I didn’t mean to get pregnant. Or, I could also say, “we” didn’t mean to get me pregnant.
It’s funny how many times your mind can repeat the phrase, “How did this happen?“, when you 100% already know the answer to that question as a full-grown adult woman who understands the basic concept of reproduction.
But, it happened. And now, in what seems to be the blink of an eye, I’m 6 months pregnant. Time flies when you’re growing life and it’s been a ride watching how my feelings about the pregnancy have changed.
In the beginning, there was fear. Maybe some panic sprinkled in.
I already knew that I was running a bit late that month, so when we came home from a nice night out (where I hadn’t had much to drink) and found myself throwing up for hours and sleeping on the bathroom floor…I started to get a little nervous.
And by “nervous” I mean, intensely anxious.
The next morning, when my fiancé (still boyfriend at the time) jokingly said, “Maybe you’re pregnant”, after finding out how I’d spent the night…that anxiety spilled over like Niagara Falls.
Instant, pouring tears. The stress showing itself after I’d been trying to stuff it down into the vaults for the last week or so.
His reaction: nothing but comfort, caring, and reassurance. He didn’t even waver.
Fast forward to taking the pregnancy test and going into the bathroom together to look at the results:
Me: Crying into his chest.
Him: “OK”, said with complete calm while holding me in my weepy panic.
And he really meant that “OK”. This wasn’t a bad moment. In fact, it was a good one and he fully accepted it (and was even happy about it) the moment we knew. I appreciate him every day for how he handled these moments because he was an absolute rock. It took me a little bit more time to get there.
So many things were going through my mind: I’d always pictured that I’d be married for a few years before having a kid. That is, if I ended up having a kid at all. I’ve said many times before that I could be happy not having kids or could be happy having kids, as long as I met the right person. Was this the right time? What is the right time? When I’ve planned it? How do you even hold a baby? Did I mention that I’ve spent literally almost no time with babies or children?
Other thoughts I had, followed by my logical brain’s response:
“But…I’m so young.” – You’re 33 years old. Insert eye roll here.
“What if I don’t know how to do this?” – Well, you definitely don’t. But, you’ll probably learn like all other, conscientious new parents.
“How is my body gonna do this?” – Just like women’s bodies have been doing it for more years than you can process.
“But..how did this happen??” – You know exactly how.
Once we knew, I was so nervous about telling anyone right away because I wanted the space to wrap my mind around the idea first. He wanted to tell the world immediately. The man was loud and proud.
If I could pick one word to describe how I first felt when I found out, it would be “vulnerable”. Thinking about my health and the baby’s health, the discomfort of the 1st trimester, the worry about actually giving birth, thinking about the new responsibilities, thinking about money and the fact that this was when the coronavirus was starting to show up more and more in the news everyday. It all felt like a lot.
So, I had to slow down and process it without the filter of fear. Once I did that, the most important details were able to come to the forefront:
- This is the right man. That’s not something I doubted for a second. I had kept saying to myself, “It’s the perfect man, but the timing isn’t right. It’s not what I expected.” Well, look what you’re expecting now. Sometimes the parts of our thoughts before the “but” are the ones that deserve most of our attention.
- You’re actually getting everything you asked for. Ever realize that sometimes you’re getting exactly what you wanted but, when it doesn’t show up in the time or way that you thought, you instinctively fight it? It’s a weird thing we humans do. I have the man I’ve been asking for (better than I was asking for, actually) and I’ve always enjoyed the idea of starting a family…somehow without fully realizing it? A lot of the things I’ve been looking for and prioritize in life line right up with having a family. Go figure.
This was one of those crossroad moments in life that really matter. The kind that you need to process during a 30 minute sit-down shower. You know that shower. You’ve been there.
The two paths were clear from the bottom of that tub: Either view this as the genuinely good thing that it is and trust the process or let fear of the unknown hold you back from enjoying all this good in your life.
Suddenly, the choice feels obvious. The fear begins to slip away and allows room for excitement.
In fact, many big moments in our lives can be boiled down to those two paths.
I’ve made it a point to not let fear hold me back in the last couple years of my life and, while sometimes confusing and not without its moments of uncertainty, that decision has yet to let me down.
I guess my overall point is that finding out you’re pregnant is not necessarily all one feeling and the circumstances matter.
For some women, it’s pure celebration from the first moments because they’ve been actively trying or having a child is what they’ve always wanted. For some women, it might be devastating if the situation is awful, it’s the wrong person, or if a woman had absolutely no interest in having a child. For some women, it might not be as big of a deal one way or the other. It’s just natural.
And for some women, like myself, these feelings will evolve as it all soaks in and you chalk it up to being one of life’s little surprises.
In my case, the surprise means that I get to start a new family with the man that I love.
And, for that, I am excited and beyond grateful.