Authors: Hazel Kelly
© 2014 Hazel Kelly
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All characters in this story are
fictitious. Any resemblance to actual persons is purely coincidental.
Kingdom come; Thy will be done”
They say if you love something, let it go, and if it
comes back to you then it’s really yours. Well I had done that with Kirk. But after
I gave him space, I thought he would come around a lot sooner.
When I realized I was pregnant, I was completely rattled.
But as soon as the reality of how my life was about to change dawned on me, I
I knew I would be a good mom. I’m a natural care
giver. And it didn’t matter how little I knew about babies. I’ve heard nothing
can prepare you for becoming a mother anyway.
The important thing was that the baby was conceived
in love. Kirk and I’s relationship was full of passion, vulnerability, and
understanding. I had no doubt he would be a wonderful father.
I was convinced he’d want to start pampering me and
our unborn miracle from the moment I told him the good news.
It never occurred to me that he would be upset, that
he might feel I’d “trapped” him. After all, I knew better than to make the
mistake of trying to cage our wild love.
And it’s his fault everything got so complicated. All
he had to do was leave his wife so she wouldn’t be a thorn in our side going
forward. If he had just been a man, I would never have had to take things so
But that’s the other thing they always say, isn’t
it? If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself.
Julianna tucked the shopping bag under her feet and rested
her back against the park bench. She watched as a dozen kids chased each other
around the playground, took turns running up the slide, struggled to get across
the monkey bars, and turned green on the metal merry-go-round.
She knew she was going to have to change a few
things if she was going to pull off having one of those little sparklers. No
more Bloody Mary mornings, no more social smoking, and definitely no more
joints when she visited Heather in New York. Not until after the baby came
At least, she wouldn’t have to give up her favorite
vice, sex, which was fortunate. After all, as soon as Kirk found out about the
baby, he would probably jump her and kiss her all over, refusing to dismount
until her due date.
She was relieved that she wouldn’t have to meet him
in secret anymore. And he would probably agree that it only made sense for them
to get a place together.
She couldn’t wait to show him all the toys she had. He
had no clue how extensive her collection of role playing outfits and gags and
cuffs and other assorted gadgets was. She could just imagine how excited he’d
be. Of course, some of those would have to wait until after the baby came.
Getting tied up wasn’t exactly turning her on
lately. Dick slapping she was up for, but no whips or chains. Nipple tassels
sure, but vibrating nipple clamps no. After all, she was planning on
breastfeeding and she expected her nipples would be sore enough from that.
She was getting so excited just thinking about it,
it was becoming increasingly difficult to contain herself. For a while, she
liked having it as her little secret, but at this point, she was just bursting
to tell someone. And it was only right that he be the first to know. And then
they could tell each other’s parents together.
One of the older moms on the playground took a seat beside
Julianna on the park bench.
“Which one’s yours?” Julianna asked, smiling at the
“Hey- no throwing woodchips!” the woman yelled at an
excited little boy with a handful of chips poised for a wind up. She lifted
her butt off the bench just enough to seem threatening, and the boy’s face
dropped along with the chips from his hand. “That one,” she said, speaking to
Julianna again, “and the girl with the matching jacket over there.” She pointed
at a girl who was burying her doll in woodchips on the other side of the
The woman rolled her eyes. “Please tell me yours
isn’t the one my kid’s been chucking woodchips at.”
Julianna smiled. “No.” She put her hand on her
belly. “Mine’s not here yet.”
The woman looked at Julianna’s hand.
“Boy or girl?”
Julianna shrugged. “I don’t know yet.”
“As long as it’s healthy, right?”
The woman smiled and turned back towards the
“I actually just bought my first baby clothes,”
Julianna said, reaching under the bench. She pulled a tiny onesie out and held it
up for the woman to see.
“White, huh? Aren’t you the optimist?”
Julianna frowned. “I hadn’t really thought about
that.” Truthfully, she just liked it because it was the same velour fabric as
the Juicy pants she wore all the time and she thought it would be soft against
the baby’s skin.
“I’m just teasing you. It’s lovely.”
“OxiClean though.” She nodded at the onesie. “Unless
you think you’ll like it in brown.”
Julianna crinkled her nose. “Thanks for the tip.”
She rolled it up and put it back in the bag.
“You live around here?” the woman asked.
“Not yet. I have one more semester of grad school
left, and then I’m going to apply for a teaching position at Amery.”
