment and inadequacy that Chris and I both feel, and how those two feelings are a great combo to make us closer to each other and to Him. By that time, my copy of What to Expect will come in and I’ll sit down to read it with a bowl of vanilla and dill.
Now, more than ever, I have to say “If this is what you want, Lord, then so be it”…
so and so be it.