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"Which one should we buy? This one shows one line for negative and two lines for positive. While this one straight away displays 'Yes' or 'No'." I was aware that it was ultimately I who was going to pick one of the two home pregnancy test kits from the medical aisle at the supermarket on one Saturday evening of fall. But I was so excited about buying this one thing that I asked such a redundant question to hubby due to my habit of being a chatter box when thrilled. "Let’s buy this one that directly answers yes or no." I realized that I could not even wait to do some interpretation by counting lines myself. He simply smiled and we headed back home after buying some groceries.
It had been more than a week of missing my monthly encounter with Aunt Flo. We had just decided to begin our family about three months back. Given my history of PCOD and us moving to America unexpectedly for his assignment soon after the decision, we had not expected to be 'to be' parents so soon. I was still coming to terms with my stand of leaving a job that I enjoyed to move with hubby dearest. So I had been pre occupied with getting myself employment authorization and a job as soon as possible. But nature had a plan for us already.
Hubby waited anxiously in the patio even though it was chilly outside, while I was waiting in the restroom of our apartment counting sixty seconds with my eyes shut till the display on the HPT said something. I remembered being this nervous before my board exam results. After that one biggest minute of my life, 'Yes' it was! I went to the patio to break the news to him. I shivered all the while. Sure it was cold, but it was more out of excitement. He hugged me tight and we rejoiced together about the biggest milestone of our marriage. The thought to first strike my mind was, "Yippee, I am sure now. What next?"
We broke the news to both our families over the phone. It was the first grandchild on both sides. The mere pause in their response after we declared the arrival of the new family member depicted their joy. The merriment was then followed by a rigorous search for a good gynecologist and a hospital. Thanks to our friends and acquaintances, that happened to be a cakewalk. It was sheer luck that I was otally unoccupied in my life for the first time during first pregnancy. And I intended to use that time to the fullest by reading, planning my diet, exercising and dreaming! So continuing with my pregnancy bandwagon, the second thing that I bought myself in my ecstatic pregnant mood (first being that HPT :)) was the bible for all expectant mothers - 'What To Expect When You are Expecting'. I must say, any first time mommy cannot get more enlightened about the facts and myths; dos and don’ts of pregnancy, enjoying the read to the fullest all the while.
Hubby and I made our first visit to the gynecologist. It was altogether a new, rather pleasant experience of another well ordered American system. I was a bit anxious before my first ultrasound for checking symptoms of Down syndrome in the baby. But it happened to be totally uneventful to our relief. After getting a go ahead with my doctor about everything being normal, I planned my exercise schedule with her advice. It would later on aid in a healthy and normal delivery and of course avoiding those extra pregnancy kilos. I straight away began with a 20 minute pre natal yoga session followed by a 20 minute walk everyday. Since 'winter was coming' in that part of the world, stepping outside for a daily walk didn't seem to be a warm idea. So I turned it to an indoor musical walk by myself in the huge apartment every afternoon. The idea was absolutely refreshing.
Reading apprises you. But reading half baked information on the internet baffles you with an unwanted information overload at times. I thought that the first trimester ought to be a nightmare full of morning sickness, nausea and fatigue for every woman. Accordingly, I was waiting for my ordeal to happen. Turns out that nature decided to bless me once more. Apart from an unusual affinity for that bed and comforter and an occasional event of nausea, nothing else seemed to bother me. I craved for strawberries and flavoured yogurt. I never missed to pick a huge box of a couple of dozens of that fruit and a crate of differently flavoured yogurt cups on my bi weekly visit to Costco (No prizes to guess what my older daughter's favourite food is!). The only food I could not bear the sight of was mushrooms and easily did away with it (It was not on my list of most favourite foods earlier anyway. So, no regrets about that!). I would be dishonest to say that I was as merry as a lark, untouched by mood swings here and there. But I was able to deal with that (Can say this confidently as hubby has till date never complained about me bothering him irrationally during both pregnancies :p). Upswings, downswings, cravings, aversions! I realised that it is the only period when a woman can very conveniently point fingers to something (those damn hormones) for her woes!
Another important task that I had assigned to myself was picking up a baby name. Yes, it was too early but I like to be prepared. I created an excel sheet with names for both genders organised as per birth stars (Hubby and I were both named as per our moon signs. We decided to continue with the trend. Besides, it would make the short listing easy) and circulated it among the family members as well for their suggestions (Although I would have been as happy to mother a son as to a daughter, I prayed a percent extra for a girl. And guess what? I got what I had ordered!).
My first trimester the first time was full of self care, self appraisal, ample me time and fun. Just like an excited mommy to be here.
Well, I would not be able to say it a couple of years later while expecting our younger one. I did utter those words to myself after the HPT once more, "Sure again. What next?" I still wonder whether I was gifted yet another time with a sickness free first trimester or I did not really notice it while chasing my toddler around the house (Honestly, it is difficult to say!). I guess all the self pampering was exclusive for the first time as I was single handedly looking after my older one. Nonetheless, the happiness of her having a sibling was match to nothing else.
We, women, are designed by nature keeping child bearing in mind. So practically speaking, it has equipped our bodies and brains with all the essentials to bring a new life into this world. It goes without saying that awareness, care, precaution and cheerfulness is indispensible in setting to sail this journey of nine months. Ironically, it has been a time when I was sure about something, about being (rather wanting to be) a mother; but so not sure of what was going to happen next. Just as my first thoughts after reading the HPT both the times, "I am sure now. But what next?"