Panic and Pregnancy

Three weeks ago, I was woken up a few minutes past midnight by the shrill ringing of my phone. I was really tired, and had no interest in talking to anyone, so I decided to let it ring. When the caller didn’t take the hint and kept redialing, I grumpily took the phone and growled into the receiver.


The voice that responded was hysterical; I couldn’t make out a word it said, and only barely recognized it as female (though that might have been because I was still half-asleep). It took me about ten seconds to realize it was my friend Annie.

Since Annie and I had been close friends for a long time, my alertness level shot up. I tried asking her what was wrong, but she kept mumbling about “how to tell him,” and “she’s scared,” and “she wasn’t sure she was ready.” Realizing that the conversation wouldn’t go anywhere quickly over the phone – and starting to panic myself – I told her to wait at her place, and that I’d be around within the hour. I had gotten used to Annie being a jumpy person, but that didn’t stop me from looking out for her.

I got to her place, and found her teary-eyed and sipping on hot coco; a few of our friends had also showed up to comfort her. “So, what’s going on?” I asked them. One of my other friends – Marisse – answered: “Annie’s pregnant; ‘bout a month.”

And my response was: “How is that a problem?”

I realized on the spot my answer may have been rude and driven by my annoyance for being woken up in the middle of the night and summoned to a friend’s house when the situation wasn’t as dire as I had made it out to be. Still, I have never thought of pregnancy as something to panic about. In fact, panic is the last thing a pregnant woman should have in mind, especially in the early stages; so I stayed with them throughout the rest of the night and kept Annie calm.

By the time the sun came up, we had a plan on how to tell Annie’s boyfriend (Hugo) that she was pregnant. Marisse happened to work in the same department with him, so our pregnancy announcement idea was to sneak in a letter and a picture of the pregnancy test with some paperwork. While it took a full two days for him to dig through the pile and find out about Annie’s little gift, his reaction was worth it, as we found out for all his calm composure, he can end up hysterical as well.

As the feeling set in that they were going to be parents, things have been a roller coaster ride not just for Annie and Hugo, but for me and the rest of her friends as well. Things went crazier a week later when he used the same trick we used. He sent Annie a picture of an engagement ring and letter along with some mail she was expecting, and then he showed up that moment and proposed to her.

Despite how hectic things are, I suppose everything is okay. Annie takes some spare hours on a baby simulator doll, practicing how to deal with newborn hiccups, hunger, diapers, and the like. I guess I can’t really blame their hysteria and panic upon finding out. When I look at how much they changed in the past couple of weeks since then, I guess it’s true that having a baby changes your life. For most people, it’s for the better, and for some – God forbid – it’s for the worse. It’s just nice to see that for my friends, it seems to have been for the former.