turkey basterIf the words “turkey baster” have taken on new meaning in the Baker/Kaprowy household this year, so has “rollercoaster,” a ride that started getting very bumpy last month after I underwent intra-uterine insemination.

This was the latest step in our efforts to get pregnant.

Seven days after the procedure, in which a turkey baster-like piece of equipment was used to give my husband’s swimmers a head start in getting to my egg, it was time to turn to First Response to take a test.

First Response and I have had a shockingly intimate and costly relationship over the past two years, and when I peed on the stick and it showed just the lonely one line once again, I realized it was one that was only going to get longer and pricier.

“It’s no big deal,” my husband said sweetly. “It might be too soon to tell.”

But an hour later, I became inordinately curious and went to fish the test out of the trash just to be sure I’d read it right, something I’d never done before but decided to do anyway.

And that’s when I beheld a second line, one that was, true, just faintly pink but one that was, yes, still there. The rollercoaster descended, and I felt like I was flying.

I ran over to William, shoved the test in his face, and he stared at it blindly.

“You need to start drinking some water,” he said.

An hour, six glasses of water and six more tests later, we had a squadron of sticks lined up, each showing a very faint, but very there, line.

“I’ve got to call my mom!” I said.

Between that night and the next afternoon, my husband and I told just about everyone our very exciting news, delighting in the resulting whoops of joy. In that span of time, my life had changed dramatically. No longer was I just Tara Paule Kaprowy, party of one. I was a mommy-to-be, in the flesh.

Very quickly, my entire outlook changed. I went into the kitchen and started baking chocolate chip cookies, roasting chickens, kneading bread, freezing chili. We went to the mall and I picked up a copy of “What to Expect When You’re Expecting,” whose fitness and nutrition sections I devoured. I consequently put a hold on the chocolate chip cookie-eating extravaganza and stocked up on juice and whole-grain cereal and oranges.

And then four days later, we took my stepdaughter Gabrielle, who’d already started saying good morning and goodnight to the baby, to see a movie. Walking into the theater, the smell of popcorn hit me like a hammer, and I was all of a sudden very faintly, but very surely, nauseated.

It was, I can say for certain, pretty awesome, in no small part because I realized I, too, had the ability to step up and do this. There was always a part of me that doubted it, that worried I’d be one of those women who regrets her loss of freedom more than she loves being a mother. But I realized, as the long-dormant parts of my body suddenly started working to grow this magical thing, my mindset followed suit and I felt … calm.

But then, four days later, I started bleeding and cramping. I called Wm. and he told me it happened to women about 30 percent of the time and it was nothing to be too concerned about. But then it got worse and finally we had to admit that what was, wasn’t anymore.

I’d been pregnant nine days.

How did it feel? I felt the lurch of the rollercoaster once again as I tried to backtrack and rewrite my life into what it was just nine days earlier. No, the upstairs bedroom wouldn’t be a nursery. No, I wouldn’t be too pregnant to volunteer in the school garden this summer. Yes, I would have the time to keep writing the health blog. No, I had no need to shop at Pea in a Pod. Yes, I would be able to drink wine at Christmas with my family.

It was this revision that was the hardest part. I’d read in “What to Expect” that the baby at that point was a fraction of the size of a poppy seed, so I didn’t feel an overwhelming connection to it yet. But I did have a connection to this new pregnant life, and it was hard to accept it was gone.

Anyway, that’s my story and if you, dear readers, have come this far with me, you are as indulgent as you are patient. I realized a few weeks ago it was pointless to write about anything else, because it was just filler, just something I was writing to avoid writing about this, so I finally gave into it and decided to share. It’s a lot of detail, very personal, very public, but it’s something I needed to let go of.

Thanks for helping me do that.

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