BoyWonder high fived me then issued forth a sob.
I thought long and hard about how to tell my twelve year old son about my current situation. I timed it specifically. Earlier in the day, his Dad, aka Le Dazzler, had driven us en famille down to Sussex where BoyWonder sat his 13plus exams for boarding school.
Many may bristle at the thought of sending one's progeny away but this school is quite something. Part of me wanted to botox up and put my hair in pigtails. I am intensely jealous of the opportunities afforded my son. It would be like entering the cloistered world of Herman Hesse's 'The Glass Bead Game', and losing oneself to a state of enlightenment.
On the way, I smuggled a note of motherly affectations into his pencil case, with spurring thoughts such as 'You can do it', and 'Go BoyWonder,'. He later informed me it ended up in the adjudicator's hands. Her keen eyes had thought it was evidence of cheating. Is it not a duty of every decent parent to mortify their offspring on any given occasion?(especially teenagers!)
Still, three hours later we were met by a jubilant fellow, fizzing with chatter about the questions, his answers and toting up marks on finger tips with his suspected grades.
At home, he was rewarded with a new Xbox game and then... the news.
He was shocked. Being presented with an 18+ game was a unique experience as too was learning he would soon enough be an older brother.
From the moral high ground a gathering drum roll of judgemental tuts - how is it a parent could be so remiss? that I should so wantonly damage my son by exposing him to an 18 cert game, (never mind the fact I was unmarried and pregnant!).
The loudest tuts come from women of a certain age and class, to which I reply GET REAL. Look beyond your rose tinted net curtains or easier still, open your eyes - to the daily smorgasbord we are fed of borderline porn or the lastest blood curdling horror, (& I'm not just talking about the news).
Oscar was right, we are all of us in the gutter, & sadly most of us facedown. 18 plus is the reality we live in, no matter what your age.
But back home my son was in shock. Sat beside him on our sofa I told him he would feel a whole host of things. He may hate me, feel disgust toward me, reject the idea even accuse me of ruining his life (and this time with, lets face it, good teen reason). Then again, he may embrace the idea.
He didn't respond.
I empathised, 'Hey, imagine how shocked I felt.'.
Then he asked how it happened. Why wasn't I using sufficient contraception? He asked if I was going to have an abortion. What did the Glam Rocker think about it all? Next, he grabbed his game console and began playing. Immediately his anxieties eased. X-box is his teenage dummy and calms him. I left the room to let him absorb the news.
Later I called BoyWonder's dad. Dazzler is a man of the world. BoyWonder is the youngest of his children, the eldest is older than myself. We are quite the extended, extensive family and despite our non-conventional life style, we are in many ways like an old married couple, (except of course we don't have sex with each other- then again perhaps that is exactly why we are like an old married couple...).
The Dazzler was taken aback but recovered quickly. He congratulated me. It all clicked into place as to why I'd been feeling icky and looking so sheepish of late.
Later on that evening we went oncemore en famille to celebrate BW's sitting of exams and my news. We were joined by one of BW's brothers. It was a lovely evening. I indulged in crab linguine (oh I know I shouldn't have but what the hell- live dangerously that's my motto). And over it dinner it dawned that each of us had a sibling, with a 12 year (or in one case 18+) difference in age, Le Dazzler, myself and BW's big bro. Suddenly the situation didn't seem so bizarre or strange.
BoyWonder ended up staying the night at his Dad's and for the first time in ages I found myself totally on my own, no BoyWonder and no Glam Rocker, as he was touring. I was alone in my apartment though strictly speaking not alone in myself - just me myself and I (aka the Interloper). Bliss, pure bliss, I relished every moment.
Meanwhile in the downstairs department
By now the foetus is about 3cm long. The brain is developing faster than any other part of the body, thus the head looks so large. More active with every passing day it has even started to sleep, wake up and exercise its muscles. Toes are separating. Arms bend at the elbow and, if you could peer inside, you'd see the spine clearly visible through the skin. Your uterus has doubled in size and is now as large as a grapefruit, though probably not yet showing.