Week 51 – Brian Weeks

Posted: March 19, 2012 in Brian Weeks, Week 51

The introduction to a period piece I was working on, abandoned for now, hopefully to be picked up again later…

Sitting in the examination room wearing a paper gown was not the way I wanted to start my day. It was cold, and I was tired. I didn’t get home from the bar until well after two o’clock this morning. But there I was, a little after nine in the morning, waiting for the doctor to tell me what’s been going on. Lately, I’ve been feeling very nauseous and just shitty in general.

“Ms. Oliver?” the doctor poked his head around the door.
“Well, I have some good news for you. You’re going to be a mother.”
My mouth went dry. “I’m pregnant?”
“Yes, Lauren. You’re pregnant.”
“But, that can’t be. I’m on the Pill!”
He shook his head slowly. “I’m sorry, Lauren. The Pill can’t be one hundred percent accurate at preventing pregnancy. Even if you never missed a day, there is still a small chance that you can become pregnant. Are you sure you never missed a day, or two?”
Guiltily, I thought back over the past few months. “I may have forgotten a day here or there.”
“Well, there you go. I’d like to schedule a follow-up for you at the beginning of next month. As you approach your due date, you’ll be seeing me more.”
Absently, I asked, “When is my due date?”
“Right around the first of September. Since this is your first child, you may actually have the baby anywhere from mid-August to mid-September. But, you are about two-and-a-half months along. Congratulations, Lauren.”
“Yeah, thanks.” I was completely in shock. I’d have to go home and look through my date book from last year and see what happened in November and December. Rather, who had happened.

I took a sip of my Tab and looked across the table at my two best friends. “Well. Cindy, Rose, I found out why I’ve been feeling like shit for the past few weeks.” Taking a bite of my Cobb salad, I waited for a response.
Cindy stirred her Bloody Mary. “As long as you aren’t pregnant or dying, it can’t be that bad.”
I sat silently watching the celery spin in Cindy’s drink.
“Oh, God, Lauren. Please tell me you’re dying.” Rose started to giggle at the sound of her own words, then stopped abruptly
“I’m due on September first.” I stared at my plate vacantly.
“Shit, Lauren. That’s awful.” She sipped for a moment, then spoke. “So when are you getting rid of it? I mean, you’re only nineteen. You can’t have a kid.”
“Cin, I might keep it.” I saw a strange glint in her eyes as the words passed my lips.
“What?” She turned and motioned to the waitress for another Bloody. “You can’t be serious. You can barely support yourself, let alone another human being. Besides, you aren’t married.”
“I can pick up a few more shifts at the bar. And who says I have to be married to have a baby?” I couldn’t believe my best friend since Kindnergarten was reacting this way.
“Yeah, Cindy, Lauren doesn’t need a man to make herself feel whole. Haven’t you learned anything from Women’s Lib?” Rose was visibly angry at Cindy’s thoughtlessness.
Cindy had now abandoned simply sipping her second Bloody Mary, and was now almost chugging it. “You know I will support you in whatever you decide, Lauren. But just let me say this to you. Please consider getting an abortion.”
Cindy’s thin words of support seemed forced, and void of genuine feeling. We finished our lunch in silence.

After work, I came home and sat on the bed listening to an old Stones album while I wrote in my diary. In the quiet of the night, I reflected on the long day and its meaning.

Monday, February 18, 1977
Today I found out that I am going to be a mother. I can’t believe that in just a few months, I’ll be responsible for another person’s life. Cindy Lou says I should get rid of the baby, but I don’t know if I can do that. There is a life inside me. Sure, I don’t have a husband, but who needs one? Rose says I’m not the first single mother, and I certainly won’t be the last. I’ll have to find another job, though. I can’t support a son or daughter on my tips from bartending at The Chateau.
I looked back at my date book to try and find out when I might have gotten pregnant. The only thing I can find that makes any sense was that Christmas party that I went to with Stanley Drake up on the mountain. We got snowed in and spent the weekend. I messed around with a couple different guys that weekend, and I didn’t have my birth control with me. It must have been that weekend.
Regardless, I am going to be a mother. I can’t believe it. Wish me luck!

  1. Robyn says:

    You should definitely revisit this at some point; I’d have kept reading if there was more!

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