The buzzing sound of the alarm clock jolted me awake. I slowly opened my eyes, got up and walked to the window. The sun was shining, the sky flawless, the temperature cosy with a slight breeze and I thought to myself, “Wow, I’m so grateful for my life.” I could hear my two boys in the next room already wide awake and playing computer games.
“Good morning, luscious.” Paul said as he walked in with my breakfast tray. Paul is an amazing husband and knows how to make you feel like you’re the only thing that matters in his life.
“Morning, baby. I know you’re only being nice because you want me to go easy on you at the bowling alley later,” I teased.
“Well, is it working?” he asked, winking at me. “No, of course not,” I laughed.
The breakfast-in-bed tradition started by accident. Paul and I had just started dating when he came over to visit one cold winter. We spent a lovely evening together. At about midnight, as he got ready to leave, I remember secretly wishing he would stay the night. Well, somebody up there must have been listening because when we opened the door there was a snow blizzard. There was no way Paul was going to drive in those conditions. It just wasn’t safe. So he stayed the night.
The next morning when I opened my eyes Paul was not there. I panicked. He’d gone. I quickly got up, trying to stop the tears welling up in my eyes.
“Get back into bed!” I heard a voice behind me. The relief I felt was mixed with confusion as I wondered why I was being ordered back into bed. He read my mind. “Hey, don’t look so scared. I’ve made you breakfast.”
When we got married and started a family, the tradition continued. Now as Paul stood there with the tray, I couldn’t help falling in love with him all over again.
As he placed the tray on my lap the smell of eggs and bacon wafted up my nostrils. I breathed in. Suddenly I was overcome by a wave of nausea. I pushed the tray aside and bolted for the bathroom where I was promptly sick.
“Baby, are you okay?” Paul sounded worried.
“I’ll be fine, sweetheart. I think I’ve just been working too hard,” I lied.
I’d been feeling like this for several weeks and there was no denying that I was pregnant.
I could hear our eldest boy screaming. “Daddy, what’s wrong with mummy? Is she sick?” Our youngest boy, not to be outdone, screamed even louder, “I’ll get her some Calpol from the fridge to make her feel better.” That made me smile. I wished Calpol could help me get over the sickness.
After a while I felt better. I got up, brushed my teeth then jumped into the shower. As the tepid water ran down my body, I felt a sense of dread which I pushed to the back of my mind. It was a beautiful day and I wasn’t going to let anything spoil it.
When I walked back into the bedroom I found Paul sitting on the bed looking worried. He finger combed his short, black curly hair and asked, “Baby, are you sure you’re okay?”
“Of course I’m sure,” I said as convincingly as I could. I could tell he wasn’t satisfied with my answer and would have continued probing but the phone rang. Phew! Saved by the bell. It was June.
“Hey, girl!” she greeted me with her cheery voice. “Are we still on for bowling this afternoon?”
Married to David, a serious looking investment banker, June was the life and soul of every party. The couple lived across the road and we had struck up a friendship when we moved into the area. They also had two boys and we had made it a tradition to meet once a month on a Saturday to go down to the local bowling alley.
“Of course we’re going,” I replied as relief washed over me. It would also give me a chance to speak with June about my concerns without raising too much suspicion.
...to be continued...