Christmas 2008

Kyle and I were in Hampton for Christmas and I’d been thinking that a pregnancy test was probably in order for a few days, at that point. But for some reason — let’s call it Holiday Distraction — I hadn’t. So when his mom needed to run some errands, I said I’d go along. I tried, and I think I succeeded in hiding the test from her under some unnecessary items also tossed into the basket. But it made for a rather tense few moments in the ol’ CVS.

Back at the house, Kyle was in the shower and I knew I couldn’t possibly wait a moment longer. So I didn’t. I tested while he showered and:

IMG_1869…dun, dun, dun…

I held the test stick up over the shower door and said, “Um … Merry Christmas?”Kyle is such a pro. He said, “Cool” and seemed genuinely excited. My first reaction was not quite as calm and collected. My hands started shaking and sweating, and I had to go lay down. I was very excited, but also shocked! A few minutes later, Kyle came out of the shower and said, “What’s next?” I told him I wanted to get one of the tests that says “PREGNANT” or “NOT PREGNANT”.

So I chugged a couple bottles of water (you know, so I could pee again) and drove back to the store.

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Confirmation.

And we told his mom. We showed her the test pictured above. She squealed a little and hugged Kyle. Then, turning to me, she said, “You’re ok, right? You’re going to be ok!” Guess I was still a little shell-shocked. And it showed.We told his brother later on that evening. We wrapped up another pregnancy test and put it under the tree for him. When he opened it, he acted confused. And I finally had to say, “John. Do I need to spell it out for you? Kyle and I are going to have a baby.”

He looked at his friend, Kari, and she said, “I think you should give her what you bought for her.”

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That’s right. He’d bought me a pregnancy test. No wonder he was confused. We’d given him, basically, the same thing!I knew the first thing I wanted to do was to call my brother, Craig. He and his wife, Amy, had been trying to conceive for several months and, if I was going to tell my family on Christmas morning (which I what I really wanted to do), I didn’t want her to be completely broadsided and get upset. I wanted Craig to know so he could “warn” her if he felt like he needed to.

Craig called me about 20 minutes later and asked me to hold my announcement until the day after Christmas. Disappointed, I said, “I guess I could. Why?”

As it turns out, he and Amy had their own news to share and had been holding it for almost a month and a half.

I jumped up and down (don’t tell the doctor!) and squealed and cried and acted COMPLETELY girly and then told Craig to have Amy to call me so we could talk — and maybe break the news to my parents together.

And, thus, a plot was conceived. (pun completely intended)

Amy and Craig went to Walmart that night and purchased stockings and wrapped them in separate boxes. After all the other gifts were unwrapped, Craig gave one box to each of my parents and instructed my dad to go first.

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He opened it.

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And he cried.

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And there were many hugs.

And after a few minutes, my mom remembered that she had an unopened box to return to.

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“I wonder what it is!!”

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And I was too busy laughing to get her first reaction.

But it went something like this:

“Hahaha. Baby Polk.”
(realizes, wide-eyed, what she’d just read out loud)
(re-reads in silence)
(looking at me) “Is this for REAL?!”

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And then my dad cried again, while my mom laughed. A lot.

My mom excitedly purchases gifts in the months leading up to Christmas in order to “Wow” all of her kids on Christmas morning. And while we were all still wowed this year, Christmas 2008 will forever be branded in our family memory as “The Christmas She Was Outdone”.IMG_1989
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