We haven’t been trying to get pregnant for very long.
Even saying that sentence: I’m trying to get pregnant, sends me into a field of emotions. I’ve waited for this moment.
Yesterday morning, around 10 o’clock, I texted my husband to say that I was spotting. Women – we know our cycles. It’s why I knew I’d have my period for the first week of our tropical honeymoon. Our bodies sometimes operate like clockwork. I’m not due for my period for at least a few more days, and the fact that I was spotting caught the both of us off guard.
He texted me saying that we’d had sex a few weeks earlier around the time when I’d possibly be showing symptoms of an early pregnancy. Joined with frequent urination and the strong surge of french vanilla coffee making me sick, he texted me and said, “Babe, I think you’re pregnant.”
For the rest of the day, the two of us texted back and forth with loving conversation mixed with a few holy shit moments. Loving, thinking about the possibility that there could have been a baby inside me, growing, a human being we’d love from the minute the stick turned up two, life-changing lines. Holy shit, because we thought about the possibility that there could have been a baby inside me, growing, a human being we’d love from the minute the stick turned up two, life-changing lines.
When I called him on the drive home, he held this vigor in his voice. He said to me, “I couldn’t concentrate at all today. All I kept thinking was how I could go home and find out I’m gonna’ be a dad.”
I stopped off at CVS and bought a box of pregnancy tests. If the test did come up negative, I figured we’d get use out of the other sticks eventually. I walked out with my box o’sticks and a 20 oz. bottle of water that I chugged from the parking lot to my parking spot. After two more glasses of water and only about seven minutes until we had to leave for my chiropractic appointment, I walked into the bathroom, took the test and placed it on the bathroom mat. We set the timer for three minutes as I shoved my feet into my winter boots.
“Can you read the test to me?”
I had this image of John walking out of the bathroom, stick in hand, his smile leaping off his cheeks as he shouted, “You’re pregnant!” We’d hug, shed some happy tears and just feel over the moon at the news. We’d walk around, doing aimless chores, folding laundry and making dinner, knowing that there’s a baby inside me. He’d lean me down toward the couch and hold me and then run his fingers against my flattened tummy, rubbing it like I was a tiny Buddha, telling me he loves me, and he loves our baby. Somehow, we’d end up buying a pregnancy announcement shirt or nursery decorations or a onesie for the baby, before we even heard its heartbeat on a monitor.
He walked out of the bathroom, stick in hand, pursed his lips and shook his head.
I said, “okay.”
He said, “I’m going to wash my hands.”
We went to the chiropractor and as I laid down on my stomach, feeling my doctor’s hands crack the back of my spine, I felt silly for thinking that I’d be pregnant.
It’s been a month.
We got home and John went into the kitchen to start dinner as I sat in the bedroom starting my homework.
“Do you want to talk about it?” I asked, leaning up against the mountain of laundry in the kitchen where our washing machine was running.
He turned to look at me, his face flushed, his eyes watery, “I just really thought you were pregnant. All the signs were pointing to yes.”
He hugged me, asked me how I was doing before we made love for the second time, him feeling more determined than ever to make this work.
This morning, we both felt a little melancholy and me, a little foolish. How can I be upset over one negative test result when there are women every single day who are told they can never have children? How is it fair of me to pity myself and our lack of conception when couples are being told they are infertile?
And then I realized what was making me so upset. It was John. It was his face. It was the crack in his voice as he told me that the test was negative. It was the image rushing from our thoughts of how we anticipated our night going. It was the look of heartbreak.
And it was a look I’d never seen on him.
This journey to become parents has enlightened me. Yes, we’re getting healthier by the day: eating more veggies, trying to exercise and stay hydrated. Our stress level has decreased exponentially. As we talked on the phone during our lunch break, I said, “We’re no longer doing this casually, are we?” Without hesitation, he said “no.”
We tried to do this casually, saying we were just going to let nature take its course and it’ll happen when it happens. While that’s still true, our realization that we want a child inspired us to become more proactive in what we can do to get there.
As I said, I’d never seen that look on his face before. It’s a look I don’t think I’ll ever be able to forget. It’ll forever stay with me, just like the crack in his voice when I heard him say, “I thought I was going to be a dad.”