IMR: Prologue: June 18, 1997 -- 12:22 a.m.
The Apartment, Waikiki, Hawai`i
I called her to say I loved her. She told me she was pregnant.
The day seemed innocuous enough. Worked, ate, worked, and headed home. Driving down Kapahulu, I was listening to the ever-chatty deejays on KINE 105.1 as they interviewed Hapa about "In the Name of Love" -- their forthcoming album.
Eventually, they played a song, "Rain in Manoa." It had the unmistakable Hapa sound, perhaps a little corny, with a few dubious rhymes.
Yet, it made me think of Jen. I decided I'd ring her when I got home.
The conversation was bland, Jen obviously keeping it hedged in the realm of "how's the weather" and "what'd you have for dinner." Pauses were long and frequent, as apparently neither of us were about to offer any thoughts of substance.
Finally, I asked about the doctor's appointment.
Since she landed in Florida, she'd been feeling ill. She'd lost a bit of weight. She'd spent a day throwing up a couple of weeks ago. Jet lag? That gawdawful Florida cuisine? Pregnant? She'd said she knew she wasn't, but a visit to the doctor was in order anyway -- especially since she hadn't seen one for over a year.
Actually, I'd asked her about the doctor's appointment in the e-mail I'd sent to her the day before. She'd written a reply, but didn't mention anything. So I figured to ask her directly.
"How'd the doctor's appointment go?" I asked. I knew.
"Fine, good," she said.
"Did they figure out what's wrong?" I asked. I knew.
"What was up?" I knew.
"I was hoping we could talk about it after I got back," she said.
"Oh?" I asked. I definitely knew. "Can you please tell me now?"
"Ryan, I think you know what it is."
I knew indeed.
"That's big news," I said.
"I'm so sorry," she said. "Are you angry?"
I was feeling a million things. But anger wasn't one of them.
She was five to seven weeks along. She told her mother. She wanted to keep it, but she wants it to be our decision, and she'd understand if I didn't.
We talked for three hours. Damn me, now I can't remember a teaspoon of what we said.
I do know that the strongest feeling she had was fear of what I'd say. Fear of my being angry, disappointed, somehow upset at her. She said I'd had the roughest year anyone could have (on that point I'd probably agree with her) and that "now, on top of everything, I drop this on you."
I reminded her, first and foremost, that it takes two to make three. I admitted I was scared. I told her it's okay for her to be scared. And I said I could never, ever be angry.
In fact, I said, a part of me -- insane as it may be -- was ecstatic.
The second I said that, so much tension drained from her voice. "It really means a lot to hear you say that."
Of course, it wouldn't be my life if there wasn't a weird twist.
Jen has endometriosis. To be honest, I haven't a clue what it is, but I know it's an occasionally serious problem in a woman's plumbing.
Perhaps I should backtrack a bit. Actually, I should backtrack a lot.
Dare I tell the whole story?
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|© Ryan Kawailani Ozawa · E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org · Created: 6 April 1998 · Last Modified: 11 April 1998|