Sunday, July 30

random memory

August 2002: the day I tried to tell my friends that I was pregnant.

I was 3 months pregnant and hadn't told anybody except Carlo. My parents were about to find out. An envelope was on its way to the UK with a card inside. Attatched to the card was a printout of my first scan. Next to it was written, “Here is the first photo of your first grandchild!” I like surprising people.

Now, I had the task of telling two friends, one from Positano, one from England. They were both very anti-pregnancy, pitying anyone who got themselves in the family way. The three of us had hired a boat for the day and as we set off towards the local Islands, I wondered how I was going to break my news to them. We swam and snorkelled in the clear green waters where the mermaids once lived and lured sailors down into the depths. I didn't know how to phrase it. I decided to wait until after lunch.

We sailed to a small village down the coast. The restaurant we ate at stood on stilts, hanging over the sea. We moored our boat and were picked up by a shuttle boat that transferred us to the small dock that led up to the restaurant. There were live lobsters in a tank in the corner and the sea rippled and sparkled below, through the cracks in the floorboards. I sat by the glassless window, so that when no one was looking I could pour away the glasses of wine that my friends insisted I drink. That might have been the perfect moment to tell them, but I hesitated. We ate never ending mixed antipasti, followed by fresh grilled fish and salad, then pear and ricotta tart. After we had finished, the owner brought us glasses of prosecco with wild strawberries floating on the top. We carried our drinks out to the dock, where we basked in the sun, swinging our legs over the edge.

I took a deep breath,“guess what?” I said, shaking with anticipation, or fright. I was going to tell them!
“ Ooh!” said my Italian friend, “Yeah, guess what? I forgot to tell you both, you'll never guess who has got herself pregnant?”
I froze. The name was revealed, somebody else, and they discussed the fact that she would have to marry immediatly, and why couldn't she have been more careful. They went on to discuss other girls who had not been careful enough, and I realised that neither of them had any desire to start a family or have their independance taken away from them. I doubted that they could understand that someone might voluntarily want to have a baby.

I decided not to tell them. They would find out sooner or later via the local grapevine. After that experience I found it hard to tell anyone that I was pregnant. And so it came to pass that 6 months later 2 of my 3 brothers and the rest of my family received some very unexpected phonecalls informing them that they were uncles. My friend from Positano was away on holiday, so I sent her an e-mail. She had found out, as predicted through the gossip grapevine,a few months before. My friend from England , however, knew nothing. She was very surprised when I turned up at her house with a small baby, and offended that I hadn't told her.

So I told her all about the day I tried to tell my friends that I was pregnant...

12 comments:

  1. Hey Niki.

    She was very adorable as a baby and she's very adorable now.... Hmm...do you have another baby on the way?? :)

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  2. Gorgeous baby!

    There's one thing being anti-pregnancy, another is being anti-pregnant friends!
    So, I'm not crazy about babies, but the moment Annie told me she was expecting, I felt truly happy for her. It's her life, and her choice, and she was happy, so what's there for me to be anti? I want my friends to be happy...!

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  3. She was so beautiful as a baby! What a neat story. Thanks for sharing! :)

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  4. That is one fine shot.
    What's her birthdate (if you may tell)?
    btw I sense gossiping...everyone is expecting you deliver a boy now...did you know? This is Positano. If your single, you need to get married...iuf you are married you MUST have a child...if you have a child you absolutely owe it to everyone to have the oposite gender of your child...it's NEVER ENDING...uffa!

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  5. Everyone who thinks Niki has a novel in her, please raise their hand and send her a ream of paper.
    William/LA

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  6. Okay, now I am not usually a fan of baby pictures, because babies tend to scare me (because I don't know what to do with them!), but that is one ADORABLE baby!

    (I'm assuming that I won't be too terribly scared of my own baby when I have one!)

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  7. Well this borhter - the youngest I am happy to say - is the luckiest in the world - for two reasons: 1: my neice is gorgeous...and 2: my sister rescued me from the whole grandchild thing - as the whole family know - IT AIN'T GOING TO HAPPEN! Nicki - I thank you and love you x

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  8. Niki,
    I shouldn't have even asked, it was rather silly on my part.
    I know roughly her age I was just curious about her sign, that's all.
    She's a true beauty.

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  9. Oh, you're a writer, all right. You've got a wonderful title for a novel, The Life I Chose... I checked Amazon and the Library of Congress, and I don't think it's ever been used before. Your own story, spiced with fiction, has it all: adventure, suspense, romance. Just three pages a day is 540 pages in six months! And the rewriting is more fun than the writing.
    --William/LA

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  10. William-I wouldn't know where to start! Theres a whole load of stuff I can't even write here! Oh, and I would probably get writers block too, this I can do because there is no pressure!

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  11. Please consider adapting "morning pages" à la Julia Cameron [i](The Artist's Way)[/i]. Complete three long-hand pages each morning. Write more when you feel like it, but never less than three. Write what's in your head. Some days will be great, others will result in three pages of [i]"All work and no play makes Niki a dull girl"[/i] over and over. Don't edit the pages. Don't reread them. Just keep going forward. I just reserved my copy of [i][b]the life i chose...[/b][/i]on Amazon.

    http://paperartstudio.tripod.com/artistsway/id3.html

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  12. ¡Guapisima la niña! Congratulations, I think babies are great. I remember when my sister got pregnant once and had a whole host of problems with telling my parents and others. Well done and the best of luck!

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