“This is it!”

You’re thinking: ‘This is it, this the moment!’ And while you stop short of giving yourself a celebratory pat on the shoulder, the feeling of triumph is still there. You stride towards the bathroom, feeling all confident, and you wink at your reflection in the mirror. Guys…what strange creatures we are. But let’s make one thing clear: Sarah and I decided to throw all of the contraceptives out the window. We wanted to get pregnant. How many times I winked at myself like that, I’d like to keep to myself… Still, we got the job done quickly enough!

It’s such an exciting time. Even though you feel you’re standing on the sidelines. Not knowing what’s happening in her belly. But you’re thinking, suspecting and asking yourself: ‘Are we pregnant yet?’ Without expressing it, the hope and belief gets stronger. Collecting every bit of courage for that one moment: the inevitable visit to the local chemist’s. Thinking of ways to sneak in unnoticed, just to keep the secret. To buy a pregnancy test incognito. Eventually, Sarah bought it. We agreed to pee together. That was our deal. Well actually, she would pee; I would just sit and wait with her. A special and exciting moment.

We decided to have lunch at home that Thursday. We ate a sandwich, stupidly giggling for no reason at all. This was the foreplay to the peeing ritual – hilarious! But then comes the waiting. Peeking. Pretending we’re pregnant. The waiting continues – but then there’s the lines, the confirmation… PREGNANT! Two thoughts immediately cross my mind: ‘I knew it.’ That is the tough version I usually use in the presence of my male friends. However the rather restrained, quiet second thought was: ‘Wow, pregnant… what do we do now?’

You look at each other. Stoical. Then all of the sudden the news sinks in. You hug tightly, the happiness overwhelming. On our way out, we smoked our very last cigarette together. Although I’m embarrassed to admit, it turned out to be only her last cigarette. Eventually you end up in a sort of euphoria. Together, you share this amazingly brilliant secret. But when just a week later during dinner with two friends the subject of getting pregnant is brought up, I almost choke. Apparently my face gives away a certain emotion and denying it any longer doesn’t work anymore. And to be honest, I don’t want to. I just want to scream it from the rooftops! We laugh, we talk, we drink. And I smoke. Keeping your mouth shut is bloody hard. So when going out with another acquainted couple one night, you immediately own up. Because they can see how you’re ‘trying’. No alcohol is a signal. The smoke curtain you leave behind are of no help at this point. And so yet another couple is informed, even before our first visit to the midwife, to get the final confirmation on our happy status.

After our visit to the midwife, it was okay to let the rest of the world in on our secret. Alright, so we spilled the beans to my sister-in-law already, but the most important moment is when you tell the parents. At least, in my opinion. We order echos, buy picture frames, add a message, wrap it up and off we go. Curious about the reactions. My parents immediately burst into tears. They are in no condition to talk. What else, you ask? Well, they did this kind of air sucking. With tears. I knew I was giving them a beautiful present, something they were not counting on anymore, but their reaction took me by surprise nevertheless. And it was priceless.

Her parents. No tears. More of a shock. The same thunderstruck effect here as well. My father-in-law opens the present, sees the picture and cries out: ‘Holy f*ck!’ We laugh. When I think about his reaction… Yeah, that’s exactly what it was. Literally. But that was something I’d already told myself when I looked in the bathroom mirror.

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