Deciding to be pregnant while unemployed

Finding out that you’re pregnant is very galvanizing. I didn’t feel any instant connection to the little speck deep inside my abdomen, but I knew very clearly that I didn’t want an abortion. If this embryo had survived Plan B and evaded my first pregnancy tests, it was a keeper. And in addition to all the scariness that pregnancy, childbirth, and parenthood always bring, it was also going to be very inconvenient, since I was still unemployed and no one was going to hire someone visibly pregnant. And still, I knew I didn’t want an abortion.

But I’d had reason to want to prevent the pregnancy in the first place. Being unemployed was the main one, and would have been my reason to get an abortion, if that had been what felt right. I have always known that if I ever became a parent, I would want to be a working parent. I’ve never ever seen myself as a stay-at-home mom, much less a stay-at-home pregnant person. But here I am.

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I’m pregnant…

…and this is how I found out. It wasn’t like most of your married, hetero, thirty-something pregnancy discoveries. Closer to a clueless, irresponsible teenager.

This past summer, my partner and I decided to go ahead and try getting pregnant. A year earlier, I’d set a not-so-arbitrary date of my 33rd birthday as the point at which we should start. I’d done enough self-educating to know that the longer you wait, the harder it is to get pregnant, and the higher the chance of birth defects. I’d also learned that I had endometriosis, which can make it more difficult to conceive. So while we might not have felt totally ready, our biological alarm clocks had run out of snooze buttons.

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