This is the date that I woke up in Liverpool. This is also the date that I discovered that I was pregnant. I woke up in Malmaison by the docks. I ate a continental breakfast with black coffee. I lunched with colleagues, ordering a ginger beer to counteract my hangover from the night before, before heading to Lime Street station to take the train back to London. I fell asleep on the train, waking up as we pulled into Euston, still feeling horribly tired and hungover. As I collected my bag and coat, I made a mental note to make a Doctor’s appointment the following morning to address the exhaustion I had felt over the previous few weeks. I was certain it was caused by a vitamin or iron deficiency as a result of the lack of meat in my diet or the lack of sunshine in my life. Walking past Boots as a I exited the station, I decided to nip in and buy a pregnancy test. Not because I thought I was pregnant, but because I knew the Doctor would ask me whether it was a possibility and I wanted to be able to answer with confidence so that I didn’t have to go through the embarrassing process of being made to pee in a cup of sorts and invariably covering my hands in piss. I bought the cheapest test, an ugly unbranded box that only those who are convinced that they are not pregnant buy.
I was 29 – just – and had been dating a good friend, T, for ten weeks. My head was full of fantasies of taking a sabbatical, recently approved by my boss, to travel Australia. My long term ambitions were to open my own supermarket, steps towards which I’d started taking. I didn’t consider what would happen if the pregnancy test was positive because I couldn’t imagine anything disrupting my wonderfully uncomplicated and hopeful life.
It was with this dismissive attitude that I pissed on the stick (and, okay, my hands too).
And then two blue lines appeared.