Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Oh Dear God I Think I'm Pregnant

Dude. I know EXACTLY how you feel.
Here's the thing. I don't want to have any more kids. I have three and they're awesome and beautiful and healthy. On most days, if I'm being honest, I'm completely over-matched. On a good day, it all works. On a bad day, they are tornadoes and I am a trailer park. Being the mom they need is an ongoing struggle for me. Being the mom they deserve is simply not something I'm able do. At least not every day.

So no more kids for me and Cap'n Coupon. Plus we are both getting really, really old. Even though I won't be 40 for a very long time (about 12 weeks), lately I feel elderly and fragile and perpetually exhausted. But in the past month there was this one time where we both felt young and frisky and maybe a little careless and maybe something could have happened. And by "something", I mean possibly one of my last remaining eggos becoming slightly preggo.

But it was statistically completely unlikely. I mean, this had to be nothing. NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT, STUPID. Because nothing is happening.

Then a couple of days after nothing happened I got this weird cramping. Like a tiny little something burrowing it's way my geriatric uterine lining. And I got a teensy bit scared and I maybe said: "OH SHIT THIS CAN NOT BE HAPPENING." Then a couple of weeks later, I started having really vivid dreams about the Blue Wiggle and other bizarro things, like having to breastfeed kittens.

And a few days ago I started smelling chicken. Like I could smell it when it was wrapped in plastic inside my fridge. And when I tried to eat it, I couldn't shake the idea that I was chewing flesh and I would involuntarily gag. Even Chick Fil A.

I do not want to be pregnant. I can't do this. This has to be nothing.

When that bite of spicy chicken sandwich made me gag, I knew something was up. I mentioned it to the Cap'n. He smiled and said "Let's get a test, honey" but the look in his eyes was saying "OH SHIT THIS CAN NOT BE HAPPENING."

So I went to Walmart with Mini. I haven't bought a pregnancy test in a long time. I walked over to the part of the store that sells things like shampoo, feminine hygiene products, toothpaste and band aids. My kids call this part of the store "The Bathroom Area". I asked why they call it this when the bathrooms are on the other side of the store, a full football field away. In truth, I was worried that Mini called it that because she had once dropped a deuce there or was currently planning to. Instead she looked at me like I was moron and said: "Momma, all dis stuff is suppose to be in your bafroom."

Fortified by her preschool logic, it occurred to me that I had no idea where the tests were (within the bounds of the bathroom area). So I headed for tampons. And I began looking carefully up and down the aisle. There were no tests anywhere. I started to get nervous because it was becoming apparent that I might have to ask someone where the pregnancy tests were. I would have to ask them that out loud.

To avoid that horrible fate, I began to look more carefully all over the tampon aisle. My inner monologue began: "COME ON, WALMART. Where are the pregnancy tests? WHY AREN'T THEY HERE IN THE AISLE THAT HAS TO DO WITH VAGINAS? This is the damn vagina aisle, is it not?" [Editor's note: Yes. Yes! I vow to call that aisle the 'Vagina Aisle' for the rest of my life. -Guru]

I started sweating a little. I walked over to where there were vitamins and supplements and other things that had nothing whatsoever to do with vaginas. Not surprisingly, there were no pregnancy tests there either. I saw an old man in a blue vest and I started to feel faint because I was going to have to ask him using my mouth. And dear Lord. My dear sweet baby lemur. He was talking to my daughter's third grade teacher.

So I ran away and hid in the corner where the vagina aisle intersects with body wash. There is douche in between those sections, in case you were wondering.

I waited five minutes and looked again, but I couldn't see the teacher or the man in vest. I started to get worried because the only thing worse than having to ask him with my mouthhole was for him not to be there. And for me to never, ever find the pregnancy tests. I started to feel light-headed. I walked to the next aisle and looked up. There he was, the man in the vest. He smiled at me. His face seemed kind and understanding, so I opened my mouth to speak but before any words came out, my eyes flicked over to his nametag.

It said "HO". I slowly blinked. It still said "HO". It flashed at me as if written in lights. I closed my eyes, counted to five and opened them again. No change, still "HO". I walked closer to him, staring at his name tag, to make sure that I was seeing it right. He started to back away, very slowly, while conspicuously avoiding eye contact.  Mini looked at me from her perch in the shopping cart and said: "Momma. What. Are. You. Even. Doing?"

It was a suitable wake-up call. I decided it might be best to avoid asking Ho where the pregnancy tests were, given that he may have just called security. I quickly spun around to make a break for it and right there at eye level was an enormous bottle of lube. Inner monologue: "GAH! What the hell, Walmart? That is A LOT of lube for this time of day."

Below the lube were many, many boxes of condoms and above it? Pregnancy tests. BINGO.

Hello there, Lube.
My inner monologue began again: "I don't get it. I mean - I understand why you would put pregnancy tests with lube and condoms in the sex aisle. But really? It's more of a vag item. Am I wrong?" Then I saw that the only other things in the aisle were antacids and hemorrhoid treatments and I was like: "That's why they're here. Because pregnant women totally need Rolaids and Tucks wipes. They should put ice cream over here, too. And non-alcoholic beer."

I nodded to myself in satisfaction that finally something was making sense and then I realized that I'd said that last part out loud. Mini was looking at me with one small eyebrow raised and Ho was peering around the corner looking concerned. This has happened to me before. Thankfully, no one was filming me for People of Walmart this time.

I quickly scooted my boot to the register and paid for my purchases. The woman checking us out was wearing a nametag that said "Noneya" and I was like WALMART, WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON WITH YOU TODAY?

I went home and when I pulled in the driveway, I noticed that Mini had just fallen asleep. GAH! The dreaded 5 Minute Car Nap was going to wreck whatever chance at a reasonable bedtime and/or evening I had hoped for. I carefully picked her up and carried my ginormous three year old inside. I felt her chubby hands go around my neck, her little face nuzzle into my neck, and I smelled her sweet head.

I plopped her down on the couch and watched her sleep for a moment. Her little toes scrunched up and I bent down and kissed them. These were the only kid toes in my house that were kissable anymore. The other ones were now all too big and stinky. 

I decided to take advantage of these few minutes of quiet and quickly ran upstairs. I took the test. I should've waited 2 minutes but I knew right away. It was negative. I expected to feel relief. I expected that I would want to go back to Walmart and high five Ho and Noneya after shotgunning a victory beer with the Cap'n. But I cried in the bathroom for what seemed like a very long time. And I tried to stop myself from feeling like I'd lost something. Because I'd lost nothing. It was always nothing.

So I went downstairs and held my littlest until she got too squirmy. And I fervently thanked my lucky stars for the somethings I already have.

(c)Herding Turtles, Inc. 2009 - 2012

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