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I woke up at my mother’s house feeling nauseous. Still no period.
I looked around the house for some Pepto Bismol. Of course we didn’t have any. The only thing stuffed away in our medicine cabinet was a bottle of vodka, that’s where my mother hid it from us.
I waited outside the bathroom to wash my face and maybe throw up a little. Nadine was in there, doing God knows what. I could hear her humming seductively and I could just imagine her squeezing her boobs in the mirror, puffing out her big red lips and shaving the top of her arms. Tyrone insisted that she do it.
I knocked on the door, “Nadine? When are you going to be done?”
“Whenever the Hell I feel like it,” she scoffed.
“Well I don’t feel good, so can you hurry it up?”
“I’m sorry, you’re gonna need to wait.” Even her apologies had bitchy written all over them.
“Please, I just need to puke, wash my face and pee, I’ll be out in five.”
“Oh my God, you selfish bitch, just come in.” She opened the door. She was completely topless and in a thong. She obviously had been scrunching her hair and applying eyeliner.
“Oh wow, you really need to put on a shirt.” I covered my eyes and walked in.
“Ugh, get over it you lesbian.” She returned to doing her make-up.
I knelt over the toilet and dry heaved. Nothing came out. I hadn’t eaten today yet and there was nothing to throw up. I wiped my mouth and stayed sitting on the floor.
“What the fuck is wrong with you?” Nadine asked.
“I’m just sick, it might be a bug.”
“Okay.” She didn’t seem to find anything wrong with it so she continued to put on lip-gloss.
A part of me kind of wanted to talk to her about yesterday’s inquiry. She would be the one to talk to; she had been pregnant more than once. Nadine and I have never had that special sister bond that they show in the movies. We never hung out or dished about boys. Sometimes I wished we had.
She looked down at me annoyed, “Um, you gonna leave anytime soon?”
I stood up and looked at her straight in the face.
“What?” Nadine asked, confused.
“I think I might be,” I paused, “pregnant.”
“Ha,” she laughed out loud, “yeah, okay.”
“No, really,” I said with a stern expression.
Surprised, she said, “holy shit, you’re not kidding around!”
I looked down, suddenly I was extremely embarrassed.
“Well do you have any symptoms?”
“Kind of, I don’t really know. I missed my period.”
Nadine punched me in the boob. Holy Fuck, why did people keep doing that?
“Ouch, you bitch!” I held my boob.
“Well you got sore boobs.”
“You couldn’t have just asked?”
“Well that’s no fun, is it?” Nadine was amused with herself.
“I’ve been nauseous and I threw up a couple times,” I offered.
“Hmm, well have you taken a test?”
“What!? You’re probably worried about nothing then.”
“Have you even had sex before?” Nadine asked.
“Wow, are you kidding me with that question?”
“Well, who knows it could be one those Immaculate Conception deals,” she laughed.
“Yeah, me and Mother Mary are one in the same,” I changed the subject, “but yeah, of course I have.”
“Who?” She looked interested.
“No one.” I wasn’t about to reveal my degrading night with Steve to anyone.
“Whatever.” Nadine put on a thin tank top, covering her chest. Thank God.
I stared at the floor tile and kicked away a dead fly.
“So, do you want to go and get a test?” She asked me.
“I guess.” I was scared to know the truth.
Nadine led me out of the bathroom and then traveled into her bedroom.
“Um, what are you doing?” I asked, “I thought we were going to buy a pregnancy test.”
She looked at me from inside her room, “who said anything about buying one?”
Nadine reached under her bed and pulled up a box labeled ‘family pictures’ and motioned for me to come into the room. I walked in and closed the door behind me; something told me that the box of family pictures wasn’t actually filled with pictures.
“Look,” she tipped over the box and about 15 pregnancy tests fell out of it. All of them ranging in color and brand.
“Holy shit, Nadine, why do you have this many pregnancy tests?” My eyes widened.
“Let’s just say I’ve had a few scares in my day.”
“Yeah really, two abortions, I call that more than a scare.” I crossed my arms.
“As far as you know, there was only one, you little bitch, now do you want my help or not?” She looked angry.
“Okay, well lets see, I have ClearBlue Easy, E.P.T. my personal favorite, Aim Stick, Dollar store Brand, First Response—” The list went on and on.
“Um,” I interrupted her, “I’ll just take the Dollar Store Brand one.”
She looked at me confused, “why?”