“Yeah. I went there for undergrad, so I’m hoping that
works in my favor.”
The woman scanned the playground like a lifeguard,
never taking her eyes completely off her kids.
“And the baby’s father works there so it would be
really convenient if it works out.”
The woman smiled and shook her head at the ground.
“Nothing. You just sound so happy. Reminds me of the
first time I got pregnant.”
Julianna tilted her head.
“Before I realized that no amount of planning or
good luck could prevent the years of inconvenience I had ahead of me.”
This woman’s negative attitude was starting to grate
on Julianna’s nerves. She clearly couldn’t even pluck her eyebrows adequately,
no wonder she felt like such a helpless mother.
“The sooner you decide to just go with the flow-
bodily fluids included- the better.”
“I’ll keep that in mind.” Julianna felt like the
bench was a seat in a plane that was falling out of the sky. “Is there anything
else that surprised you? You know, that you found out you were wrong about when
you had your first baby?”
The woman turned to face her. “I’m sorry. Am I
“I really shouldn’t be so negative. You’re obviously
“I just assume your friends and family are
sugarcoating everything, and you deserve to have someone tell you the truth.”
“No, really. I appreciate it.”
The woman looked at her watch and then up at the
sky. “Okay. Three pieces of advice and then I have to be supermom and get the
kids to two different places at once.”
Julianna sat at attention.
“First of all, take the epidural. Don’t be a hero.”
“The last thing you want is for your kids to come
into the world with you resenting them because they caused you so much pain.”
“Secondly, bring socks to the hospital. Nobody tells
you that, but you’ll be freezing.”
“Yeah. Everyone tells you to get your toes painted
really nice because it’s the first time you’ll see them in so long, but save
yourself the time and energy and get yourself a nice thick pair of socks.”
“And finally, don’t expect the baby to bring you
closer to your husband. It doesn’t work like that. Not for years, not until you
both feel like the kid’s turned out okay. Which is something you’re bound to
“I’m sorry, but that’s the truth. Don’t get me
wrong, a baby is a blessing, of course, but it can feel like a curse when you
aren’t both in it together. And your husband will need time to adjust to the
fact that you love someone else.”
Julianna raised her eyebrows.
“Seriously, my husband acted like a jealous child
until the kids could walk. I’m not saying yours will be the same, but don’t
expect him to do anything at all to help. That’s the only way he’s going to
exceed your expectations.”
Julianna bit her lip.
“You’ll see.” The woman stood up. “There’s a reason
men can’t give birth on their own.”
“No problem.” The woman started to walk away. “Oh,
and nice to meet you. Welcome to the neighborhood.”
Julianna collapsed against the back of the bench. Then
she watched the woman wrestle her kids towards her minivan and prayed that
pregnancy wouldn’t make her a raving bipolar nightmare, too.
Kirk dragged the paint roller through the tray until
it was coated with the light lavender-blue color that Madeline chose for the
nursery. He had three walls down, one wall to go, and then it would be
At first, Madeline didn’t want to go to any extra
trouble because of the miscarriage, and Kirk respected her wanting to keep it a
secret for a while until she was comfortable telling close friends and family.
But eventually he convinced her that the baby would
know if they were going to some extra trouble for it. He suggested it might be
more excited to come out if it knew there was a lot to look forward to. Like its
new room, its new clothes, and the lifetimes’ supply of edge and corner guards
they had for what seemed like every table, every book, every square picture
frame, and every cereal box.
Sure it was overkill, but she was happy. And when
Madeline was happy, Kirk was happy. He felt grateful every day that he had come
out the other side of the affair with Julianna with his marriage unscathed. He
loved Madeline more than ever, Julianna was long gone back to Emhurst to finish
her graduate degree, and their life was back on track like nothing had ever
Of course, he hadn’t tried half of the things he did
with Julianna with Madeline yet and he probably never would, but that didn’t
matter. His basic needs were still being met, and it was only the most fleeting
instance when he would have a flashback of Julianna sucking him off or her
breast in his hand or his dick disappearing into her as he did her from behind.
And those would fade away in time. They were already becoming far less frequent,
and it had only been a few months.
The only time he really felt guilty was when he had
moments where he didn’t regret it, moments when he felt like he was entitled to
get that raunchy sex out of his system so he could be a better husband to his
wife. Because he knew that wasn’t true. There was nothing right about what he
did. In fact, he figured the only reason he’d gotten away with it was because
he must have done something good in a past life.
