On Men, Women And Pregnancy Tests
My eyes flickered open at 5 am sharp, a full ten minutes before the alarm sounded, and the first thought I had was about that test. I needed to take the pregnancy test I hid under a pile of underwear in my top dresser drawer. I threw the down comforter off my body and tiptoed to the bureau.
I didn’t need to take a pregnancy test, really. I already knew it was positive, but because I love to see things in black and white (or in this case bright blue), I took the test anyway.
The control line was clearly blue but the second line, the one which confirms a pregnancy, was faint. But, after 7 pregnancies and six kids, if there’s one thing I know it’s this: there are no false positives.
We were going to have another baby.
I took a few cleansing breaths and thought, We can do this. Everything will be fine. Another baby? No problem.
Then I said a silent prayer of thanksgiving, “Thank you, Lord, for this gift of life. I’m continually amazed you trust me this much. Perhaps you shouldn’t?”
When I came back into the room, John asked me where I had gone. I ignored his question and climbed back in bed.
“Are you getting up?” I whispered.
“Hmmmmm,” he grunted into his pillow.
“Because I really need to show you something.”
“Hmmmmmmm…” he groaned again.
His alarm sounded and he hopped out to slam it off. I sat up, aware I had his attention.
“I need to show you something,” I said again and John followed me into the bathroom where the test lay on the back of the toilet.
“I just took this pregnancy test and there are two lines, even though one is really faint,” I explained, showing him the test.
“There aren’t two lines, there’s only one line–the control line,” he said.
“No, John, there are two lines. Don’t you see the second one? It’s faint, but it’s there. See?”
“That is not a line! I can barely see it. This test doesn’t count, Colleen. It’s not a positive pregnancy test,” he said.
I started to get annoyed.
“John, this is not my first pregnancy test rodeo. I know I look stupid, but there are no false positives. This is a positive test. We’re going to have another baby.”
For as good natured, easy going and calm as he is, John has a silent stubborn streak as long and as deep as the Grand Canyon. Once he’s convinced of something, even if I offer my best case otherwise, it is impossible to change his mind.
“That test is dead to me,” he said. “It doesn’t count. You’re not pregnant and I’m not celebrating until you take another one.”
“I’ll take another test, but this one isn’t wrong,” I argued with him. “I’m pregnant.”
We bickered back and forth for a few minutes about the accuracy/inaccuracy of the test and our conversation ended with his promise to secure another test so we he could be sure. When he got home from work that night, he immediately produced a CVS grocery bag containing the “goods” and I, the dutiful wife, took the test.
The tests results were exactly the same: a strong blue control line and a very faint second line.
“You’ve got to be kidding me!” John said when he saw it. “This means nothing to me! Nothing!”
And then John did what he always does when I give him a piece of information he doesn’t trust: he took it to the Internet. He googled the terms “faint line on pregnancy test” and it wasn’t until he read some random comment from a woman on a message forum whose husband insisted she take five different pregnancy tests because of the same problem, that he actually conceded I was with child.
“If you aren’t convinced now, maybe you will be in nine months because ready or not, here she comes,“ I said.
Copyright 2013 Colleen Duggan