One year ago I stood in the bathroom, a little bleary-eyed, and waited.
Something was going on…
But I had been here my fair share of times before.
Denial. There’s no way I’m pregnant. Impossible. I’m not taking a test!
Questioning. Right? There’s no way…………. right?
Bargaining. WHAT DO YOU WANT FROM ME? I WILL GIVE YOU MY LEFT EYE IF YOU JUST TELL ME!
Acceptance. Fine. You win. I’ll take the stupid test.
Just as I had many times before, I had finally arrived at the nirvana of acceptance.
But not before a small meltdown at Home Depot. The kind where I spotted a pregnant lady, pointed at her, whined “looooooooook a baaaaaaaaaaaaaby,” and proceeded to sob like an emotionally disturbed child. I was then steered by my sheepish husband into the sink aisle and told to “calm down” and “take a pregnancy test.”
But I had been taking them. For the past 5 days. Every day. According to my calculations, I was a solid 9 days late. Therefore, I was either pregnant or dying. This was uncharted territory. Different from the other eight million times I tested as a consequence of being 1 day late. I had never made it this far before….
We went to dinner. I ordered two entrees. The waitress brought three entrees to the table and attempted to place my mac n’ cheese in the middle “to share”. No. No. That would also be mine.
Hindsight…. ya. I probably should have known then.
We always wanted to be young parents. We also had quite the generation gap to fill. When we got married, we thought maybe 28 was a good age. By August we thought, well, maybe 26. My Pinterest-inspired baby fever was rubbing off on Alex. We saw families everywhere. Young parents. Our neighbors were all starting families. Alex saw dads trailing little tribes of children. I cried at diaper commercials. By January we decided we would try one time on our one-year anniversary – to tempt fate? To see if it was meant to be? Because we were ready? We didn’t get to answer those questions….
On Valentine’s Day 2016, I woke up quite determined. I told myself this is it. You will test this morning and then no more. This is the last one. If this one is negative, you are not pregnant, you will wait it out. I pulled the test out. COME AT ME FATE! And waited.
I had a small lamp on in the bathroom. When the allotted 2 minute waiting period was over I glanced at the test. Eh. Negative. Figures. Alrighty then.
Hold on now.
I flicked on the bright lights.
Excuse me? Is that the stupidest, faintest line you ever saw?
I had almost thrown the thing out! This isn’t real.
I tear apart another test.
I wait, convinced I’m seeing things.
I squint. Two lines.
One does not simply get false positives. Wow.
It doesn’t really sink in. Not completely. My mind feels like it’s playing catch-up. I have to remind myself to have thoughts. The first things I come up with are “that explains a lot” and “I’ve never been pregnant before” – I need to work on that for next time.
Then the excitement comes. I knew it!! And somehow, I did. I just knew something was going to be different this time. I blow down the bathroom door, fly into our bedroom, and flip on Alex’s lamp. He’s still partially asleep. “THERE’S A LINE! THERE’S A LINE!” He’s smiling like he already knows.
We both look at those two tests. Four lines. Someone’s in there.
It’s the best Valentine’s Day we could have imagined. We celebrate our newfound knowledge of the little person growing away inside me. We buy a baby book. We cook dinner. We light candles and watch the snow fall. We play in our snow-covered street, taking pictures. We think about our little person’s life. We envision what our life as a family will be like. We think about what Valentine’s day will feel like next year. We hold onto this feeling of pure wonderment and snap our first “bump” picture.
One year later, I’m sitting here next to the little person who stole my abs and gave us the best Valentine’s present in the whole world. He’s chewing on his blanket, talking to himself, watching me type. Today, we celebrate our son’s life. We celebrate the one-year anniversary of the day he told us, “mom and dad, you don’t have to wait anymore. I’m already here.” He was then, and will forever be, our sweetest Valentine.