Whatever the reason, he didn’t want to overthink it.
He just wanted to focus on enjoying every blessing, every day, as it came.
As he squatted low to bring the roller all the way
to the ground, he heard the door slam downstairs followed by the sound of keys sliding
across the entryway table.
He put the roller down and walked to the landing. “I
see you stopped by your parents shop?”
“I know!” Madeline held up two second hand baby
gates. “How lucky is that?”
“At least they’re useful.”
Madeline rolled her eyes. “Does that mean you
haven’t come around to the Care Bears nightlight yet?”
“It doesn’t even work!”
“Yeah, but it’ll work until we get one that works.”
“Don’t make me say it again.”
“I do not have pregnancy brain!” she said, heading
up the stairs. She waved a letter in the air. “This came for you while I was
“That can wait. Did the doctor give you any news?”
“What are you talking about?”
He greeted her with a peck on the lips. “About the
sex of the baby?”
“I thought we didn’t want to know?”
“Well, yeah. That’s what we agreed, but I thought
you would change your mind at the last second for sure.”
“Sorry to disappoint. I guess I’m not as flaky as
Kirk’s shoulders dropped. “I’m so sick of looking at
everything through gender neutral lenses. I just want to know.”
“Nothing else to report then?”
“Nope. I’m healthy. The baby’s healthy. Everything
“I guess that’s the most important thing.”
Madeline poked him in the chest. “That’s absolutely
Madeline shoved the letter at him. “C’mon, open it.
It looks official.”
Kirk looked down at his lilac hands. “I’ve got paint
on me. You go ahead and open it.”
Madeline wiggled her tiny finger underneath the
envelope’s sealed edge and pried it open. “It’s from the N.A.A.S?”
Kirk’s eyebrows went up.
Madeline kept reading. “The National Association of
Kirk gestured with his hand for her to hurry up.
“Dear Professor Jenkins, blah blah blah.”
Madeline laughed. “You’ll never let me open your
“Dear Professor Jenkins, We have reviewed the
results of your study following its publication in the American Psychological
Society’s esteemed addiction newsletter,
. We would like to
invite you to speak at a meeting of our board of directors to be held on March
The purpose of this meeting is to discuss whether it is in the
Association’s best interest to partner with the International Society of
Addiction Medicine and repeat the study on a global scale.”
“This sounds like a good thing.”
Kirk jumped up and down. “This is so much more than
I ever could have hoped for!”
“You deserve it. You’ve been working so hard.”
“But this is the big time!” He waved his hands
excitedly. “This isn’t just a big deal for me. It’ll bring major recognition to
the university. I’ll probably get a raise. They’ll probably erect a freaking
statue in my honor and put it in front of the psychology building.” He began pacing
Madeline stepped back to give him space.
“I’ll have to prepare a speech. And if it’s good
enough and they go forward with the additional funding – do you realize how
many people this could help? If we do my study with Addiction Medicine on
board? I mean-“
“Calm down, honey.” Madeline put a hand on Kirk’s
shoulder. “Stop and take a breath.”
“I have to call Paul! I wonder if he knows?! He
probably does, but maybe he doesn’t.”
“Kirk, relax. You’re stressing me out.”
Kirk’s face dropped. He turned to her suddenly and
lowered his voice. “I’m sorry.”
“Maybe you should do some of my Lamaze breathing.”
Kirk smiled. “This is just one more thing that’s
going right for us, honey.” He went to put her hand on her belly.
“Don’t even think about it.” She grabbed his wrist.
“Do you have any idea how hard it is to find cute maternity clothes in a second
hand shop? You get paint on this, I’ll kill you.”
Kirk jumped back. “All I was saying is that this
little baby is like a lucky charm.” Then he started singing. “Ain’t no one
gonna breaka my stride- Ain’t no one gonna hold me down.”
“You’re a maniac. You know that?” Madeline put a
hand to her shaking forehead as he danced across the landing. “You’re going to
be the most embarrassing dad ever!”
Kirk scooted backwards into the nursery. “Isn’t it
great?! I’ve been practicing my whole life for this!”
Madeline called after him. “Do you think a takeaway
pizza might calm you down? I’m starving.”
Kirk popped his head back into the hallway. “It’s
worth a try.”
Kirk spun back across the room and dipped the roller
in the paint, wondering where he would be without Madeline.
He didn’t know. And he didn’t want to know.