If you’re new here, start reading from the beginning! Here’s Part I.
Katy spent the next day in bed watching movies, reading books, and being catered to by her sister. Her parents were out shopping and visiting old friends for the entire day which was a huge relief. The last thing she wanted was her Mom breathing down her neck.
Last night she had gone to her room as soon as they walked in. Her Mom had come in to talk to her about Tyler.
“He seems like a nice young man,” she had started with.
“Yeah, he’s nice,” Katy replied, half-heartedly.
“What’s wrong? You don’t like him? Did he ask you out?”
“No, it’s this,” she pointed at her belly. “This,” she drew rapid circles in the air around her belly, “is complicated. He doesn’t need complicated.”
“Sweetie, everyone’s complicated. And he seems to be a family guy. I saw the whole Thompson family at church. I know his mother but I’ve never seen her children.”
“You know them?” Katy squeaked.
“Yes, I met her at a Parent Teacher conference about ten years ago. She was one of Julia’s teachers in Junior High and, well, her with four kids and me with three, we ended up having a lot in common. And of course, we talked about how to raise our children as Christians in the public school system. I remember being so glad that there was one Christian teacher in Julia’s junior high to look out for her. I didn’t realize they were going to this church now.”
“Hmmm, she must have come right after I left Junior High.”
“I think I remember her saying she stayed home to raise her children until their youngest was in high school. But she was a substitute teacher before that. You might have seen her.”
Katy shook her head. “I don’t remember her, but listen Mom, I’m really tired. I just want to go to bed. It’s going to be a long night with lots of trips to the bathroom.”
“Okay, sweetie. But don’t push this boy away too quickly. I saw him hold that baby at church. He’d make a great father.”
“Mom! It’s not about that! I’m not out looking for a daddy for my baby!” Katy had turned her back on her Mom and had started getting ready for bed. Her warm red sweater was off and hopefully she wouldn’t have to wear it ever again. And hopefully her Mom would stop trying to marry her off.
“Sorry, you’re right. You are a strong woman, but I don’t want you to think you’re completely off the market. God has a good man out there for you.”
Katy sighed and sat down her bed. No decent guy would want to have her and another man’s baby. Her mom had stood up and put down the gift bags she had been playing with as they spoke.
“Well, I hope you have fewer trips to the bathroom tonight. Good night.” She had kissed Katy on the head and left the room, closing the door behind her.
Katy had curled up into the nest of pillows on her bed and felt absolutely awful. There was no doubt in her mind that Tyler would be a good father. Or a decent husband. But could she really know this after meeting him only 24 hours ago? Even if his whole family went to church and his mom was this amazing teacher her Mom seemed to think she was. It was much too fast. And soon she’d have a baby and that would be her priority, not finding a husband. No, she was pretty sure she had screwed up on ever finding a good husband. Anyway, if he had any sense at all, he’d get the idea that she wasn’t looking for a relationship and he’d run as fast as he could in the opposite direction.
Complicated. That’s right. That was what she had chosen nearly a year ago when she had first slept with Chad. Ugh, what had she been thinking? Why hadn’t she been thinking? They had both said that it wouldn’t happen again. They said they would stop, but Chad had never been serious about stopping. And he never seemed to believe she was serious when she said no. Anyway, after you had sex once, you couldn’t turn back the hands of time anyway. So it had happened again, and again, and again until she found out she was six weeks pregnant.
Why hadn’t he worn condoms? Why hadn’t she gotten some sort of birth control? They had practically been begging for this to happen!
‘Why, Katy, why?’ she lay in bed, emotionally beating herself up. She felt like a complete idiot. If the church was any indication of how society felt, she’d be alone forever. She’d have to go looking outside the church for a man who would put up with her ‘unforgivable sin.’ The people at work were incredibly kind and supportive although there weren’t any younger guys working there. Well, there was the young courier who had tried to kiss her in the elevator but he was probably only 18 years old. She gave her head a shake. Here she was getting upset at her mom for trying to pawn her off on the next decent guy standing on two feet when she herself was thinking the exact same way.
