Friday, April 16, 2010

And one more makes FIVE!

Let me tell you a story. Yes, this is a true story. One night, not too long ago, a very tired momma (me) was picked up by private van to attend an FDA study and have a night out with a friend. The study was for the Milkscreen strips (strips which tell you if your breastmilk has low enough alcohol content to feed your child). The Details: Milkscreen employees give the participants one alcoholic beverage per hour, then test pumped breastmilk for alcohol levels and the effectiveness of the Milkscreen strips. I was looking forward to spending the evening with a friend who I don't see often enough, plus the pay was $100 and I was helping a product that advocates breastfeeding! 

When I arrived at the study, my friend had not yet arrived. I filled out my paperwork and received the instructions. Then they sent us to the restroom to take pregnancy tests, as a precaution since they were about to serve us alcohol. As we are walking into the restroom, I say to the 3 strangers who are with me, "Here's hoping for no surprises!" I pee on my stick and immediately 2 lines appear. I think it's strange there are 2 lines, check the wrapping paper to see if there are any pictures of what a positive test looked like (I thought maybe a positive test would be 3 lines, but definitely NOT 2). However the wrapper was very clinical and had no words or pictures written on it. I didn't think anything of it, and walked out to the section of the restroom where the other 3 women were washing their hands. One woman says, "Oh, thank God I only had ONE line." I freaked out and said, "WHAT!?!?! I had 2 lines on mine!" They were in shock and one of the girls said, "Well then you're pregnant!" I was in TOTAL shock. My period had yet to return, which I didn't think much about since I had been training for the marathon, and obviously we weren't using birth control, but I still didn't think this was a real possibility. After a few minutes in the bathroom with these 3 strangers asking me questions and making sure I was ok, I went to tell the Milkscreen coordinator. I seriously thought the pregnancy test was wrong, so I asked them to give me another one so I could retest. Surprisingly to me, the 2nd test also revealed 2 lines immediately. This made me suspect I was fairly far along, but really I had no clue. 

So here I am at this study with 50 women participants. At this point I had texted Ty and asked him to come pick me up because I "didn't qualify for the study. The word is getting out that someone discovered they are pregnant. " As I waited in the hallway for him to come get me, all these women are walking up and down the hall. I overhear many comments: didn't she know how to use birth control? didn't she know breastfeeding isn't a form of contraception? how awful to find out you are pregnant here amongst a bunch of stangers? I'm so glad there were no surprises on MY stick, and on and on.

Anyway, the Milkscreen coordinators were really cool about the whole thing. While we were waiting for Ty they were chatting with me about parenting, and one of them ran around getting me $50 to compensate me for my time. They asked how I planned to tell Ty the news, and I was still in major shock, so I really had no idea. One of them suggested just asking him, "So why do you think I didn't qualify for the study?" I thought that was a simple enough sentence that I could spit out in my state of shock, so when Ty pulled up in the Expedition with Colt and Levi in tow, I climbed in the car. Ty started driving off and I spit out, "So why do you think I didn't qualify for the study?" He joked back, "You're pregnant." And I said, "YES!" Ty slammed on the brakes and we just sat there in the parking lot for a bit. I start crying, which confused and worried Colt. It's not that I wasn't happy about the news (I am), it was just hard to be so strong around all those 50 women and I was very overwhelmed, and so it was nice to finally share the news with my confidant and best friend. 

When we were finally calm enough to drive, we hopped on the highway in rush hour and drove to church for Wednesday night huddles. This was a great in that it gave us lots of time to process. Ty went through the typical male financial thought process ("We'll need a bigger car/house." "How are we going to afford this?") and I went through the more emotional process ("Why God? I can't handle this!") It took me about 3 weeks to come to peace with the idea of having our third kid so close in age to the other two. About 2 months prior, I had really been thinking about if we should get pregnant again now. After several thought sessions on this topic, the conclusion was always a resounding NO. I just didn't think I could handle having 3 kids 3 and under, as this last year has been pretty stressful just having 2. I guess God is going to show me otherwise! 

I scheduled an appointment with my OBGYN and found out I was already 8 1/2 weeks along! Due date is October 22nd. I was pregnant when I ran the marathon and didn't even know it. Since I've had very few and minor pregnancy symptoms, I wonder how much longer I could have gone without knowing I was pregnant, if I hadn't gone to the Milkscreen study. As of today, I'm 13 weeks along and out of the 1st trimester. Next week we go for another ultrasound, so I'll update with a new baby picture then and with details as this miraculous story continues! 


Several of you (or all 3 readers of this blog) told me that you were having trouble posting comments. I think I have resolved the problem, so comment away!