|I made it to 37 weeks.
That night, my water broke.
On the visit to my OB during my 35th week of pregnancy, he seemed concerned that I would go into labor early. He ordered me to take it easy and get through two more weeks before meeting my little one. I was horrified. I was barely ready to become a mother in five more weeks and now he was telling me that I might have even less time. I needed every second I could get. Doctor Lopez didn’t care about that though. And neither did my child, apparently.
point in worrying everyone else. I told my roommate about it. I told my
Aunt Melodie who was also my birth coach. She basically told me not to move a muscle for any reason and
that she would be praying for Emilia to wait for the due date. I called the
restaurant where I worked and said it was time to stop coming in.
kids! Let me know if you want to come work at all after the baby comes. After
you heal, of course.”
newspaper. I decided the only difference between home and the office was a car
ride so I’d still go in for now. My boss was CERTAIN my baby would be at least two weeks late. When I went into the office the next day I told her to
be prepared in case I needed to start my maternity leave earlier than May 15.
You’ll be more than ready when she decides to come out.”
they could do to delay the inevitable and my mom would freak out and wonder if
she needed to change her flight – a question I had no conclusive answer to. So I didn’t tell them.
across my belly. All quiet on the baby front. No contractions. No butterflies.
No kicking. Just a napping baby with no indication that she wanted to greet the
world anytime in the next decade.
had met pre-pregnancy when she and his step dad had come into the restaurant for
dinner. She had a Polish maiden name and wanted to meet this Polish girl from
Chicago that her son had been talking about.
been introduced but I couldn’t remember her name exactly. Denise? Diane? Debra?
Some name that didn’t even start with “D”?
pregnancy was encouraging him to tell his parents about the baby. They had both
seemed so kind. Like the type to embrace grandparenthood. And even if they
weren’t either of those things, they deserved to know that there was a little
girl in the bloodline.
he had told them and that they called me a liar. When invitations for my baby
shower went out, girls at the restaurant asked me if they should send his mom
one. I said that since she didn’t believe the baby to actually be her
grandchild, maybe they should skip the niceties.
he says she does, then she will just throw it away. If she doesn’t know about
the baby, then I guess she will find out.”
weeks and possibly days of delivery, I thought about the beautiful Polish lady
from Pennsylvania who was the grandmother to my daughter. Maybe she did hate
me. Maybe she thought I was trying to put the squeeze on her table-waiting son
for every penny he was worth. Maybe she felt that she was too young to be a
grandma and resented the suggestion.
happened to the pretty Polish girl that her son had seemed so crazy about nine
months earlier. Maybe she was already a grandma and would welcome another
little one with open arms.
implications of a deadbeat grandparent so I just avoided the issue. Now as the
inevitable delivery was within a calendar page I felt like I needed to revisit
the idea that it might be me who needed to step up and be the bearer of bad, or
joyful, news. Whatever the reaction, these grandparents needed time before the
baby arrived to accept the concept – even if that time period ended up being a
day or two.
person would find the phone number of a person who’s first or last name he or
she didn’t know, but knew the name of the searched person’s adult son.
just feel like I have the responsibility to do this.”
her face. She wanted to say that it wasn’t my responsibility. It was the
lowlife-scum-bucket-douche-bag-deadbeat dad’s responsibility to tell his own
parents that he had been half of a baby-creating team. That was a typical reaction from all my friends in those days. Instead, she wrote two
numbers on a piece of paper, one with her name next to it.
straight from the newspaper and hoping the I-4 traffic gods liked me. Today I
was just heading home for a quiet evening. My roommate was away waiting tables
quietly at a high-top table, watching the sunset out the sliding door into the
backyard. My cell phone was on the table next to me. I texted my roommate and
asked if Jason was at work. About twenty minutes later, I got the reply “Yes.
didn’t know if his Mom, or step dad, was home. But it was time to take the
chance and make the call.
a second, I would turn back. I barreled forward.
asking me to identify myself for the resident. At the sound of a beep, I
tentatively said “Katie.” Damn. I probably should have said my last name too. I
must have spoken too softly, because the robotic voice asked me if I was still
there, and that I needed to please identify myself at the tone.
from hanging up and now this audio contraption was making even easier to hit
the “end” button. This time at the beep, I was ready.
to open and the words to tumble out. I was horribly afraid suddenly.
have defaulted to terms of endearment already.
“Um. Yes. Yes I am. Katie Powalski.”
calling. Her name is Katie too. How are you sweetheart?”
But still a term of endearment was being thrown my way. The fear started to
loosen its fingers around my larynx.
decided to take a stab at the first initial.
cleaning done. Enjoying the quiet for a bit. I’m sorry but Jason isn’t here
right now. He’s at work tonight. I guess that you must be off?”
calling for Jason anyway. I’m calling for you.”
to know that I’m having a baby in about a month and she is Jason’s. He said he
already mentioned something to you, but I guess I just wanted to be positive
that you knew about the baby.”
name. I was going to stick with the level, monotone plan.
the pregnancy and has made it pretty clear he doesn’t want to be involved with
the baby. Which is his choice. But I wanted you to have the information and
make your own choice.”
due May 15th.”
would’ve loved to invite you but didn’t know if you’d want to come.”
excited. I didn’t know how to react so just kept answering her barrage of
questions. We talked about my jobs, my insurance, how much maternity leave I
was going to take and when my mother would be in town to help me. We ended
with her getting my phone number and telling me she was going to let everything
soak in then call me back in a few days.
been easy. Welcome to the family!” Denise said enthusiastically.
called Jason’s Mom, because that was the rumor around the restaurant. I confirmed and she said that
he was acting more relieved than angry. Part of me wished I hadn’t done his
dirty work for him but then I remembered that the conversation I just had with his
mother had nothing to do with him. I brought joy to a future grandmother and
peace to myself and that was worth the call.