Tuesday, October 10, 2006

I'm Pregnant, the Second Trimester

So, I have a piece in the middle, called "The Big Day" which was supposed to be Alicia telling Matt that she's pregnant. But I got stumped. Instead, I have decided to try writing some later scenes and see how it goes after that...

Alicia walked out of the bathroom and stopped at the chair where she had set her prosthetic belly the night before. Matt watched, and when she was finished asked "why do you keep putting that thing on, Alicia?"

She turned toward him, naked except for the "Empathy Belly" they had bought two weeks previous, and answered, "Honey, I'm pregnant! Don't be silly. Now get out of bed and get ready, I need you drop me off at work. It's hard to drive with all this extra tummy." With that, she turned to the closet and rifled through the small wardrobe of maternity clothes that they had bought in the same two-weeks-ago shopping trip. Matt stared, as he had stared for the last two weeks when she dressed, when she undressed, whenever she told their neighbors about the baby, and whenever she wasn't looking. There was a glimmer of hope in his that this was some kind of test or a that it was a joke they were playing on their neighbors, on everyone at work. And on their friends. And on their family. And on him.

"Get up, Matt! You cannot lay there in bed all morning watching me dress. Look! I'm almost finshed and you haven't even showered." Matt threw off the covers, walked to the bathroom, and started the water running. It wasn't like the whole thing was all bad. She had been cooking breakfast now for almost two and a half months straight--a couple of pancakes and some sausage usually hit the spot in the morning. She still took long showers, but she was through with that whole morning sickness thing. Had she really been sick then? He had nearly forgotten those mornings when she would hold her stomach and lurch to the bathroom.

Matt was just turning off the water when Alicia poked her head through the door: "Almost ready? I made oatmeal." She poked his stomach as she added, teasing, "I think you're putting on the pounds after all." Alicia popped back out of the bathroom, but not before Matt gave himself the once over in the mirror--Were those love handles? Or a spare tire?

At breakfast, sitting across from her, Matt concentrated on his oatmeal as he tried to bring up the subject of her pregnancy for the third time. "Honey, I know you've been ready to have kids for a while, and I think if you just gave me a little time, I could be ready too. I'm not sure all this is necessary."

Alicia smiled and reached across the table to hold his hand, "Sweetie, I know you'll be a great father. You don't need to be worried. When I have the baby I'm sure you'll be ready...Which reminds me, we have an ultrasound appointment in a week. You better put in for sick leave so you can be there."

This was not going as Matt had planned, and it was not going as had his other two attempts, it was actually, suddenly, going much worse, "An ultrasound?"

"Aren't you excited? I can't wait to find out whether we're having a boy or a girl."

Matt stared, which he seemed to be doing a lot of recently, and asked his wife how exactly that was going to work, he couldn't bring himself to add, "since you strap on your pregnancy every morning?"

Alicia returned his stare and wondered at his lack of knowledge--"It doesn't hurt, Matt, for either one of us. In fact, you don't have to do anything. They just put this thing on my belly and they can see the baby. You must know what an ultrasound is, don't you?"

"Of course I do, but," and he didn't know how to finish so he just tried to get out of it instead, "Look, I've got this presentation next week and it's a big deal, I don't think I'll be able to go. Why don't you take one of your friends with you, I'm sure they'd love to go." Maybe they'd even talk her out of all this crazy pregnancy crap.

Alicia looked at him, and he knew before her eyes even began to be wet, that there were going to be tears. He also knew that he would be going to the appointment, and that he would be excited to know whether they were going to have a boy or a girl.

So, if you have ideas about the story, or ideas for scenes that should be included...feel free to leave a comment. Sorry about the comment moderation, just trying to keep the wackos of the world from posting garbage.


samantha said...

I'm not going to lie Ricky, I'm a little bit confused. I think I'm intriuged by the whole thing but still slightly confused. Not that confusion is all bad but it is hard to make suggestions because I'm not really sure where it is going.

KF said...

First of all, the grammar and general structure seem to be fine, though I'd have to reread it w/ a fine-toothed comb to double check. Always appreciate an author who cares enough about his/her work to make it readable!

Secondly I'm interested in your inspiration for this piece. I can think of several possible sources, but I can email those to you if you're interested.

Thirdly, I think your descriptions are just right. No need to go all L.M.M. Montogomery on us and describe fiber of carpet and every shade of light.

Possible suggestions: Maybe I missed this, but I'd like to know why Matt decides to go along w/ this and not just confront her about it. This reason will be a strong example of his character and maybe the story could focus more on his reason for going along w/ it (just a suggestion for another point of view). Obviously, your readers are dying to know why she's doing this. Have you written out character descriptions for your characters?

Also, you could include scenes of her telling her boss--she'd have to so her company can prepare for maternity leave. If they find out she's not really pregnant, I'm pretty sure she'd get fired (in real life). Another scene(s) telling the parents and friends.

I realize this is a work in progress. I wouldn't feel like I had been true to my editorial-self had I not made a few (solicitated) suggestions.