Happy tears flooded my eyes when the ultrasound confirmed we were having a girl. Even though I could only see her through the screen, I felt like our connection was already unbreakable. I had a powerful urge to run out of the room to announce that our babygirl was strong and healthy… but I remained cuddled in her fathers arms, the only place that made me feel like I had it all together.
Within the next few weeks, we planned a separate reveal for my parents and extended family. As much as I wanted to keep it a secret until the day of my delivery, the excitement I felt was far too much to handle on my own. I cracked a smile every time someone guessed that we were having a girl. Based off of the glow of my face and the position in which my stomach sat, they were right. With one pop of a ballon and a little slither of cake, the pink of my dreams came to surface. The word was out, and it was only a matter of time before the entire world knew. My babygirl was doused in a bucket of love… all while she stayed snug in my belly of warmth and security.
As I wrapped my apron around my belly, it became more apparent to my coworkers why I was so being so cautious. My anxiety was heavily pressing against my chest making it difficult to breath. There were tons of kids gathered into a closed area, one that I was required to work in until night fall. Sticky hands, runny noses, drool and dirty diapers… all things I would soon encounter with my own child. Sure, I had babysat before and became acquainted with kids of all ages. But the thought of caring for a child whom referred to ME as mom… that was something I had no choice but to prepare for. I had always imagined myself chasing after a little one with less than an hour to lock the door behind me. But every time I told myself I could manage, even with the pressures of being a good mom, the doubt would come back and take over the wheel.
I checked the time on my phone every couple of seconds in hopes that somehow the day would fast forward to the end of my shift. I remember leaving my house feeling lightheaded, but calling out of work wasn’t an option. I sat in the break room listening to the sounds of little voices surround the building. Water. Maybe I just need some water. I started my breathing exercises to soothe my raging nerves. My babygirl was still moving… I felt her wiggling ontop of my bladder. But something wasn’t adding up. I hesitated to text my boyfriend because I didn’t want to stir up a worry when it wasn’t needed. But a huge chunk of my mind told the contrary.
Over the intercom…
Ms. Courtney, please report to room 1. You’re needed in room 1.
The voices were faint. Everyone in the building was in search for me, and while I wanted to shout that I was in the kitchen… my voice remained unheard and persisted to speak in my own mind.
The floor below me was cold against my skin. I knew I must’ve hit my head first being that the pain started from there.
Has anyone seen Courtney? I just saw her walk in almost ten minutes ago. Maybe she’s in the….
Kitchen. I’m in the kitchen.