I’m of the opinion that it isn’t healthy to keep secrets. Ultimately the truth needs to come out and it’s easier to just be honest along the way. But I’ll be the first to admit that this has not been my summer of full disclosure.
Remember that super-great job that my husband got at the beginning of the summer? The one that was going to get us out of debt before the end of the year (including a huge chunk of the student loan), and help us put aside for retirement, savings, and possibly a house? The one that was going to send us to the dentist come October 1st? The one that made me finally relax and feel like a real person again after that long job hunt?
There was one good thing came from that job: I relaxed enough about our situation that we decided to work on baby #2.
And almost as soon as I conceived the job didn’t turn out to be what we thought, and with the little money we had made in those few short weeks my husband came home and got to looking full-time for another job. We were full of faith and optimism, knowing that he could get another job easily and that we’d be back on track with our plans in no time, but the offers that came in were often commission-only or in other ways unacceptable, and time wore on.
There were several days that I thought we’d reached the end, that we were done with the trials and good would come on the morrow but the only thing to greet me when I woke was another day of sameness. And even though I thought I couldn’t do it, I did. The day our computer died capped the end of a week full of bad news. How could we possibly get a job without a computer? I thought for sure we were at the end then, and I knew that Monday morning would greet us with an acceptable job offer, and a call back for me for some of the things I had been investigating. It didn’t, and I survived. It would be another week before he got a job that we felt good about, and none of my fruitful leads ever did work out (but at least Sylvan called me back, as you already know.)
Underscoring the stress of looking for a job without money coming in was my inability to continue my schedule as before. I had forgotten just how exhausting it is to create a biosphere and had assumed that my narcolepsy last time was due to my rigorous teaching schedule. Unable to function normally I resorted to Sesame Street to raise Little Red while I lay on the couch on my way to becoming catatonic. He was surprisingly patient with me, but I know he’s ready to have his mother back (and I hope he’ll be okay with watching less television now that I’m getting back on my feet.)
To add stress to stress to stress we got caught in a bad situation with insurance coverage thanks to the ineptitude of someone from the original job (who is one of the reasons we decided to leave that company in the first place.) If I wasn’t pregnant it would have been an easy thing to fix, but I wasn’t about to commit insurance fraud so I had to keep trying to do it the right way, despite the stubbornness on her part to cooperate and the fact that it was going to cost us twice as much. I won’t go into the tirade I’d like to on this issue, not now, and not ever, but I’ll just say that the system is broken and once again we were left pregnant and trying to find a way to make it work. So the weeks were dragging on like years and I had yet to see a doctor, not to confirm my pregnancy -that’s obvious- but to confirm that the baby is okay. For the first time in two pregnancies I was actually starting to worry, although I knew I shouldn’t.
I discovered that I’m better at keeping secrets than my husband is, and that he did let it slip a few times that “we think Heather might be pregnant.” I guess, to be fair, it isn’t like he announced that we were, just that we might be. But I know he worded it that way because last time we announced we were pregnant we were met with skepticism until my OB (who wouldn’t see me until I was 10 weeks along) had confirmed it.
Why did we keep quiet about the job search? We had been open about the first job search and all that did was add to the stress as people lobbied for us to live their lives or told us “you just can’t move!” Neither of which was very helpful when multiplied by the number of people who wanted us to live our lives as they had planned. And I’ll be honest, this second job hunt was so discouraging on the back of the first. It wasn’t that we had done anything wrong, but it really wasn’t something we wanted to broadcast. Without the well-meaning pressure from all of our friends and acquaintances we were able to investigate all options fairly.
Why did we keep quiet about the baby? We would have even without the job search, but the job search made it all the more necessary. But now, having seen my nurse practioner, seen the baby, and been given the okay, I feel okay talking about it. Besides, when it was a secret I couldn’t complain about how lousy I felt.
Now you know: my husband has been working his new job for a week now. It’s a better work environment than either of the jobs he has held out here, and while the base pay is lower than that super-great-sweatshop it’s such a relief to be somewhere that will move us forward professionally and still recognize the need for balance in life.
Now you know: I am eleven weeks pregnant and the baby appears to be due on April 3rd. I’m so glad I’ll have Kaiser insurance throughout the pregnancy, as I adore my NP and I know that my best shot at a VBAC in California is with them. I know I can do it and I know they will help. Baby is healthy and Mummy is happy.