One of the cruelest ironies about life with ladyparts is that the same symptoms that you are about to get your period can be attributed to early pregnancy. [To be fair, based on my personal history of Googling every weird thing my body every does, pretty much any physical symptom can signal pregnancy, up to and including bleeding out your vagina, which, you know, is supposed to be the "all clear" when it comes to these matters. Totally unfair.]
I don’t get my period regularly because I have an IUD. This also means it is incredibly unlikely for me to get pregnant; it is more than 99% effective. So when I got tired and moody and my back ached and my boobs got so tender I couldn’t run even with two sports bras on, I figured it was PMS.
But then I didn’t get my period. And my body started to do other things that the internet in all its baby-obsessed wisdom insisted might be signs of pregnancy. Night sweats? Pregnant. Watery eyes? Pregnant. This Diet Coke doesn’t taste quite right? Pregnant.
And somehow, “there is a less than 1% chance that I am pregnant but my Google searches keep auto-completing with the word ‘pregnancy’” translates in the (hormone-addled, hysterical) ladybrain to “OMG I AM TOTES PREGTASTIC.”
So from the time that Imaginary Fetus is conceived until the time you get to the pharmacy to pick up a 3-pack of piss divining rods, you start to play out your Hypothetical Spawn’s entire life in your head, and more importantly, your own brand new Changed Forever Life. I’m sure I’m not the only person who does this [anybody see How I Met Your Mother last week? This all went down last Monday. My name is Robin. CREEPY, RIGHT?]
So my brain goes into a spiral of baby speculation. Will we still move to South Africa? What is pre-natal care like in Cape Town? Will our baby forever annoy everyone by being the white brat who calls himself “African?” OMG, do I conceivably have the time to convert before the baby is born? Oh god, will I have to appear before a South African bet din? I’m I going to have to pull of Afrikaans-accented Hebrew? I can’t do that! But I want Jewish babies! WHY DID I PUT THIS OFF!?
Wait, oh my god, I’m going to have an infant to care for 8,500 miles away from the nearest grandparent? I can’t do that. We can’t have this Imaginary Baby in South Africa!
Which means this poor kid is going to grow up thinking he crushed his father’s dreams. I can’t do that to my baby, to my new family. Maybe we need to be strong and let Collin go to South Africa alone, and I’ll stay here to raise the baby. It’ll be like he’s off at war. Collin’s grandfather didn’t meet his first kid until he was 14 months old because of Korea. God, remember that episode of M*A*S*H where B.J.’s baby calls Radar “Daddy”? I’m already crying. Oh man, I’m crying over the memory of a later-season episode of M*A*S*H. I am SO OBVIOUSLY PREGNANT.
Spoiler alert: I’m not really pregnant. Yay! Sushi for everybody!
I’m glad they only sell pregnancy tests in multi-packs, because the next time a patchwork quilt of random body quirks morphs into a hypothetical baby blanket, I won’t have nearly as much time to freak out over a baby that doesn’t exist yet.
Have you made Baby Contingency Plans during pregnancy scares and/or whatever-word-people-who-are-actually-trying to-procreate-use-for-when-they-think-they-might-be-pregnant (“pregnancy tease?”), or am I the only one with a whole brood of hypothetical accident babies living in my brain? Does that make me crazy? Or is it just a sign that I might be pregnant?