Space for a Child
I was in my early 30’s when I became pregnant with my daughter. My parents and my in-laws always said that we waited too long to have a baby. We should have had one right away after we got married. The truth is, I’ve always imagined us traveling the world as a childless couple — completely happy with just each other. I loved my career and he loved his. In the back of my mind, I knew that he would eventually start wanting a baby. My husband loved his nieces and nephews and adored children. For most of my 20’s, I didn’t think about having a child or even wanting one. So, we never discussed it before we got married.
It happened though. I got pregnant. I sat on the bed for an hour or so thinking about space. How much space would a small human need? We owned a three-bedroom house. It was just the two of us — so we had our room, a TV room and I had an entire bedroom that I use as a closet.
I walked over to my dressing room, twirling the pregnancy test in one hand. I looked at the plastic stick one more time to confirm that it was indeed positive before chucking it in the bin. I have to give up those shoes. I thought to myself. 5-inch heels in hot pink seemed like it wouldn’t work with being a mom. I ran my fingers through a row of party dresses that I probably won’t get to use for a while.
I tilted my head to the side and imagined the room in pink. I was sure I was going to have a baby girl. She was going to be a mini version of me. I actually started to smile as I envisioned the nursery in my mind. The thought of giving up this space — the one that was truly my own in this world — weighed heavily at first. When I started to paint the room in my head and visualized replacing the rows of dresses with a little cot and a comfy chair where I could sit to watch over her, sacrificing my space didn’t seem too much.
I glanced at the corner of the room where the full-body mirror stood. I started to think about the changes that would happen to my body over the next nine months. This baby was going to need more than just a small room. She was also going to take up space in my body. I started to panic yet again. I cried for a good hour or so at the thought that another human being was going to live…