Since I was a teenager, babies had only ever acquired a sliver of my thoughts. It was a soft battle cry — whispered instructions for how to not disappoint everyone around me. Don’t get pregnant. Don’t get pregnant. Don’t get pregnant. I’m like that — I take one simple idea like “Don’t get pregnant,” run with it for most of my adult life, and never look back.
So I was naturally disgusted when moments after getting engaged people started in with, “When are you having a baby?” How. Dare. You. In classic Royer form, I had seemingly been doing one thing correctly my entire life only to find out I was doing it wrong. What the fuck?!
I suppose there has always been a part of me that just assumed I would have children. Much like I’ve always vaguely believed I would know how to respond if ever faced with imminent danger. I’ve imagined that if there were an apocalypse, my adrenaline would start pumping and I would save the world, but also I never really believed the apocalypse would happen in my lifetime. Yet here I am, married, and the apocalypse is upon us. I tried to ignore it, but wouldn’t ya know well-meaning bitches are on my jock…NON. STOP.
Well-Meaning Broad #1
#1: That’s so exciting that you’re getting married!!!
Me: That already happened.
#1: How great! Are you planning on having children?
#1: (Face of shock and horror) Oh…how old are you?
Me: I get it. My eggs are deteriorating.
#1: Well if you ever need a good fertility doctor, my sister had an incredible experience with IVF.
Me: Is this a joke? I haven’t even tried to get pregnant yet and you’re already calling me infertile?
Well-Meaning Broad #2
#2: So, how long have you been married now?
Me: A week.
#2: That’s so great! Are you guys trying to have a baby?
Me: What?! No. We literally just got married.
#2: But you want to have kids don’t you?
Me: It feels like I should be having this conversation with Husband and not you.
#2: I’m just saying, it could take years to get pregnant so you might want to start trying.
Me: I’ll take that into consideration, Jane from accounting.
Well-Meaning Broad #3
#3: You still smoke?!
Me: OMG shut up!!!
#3: Don’t you want to have kids?
Me: I didn’t realize people who smoked couldn’t procreate. Are you familiar with the 50s?
#3: I’m just saying, you might want to quit.
Me: I’M just saying it seems like I can deal with that when I go off birth control which I have not yet done, you raging Cuntbag. And by the way, NICE JOB CONGRATULATING ME ON MY WEDDING!
#3: Oh right! Congrats!
Obviously, I literally hate everyone. I tried to stand my ground, but after a plethora of bitches hounded me about my potential offspring I started to panic. I then spent the next six weeks after my wedding implementing something I’ve decided to call Impending Baby Syndrome. It’s when you know a baby is about to happen so you do as many fun things as humanly possible, because eventually your vagina will be out of order due to a person crawling out of it and you won’t be able to have fun anymore — unless that fun can include a human being hanging by their mouth from your jugs… blech.
I decided to start big. My first Impending Baby Syndrome event would include Vegas. It happened pretty organically but goes against all of my natural instincts. Here’s the thing. I hate leaving my house. When people invite me to social functions, I take it as a personal affront. All I ever want to be doing is laying on my couch, watching Real Housewives and convincing myself that I am moments away from experiencing even a modicum of success. BUT IT’S KIND OF HARD FOR ME TO DO THAT WHEN I HAVE TO GO TO YOUR SURPRISE PARTY, CLAIRE!!!
Needless to say, Vegas does not conjure in me the kind of “we’re gonna have the time of our lives” scenario that it apparently does for other people. This is largely due to the fact that I don’t drink anymore and previously, when in Vegas, I spent my time drinking liquor out of plastic sippy cups depicting the Eiffel Tower and slutting myself out for cocaine. So when a few of my improviser friends suggested that I drive to Vegas to do a show, my first instinct was “absolutely not.” But then the panic set in and I thought to myself, “Alison, your husband is going to impregnate you. And you will never be able to go to Vegas again. This could be your last opportunity to experience joy. Once you have a child, you think you’ll really be able to travel to Vegas on a whim? GET OUT THERE AND DO SOMETHING!” So I went to Vegas. It was terrible.
Here’s the thing. I drove to Vegas. Strike 1. I hate driving so why would I want to relegate myself to an automobile for four hours? FOUR HOURS! The only time I like road trips is when Husband is driving and I’m sitting shotgun smoking and eating sandwiches. Now THAT...sounds like a delight. I decided to stay with my friend Rob which was excruciating because Rob hates me. Strike 2. This is largely due to the fact that I once agreed to meet him in Mexico and then was unable to go at the last minute because I inadvertently sent a water barrel to Ecuador. Finally, due to my spine fusion, I rarely stay awake past 9 p.m. Strike 3. I think our show was at 10 p.m. It was horrific. They basically dragged my lifeless body onstage and I pretended to have control over my motor functions.
Sadly, Impending Baby Syndrome never got better than the Vegas trip. I spent weeks saying yes to birthday parties I would ditch under normal circumstances, I went to Six Flags, I agreed to watch someone’s cat. And each time someone presented me with what literally sounded like the worst idea in the world my inner-voice would whisper, “Of course I’ll watch your cat! When will I ever be able to spend time with a cat again?! Don’t cats eat children? This could be your last chance to enjoy a feline! ALISON, GET OUT THERE AND DO SOMETHING!”
By week six I was overwhelmed and exhausted. Impending Baby Syndrome had barely left me any free time to think about myself and all the ways the world had fucked me over. It was so depressing. I clearly needed some me time. The spinal Gods must have agreed with this sentiment because before I knew it, I literally couldn’t move most of my body. This is an unfortunate side effect of an autoimmune disorder. Your body gives up on you when you’re just trying to have a little fun before your vagina turns into a thoroughfare.
Husband was concerned, to say the least. He came home from work one day and found me in a dark room, covers up to my chin, Ferris Bueller-style.
Husband: What happened to you?
Me: Impending Baby Syndrome.
Me: WE’RE GONNA HAVE A BABY SOON AND THEN MY LIFE IS GOING TO BE OVER!
Husband: OMG, are you pregnant?
Husband: I don’t understand.
Me: I’m trying to do fun things before I become filled with baby but I did too much and my bamboo spine is acting up.
Husband: But you don’t like doing fun things.
Me: DON’T TELL ME WHAT I LIKE!
But holy shit did Husband nail that one on the head. I DON’T like doing fun things! Why was I spending all my time trying to “live my life” when I’ve literally never done that? I couldn’t possibly be missing out on anything because I hadn’t done a God damn thing in the 35 years that I’ve been alive. My idea of a good time is sleeping while football is on a T.V. somewhere. The craziest I’ve gotten in the last ten years is keeping a library book for too long. I had a piece of cheese the other day that had whiskey in it and I legitimately thought I would get drunk so I spit it out. I’M NOT FUN! I WAS SO RELIEVED!
Here’s the deal. I can tell Husband is trying to impregnate me. I’m not stupid. But maybe I can do that thing where they just put you to sleep and rip the baby out of you. And I already almost exclusively wear maternity clothes so that part won’t be all that different. And, from what I can tell, once you have a baby, you are literally unable to leave the house which basically sounds like a God damn dream. So after a month and a half of Impending Baby Syndrome, I realized that having a baby sounds great! I mean… obviously my baby’s not going to like me. That’s a given. But it will be a justified reason to not have to attend any social functions and from what I’ve been able to glean, my tits will get bigger. I’m in.