Friday, January 15, 2010

On the Occasion of Everyone I Know Being Knocked Up

Holy shit. Everyone I know is pregnant.

This all started in October, when Katy and Matt showed up in Maine.

"So," Katy said, "if we drive by a drug store, we should probably stop in."

"What do you need?" I asked. I am a girl with plenty of sundries, and if she needed anything--deodorant, lotion, tampons, laxatives--I would be able to accommodate those needs without having to pop over to a CVS.

But Katy just grinned. "Well," she said, "I took a pregnancy test last night, and it was positive, so I think I should take another one to get a second opinion."

And then I squealed. I squealed a lot. And then, after we ate a lobster lunch on the rocks of Cape Elizabeth, we drove straight to the drugstore and wandered up the family planning aisle.

Katy couldn't help herself. She stared at the prices--pregnancy tests aren't cheap--and then she reached for the cheapest one on the shelf.

"NO!" Matt and I said, in unison.

Her hand froze in midair. "What?" she said. "Seriously, what's wrong with a cheap pregnancy test?"

"You get what you pay for," I said. I was remembering last October, when I visited Minnesota and Diana threw a party after the Good Thunder reading, and we made Babies-in-the-Cupcakes, and whoever found a baby in his or her cupcake got a present from the grab bag. We'd combed the aisles of the local dollar store for an hour, just looking for good gifts to hand out later. We'd selected some boas, some statues, some tubes of dollar store lube, and, of course, a pregnancy test. One of the boys was lucky enough to choose the pregnancy test, and he strode upstairs with a beer in one hand and the test in another. He did his business while we all gathered outside to talk him through the process, and then he came out of the bathroom beaming. It was good news: He was with child.

So, a year later, standing in the family planning aisle of the Cape Elizabeth CVS with Katy, I felt compelled to remind her of that. "Will we really feel confident about the result from a cheap test?" I asked.

Katy frowned.

"Don't be cheap," Matt said.

Katy frowned even more, but she edged her hand higher, toward the more expensive brands. "Can I at least get this brand?" she asked, poking to a store brand box. "It's a two-pack! It's a deal!"

Matt and I sighed. She plucked the box from the shelf and went off to pay.

A few hours later, there were a tense few moments in my bathroom before Katy came out waving a stick in the air. "Look!" she said. Oh, and we sure did:

And then we celebrated:

Yes, I put the stick Katy peed on very close to my face. In my defense, the gross end was capped.

Matt and I were excited by the results. I think it will please Katy that I've put a very rare picture of me in sweat pants out here for the world to see.

I can't remember what Katy is drinking here. It might be Loganberry. I might've been so pleased that I mixed her a big glass of Loganberry because, well, she earned it.

Not long after Katy and Matt left Maine for Mankato, I got more news. This time I was in my car, and I was driving the two hours down to Boston to pick Josh up from the airport after he ditched France. I had just crossed over into New Hampshire when Rachel, another of my best grad school girls, was having a baby, too. The kicker? She was due only three weeks before Katy. The two of them were going to be having babies at pretty much the exact same time.

At first I felt a stab of jealousy because my brain went fast-forwarding through the next few months, and I could see them pushing their stomachs together and posing for pictures, shopping for cute maternity clothes, comparing aches and pains, secretly swapping name ideas. And then, as quickly as it came, the jealousy disappeared and was replaced by another feeling, and that feeling has been simmering for a while now.

It's hard being away from my old friends. They're spread out from Buffalo to California. They're everywhere in between. They're nowhere near me. And it seems so odd that I was there for their weddings, for their first big steps into adulthood, but now I won't be there for the next. It seems completely bizarre to me that they will be pregnant all that time, and I will not see them. I'll never get to put my hand on their swollen stomachs and wait patiently to feel a kick. The night I first realized that, I was overwhelmed with sadness. I wanted to pack a bag and fly to Minnesota right then, right that second, but I couldn't, and I didn't, and instead I am trying to find comfort in the fact that, yes, this summer I'm driving out, and I'm going to spend time with the new babies in the Midwest, and, yes, Katy is forcing me to change my very first diaper then, and, yes, I will do my part in spoiling the new babies, and that's all great and wonderful and lovely, but it still seems just so quick, like those girls are going to snap their fingers and then, before you know it, before you can even orient yourself, everything is different, and I wasn't even there to see the change.


KNC said...

You may be in sweat pants, but you still look way better than I do. But to be fair, this was at the end of a day of plane rides, bus rides, and lobstah rolls. Also, I was drinking that really yummy ginger ale you had. But I did have some loganberry the other day at IKEA. Oh yeah, and when we went to MOA, we parked in Maine. Yup.

Kristin said...

What a frigging cute story! Mine - not so exciting. But you can borrow my baby anytime Jess:) Especially now, as I hear him upstairs screaming as his dad changes his diaper. He hates having his diaper changed:)

Kristin said...

And for the record, when you posted this, I wasn't pregnant anymore:) So there. :)

Jess said...

Just barely, Mama Schai-Schai! Just barely! And he's so cute!

And, KC: I heart Loganberry!

Diana said...

I'm not pregnant! You and I can be not-pregnant together.

Jess said...

And we'll get really drunk and dance around and do all kinds of inappropriate things!