After Jack left, the next few days were filled with me trying to act like everything was fine. At work, at University, at home. I was emotionally and mentally exhausted, and tired of putting on a happy face. Then I started to feel nauseous.
One morning, during a two-hour lecture, I began to feel horrendously ill. During the break between the first and second hour, I told my lecturer I wasn’t feeling well and headed home. But I couldn’t make it home. I had to stop off at a University building and run to the toilet, where, the second I locked the door behind me, I spun round and vomited into the glaringly white toilet bowl. I let myself sink down onto the bathroom floor as I wiped my face, blew my now running nose and dried my tearing eyes.
I walked home fast. Desperate to get into a hot bath, close my eyes, and forget the incident. I was quickly catching the cold that was infecting most of my classmates and I didn’t need to be throwing up on top of that. By the time I made it home my head was spinning. I went to the bathroom and began running a roasting hot bath. As I waited for the tub to fill, I started looking up morning sickness. Everywhere I looked, I was told: “Morning sickness usually begins during the sixth or seventh week of pregnancy.” I was six weeks pregnant. Perfect.
I eased my way into the hot water, hoping it would ease my stomach and my nausea. It didn’t. I had barely even started washing my hair when I began to feel the stomach acid rising in my throat. I leapt out of the bath in time to once again stick my head into the toilet bowl.
I messaged Jack, hoping this physical reaction to the pregnancy would trigger some sympathy and responsibility within him. After waiting almost an hour for a response, he told me a long winded story about his day and ended the message with “and I hope you feel better.” Not exactly what I had been expecting.
The rest of the week that Jack was gone I spent most of between bed and the bathroom. I was struggling to keep most food and liquids down, including Lemsips to ease my aching throat and the raging cold that was now fully developed. I had never felt more dreadful. When he could, Henry visited and took care of me, bringing me whatever food I could actually stomach, and different teas that he had read were meant to help ease morning sickness. None of it worked, but I was grateful to have him there looking after me. I desperately wanted to tell my mum, but I was also terrified of what she would think of me once she knew. I spoke to her a couple of times that week, and each time she asked me if something was wrong, as though she could sense the unhappiness and worry in my voice, something I was striving desperately to conceal. I managed to keep the secret till my parents went away on holiday, and I wasn’t likely to hear from them for the next two weeks. It was ideal.
The night before Jack was due back from his parents’, I asked if he wanted to come over the following evening and catch up. He turned up looking calm, and acting more or less as if nothing had happened. We put a film on and I tried to cuddle up next to him on the sofa, but he was reluctant. Rude. I was still in my PJ’s and I apologised to him for my appearance, which might have been putting him off, but I had spent most of the day feeling ill and occasionally being sick. After two films, a minimal amount of hugging and a lot of small talk, Jack left. I was confused and hurt. He hadn’t asked me how I was doing, if I had needed anything, or if he should come with me to the TOPAR clinic appointment, which was looming closer. I was also hurt by the fact that he had barely touched me all night. He had stiffly put his arm around me when I leaned into him and didn’t even give me a hug when he left. What was going on? I sent him a text telling him I was confused, and asking where exactly we were, were we friends, or something more? His reply explained that he thought we were better off friends, that he thought I was amazing but us being more than that never seemed to work out. I figured this was pretty true, and tried to be OK with it on top of everything else. That was fine until the next day.
Jack and I were chatting away online, back to our usual, relaxed and easy conversation I had always loved. He wasn’t bringing up the pregnancy or his responsibility for it, but he was back to normal. I casually asked if he had any plans that evening, to which he responded, “I do actually, I’m meeting Tessa.”
WHAT?! I was fuming. The day after he just told me we should be friends, he was meeting her?! Had he completely forgotten that I was pregnant? And despite the part of me that wished it was Henry’s, I knew deep down, this was Jack’s, and I was filled with rage at Jack’s denial and incompetence. I was furious, and pointed out his perfect timing deciding to call things off with me. He told me, “I’ve been talking to Tessa ever since I decided to stop wasting my time on you.” Now that stung. I was at this point, an emotional, hormonal, increasingly sick woman, and getting sick of pretending none of this was getting to me. I felt betrayed. I asked him if he felt this way, why on earth he slept with me just over a week ago, and how he could do that while making dates with another woman. His response, and at this point possibly the worst thing Jack had ever said to me was, “I was drunk and you were there.”
I had thought that, despite our problems, when Jack and I fell into bed together again, it was because it meant something to both of us and because we both wanted to try and make something more out of it. Apparently, I hadn’t communicated this to dear Jack, and he saw our last sexual encounter as a drunken mistake, not a sign that things were looking up. I asked him how he could do this to me with all that I was going through, that I thought we were both going through. I can’t remember his exact words but they hurt. To be honest, all I remember is that everything he said to me that day, and for the following days was cruel, hurtful and unnecessary, but the individual words escape me. I had been completely dumped for another girl by the father of a child that was beginning to grow inside of me. To say I was pissed off does not even begin to cover how I felt.