I have a tendency to be direct and brash according to those close to me, and my mama writing may often come across as a scary mom who should not be a mom if she hates it so much, but it is part of my way of coping, and I was a bartender for 14 years so a blunt potty mouth runs through my veins. Here is how becoming a mom happened for me in the form of a timeline.
Age 24: Broke up with my long time boyfriend because I wanted to be single, he wanted to settle down and have kids. Yikes! NO! We did not practice safe sex in 5 years. I was never pregnant (at least to my knowledge) and didn’t mind the idea of never having kids at all.
Age 25: I didn’t want a relationship … let alone a kid. I had told my mother for years that I did not want kids; I wanted dogs. I lived with a roommate in a two bedroom apartment in downtown Minneapolis. I was a bartender. I was super social, had tons of friends and the world at my fingertips.
Age 27: After months/years of very unusual periods and many inconclusive doctor visits I was finally diagnosed with fibroids after switching to an OB/GYN from my life long family practice physician (the doctor that delivered me). They were the size of softballs. No wonder my periods were so unusual … I’d like to say thanks a lot to my regular doctor for making me feel like I was being a whiney baby and periods were super weird for all women. They were removed successfully through a minimally invasive surgery. Without even asking, my new wonderful doctor said this surgery usually does not result in any complications with pregnancy, “However, there may be some scar tissue that could make becoming pregnant a small challenge, but when you are ready for babies we will climb that mountain. There is no reason or need to worry about that at this point.” Now, all of the sudden, seemingly out of nowhere, child bearing mattered to me. Everything in my women’s biology class came shooting back into my consciousness, increased rates of disability, increased likelihood of multiples, and increased loss of calcium as the parasite leaches nutrients from your bones for itself.
Age 28: One year follow-up appointment: indeed there was some scar tissue, she still wasn’t worried. However, I was. I had met and was currently living with the man I wanted to spend the rest of my life with and I wasn’t getting any younger. I knew all the potential complications of conceiving after age 35, which is when we might financially “be ready.” As a graduate from a liberal catholic all women’s university (yes, such a thing exists) I learned the biology of women better than many ever will. Will he love me as much if I can’t have babies? Now … how did this well-educated, confident chick start to worry about if some dude would love her for something so selfish … yes, he should love me for me, not my uterus. We never even really talked about kids. Yes, my mind agreed it was ridiculous, but my emotions did not. What if it was really hard to get pregnant when we were ready at age 35, or worse, what if we couldn’t at all when we decided we wanted kids? What if we wanted more than one? Why am I so concerned about this? What, Why, Where, When, How?
Age 29: I was over the whole baby obsession, having a great time with my boyfriend. I came home one day after a day out and about, don’t really remember what I was doing, but clearly got some sun. Boyfriend pulls me in for a kiss and says, “Hunny come here, you look great today, you are glowing.” I stopped in my tracks, pulled away and sternly told him (he has a tendency to say the wrong thing and I am usually casual and calm in correcting him). “You DO NOT say that to a woman, ever, unless you are positive she is pregnant! Do I look pregnant to you!? You better say no.” We laughed about it and carried on with our day.
A few days later, boyfriend was making me breakfast, I was watching because I didn’t (still don’t) trust his cooking skills. He cracked open a double egg and freaked out, refusing to cook it. I laughed saying he was ridiculous, “What is the difference between one or two unfertilized yolks, big deal?” (Actual double yolk from this moment in time pictured above.)
July 2012. I am still 29, and will be for the next 600 words or so.
My periods have been very regular since my surgery, I never kept track of the day or anything because they had been so unpredictable for so long I just never got into that habit, but could recognize the signs, sensitive breast tissue, bloating, crying during commercials, you know the regular signs. We were not trying to get pregnant, but we weren’t preventing either. I honestly didn’t think I could have kids. It popped into my mind from time to time, but I just figured if it was going to happen it would have happened by now. I had been experiencing these signs of my period for over a week, but no period. I am no dummy, but seriously being pregnant just didn’t cross my mind. Finally after two weeks of the same feelings I took a pregnancy test. It was old, years and years, and I just took it to clear my conscience so I could go out of town for my boyfriends birthday and have some drinks with friends and not feel guilty, just in case. I pee on a stick. I throw it in the sink and carry on with my evening. I go in to brush my teeth and remember I took a pregnancy test when I see it in the sink. I roll my eyes at myself. Look down to see ( | ) not ( + ) or ( – ). WTF? I brush it off as old and faulty, but of course now I can’t sleep. So off to Walgreens I go to get a new one, after slamming a huge water to be sure I could pee more, I got the cheap generic 2 pack. Both had the same reading ( | ), which I brushed off as having diluted urine. Ok, digital expensive pregnancy test, apparently I need to read words as this whole line thing is not working out for me and I waited until I genuinely had to pee without shoveling gallons of water down my throat so I wouldn’t doubt the reading on these expensive ones because my urine was still too diluted.
Next day, still 29.
It’s well past midnight now, the expensive test was taken and sure as shit it read “pregnant.” So what did I do? What any sane woman would do.
Started cooking. I knew I got weird if I was hungry, so I wanted to be sure the boyfriend had a full belly when I sat him down to tell him the news (he worked second shift, home around 2:30 am). What I cooked … I don’t remember … a lot of that chunk of my life I call a “grey-out,” not a full on black-out like from drinking too much, but I certainly could not clearly remember a lot of it. Mind reeling about EVERYTHING you could imagine, from how am I going to finish school, where are we going to live, are we really in love, could we ever raise kids together, could he really be dad, could I really be a mom?
I sat him down after dinner and said “I have some news,” and handed him the pregnancy test (which the words had faded off of by that time, so it really effed up my delivery). He said, “Well, we knew this could happen. I am happy.”
And that was that. Now our twins (note the appearance of double eggs earlier, save that for a later post) are 2.5 years old, we are engaged (indefinitely, another rant) and I still ask all of those questions I sat up for hours pondering when that one “P” word changed my life. I love my life (90% of the time) and wouldn’t change where I am for the world, and sure, I may sound bitter sometimes — who doesn’t, I am a real person.