I always imagined having three children. Never four, because I was the youngest of four and it just seemed like that was just way too many kids – not to mention that when I grew up, I’d never seen a van or a suburban and couldn’t imagine how the heck you’d cart that many kids around. Well, okay, we had a station wagon when I grew up, but I despised sitting in that way back seat because it smelled like puke and sour milk. Not that I had anything to do with that. Really.
When I met Joey I had gotten to the point in my life where I didn’t even know if I wanted to get married let alone have children. And I was okay with that, at least for a few years. But as I grew closer to turning 30, the biological clock started ticking as loudly as Big Ben and I started panicking about having a baby. Joey wasn’t exactly on board with the whole program for a while – he wanted to wait, so I acquiesced and we decided to start trying about a year later.
Mother Nature, the bitch, decided she had other plans for me. Two years of trying to get pregnant went by, and by the beginning of Year Three I was almost psychotic with the grief of not being able to have a baby. Adding fuel to the fire was the fact that my brother-in-law and his wife got pregnant on their very first try, and I suspect they didn’t even do the deed - they just looked at each other and it was a done deal. They called us early one morning at 6:30 AM, freshly peed-on stick in hand, to trumpet their happy news - and I went running out into the icy-cold night in my bare feet and nightshirt, collapsing in the frosty grass and wailing into the darkness like a wounded animal. So unfair, so hurtful. And one of the lowest moments of my life.
At that point, however, we had started infertility drugs and within the next month we found out that I was pregnant after all. I still laugh when I think about the night Monkey Man was conceived…I had just returned from a long weekend in Philly with my sister, it was “that time”, and Joey was deathly ill with the flu. So I did what any concerned wife would do – I announced, “I don’t give a rat’s ass how sick you are, just lay there and I’ll do all the work…” and so it came to be. Not one of my better moments, but remember – I was borderline psychotic at that point. Probably all that riding around in the way back seat of the station wagon as a child.
The night I found out I was pregnant, Joey had been out at a business dinner and it was around 10:30 when he came home (well-lubricated with plenty of Maker’s Mark). For some odd reason, I decided to test because my boobs were sore and I was secretly hoping that I was finally pregnant…and anyone who knows me knows that I am highly impatient and there was no way I could wait until the next morning. So I took the test, and the teeniest little positive line popped up…I ran into the bedroom and thrust it under Joey’s nose…
Me: Look, I’m pregnant!
Joey: Are you sure? That doesn’t look like it.
Me: Yes, look at the line! It’s positive!
Joey: Does that stick have pee on it?
So I tested every day for the next three days, and every day the line got darker. That was it. It was finally true.
Funny how a pee-soaked stick changes your life forever.