Monday, August 16, 2010

An Anniversary of Sorts

Tomorrow is Robert's seven month birthday! That is a milestone in and of itself, of course. Seven months, what a big boy! But today is also special because one year ago today, I woke up very early on a Sunday morning and left M sleeping to drive out to Walgreens. I had been having such strange feelings in my stomach for the past couple of days, I was no longer able to sleep for worrying. I had to prove to myself, I thought, that it was gas bubbles I was feeling, or indigestion, or whatever. I left a note on M's computer that I'd run out to get a new hairbrush (which was something I happened to need at the time anyway), and would be back soon, just in case he woke while I was gone. I thought I would go out to Walgreens, get a test, come back, reassure myself that I was imagining things, and have the evidence disposed of by the time M woke. Not that I was worried about him seeing it, really, but I would've felt so silly. We both knew I was infertile, and on birth control pills besides! I felt like a little bit of an idiot even entertaining the notion, but the persistent strange feelings in my stomach would not be denied.

Buying a pregnancy test is a little embarrassing no matter what the circumstances, I think. Luckily, the store was pretty empty before seven in the morning on a Sunday. I decided against the Walgreens brand and sprang for a two-pack on one of the more inexpensive name-brands. I also bought the hairbrush, and some headbands, and a can of iced tea, and some candy, just to show that I was totally not out first thing on a Sunday morning for the sole purpose of buying a pregnancy test, no sir. I'm pretty sure the cashier didn't care even a little bit one way the other. When I went home, M was still sleeping, no note necessary. Ah, those days of lazy weekend slumber! I left him sleeping and went into the bathroom. I had barely gotten the post-test plastic cap onto the wretched thing before the big bold PLUS sign was becoming visible. I just sat there for a few minutes and looked at it. I was stunned, but somehow I was not surprised. The kicky feet inside me were not gas and not indigestion, and deep down I think I had known they were not, but I was in such deep denial that I had made myself disbelieve.

Telling M was the next thing on the agenda. If I had it to do over again, I probably would've just waited till he woke up, but I was not thinking entirely straight at the moment. Basically I woke him up and waved the test at him and told him it was positive, and he had no idea what I was showing him or what I was talking about. It took several minutes for us to get onto the same page and wasn't exactly the sort of storybook reveal I sort of thought it would be if we ever did have a kid, but the circumstances were also not exactly what we had envisioned. We had no idea how pregnant I was, or even if the test was accurate, or what on earth we were going to do now. At that point, we did not even know the month we conceived, much less have an idea on things like last menstrual cycle or due date. It was entirely overwhelming. In the days to come, we would go to New Hope for the first time, take three more pregnancy tests (all positive, of course) and get an ultrasound to show us the face of our unexpected addition. But when I think back on that day, it's sort of funny, how absolutely shocked we were.

We didn't actually do anything that day, because it was a Sunday and no one was open. We didn't call anyone, I'm not even sure we really said the word "pregnant" beyond the initial conversation. It wasn't until the next day that we got the other tests done, and I felt comfortable enough with the reality of it all that we started telling people. My dad was in the hospital for tests on his heart, and I almost waited to call them, but decided not to. If he was going to have a heart attack, might as well do it in the hospital, I figured! I was a little worried what the reaction from our folks might be. I didn't have a job or any insurance, we were barely scraping by as it was. The last time I'd talked with my dad about my prospects for the future, I'd wound up crying (which makes a lot more sense in retrospect, with the whole hormones thing.) But of course my parents were just thrilled, and M's parents were thrilled, and they were 100% behind us all the way. My mom was just beside herself with excitement, and it was actually pretty funny.

I didn't have this blog active back then, but I did have another online journal I was keeping, a more private one that is not quite as open for the world to see. I posted a message there on August 17, 2009 for my friends that I will replicate here for posterity:

This has been such a weird summer. Sure we've been in a new place and I still haven't gotten a job, but there have been other weird things as well. Like the dizzy spells. Sometimes when I was walking around or in the shower, I would start feeling really funny and need to sit down or lie down. Then there was the great grandpappy dizzy spell back in May, when I all but fainted on the floor at the Honda dealership, then threw up in the poor manager's trash can. Then there was the moodiness, to the point where I was fighting tears if I didn't win initiative in a game or saw an especially sentimental commercial. I thought it was because I was depressed about not working. I gained some weight, too, but I did get off Weight Watchers, and it wasn't like I grew out of all my clothes or anything...

You know, when you put it all together, it seems far more suggestive than it did at the time. But when a doctor has assured you that something won't happen without significant medical intervention, it's just not the first thing on your mind, and when you haven't had a regular menstrual cycle since high school, missing a couple periods isn't something you think much about. But when something starts butting its head against your pelvis and demanding attention should be paid, well, attention generally gets paid. 

All that said, guess what, everyone! We're spawning! It's not an ideal time for it, but considering I didn't know if it would happen at all, I'll take a miracle as it comes. After four pregnancy tests to confirm it, anyway. It's hard to doubt at that point, especially when you started taking them to figure out what was wiggling and jiggling and tickling inside you. We're getting an ultrasound ASAP to figure out how far along we are, but we could have a new Davisling come January. Wow! It seems like so little time with so much to do, but at least we noticed now, and aren't one of those couples who show up at the hospital in labor, all unawares. We'll be very busy, but there's time for a little shock and awe yet. 

What a difference a year makes, huh? It's hard to believe how quickly it's gone, or what a beautiful baby came from such slapdash and makeshift origins. But I think it's reassuring too, Robert has always been a baby who has his own. We're there to give him everything we can, but he's an independent little cuss, and he's going to make it just fine. 

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