Last May bank holiday weekend was a big one for me. I started off at my Mums, happily knocking back glasses of wine and shots of tequila, smoking a MILLION fags and putting the world to right. Then I tripped off home to the love nest I share with me fella, and got myself all dolled up for a day-and-night-on-the-tiles with one of my bessies.
It was between cocktail five and six, while out on a balcony of a v nice eatery on Dublin’s Camden St when I took a deep puff of a fag and said to the bessie, “listen. I think I’m up the duff. The period is about four days late.” Peals of laughter – on both sides – followed. This was a regular occurrence with bessie and I. We spent most nights out announcing that we could feel it in our waters, while simultaneously downing millions of tiny bottles of wine – it was par for the course. After going through the usual “I mean, what would we DO?” conversation, we settled on the fact that I DEFINITELY wasn’t pregnant and took our carousing elsewhere.
The next morning, Bank Holiday Monday, me fella was off at work and I was nursing a vicious hangover. The tiny seed of doubt about my maybe pregnancy drove me to the bathroom to do a test (I kept ones on standby for moments like this). “I’ll do the test, find out it’s negative, and then happily spend the afternoon watching The Good Wife”, I thought. NO. OH NOOOOOHOOOOO.
It was positive. IT WAS POSITIVE. I did four more just in case. Then, like a woman possessed, I dove into the shower, scrubbing myself with the most spa-like of products (REN Rose Otto Body Scrub if you must know – nom) to try to eradicate any trace of my day-and-night-on-the-tiles. Then, I ripped through the house, throwing away cigarette boxes, lighters, coffee – ANYTHING that I thought could harm my baby.
The guilt I felt. THE GUILT. It was horrific. I spent the rest of the afternoon on the internet, typing “I got locked and didn’t know I was pregnant – did I kill my baby” (no) and “can being a bad mother start from conception?” (debatable) into Google. The fella arrived home, and as he tried to tell me about his day at the office I hopped from one leg to another, trying to interrupt (“Ciara! Can you let me talk for a second please?|”) Eventually I shouted, “I’ve got something to say. I’m preganant!”
Tumbleweed. TUMBLEWEED. After his face turned from green to grey to red, he smiled, gave me a hug and said he was delighted. So was I. Even though our baby wasn’t even the size of a pea (more like an apple pip), this was the most exciting thing to ever happen to us. We spent the evening petting the baby through my stomach and talking about how things were going to change. How much, we couldn’t have predicted, but then and there we were the happiest people around.