“I don’t know, the other ones just seem too confusing,” I lied. The real reason I wanted the cheaper test was because there was a larger chance that it would be a false positive.
“You never cease to confuse me, Lily.” She handed me the test, “well uh here you go.”
I grabbed for the test. My hands were sweating horribly. Nadine led me out of her bedroom and made sure no one was around to see me with the wretched test. I felt like I was walking to my death. She opened the bathroom door and let me in. I stood there helplessly, staring at her.
“Aw, isn’t this sweet? Your first pregnancy scare,” she laughed.
“Shut up, someone might be around!” I whispered, harshly.
“Calm down, little miss,” she smiled. I wasn’t amused by her attempt to make light of this situation.
I turned and set the home pregnancy test on the sink.
“Good luck,” she whispered and closed the door.
“Thanks,” I said, too quiet to be audible.
I opened the box and took out the directions. They read: To use the pregnancy test strip you simply fill a container or a collection cup with urine and hold the test strip in the container in a vertical position for a few seconds. Your results appear in just 5 minutes.
It seemed easy enough. I looked around for a container. I decided that the mouthwash cup was sufficient. I held the cup underneath me and started to pee. Some trickled onto my hands. Great. I filled the cup and set it on the sink. I gazed at my piss. Was it pregnant pee? How could that gay stick even tell?
I held the small white, plastic test in my hand. I gawked at it for a moment. I couldn’t believe that this nasty little white stick was going to determine my whole future. It was like a fortuneteller, except it wasn’t creepy and didn’t include a magic ball. If I were pregnant, a pink strip would appear after waiting for five minutes. I hated the color pink; it reminded me of Fay’s trashy lip-gloss. Did the people who invented pregnancy tests think that pink would please the buyers? Too bad you’re pregnant and only fifteen years old, but here’s a bright color to look at as you cry!
I dipped the test in my urine and then sat it on the sink to dry. I poured my pee into the toilet and set the mouthwash cup on the sink, I would wash it later. Now I was to wait for five minutes of pure Hell before I discovered my fate. I stared at the cat-shaped clock that hung above the door. What a stupid place to put a clock. Perfectly placed so that when someone is just kneeling in front of the toilet they can just turn their head to glance at it. Well now that I thought about it, Nadine probably did that a lot while servicing Tyrone as he sat atop the toilet. I thought about Nadine. She had gotten pregnant, told my mother and my mother, who was too afraid to tell my father, drove her to Mexico for an illegal abortion. The thought of driving all the way down to Mexico for a smelly man to look at my privates made me shiver. Ha, Pam probably assumed that she would just happen to run into Tomasito down there. Who knows what happened after the second pregnancy? 3 minutes left.
My forehead was experiencing extreme perspiration as I watched the paws of the cat slowly jerk around the circle of numbers. My mind wandered to the subject of Steve. A part of me yearned for him. I wished that he would have loved me, like in my dreams. I wanted to feel his strong hands holding my back as he hugged me and his steaming breath in my ear as he whispered, “I love you, Lillian McBride.” But no, he wasn’t as I had imagined him, he was cold and heartless. He probably loved me less than his own hairbrush, a lot less. Who was I kidding? Steve would’ve never cared for me even if we didn’t come together the way we did. I loved him so much that my body was harvesting his child, maybe. He probably didn’t even remember that night, and I knew for a fact he had no idea what my name was. My name is Lillian McBride, Steve, it’s okay I know you forgot, I forgive you! 1 minute left.
I tapped my feet on the ground as my hands twitched uncontrollably. I wanted a cigarette. No, I wanted to run away in a field full of daisies and other sweet smelling fragrances. I wanted to jump into the ocean, holding Steve’s hand, and then ride on a humpback whale over the foamy waves of the sea. Really, I just wanted this pregnancy thing to all be a dream. I would awake from this dream and everyone would say, “Ha ha, we really fooled you!” What would happen if my father found out? Did you hear about that Lillian character? Her Father sent her away to be locked in a convent for the rest of her life, after he discovered she was pregnant. I looked into the mirror. I didn’t look like Nadine. I didn’t look like a nun. I was a steady in-between and slightly boyish.
