7 Weeks Pregnant
Maybe sometimes, you do get to have what you want.
I’m used to living in a fantasy world of everything that could go wrong.
When I found out I was pregnant I thought I'd be happy. But the first thing I felt holding the little strip of paper with two clear lines on it was terror. I saw my blueberry-sized baby sitting in my uterus, malformed limbs, dead tongue, still heartbeat. I heard the doctor telling me that nothing good could grow inside me.
Despite all the signs that nothing was wrong with me, I had trouble believing that my body could support healthy life.
Even after all these years of trying to heal it feels like there's still a desert in me.
I've wanted a baby for so long, it almost didn't feel real. I thought maybe I'd imagined it. That somehow the three pregnancy tests I took gave me false positives. That my period was just extremely late. That I was just getting fat. My mind twisted inside me with justifications for why I couldn’t have this.
But Robert and I went to our first ultrasound on Tuesday, and when I heard the baby's heartbeat inside its tiny body, fluttering and quick, I burst into tears.
It's difficult to explain the feeling of knowing there's a human being growing inside of you. And even at 6 weeks and 6 days it's alive, it's real. It's swimming in the amniotic darkness and it doesn't even understand what or who it is yet, but it has a heart. It has a heart. And that heart is going to continue beating for the rest of its life.
It's a transcendent, burning feeling. Simultaneously being pushed in and outside of your body. I am me but also I am not me. I'm something both big and small. I am the end of a whip that a star cracked through dark space.
And it shows that despite all my fantastical and horrible dreams, things can still go right. I don't control the universe. I don't get to decide that the worst possible outcome is what's true.
There's so much to do and plan before the baby comes. It's easy to get lost in the swarm of information and think you need all the best gadgets and latest technology. $1300 baby cribs and $500 diaper bags. Or the rampant fearmongering geared toward pregnant women. Don't drink coffee. Don't eat deli meats. Take prenatal vitamins or your child is going to be born with spina bifida.
I keep telling myself, it really isn't that complicated. People used to birth children alone in caves and swaddle them in grass-woven blankets. No prenatal vitamins required.
Having a baby is one of the most life-changing things a person can do, but it's also the easiest fucking thing in the world. Just keep eating, and wait for nine months.
I wanted this for so long. A family. Maybe I can learn to enjoy it.
I created this newsletter not as a marketing tool to sell books, or to get people to pay me money. I created it as a way to track my progress as a human being and share the journey with you. That means anyone who's following this newsletter from the beginning has gotten to see a lot of cringe, contradictions, and confusion.
And now, it's a record for my kid too.
It's almost like the baby and I are on the same journey at different points - swimming in the dark.