No, not another one…
It was on this day exactly twelve months ago that Sian and I first found out that we were going to have a baby.
Thinking about it now it’s amazing to consider how one day or moment can change your life forever, and equally how that moment doesn’t have to be full of drama or fanfare worthy of a Hollywood film, and can simply be a few words said, or not said at the end of the day…
That day started like any other, I’d been at work, as had Sian and in the evening we went out for dinner with our friends Jenna and Chris to an Italian in Fulham. Among many other things we chatted about their wedding plans, Chris’ stag do and reminisced over the recent Hilton-Cunningham wedding. It was a really nice evening, and Sian and I eventually got home around 11pm.
I fell into the sofa and lay there scrolling through facebook and twitter, while Sian went to the bathroom. I’m not sure how long I was sitting there before Sian called asking me to “come here”. Now I can’t explain why but something in Sian’s voice and the way she called me made me think I’d done something wrong. We’ve talked about this since and Sian always asks what I was worried I’d done, the answer is I don’t know but in the previous few days Sian had been a little more tired and emotional than normal and the way she sounded made me think I was in trouble.
So what did I do? What any self-respecting man would, I pretended I hadn’t heard her and stayed exactly where I was. I think it was a mix of tiredness and laziness and yes admittedly not my finest moment but if I was going to get told off I was going to do it lying down. So I just lay there and waited for Sian to come to me, which she did…
“Is this right?” she asked. Looking up Sian was holding something in her hand and didn’t look annoyed at me at all, more shocked. “Is what right?” I asked back at the same time as realising Sian was handing me a pregnancy test.
Sian didn’t reply… she didn’t need to. I knew what she was asking.
I looked at her and looked at the test and almost instantly realised I had absolutely no idea what I was looking at or for. I had implied the outcome already, Sian wouldn’t be asking me if she thought she wasn’t pregnant, which means she thinks she is pregnant and I’m no expert so if she thinks she’s pregnant she’s probably pregnant, which means we’re having a baby… but Sian was asking for confirmation and like I said I had no idea what I was looking for. “Where are the instructions” probably wouldn’t be the first words I’d say if I could do that moment over again, but as it was that’s what they were.
Let me just quickly add here that I am probably the worst person at receiving gifts, presents, surprises etc. In those situations for whatever reason I find it really hard to react naturally. So even if I’m delighted inside I can still manage to come across the opposite. Because I know I’m bad at reactions I over think my reaction before the time comes to giving it, but this was different; I was over thinking everything in the moment so I was giving absolutely no reaction. I’m sure everyone reacts differently to finding out they’re having a baby, I believe much of that is shaped by the circumstances in which they’ve tried for a baby and found out. A few months earlier we had decided that wanted a baby, and that we would take away the possibility of not having one and see what happened. But because we hadn’t been trying long, and Sian hadn’t told me she suspected she was pregnant or that she was taking tests (especially not at that moment), it caught me completely off guard.
Sian handed me the pregnancy test instructions and I stared at them without reading them because a million other thoughts and feelings were running through my head, excitement, confusion, nervousness and happiness, all of them preventing me from processing the information in front of me. After an age longer than it should have taken I finally established that a cross meant pregnant and a single line meant not pregnant. Simple, right!!??
Well no, not simple. This was one of the most important moments of our lives and it had come out of nowhere, I think if you’d have asked me to add 2 + 2 together at that moment I would have struggled… There was a cross, one line was maybe a little fainter than the other but there were two lines crossing. So what did that mean again, positive, no negative, hang on let me check again. In that moment I wasn’t sure about anything and remember thinking does this mean Sian is ‘a little pregnant or properly pregnant’ what does that even mean?
I don’t remember many words being exchanged between us during that moment, there probably were, but I was definitely shocked and Sian was tired, not normal tired; pregnancy tired. I was overwhelmed with happiness, but I still hadn’t really reacted. I don’t know whether Sian was wondering what I was thinking or because she’s known me for ten years she knew I was having trouble showing my emotions, but she was very patient with me. The rest of the evening is a bit of a blur. We sat and hugged and talked and after a while she went to bed and fell asleep, I sat up for hour’s just thinking things over. Then I went to bed and didn’t sleep some more. The next day I went to work but my mind was elsewhere. Was I scared, honestly yes a little… I was scared that we were wrong and Sian wasn’t pregnant because I wanted her so much to be. I was nervous for her and our unborn baby to be safe and well.
But more than anything else I just wanted to tell everyone, I wanted to call everyone and post it everywhere. I wanted everyone to know because I’d never been this happy before. I’d never felt so strongly about anything, it was consuming me (in a good way) and no one else knew. Sian remembers me texting her the next day saying that I couldn’t keep it quiet because someone had asked how she was and I felt like I was lying by just saying she was fine…
“Justin can you come here… is this right?”
“Is what right… Where are the instructions?”
Like I said, it won’t make the script of a Hollywood movie, but undoubtedly these words and the ones we didn’t need to say mark one of the biggest and best moments of our life together and the start of our little family.
A year on and Quinn is now exactly four months old…
Four months to the day she was born Quinn has changed so much. She’s soooooooo heavy!!! I used to walk around the living room with her in my arms for hours, now I can barely last ten minutes before needing to sit down and prop my arm up. Sian did the first proper clear out of her clothes this week and it’s hard to believe how small she was when she first came. She’s talking loads and has over the past few days begun to reach out for things, including us! It’s funny to watch, although if you get too close she ends up smacking you in the face. Yesterday the Christmas tree went up with some help from our little elf; she loves the colours and the lights so we’re all really looking forward to the next month to see what she thinks of her first Christmas.
Tomorrow Sian is at Catherine’s baby shower and will spend the most amount of time away from Quinn she has so far. It will be hard for her but I’m looking forward to a daddy and Quinn day which will hopefully include a trip to the swimming pool. Wish us luck!