He is calm when he says this to me. No particular look on his face. No unusual breaths. I feel a bit guilty for my outburst and give him an extra kiss. He isn’t moved and I don’t blame him.
I watch the phone. I found three different specialists to contact, one of which I am struck by simply because of her name. HER NAME! Shilo Avery Pence, MD. “Shilo Avery.” I say this aloud, wondering if her parents were in love with the music of the 60s and 70s as well. I give the website to her practice a browse. She and her staff look friendly. They look inviting. I click the Appointments tab, read over their terms and conditions, and proceed to type in my details. He is waiting for me to tell him of my duties today. I mustn’t disappoint him. There was no need for the phone…
I click submit and watch my contact information and previous diagnosis fade to black. A few moments later, a confirmation email is in my inbox. *Gee Wiz* That was quick! As I give my email a once-over, I am lured to the details of the website and decide to read about a “Normal Pregnancy.” The weight of the introductory paragraph, The First Trimester, is so heavy, I could feel my heart dropping to my knees.
From the very beginning of your pregnancy, your baby alters your body and the way you live. During the first three months of your pregnancy, known as the first trimester, you will feel many physical changes as your baby begins to grow and develop.
Although the symptoms of early pregnancy vary tremendously from woman to woman — and even from pregnancy to pregnancy — most women can expect to experience one or more of these signs of early pregnancy:
Larger, more tender breasts
Nipples may stick out more
More frequent urination
Feeling very tired
I stopped reading after “Feeling very tired.” I began thinking… Why am I even reading this? What probed me to feel as though I was welcome to glance at what a normal pregnancy is like? At this moment, I am a statistic. I am a walking, talking, living, breathing, cannot-have-a-child woman yet I am reading about having one. Ironic, isn’t it? He calls just as I close the window to the page before me.
“Hey, baby. How is it going?”
“It goes. I just submitted my information via the website for an appointment for the second opinion. I feel good about this, Ty. The physician’s name is Shilo Avery Pence. HOW COOL IS THAT, BABY?!?!”
I can hear him sighing over the phone. He doesn’t seem as excited as I am by the news. Another second goes by, he speaks up.
“Baby, I hope you’re not basing our future on a physician’s name and not their credentials.”
The words hang hard in the air; strong and weighted with disgust. I could see the look on his face as I replayed each one in my mind.
“No. I am not, Ty. I was just taken aback by her name. Given the fact that I have always had what others deem an odd name, something pulled me toward hers. Don’t fret, though. I am quite capable of researching, reviewing, and acknowledging the credentials of someone who will soon be fondling the very region you love so dearly.”
Again, I wish I could take this back. But, it was out there. Every word, naked as they left my mouth, flaunting with the silence we now embraced. He couldn’t even answer me. I made things awkward again. I shoved them in the closet, unable to expose them rightfully to our family and friends.
“I see you want to argue. I do not. I just wanted to check in with you. We’ll talk more about it when I get home, Aja. I love you.”
He said this with a directness I felt I did not need. I had hurt him. Again. And, before this is all over, I will again and again. He doesn’t deserve this.
“I love you too.”
Author’s Note: The blip about Normal Pregnancy was taken from the website of Capital Women’s Care Creek in Maryland where their mission is, “ The providers of Capital Women’s Care seek the highest quality medical and ethical standard in an environment that nurtures the spirit of caring for every woman.” I learned quite a bit spending some time there while writing this. Peace~