Below is the story of how we found out Andrea was pregnant with Benjamin. I wrote this several months before he was born when we were referring to him as “Pudge”. Also, I think the writers of the TV show Scrubs stole our story.
The instructions were simple. Pea on the stick first thing in the morning, wait three minutes. One pink line meant not pregnant…Two pink lines meant pregnant. I gave it a try first, but something seemed wrong, so Andrea gave it a try. Nothing.
No problem. We had only started about two weeks before…maybe three. Her monthly friend visited during that time, so we really didn’t expect a positive result. We went on with our normal Sunday morning routine…coming up with excuses for skipping church and watching TV until we had enough motivation to actually do something…like eat dinner. On this particular Sunday, I believe we had planned to spend most of it putting off packing. We were going to move in two weeks.
I really don’t remember the details of that morning. I don’t remember what I was watching and I don’t remember the things I had done. What I do remember was a peculiar tone in Andrea’s voice as she walked from the bathroom into the living room. I didn’t think anything of it until I saw her holding the pregnancy test and her face twisted in confusion. My heart started beating so hard, it was almost as if it were beating for the first time.
Evidently, she was in the bathroom and glanced down into the garbage and a mysterious pink line caught her eye. It was extremely faint, but absolutely, positively, definitely there…we think. I jumped off the couch, trying to temper my reaction.
A few years before this particular moment of time, I had rediscovered cycling (yes, this tangent will have a point realting to Pudge). It gave me such a sense of joy. I started out riding the heavy mountain bike I had bought almost ten years before. After a summer of riding that lead laden bike around, I bought a used road bike off of ebay that was decent, but outdated. I spent the next year or so fixing that bike up, replacing parts and fighting each and everything that went wrong with it. I openly coveted a new bike and constantly priced the shiny sleek new machines that I knew I could never have. Just before my thirtieth birthday, Andrea got me up early on a Saturday morning and told me we had to go to a friend’s garage sale. We were suppose to meet them in the parking lot of a food store that also had a bike shop adjacent to it because the directions to their house were too complicated. I “talked her into” letting me go into the bike shop. After poking around the bikes, and showing her different bikes that I liked, she asked me about the one behind me. I turned around and saw my perfect bike. A black and silver Cannondale that was beautiful. I moved around from the back of it and looked at the front. On the front was a piece of paper with a picture of Edgar, our dog, on it and the word “SOLD”. I stared at it a minute. Then I looked at Andrea and then I looked back at the bike, and then back at her. I then whispered to her “Did you buy me a bike?” And that’s the point of this strange written meander…At that moment, when I was staring at a bike that was so completely and obviously meant for me, I whispered the question, because I feared that if I said it too loud, I would wake myself up and it wouldn’t be true.
That Sunday morning, it was the same thing, multiplied by a million. That second, barely noticeable, ever so faint line on a stick covered in pea, was the fulfillment of a dream I had stopped dreaming for years because I never thought it would come true. And I thought if I got too excited, I would wake up and it wouldn’t be true.
As Andrea and I stood in the kitchen that afternoon, staring at that test, excitement ebbed and flowed from our voices. We both pretended to not know what it meant. We grabbed the instructions that came with the test and took turns reading them and rereading them, trying to figure out what a faint line three hours later meant. We even did some research online. You see, there was one crucial step in the simple instructions that we missed. Three minutes, we waited 30 seconds, initially. We saw the first line appear without a second and threw it away.
That nothing special Sunday, suddenly became surreal. We were afraid to take a second test. Since these tests were suppose to be taken in the morning, we were afraid the test would be inconclusive…it is suppose to be taken first thing in the morning. We spent the rest of the day speaking in what ifs and eventually went to the store to buy some additional test.
The next morning, Andrea took another test and I strained my blurry eyes trying to figure out if that second faint line was really there. I had spent so much of the previous day surpressing my excitement and convincing myself that it was true, that I expected the second line to not be there…but it was. That night, Andrea picked up yet another test and took it when she came home from work. The second line appeared again, and this time…it was almost as clear as the first line. It was with that test that I feel like I took my first breathe of air in more 30 hours.
There have been a few sharp moments in my life that changed my whole lifes direction. They were moments that were catalysts that changed the very fibers of who I am and cast new light on my past and my beliefs.
However, nothing could prepare me for that moment of revelation…I was going to be a papa. This small, defensless little child was going to enter into our lives — a person that was literally going to be part me and part of the woman I love. At that moment, I could feel everything changing…and in that moment, I became happier than I have even been. Even if it took 30 hours and three minutes for the moment to develop.