‘You don’t need a husband, Katy. Your baby will be just fine without a father. Plus, there’s Julia. She may not be a dad, but at least she’s here. Until I move out or she gets married.’ Katy groaned out loud and turned on a movie to try to take her mind off her racing thoughts.
That was last night. Today, she allowed herself a day of luxury. Who knew how many more would be coming? She had seen Audrey running after the toddler and had eyed the bulging diaper bags that Tyler’s sisters were lugging around. And with all of Tyler’s dire warnings, she suddenly felt compelled to stay in bed. Plus, her belly was cramping up more than usual, even with all the water she was drinking. At noon, she even asked Julia to come in and rub her feet. It’s not that they were swollen, they were just uncomfortable.
Everything was uncomfortable and achy no matter how she moved her pillows. By two that afternoon she couldn’t stand being in bed so she got up and wandered into the living room where Julia was working at her desk.
“Do you remember Mrs. Thompson?” she asked her sister who was peering at her computer screen. The Christmas tree had lights and decorations on it. Her mother must have decorated it last night after she had closed herself up in her room. Katy gently fingered a few of the ornaments. She remembered making a few of them as a child in school and at Sunday School.
“Yeah, she was the best. I had her for Home Ec. You didn’t?”
“Heh, come look at this. Oh wait, I’ll bring it to you.” Julia picked up her laptop and brought it over to one of the couches and motioned for Katy to sit beside her. “Okay, you know that thing Tyler did to your back last night? Look here.” She pressed play on a YouTube video and Katy watched as a woman in labour got assistance from a doula with a similar technique.
“Hmmm. Interesting,” Katy said without a lot of enthusiasm.
“Where’d he learn that?” Julia stared intently at the screen as the next video came on. It was another woman labouring but she was screaming hysterically in pain.
“Oh turn it off! I don’t want to know that!” Katy put her hand in front of her eyes and Julia hit mute but kept watching.
“This is fascinating.”
“You are such a nerd. I’m going back to my room.” Katy tried to stand up but she felt stuck.
“Can someone please help me?!!” she yelled.
Julie slammed her laptop shut and jumped up. “Sorry, you just need to ask nicely. I didn’t know.” She reached out her hand to pull Katy up and moved out of her way as Katy lumbered towards her bedroom.
Katy slammed the door and slumped into bed as a sharp twinge ripped through her lower belly.
“Ugh, I just want this to be over!” she yelled at the wall. She picked up her phone and checked her text messages. Nothing. She looked at the brief conversation she had had with Tyler yesterday before she had arrived at his shop. She really wanted to talk to him. He’d probably have her calmed down and relaxed in no time at all. That’s what she needed. He probably gave a really good back massage too. And she was dying to ask him what other things he knew about pregnancy and childbirth. That fascinating man was taking over her brain.
For one, he was super useful. How she’d love to have her own personal mechanic again not to mention the door to door service he provided.
He was obviously good with children. She could still picture him with baby Bailey in his arms, his thumb wrapped in Bailey’s tiny hand while his nieces and nephews vied for his attention. His own sister had sung his praises! And he looked like he could be a GQ model with his intense brown eyes, his perfect smile, his incredibly body, and his sense of fashion which Katy secretly admired.
‘Katy, look at you! You’re just as superficial as everyone else! That’s ridiculous! And unfair.’ But was she really being ridiculous? She desperately wanted to find out more about him but there was no way she’d want to pull a decent guy like that into her complicated world.
Another sharp twinge ripped through her belly and into her back. Was this labour? She willed herself to calm down and took a sip of water from her water bottle. Then she turned on another movie and tried to distract herself. Fifteen minutes later there was another sharp twinge, but more intense. This was probably what labour felt like, she thought, but it wasn’t too bad. More annoying than anything. She noted the time and tried to focus on the movie.
Twenty minutes later, another one. She decided to keep track of the times on her phone. Then twelve minutes, then ten minutes, then back up to fifteen minutes. By the time the movie was over, she had had about seven or eight contractions, or what she thought were contractions.
She heard Julia rustling around in the kitchen and she needed to refill her water bottle. Plus, she owed her sister an apology. Time to get out of bed and stop feeling sorry for herself.
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