Feb 20, 1999.
I bought my first pregnancy test. I was late by what I thought was four days. Later I would realize that it was ACTUALLY more along the line of three weeks. I had been engaged to Chris for a little over a year and we were in the process, albeit a slow one, of planning a wedding. I told Chris that I thought I might be pregnant and we went to Walgreen’s and bought a pregnancy test. We went back to his house and I took the test. Immediately I lay the test on the counter and covered it with a towel. There were so many thoughts running through my head and I wasn’t prepared to watch the little lines pop up fast, as I was for sure they were going to do. I hopped in the tub and took a nice hot shower. The water beat down on my back like little needles and I was so aware of the things that I had been doing. The impact that I could have on this little person inside of me. My mind was racing. What would my parents think? My grandmother? Chris? We hadn’t even talked about children and didn’t even know where we stood on the situation as a whole. I took my time in the shower and only exited when I felt the cold water pouring from the spout. I dried slowly, not wanting to look at the test, not wanting to see responsibility slap me in the face.
But I did. I looked, and it was positive.
You know the feeling you get just before you are going to throw up? That little tickle in the back of your throat that causes your mouth to water and you are positive that you will never swallow again? That is the feeling that came over me when I saw those two pink lines appear on the little white stick that I held in my hand. My hand shaking, I placed it back on the counter ever so slowly as if it were going to detonate in T-minus 5 and hurried into the bedroom to finish getting dressed. There Chris sat, awaiting my return. I could see the fear in his eyes as he looked at me, his thoughts pushing the answer out of my mouth as I heard myself say, “It’s positive.”
I got dressed slowly and silently. Chris headed outside for a smoke, and to clear his head. I would have headed outside behind him for my smoke, but being fully aware of the causes of cigarettes on unborn children, I decided it was cold turkey for me. After I was dressed I headed outside with Chris. We sat in silence for a while until I said,”I’ll do what ever we need to do.” He looked at me with a puzzled look on his face. “What do you mean by that?” He said. He continued,” Don’t get me wrong, as unplanned as this may be this is something that we have to go through, we are going to have a baby. Albeit a little earlier than we would like but none the less we are having a baby.” I knew I was marrying this man for a reason. So then and there, as we sat on the back porch of his mothers house, we found out we were having a baby.
We hugged and said no matter what we were going to go through it together. People might not be happy at first, but in time they would come around. Everyone loves a baby.
Chris’ mother has always been the emotional type. She cries at everything. Now I’m not saying it’s a bad thing… but it was highly expected that she would be excited, if no one else was. And as we sat on the sofa in her living room, somehow, she already knew and begin to weep. Then she laughed, and clapped her hands and squealed in delight at the fact that she was going to be a grandmother. Thank God one of them was happy.
The next person I told was my Mom. She was upset. Now not too bad, but I’m sure it was at the fact that we had told Chris’s Mom first more than the fact that I was “knocked up” as she so eloquently put it. She helped me set up my first O.B. appointment and went with me the first time. It was in March. The Dr told me that I was twelve weeks along. And was to have my baby on the second of October.
Next I told my grandma. She is NEVER a lady that I fancy disappointing, nor do I like to see upset. So when I told her that I was going to have a baby I cringed and teared up as her brow furrowed and she looked at me and told me,”Right now, I’m not too terribly happy with this news Liz.” but like I said EVERYONE loves a baby and she eventually she came around.
And finally I told my Daddy. This was only after I had had my first sonogram and heard the heart beat for the first time. Chris sat on the back porch waiting with his running shoes on, contemplating what Daddy might do. Like most Daddy’s I’m sure he was thinking of going and retrieving his shotgun from under the bed, but he didn’t. I stood in front of him, blocking the TV so I had his FULL attention and told him I was having a baby. He looked at me and began to cry. Great. Now I’m just a big fat disappointment to the only man that I had never wanted to disappoint. He stood up and gave me a big hug. It seemed like we stood in that spot for an eternity until he let me go. The next thing from his mouth was,” Well when are ya’ll getting married?” “July 10th.” I said quickly knowing the date by heart now since we had been planning it for some time now. So it was set, a baby, a marriage and responsibility all in the span of six months.
