Thursday, February 4, 2010
The conclusion of pregnant in law school.
I really struggled with not having a clever title for this series of stories. I briefly considered some, but Junior and Juris seemed like too much of a stretch, so I give up.
If you wanna read it, here's the rest of the story. Part 1 and Part 2
Going back to school after summer break has always been a whirl of emotions. As a kid I can remember not sleeping the night before because I was nervous/excited. Who would be in my class? What am I going to wear? Did I get enough folders for my trapper keeper? I’d always have butterflies in my tummy the first day of school. Going back into my last year of law school was like that, except instead of butterflies, there was a baby. And I didn’t have an awesome trapper keeper.
I decided before I headed back to school that I wasn’t going to tell anyone until I was bigger than a breadbox. I didn’t want anyone to judge. Looking back, I’m not really sure why I thought it was a big deal to keep it secret. I didn’t want professors/classmates think that I did not care about my education, or my grades, or my future career. I wanted people to take me seriously, both as a mother AND as a future attorney.
Keeping baby a secret was hard. Morning sickness was ALMOST done, but I still went to the bathroom a little too often. I’d also developed a habit of not wearing makeup on days I felt subpar. Friends noticed, I told them, and before long, being knocked-up wasn’t so hush-hush.
One day, while waiting for class, “Jane” came up to me in the hallway. “Jane” was known for speaking without a filter.
J: Heard you were pregnant
M: Yes, I am
J: *blank stare*
J: So…. Are you actually going to keep it?
M: *thinking did you REALLY just ask that* Yes..
J: AND still go to school
J: Oh… *look of disapproval*
And with that she walked off. This was still early on in the semester and I thought. Please God… if I get much more of that, I’m going to end up bawling right here in the hallway. To make matters worse, I was convinced that was going to be the feeling of 99% of my classmates.
Not 20 minutes after the “Jane” encounter, someone came up to me and said that “Holly” was also pregnant. “Holly” was also in her last year and not only that, we were in the same study group. I immediately hunted her down to confirm, and we both expressed relief that we weren’t “alone”. There may have been a tiny happy dance in there as well, I can’t be sure.
The semester went on, and I did not tell any of my professors what was going on. By Christmas, I was starting to get a belly, but I just wore bigger sweatshirts. No one said a word. When class started after Christmas, I couldn’t hide the belly much anymore, so I wrote an email to my professors. I got 3 “Congratulations!” and only 1 “I don’t care.”
The day before I was scheduled to be induced, I told my small Estate Planning class (8 people) that I wouldn’t be in class the next week because I was going to have a baby. THREE (all guys, I might add) looked at me in disbelief and said, I didn’t even know you were pregnant. Dude… I’m as big as a house. Really? No idea? Me being the huge preggo found it flattering and the whole class expressed Congratulations.
Avery's Birth Story
To be honest, aside from the “Jane encounter” and the indifference of one professor, the law school community welcomed my pregnancy with open arms. My fear was far and away the worst part of it all. 99.9% of everyone was genuinely happy for me (or, apparently, didn't notice.) Even though I started out thinking that this was the absolute WORST time to have a baby, it ended up being the ABSOLUTE BEST time to welcome baby Avery into our family.