Saturday, October 30, 2010

Hypnosis and Babies, Part I

Flamingo Joe and I were married for 7 years before I became pregnant with Casey and there was a good reason we waited so long . . . two good reasons, actually . . . Flamingo Joe wasn't so sure he wanted to have kids there for awhile and then in about year 5, we decided we'd like to adopt a little girl from China and started that process in year 6. At the time, adopting from China took about 18 months. In hindsight, neither of those reasons were particularly valid considering how much we love our children and that, because we waited so late, Flamingo Joe will be 61 when Mace actually goes off to college and I will be 56. I really should be working out more.

I had been on birth control for those first 7 years and was starting to be concerned about the side effects of the birth control (not that I can remember now what those were), so I bought a book about using natural fertility planning to prevent pregnancy (go ahead and start laughing now, you know you want to). I had been out of law school and working at a large Tampa law firm for about 8 months when my careful fertility planning fell through and I got pregnant while I was specifically planning not to.

On the day I realized I might be pregnant, I was going to a fund-raising dinner with a friend from my law firm after work. I had confided in her that I was afraid I might be pregnant at some point during the day so she insisted that before going to the dinner we pick up a pregnancy test and go to her condo and see if I was actually pregnant. If I had been thinking clearly and not in a state of sheer terror, I would have refused and gotten the test later that night and taken it in the privacy of my own home. Flamingo Joe was traveling at the time and I could have taken the test in private, processed the info, and then called him and he would have been the first person who knew.

But as I said, I wasn't thinking clearly and went along with my friend's plan. We purchased the pregnancy test and went back to her condo. I can remember sitting there in her bathroom after having peed on the stick and waiting for about 10 seconds before the line popped up just as bright as anything you've ever seen. I started feeling faint and moaned something like, "Uh-oh." My friend, sitting outside the door, started squealing and laughing. We barely had time to chuck the test in the trash before we had to leave for the fundraising dinner, which was about three blocks away. So as we were walking, my friend was chattering away about how exciting it was that I was pregnant and I was numb with terror and thinking I really needed to call Joe because it wasn't right that he wasn't the first to know, but how could I? I only had about two minutes before I would be sitting in the dinner, so I decided I would call him when I got home -- I rationalized that my friend knowing first was okay since she happened to be there when I took the test. I would just get through the dinner and get home and call Joe. It's not like anyone else at the dinner was going to find out.

As we got close to the venue for the dinner, we ran into my friend's father, who just so happens to be a sitting federal judge here in the Middle District of Florida, and my friend's stepmother. I believe I had met the judge once before, but had never had a real conversation with him. As soon as we approached the judge and his wife, my friend re-introduced me and blurted out, "She's PREGNANT!" I almost fainted dead away. A federal judge I didn't really know and his wife knew that I was pregnant before my own husband. (I'm certain that my oldest child's inclination to judge a new experience before he actually tries it is somehow a direct consequence of my stupidity that day.)

I barely made it through that dinner without throwing up. As soon as it was over, I dashed back to my friend's condo, picked up my car and sped home. When I got home, I let the dogs out and then sat in the dark on the stairs and called Joe:

FJ: Hello.

Me: Hi -- how was your day?

FJ: Okay -- how was yours?

Me: Well -- you know that birth control method I was using to keep from getting pregnant?

FJ: Ummm -- it's not working?

Me: Right.

FJ: Let me guess -- it failed miserably?

Me: Yes -- I'm pregnant.

FJ: Well that's fine -- that's good -- are you okay with that?

Me: Sure, I'm fine. I'm scared.

I did not tell Flamingo Joe that he wasn't the first to know until later and that a federal judge actually knew before he did, but when I did tell him, he wasn't really upset as far as I could tell. He may have been as numb as I was, though, and didn't actually hear me. For all I know, this may be the first time Flamingo Joe actually hears this story and we'll have to take it up with a marriage counselor next week.

[To be continued . . . ]


  1. I'm confused... where does Hypnosis come in?

    BTW, Keller is a result of the same method :)

  2. You'll have to stay tuned for Part II to hear about the hypnosis . . .


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