When I was knocked up with Viv, Dave and I became obsessed with the television program “I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant.” Have you seen this show? It’s AMAZING. In every episode, a woman recounts how she somehow made it through 9 months of gestation without ever realizing there was another person growing in her belly.
The stories are told through dramatic reenactments, performed by slightly more attractive doppelganger actors. I can only imagine the casting auditions: “You look the part, but can you moan like you’re in labor? Now show me your “Say what?” face!”
Each episode is named for the location where the unsuspecting mother delivered her bombshell baby, such as “Baby on a Boat,” “Baby in the Bath Water” and “Baby at a Rest Stop.” My all-time favorite episode is “Baby in a Shoe,” in which our heroine learns she is a mother when a newborn shoots out of her vagina, slides down her pant leg and lands on…you guessed it…her shoe. She probably had to throw that pair away.
I’m fascinated by the deep wells of denial these women tap into to ignore morning sickness, fatigue, weight gain, and, you know, sharp kicks to the groin that come from the inside. Usually they blame fast food, too many night shifts at The Piggly Wiggly, or the possibility of a massive tumor, because that’s what happens when you have unprotected sex.
I challenge you to tune into a marathon and not spend all day in front of the television, smacking your forehead and muttering, “Ohnoyoudidn’t.”
But the real reason I got hooked on the show when I was pregnant is this: at the end of each episode, there’s always a bit where the mom confesses that since she didn’t know she was pregnant, she may have made a few mistakes.
For instance, she never saw a doctor, had an ultrasound or took prenatal vitamins. She drank a six-pack every Thursday. She ate sushi and soft cheese and went bungee jumping and relaxed nightly in an 108 degree hot tub. She snorted a few lines, chain smoked, drag raced and did belly flops into the pool. And somehow, on this show, the baby always turns out FINE.
I had a lot of anxiety during my pregnancy, but I would watch this show and think to myself, if these ding dongs managed to deliver healthy babies, then by golly, so will I. It always made me feel so much better. How badly could I be doing – at least I knew I was pregnant!
Which brings me to my point. If you’ve been following the blog, then you know I am working hard to make one more baby before the factory shuts down. Since I’m trying to conceive, I am hyper aware of everything going on in there, from how many eggs I’m maturing to when I ovulate to whether the lining of my uterus is thickening. It’s a lot of information – information that makes for terrible, erection endangering pillow talk with Dave.
Anyway, this past weekend I felt crushingly tired and that was enough to make me think I should take a pregnancy test. (I have a crate of them in my bathroom cabinet. If you need one, you know who to call.) I got a positive so I went in for a blood test, then waited 7 excruciating hours to find out that although I was technically pregnant, the hormone levels in my blood were so low that it likely would not amount to anything. Another blood test 48 hours later confirmed that it wasn’t a viable pregnancy.
So in a sense, I was pregnant for 7 hours. Did I need to know that? Eh.
I suppose it’s always good news that conception is possible, and though I’m disappointed, I understand that it was just not meant to be this time. We went through plenty of that jazz to get Viv, and she was worth the wait.
But if I hadn’t been such a quick draw with the First Response, I would never have known I was pregnant, just like those divinely crazy ladies on TLC. I could have saved myself a couple of needle pricks and a whole lot of pacing.
Next time, I’m waiting until I feel something in my shoe.