And no…Daddy didn’t try to kill Chris.
This all brings me to Oct 2, 1999. I was miserable. It was my due date and I was so antsy I couldn’t stand being pregnant any longer. Chris and I went for a walk at a local park, went to the grocery store where I was like a freak show at the circus as I waddled my fat ass around the store looking for something to appease my ravenous appetite. I settled on some stuffed jalapenos and we headed to the checkout. The cashier asked my due date and I told her with a crazy twitch in my eye,”Today!” Her eyes got big and she rang up my prized snack and scooted me out the door with a good luck and a pat on the back for Chris.
At my next appt. the Dr asked me if I wanted to be induced. YES!!! I exclaimed before he could even give me a date. So it was set. Oct 6 I would come in and begin the induction process. We packed our bags, (Chris and I) and headed to the hospital with my Dad at the wheel. My dad didn’t think that my little red sports car was safe enough to get me to the hospital even with Chris behind the wheel so he took us both. I arrived at the hospital at 11:00 pm and got all checked in. The nurse worked me up REAL good (and I won’t go into too much detail there but it would get the bravest to blush and hide their faces that’s for sure) and we settled in for a long night.
The next morning at around 8:00am the Dr came in and asked if I was ready to have a baby. No, I’ve just been laying in this bed having mild contractions since 4:30am, I can hold out for longer. Please, take your time ASS. So he broke my water and it was final. There was a baby on the way.
My grandma was there at around 9:30am. I was so glad to see her. She fed me ice chips and I said to Chris in front of her,”These contraction are a bitch.” I don’t cuss in front of my grandma, mind you, so I was scared she had heard me and obsessed over it for the next hour. It did take my mind off the pain. The anesthesiologist came in the room soon after and gave me my happy medicine and I was a new woman. I could do anything, even have a baby.
Around noon my nurse checked my progress and I was about seven centimeters. The nurse informed Chris that we had at least four hours left and he could go for a smoke break and inform our family in the waiting room of my progress. So he did. When he returned 30 minutes later I had progressed faster than she had expected and we were ready to push. The first push I gave I pushed harder than I had ever pushed in my entire life. Nothing. What the hell. The nurse was pleased but I was thinking how long is it going to take? An hour later the Dr came into the room and readied himself to catch a baby. He positioned himself between my legs and urged me to push, I did. By now my epidural had worn off and I was feeling the effects of the pushing and thought I might split into at any moment. But I didn’t.
At 1:43pm, my sweet baby boy was pushed into the world. I was exhausted. I turned and looked at Chris and said,”We did it, we had a baby.” He cried. But I didn’t. I’m not sure if it was the shock of the whole process but I didn’t cry until I sat in my postpartum room alone with my baby did I weep. He was perfect. 8lbs. 15oz. and 22 inches long. We named him Christopher Peyton. Christopher after his Daddy of course, and Peyton had always been a favorite name of mine. It was also my great-granddad’s name(on my Mom’s side).
Here in my arms sat my life. My kick in the butt,”get your life in order!” My reason to grow and change. He looked like his daddy. He was comforted by my voice and I was amazed that he already knew who I was. That he already loved me. I sat in that room and created a bond with my baby. I promised to love him and protect him. I promised to be the mother mine never was and to teach him to be a loving caring compassionate child.
And Wednesday Oct 7, 2009 my sweet baby boy will be ten years old. He is tender-hearted, smart as a whip, and a spitting image of his father. I don’t want to watch my baby grow up. I sure as hell don’t want him to be bringing girls home. He is still my baby dammit!
So I am wishing my boy a hap-happy birthday!
Continue being tender hearted.
Keep having Fun and Always care.
Be the leader you are but never be far from my arms.
Continue to learn and grow everyday.
Your outgoing personality will get you far.
You are one of a kind.
You will always be the direction we needed when our compass was broken.
I will truly learn as much from you as I hope you will from me.
Never lose the innocence in your heart.
and your tender heart will take you far.
Feb 20, 1999.