Well, reader, I’ve taken quite an unintentional hiatus from writing over the last few weeks. But I assure you it’s been for good reason: I’m pregnant! And plumb exhausted. All that talk about the first trimester taking a toll on a mother’s body is no joke, at least in my experience. Now that I’m in my second trimester, though, I’m feeling more like myself again. So let’s catch up!
Back in October, on the day before Halloween, I went to the doctor for a regular old annual appointment. When I arrived, I learned that my doctor was out sick, but I would be seen by a certified nurse midwife in the practice. Once she called my name, we sat at her desk in a cozy corner, and she asked me if I had any concerns I wanted to discuss.
“Well, my husband and I are trying to get pregnant,” I answered feeling suddenly emotional. “And it hasn’t been that long, but it also hasn’t happened yet, so I’d love any advice you have on how to make… you know. How to make it happen.” She smiled and reassured me.
“Of course we can talk about that!” she said. “I’m sure you’re doing everything right; sometimes, it just takes a little time. Let’s have you take a pregnancy test here anyway, since you’ve been trying to conceive. Just in case. And then we can discuss next steps.”
She handed me a cup and directed me to the ladies room. When I was finished, she led me to an exam room to change into a gown while she examined the contents of the cup.
Minutes later, I was sitting in the exam room, feeling understandably exposed on that wax-paper-covered table in that gaping cloth gown when the midwife knocked on the door. “Come in,” I called.
She entered the room with a smile on her face. “My dear…” she started, beaming at me.
“What?” I asked, suddenly panicked.
She extended her hand to show me a pregnancy test. I stared at it blankly, registering nothing.
“What does that mean?!” I said, a little too loudly.
“It’s positive!” she said.
“WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?!” I shouted.
“YOU’RE PREGNANT!” she laughed.
Immediately, I covered my face and began to cry. “Oh my gosh,” I repeated over and over. “Are you sure? I can’t believe it!”
“Yes! Yes!” she reassured me. “You’re having a baby!” She leaned over and gave me a long hug, her eyes also misting with tears.
I was flooded with all the little things I’d noticed in the past few weeks. Yes, my breasts had been especially tender. Yes, I had noticed that I was peeing more frequently. Yes, my period was late, but I’d taken a pregnancy test at home and it had been negative. I’d spent so many days wondering and worrying, and now –
And then suddenly, I was filled with panic. “I drank wine yesterday! At brunch! Like, a lot of wine!” In fact, I’d spent the previous day at a 4-hour-long brunch with my girlfriends, crying over glasses of wine and lamenting the fact that I wasn’t pregnant yet.
“That’s ok,” the midwife reassured me. “From now on, just don’t drink anymore.”
“And Vegas! Oh no, I’m supposed to go to Las Vegas this weekend with my friends! In like 4 days! Wine and Vegas? I’m a terrible mother already.”
“Please, go to Vegas,” she laughed. “It will be great. Plus, this might be the one of the last girls-only trips you’ll choose to take for a little while now that you’re having a baby. Go and enjoy it!”
Her comment took my breath away. You’re having a baby. My baby. Our baby. GASP!
The midwife answered the thousands of questions I rattled off at her, performed the exam, and then sent me to the lab for blood work to check my hormone levels.
“Call me when you get home from Vegas,” she told me. “Then, we can schedule an ultrasound to determine how far along you are, and you can tell me all about your fun trip!”
I promised her I would. When the blood work was done, I checked out at the front desk, my head still in the clouds, and headed home to figure out just how I was going to break the good news to Bryan.