TWO PERFECTLY FORMED BLUE LINES
Picture the scene: Two best friends in a shopping centre toilet on Chapel Street, a couple of cubicles apart, one changing her tampon, and the other holding a pregnancy test in hand, that true to its word on the packet “Gives a clear and accurate result within seconds”. This result was two perfectly formed blue lines. Two.
If I ever come across those poor unsuspecting members of the general public who just happened to be in the toilet at that time, I would apologise profusely for my appalling language that ensued, especially to the lady in the cubicle between us. No, I was not the friend changing my tampon.
You see I wasn’t trying to get pregnant. In fact I was trying NOT to get pregnant.
Three weeks earlier on Christmas Day, the love of my life got down on one knee and proposed. To say I was ecstatic was an understatement (yes, another language warning event).
The weeks that followed the engagement were a heady mix of outbursts of love and attention from my ‘fiancé’, squealing with girlfriends, flashing the diamond around at any given opportunity, plus one almighty Pinterest Board explosion - all of which were accompanied by lots, and lots of champagne. In fact this poor little foetus was probably bubbling from the inside out.
That magical carpet of well wishes, flowers, soft cheeses, tight fitting wedding dresses, champagne and thoughts of honeymooning in Hawaii was whipped out from underneath me quick smart.
I loved wine, not babies. I want to spend my money on racehorses, not nappies. South America, not stay-at-home. No wonder all my bestie could do that day in the toilets was laugh at me whilst I was sobbing. She knew how I was feeling. As a mother of a three year old, she knew, and found it hilarious.
Call me selfish, call me heartless, and yes you call me typical Gen Y, but I was not happy. Not happy at all. Looking back now, I was simply petrified.
A few hours after the public toilet soiree, I found myself presenting the unsuspecting father-to-be with the now four (4) positive pregnancy tests. The look on his face turned slowly from confusion (and most probably disgust due to the pee factor) to absolute elation. “Are you serious?”, he asked. My tears started again. He was beaming.
Writing this now at 25 weeks pregnant and currently getting the odd, healthy nudge from the inside, I can see there have been three clearly defining moments from then until now, that have flipped my entire attitude and how I now feel towards this pregnancy, well, this baby!
Number one: “We are going to be OK”. Words spoken to me softly, yet purposely by my fiancé. He is a coach by profession, using little words wisely at all times. At that point I think it was a few days after the newsbreak, and I had my head on his lap having another little cry. The wave of reassurance that washed over me was overwhelming, and I thought: Get your shit together mama, we’ve got this. He probably won’t recall saying it. But it changed me.
Number two: The twenty-week ultrasound. There was an actual, real life, what appeared fully formed, squirming human on the screen in front of us. That’s our baby! WE made that and that will be ours, to keep, forever! The sonographer showed us the baby sucking its thumb and told us he/she had long limbs. Future supermodel? Probably. No, we aren’t going to find out what sex it is. There are not enough surprises these days. And to the woman in the pub who told me you don’t bond with your baby properly unless you know the sex, I hope you choke on your bad advice.
The third: That comes later.
So the first trimester. Key words and phrases I would use to summarise my experience would be: Nausea (x10), panic, uncertainty, wow my boobs are big, tired, so tired, I’m missing out, giving birth is not the sacrifice - not drinking wine is the sacrifice, how much is this going to hurt, more nausea, why can’t you eat bean sprouts, love, Schnitz burgers, how are we going to afford this, everyone is skinny except me, tears, joy, elation, judgement, realisation, hug me, get away from me, we don’t have a car, nothing fits me and water makes me feel sick.