The Pregnancy Test
I skulked over to Target when I felt sure that I wouldn't see anyone that I'd know. I still felt paranoid as I stood in front of the vast displays of pregnancy tests and boggled at how I'd choose. EPT, the error-proof test? Fact Plus, that doctors used most? Target-brand test? Should I buy two, in case one didn't work? I finally went with First Response in a pink box. Why? It was on sale for $7.89.
I had just come from our holiday party at work, and my bladder was sloshing with soda. I decided it would be silly to pee before I got home, though, since I did need to do that for the test to work. So by the time I got home, I nearly burst, hollered hello to my husband then shut myself in the bathroom and tried to hold it in for a few moments more as I ripped open the package while trying to read the instructions. Giving up on the latter, I finally let loose, sticking the test in a more than adequate stream.
When I read the instructions, I realized that I'd soaked it for a bit too long but figured if five seconds of pregnancy hormone exposure was good, ten would be better, right? After the requisite amount of time, I picked up the test, compared it to the instructions, then looked back, and forth, and back again.
If the test was working, I should have a vertical line in the small box--the control box. If I was pregnant, then I would also have a vertical line in the big box.
I had no line in the small box and a horizontal line in the big box. I let out a yell of frustration, which drew the attention of my husband.
"Um, everything all right in there, honey?" he asked, worried.
"Stupid rassum frassum pregnancy test. I can't believe the cliches are true. I have no idea if I'm pregnant!" I wailed.
My husband read the instructions, looked at the stick and agreed. "Yep, that's fucked up." I threw the stick in the trash in frustration with the package, but kept the instructions so I could call the customer service line. What were they going to do for me, though? Send me another incompetent test? Guess that's what I deserved for getting the test that was on sale.
I stomped around the apartment for the rest of the night, grumbly and out of sorts. When I finally got into bed, though, a thought occurred to me. What if I'd doused it with too much liquid, and it just needed to dry out a bit? I hauled myself out of bed, into the other bathroom and fished the oh-so-sanitary peed-upon stick out of the trashcan. Madness, I tell you.
And there, of course, were two vertical lines. One in the little box and one in the big.
I threw it away again, washed my hands and got back into bed.
"I guess I'm pregnant, then," I announced.
"Is the rest of it going to go better than this?" he sighed.
"Goddess, I hope so."