Since it’s two years this month since we found out I was pregnant with Darcey, I thought I’d write a little about the smallest and biggest secret we’ve ever kept…and how we shared that secret with our closest people. It’s quite exciting remembering it, actually; what a different world we lived in then!
So, for most people – us included – it all begins with the biggest reveal you’ll have; how to tell your husband (not forsaking those people who wee on the stick with their partners in the bathroom…you know who you are!). I had hoped for some elaborate idea to come into my mind about how to tell Nath that he was going to be a father but I didn’t really give myself any time to do that! I remember having a gut instinct that I was pregnant but couldn’t wait to take the test, which I should have taken on a Thursday (I have no idea why I remember that it was a Thursday). I literally couldn’t wait, so rushed into Boots on my way home from work on the Monday and thought, I’ll just buy one and hang on to it until Thursday. Yeah right. I got home and thought, well, there are two in the pack. It won’t hurt if I just use one now and then I’ll do the big thing on Thursday and hopefully we’ll have great news, but maybe not. I think the ClearBlue took about five years to read ‘1-2 weeks’ and I think I wore out the carpet in our room walking back and forth around the bed waiting for the message to appear. And when it did, I was all alone in our house with no-one to tell. Except, I guess I wasn’t alone really, was I…our little Bug had already begun to keep me company! Either way, I couldn’t stop giggling. I would have looked pretty insane to anyone watching me.
Nath obviously was not anticipating this news because as far as he was concerned, D-Day was Thursday. So I had to think of something amazing. I failed. I put it in a pile of post. When he came home from work I said “there’s a bunch of letters for you on the side” and as he picked the letters up, he dropped the test. And didn’t notice. So my plan that he would work his way through the post to eventually find the most exciting message of all was led underneath our dining table and he had no clue. And his response “Hmmm, it’s just a bunch of crap”. “Are you sure? I thought I saw something important … did you drop anything?” Still Nada. He bent down and went to pick it up and then realised what it was and ran at me swinging me round the room. That was pretty cool – we were going to be parents. He ruined the moment though – slinking off to the kitchen to wash his hands in case there was wee on the test. YOU DON’T WEE ON THE WHOLE STICK, YOU SILLY BOY.
We kept our secret in our little bubble for about four weeks. Our plan was to wait until we’d had the scan to tell anyone. We really liked having this massive secret that was absolutely and perfectly ours until we decided to let anyone in. However, we quickly realised that Christmas was going to foil our plans. Now, I’m really not a big drinker. I like a cider with a barbecue and I wouldn’t turn down a Disaronno every now and again but I would say I spend 90+% of my time not drinking. However, it is a rule, as a Reed, that Christmas is a time to eat ALL the food and if you aren’t washing it down with a pint of wine, or lager then you’re doing something wrong. I wouldn’t get away with a sober Reed-Christmas. Funnily enough, I wasn’t going to get away with a sober Todd-Christmas, either. Because of Pate. I abso-blinking-lutely love Pate, along with most of my family and it is always the starter of a Todd Christmas dinner. How was I going to pull that one off?! ‘No thanks, I’ll just have soup’. No-one was going to buy it. Gina was pregnant with Harry at the time, too, so she’d suss it immediately. So it was decided, we would give our families a little extra present when I was 10 weeks pregnant.
Before we did that, we decided to tell Nath’s youngest brother one evening at the beginning of December. We bought him a Christmas card saying “Merry Christmas Uncle” on and it took him a minute or two to process what he’d opened but his reaction was awesome. The exact kind of reaction you want when you tell someone you’re going to have a baby. The bar was set, there were standards to live up to. Some met those expectations, others didn’t.
I was going away on a 3 day residential visit with my year 11s to London and my best friend was joining us as part of the ratio. She was about 14 weeks pregnant at the time. I was very fortunate to have a really healthy pregnancy where I didn’t have any sickness but I felt like someone needed to know that I was pregnant whilst I was there, in case anything went wrong. We told Jack & Lauren whilst we went round for tea mid-December. I think I got tackled off of the sofa in an enormous Lauren bear hug and there was lots of crying and laughing and smiling and general merriment at our news. Jack and Nath had an obligatory celebratory whiskey. Standard baby-announcement celebrations.
THEN. Then then then. It was Christmas Eve. The day had arrived to share our news with Nath’s family. Nath’s Mum had wanted a grandchild for about a hundred years, so we knew (or at least we thought we knew) the reaction was going to be enormous. No. They literally didn’t get it. I don’t know if they didn’t believe us, or if they didn’t hear us, or what. But it was the biggest anti-climax in the world! We’d set up the proviso that we were having a family photograph. We asked a friend of Nath’s brother to take the photo (and to ignore the fact that it was filming and pretend he was taking a picture) and Nath, instead of saying ‘everyone say Cheese’ said ‘we’re having a baby!’ and he carried on saying it, in a variety of ways, about 6 or 7 times before the penny dropped. We literally could not believe it. Anyway, I was excused from the inebriation and lots of celebration and happiness followed. We’re going to just wait until I have the baby next time and show them, so there’s less confusion! You can watch this madness here!
Christmas Day had arrived and we were going to tell my family in the same way. But we were nervous now. It couldn’t go wrong twice, could it? Well – thank heavens for my brother, that’s all I can say! If it weren’t for Harris, the same thing would have happened. We did the same thing, pretending to have a family photo and Nath stood behind the camera. When he said ‘Kate’s pregnant’ everyone dutifully carried on smiling, with the exception of Harris, who did a double take, looked at me and said “shut up?” and thankfully gave the game away. You’d think my family might have been slightly more susceptible, based on the fact that my Mum spent three quarters of her life pregnant and there were already three nephews in the family with gorgeous Harry happily cooking away ready to make his appearance the following February. But no, it was Harris, the lone male wolf of our sibling pack who got it. Watch it sink in here.
So I guess the moral of this post is something Michael Scott would say: KISS. Keep It Simple Stupid. One thing is for sure, next time there will be no creative reveals. We’re going to have concrete proof in the form of an ultrasound before we tell a soul. But they’re pretty hilarious memories captured on camera to show the tiny person who caused all this fuss in the first place later in her life!