The sound of the clock was becoming intensely loud. I turned to face it and I realized that the 5 minutes were up. I stared at my image in the mirror’s reflection. I looked nervous and scared. Could I really do this? I knew that I didn’t have enough will power to witness a positive pink strip on that test. My stomach turned and the hairs on my arms stood up. Suddenly I was freezing and my teeth were chattering rapidly. Staring directly into the mirror I felt around for the test on the sink. My hands found it, I made sure the back of the test was facing upwards and I shot a glance down at the stick. Phew. I wasn’t looking at the results yet. My eyes stayed glued to the back of the test, almost to see right through the stick and read the strip’s color. My mind was telling me to turn the stick over and accept my fate, but my hand wouldn’t allow for it. My wrist was tense and locked in position. I couldn’t stand the anticipation any longer. I needed to find out that all of my worries were wrong and I was not impregnated after all. Closing my eyes, I turned the stick around and held directly in front of my eyes. When I opened them, it would be the first thing I saw. My eyes were becoming sore from holding them so tightly closed. I counted to three and burst my eyes open to reveal the test’s results.
I felt like I had been smacked in the stomach with a baseball bat. I was hit so hard by the strip’s color that I had to struggle to keep standing. I’m sure that I had gasped out loud, because I heard Nadine trot over to the bathroom door.
“Yo, you okay in there?” Nadine asked me.
I was silent. I couldn’t breath. My eyes were watering from being held open and my mouth was dry.
“Lily?” she knocked.
Silence, except for the ferocious beating of my heart.
“Whatever, I’m coming in, hope you’re not naked.” She barged through the door.
I stayed still as a statue, starring at my fate displayed through a stick
“Let’s see this thing.” She grabbed the stick away from my stiff hand, “look, there is such thing as a false positive, I’ll just grab you another one.”
“It’s not a false positive, it’s pink!” I yelled.
“Wow calm down, it probably is, it was a cheap test.”
Nadine turned around and ran into her room to retrieve another test. I couldn’t bear to see another pink stripe. She returned with an E.P.T. pregnancy test.
“Here,” she handed me the stick, “just dip it in some of your pee it only takes like 2 minutes and it says pregnant right on there.”
“I’m not colorblind, you didn’t have to get me a high-tech one, I’m just gonna end up peeing on it anyways.”
“Will you stop being such a jerk and pee on this?” Nadine was annoyed, but I didn’t care, I was freaking pregnant over here.
I did what Nadine told me and I placed the test on the sink to try once again. Nadine had a timer this time. She was intently watching it as I dryly stared at the cat clock. When someone else was with me, it made the time go past a lot faster and plus the test took less time because it was fancy, I think.
The timer went off, I stayed sitting. I wasn’t interested in what it said; I knew that it was positive. Nadine on the other hand ran to retrieve the test. She held it close to her smiling.
“It says not pregnant!” she said, loudly.
My stomach dropped. Tears filled my eyes. I had never been so happy in my entire life. I leaped up from the toilet and jumped up and down.
“Yes, thank God, holy crap let me see that wonderful thing!” I yelled and grabbed for the stick.
“Just kidding!” Nadine laughed, “it’s positive.”
My eyes now filled with tears of anger. I couldn’t believe how I could have gone from such happiness to such utter hatred and fury.
“What in the fucking name of God is wrong with you?!” I screamed, “you are the most inconsiderate selfish bitch that ever walked the face of this hell-forsaken earth, why can’t you just be a normal sister, not a fucking slut with a jackass attitude!?” I was out of breath. Nadine looked stunned.
“Wow, calm down I just wanted to see your reaction.” She backed off with her hands up.
“Well what the fuck did you expect it to be you grimy bastard?!” I grabbed the test out of her hands and threw it in her face. “Rot in Hell, whore!”
I stormed out of the bathroom. I was sweating from yelling so hard. I was shocked at how cold Nadine could be. I was literally sick from the amount of anger I had steaming out of me. I felt like I could blow fire out of my mouth and nostrils. I ran outside and opened the door of my sister’s car. I sat in the driver’s seat. Not to drive anywhere, but just to be secluded from everyone. My heart was pounding and my hands were shaking as I steadied them on my lap. I wouldn’t believe it, I couldn’t, and I was not pregnant. But oh God, yes I was. I wanted it out of me. It was like there was some horrible poison inside of me that in nine months would kill me. There was no way out, I was terrified. With these thoughts, my mind was spinning. I was hysterically crying and hitting my hands on the steering wheel. How could this happen? How could God hate me so much!? It had to be a dream, I wanted so badly to wake up and breathe a sigh of relief. My life was over, officially. My forehead ached from being slammed into the steering wheel.
I have nothing to say to you today.