“Have you started your…”
Mark won’t acknowledge my period with words. He just squinches his face all funny.
“No, and I was actually making a point not to think about it, ‘kay?”
I really hadn’t thought about it very much. I have never ever had an irregular cycle. Ever. I was so regular that I never even bothered with marking dates on calendars and such. It was always 10 days after an ugly cry and 2 days after homicidal cravings for cheese sticks. I trusted that it was just a matter of time.
And then the weekend passed. Nothing.
I refused to think about it too much. Thinking would cause stress, stress would cause even more lateness, and more lateness would cause… well, more lateness would make me cry. “Woosah,” I whispered to myself every time my mind raced with thoughts of unplanned parenthood.
On Tuesday I was panicked. March 31st and nothing. I had less than 24 hours before I went an entire month without a period. I gave up on “Woosah” and started having internal cussing fits every 15 minutes. And then I would silently reprimand myself for cussing while with child. What kind of mother are you, I’d ask myself. And then I’d start cussing again at the word mother.
My entire world became colored with pregnancy symptoms. The flowers in our lobby that I can never smell? I kept getting huge whiffs all through the day. Was that my super powered pregnancy nose? The past weekend spent turning our dining room into my own little office/workspace, is that me nesting? Already?
After starting a small fire in the break room because I had tossed a foil wrapped chicken wrap in the microwave (pregnancy absentmindedness, perhaps?) I cried to my co-worker, Tina, “I think I’m pregnant!”
“Umm, I’m sorry, what?!?”
I recounted everything I’d been fretting over. She suggested I run to the store and get a test. I thought it was a good idea. So I went. And sat in the parking lot for my entire lunch hour refusing to get out because “Wait, I think… I think… yes, I think I’m starting…that feeling has to be my period.”
See, I’ve never had a pregnancy scare before. Not a real one, anyways. I mean, I would tell The Guy I Used To Date every once in a while that I thought I might be late, but it was mostly to scare him. And make him say things like “I love you,” and “Of course, I won’t leave you if you’re having my child“. My level of maturity was untouchable.
Buying a pregnancy test would make this thought real for the very first time in my entire life. The thought of being pregnant. A pregnancy test would be like admitting defeat in a battle I didn’t even know I was fighting. Admitting that I might possibly be pregnant. I was overwhelmed with emotions at just the thought of the possibility. Angry at myself for going between awkwardly cussing myself out and smiling uncontrollably. Confused because part of me wants my period to start, and a tiny, little voice kind of hopes it doesn’t. Scared because if I’m not, do all these different emotions mean I want to be?
I decide to get out of the car and buy a test. As soon as I open the car door rain begins to pour down. Like God was crying. Crying because He gave the wrong person a baby. “Sorry, Dude,” I silently prayed as I walked in to CVS.
I waited until I got home to take it because I had dreams of what my first pregnancy test would be like, and crying alone in the office bathroom was not one of them. So at about 5 o’clock on Tuesday Mark and I found out that…
I’m not pregnant.
Thank, God. I think. I’m still confused about how I feel. Mark seemed relieved, but his goofy smile when talking about him getting up in the middle of the night to feed the imaginary baby let me know that he is as much on the fence as I am.
And after all of this, for the very first time in my entire life, I’m answering the word ‘baby’ with a solidly undecided ‘maybe?’.
An aside: After we found out we weren’t pregnant, I begged Mark to go with me to my parents’ house and trick my mom into thinking we were pregnant. And video tape it. Because there would not be a better video on the face of the planet than my mom’s initial doubt turning into screaming joy turning into a cussing and hitting fit when I told her she’d been Punk’d. I insisted it would be art. Mark said it was cruel and vetoed the project. So, you can thank Mark for depriving you of the now non-existant masterpiece.