My menstrual cycle was one day late.
Ten years ago, this statement would have filled me with dread. It would have been spoken, not written, and hushed tones to a close confidant. The nineteen-year-old version of myself would have gone to bed with nightmares of stretch marks, fussy babies, and dirty diapers.
Fast forward ten years.
The twenty-nine year old version of myself was THRILLED. (I was so thrilled, in fact, that I am willing to break my cardinal rule as an English teacher and write the word using capital letters.) I am dreaming of a cute, watermelon-sized baby bump and that pregnancy glow and a cooing child with my husband’s large, blue eyes. (Ten years has not changed my opinion on dirty diapers.)
After nine years of marriage, my husband and I have decided to have a child together.
Like most aspects of my life, I have approached this issue with military-like precision. I have saved forty-two days of sick leave so I have have a paid maternity leave, I stopped taking my birth control a year and a half ago, I have dutifully choked, literally, down the horse-sized prenatal vitamins each day, I have charted my cycle and added it to my daily calendar complete with a little sex alarm reminder, and I have revised my eating habits. Did you know that pineapple cores help implementation? I do.
fter a sex-filled month, I have awaited the due date of my menstrual cycle like a child awaits Christmas morning. While children spend the days leading up to Christmas staring at, shaking, and analyzing their christmas gifts, I have been scrutinizing my bloated stomach and sore breast with anticipation. I can almost visualize my poppy seed sized fetus ballooning inside me. I find my box of pregnancy tests, pre-ordered on Amazon Prime in the weeks leading up to this moment, and I leave them on my bathroom counter directly next to the toilet. I wake up an hour earlier than usual eager with anticipation and urine, due to the canteen of water I downed before bed, and I urinate into the plastic cup provided with my kit.
Then I notice it. Blood.
The elation I would have felt ten years ago, and the happy dance that would have ensued, can only be matched by the disappointment I feel in this moment.
I know it's only our first year of trying in earnest, but god damn it, I just want to be pregnant already. It’s my sister’s birthday, and I am going to go out and drown my sorrows with a glass (or two) of wine. I need to take advantage of this small window where I can have a guilt free drink.