social distancing???

The other day, Brady’s mom called me. She never calls me.

When I picked up, she said, “Oh, hello. I didn’t expect you to answer.”

What was that even supposed to mean?

“I thought I’d call to check in with you. I’ve sent a couple of text messages and gotten no response,” she continued.

“Oh, sorry. I’ve been busy, as you can probably imagine,” I said.

“I understand.”

There was a beat of silence and then she said, “So I heard you’ve returned to work.”

“I have. Luckily we are still in operation. I was kind of worried I’d come back and there’d be no job for me, but that wasn’t the case. There’s plenty of work still for me to do.”

“And how is Winnie adjusting? It must be hard for her – she’s used to having your undivided attention so I imagine this is quite a transition for her.”

I could not roll my eyes hard enough. “She’s fine.”

“Do you need any help?”

“No. I’ve got it under control. Brady’s helping a ton when he can and everything is perfect.”

“Well, we’d like to see her,” Brady’s mom said. “We were thinking of driving to Connecticut on Saturday for a visit. We don’t need to stay long, perhaps until dinner and then we will leave.”

I didn’t say anything. Surely she was kidding as this was against everything we are supposed to be doing right now.

“How does that sound?”

“I don’t know,” I began. “We’re all supposed to be isolating so probably not. At least not right now.”

“Oh, don’t be silly, Reese,” Brady’s mom said dismissively. “We want to see our granddaughter.”

A few months ago, I’d decided that I was not going to deal with Brady’s parents – his mom in particular. Like I just don’t have the patience or desire to and she has no right to be a bitch to me. So I’ve been pushing them back onto him.

“Why don’t we talk to Brady about it? He probably has a better perspective,” I said. She huffed and we hung up.

A few days later, she called me again.

“Brady told me Winnie is measuring in the 20th percentile. This is a huge concern, Reese,” she said.

I almost fucking lost it.

“She’s small! She’s a petite baby. Sometimes babies are small!”

“They are, but usually due to an underlying issue or malnutrition, Reese. I’d like her to see our family doctor here in Massachusetts. He’s one of the best in the country.”

I quickly rushed off the phone, but she texted me afterwards and said, “I’m sure Brady already told you, but we are coming on Saturday to see the baby. We will bring lunch.”

I didn’t reply and when Brady got home, I let him fucking have it. If he isn’t going to control his mother, then he will have to take the abuse from me.

“Oh my God, relax. She’s not trying to be rude, she just wants to make sure Winnie is healthy,” Brady said, rolling his eyes at me.

“Of course she’s healthy! Didn’t you tell her that? You heard the doctor say she’s literally perfect!” I screamed. “And how could you give them permission to come here with this gross virus going around?”

“How could I not let them come visit? That’s so unfair. They haven’t seen her in months.”

Naturally, I was absolutely furious at Brady for being, in my opinion, irresponsible and taking his mother’s side over mine. I didn’t talk to him for the rest of the week.

As promised, Brady’s parents arrived at 11am on Saturday morning. I’d spent the morning crying because the whole situation was out of my control. Winnie, however, was excited for visitors and screamed and giggled as they all greeted each other. I stayed in the kitchen, pretending to clean.

“Reese. It’s nice to see you,” Brady’s mom said after she had come to find me.

“You as well,” I said back politely.

The dad followed her in, carrying the bags of food they brought. He was polite and hugged me (social distancing?????) while Brady’s mom began to unload the food.

Brady came in carrying the baby and his mother said, “Son, how about a tour of your house?” And then she turned to me. “You’ll set up the food, won’t you?” As if I’m some sort of slave!

By the time they got back from the tour, the food was exactly where she’d left it because I was too busy texting my mom, Kendra, Carly and whoever I could think of to complain about her. Brady’s mom gave me a disappointed look as she continued pulling takeout containers out of the shopping bags.

We sat down for lunch where Brady’s parents and Winnie did most of the talking. I’ve noticed that Brady is a teeny bit more confident around his mother now and actually gives his opinion on things. At one point in the lunch, he said, “That isn’t true,” and the mother said, “Yes, it is,” and Brady said, “Mom. That’s false and it’s absurd.” And she backed down. I don’t even know what they were talking about but it was nice to see Brady win for once.

After lunch and several mimosas for me, everyone headed back to the living room while I put Winnie down for a nap. When I got back, everyone stopped speaking and watched me walk in. It’s like, I know you’re talking about me. But I couldn’t even bring myself to care.

Brady’s mom starting talking again, asking Brady if he’s spoken to his brother. “Dominique is threatening to leave him and take the children with her.”

I almost choked on my mimosa at this piece of gossip. Brady didn’t seem to care and didn’t bother asking follow up questions so I had to.

“Why?”

Brady’s mom looked at me. “Because she’s selfish, immature and unreasonable. He should have never married that woman.”

Soooo…not because he goes around having unprotected sex with random women he meets in bars?

“Aww, but if he hadn’t, you wouldn’t have those adorable grandkids,” I said.

“If he had married someone normal and not someone from the ghetto, we wouldn’t have to deal with this crap and we would still have grandchildren.”

I gasped, Brady exclaimed, “Mom!” and Brady’s dad said, “Honey…”

“I’m sorry, but it’s the truth. She’s going to go after his money and assets. It’s no coincidence that she’s doing this now after he sold his patent. She’s classless.”

I couldn’t not say anything. “Have you considered that maybe Hunter hasn’t been a great husband to her?”

“He’s provided her with everything she could possibly want including two perfect children. She was living in squalor when they met, mind you. I’d say he has been nothing but excellent to her,” she said.

I got up and walked back to the kitchen. I couldn’t listen to it anymore. How out of her mind must she be to think Hunter is a good husband? I’d rather be poor than have my man treat me the way Hunter treats Dom. And obviously Dom thinks the same thing. Brady followed me into the kitchen.

“I think they should leave, don’t you think?” I said.

He nodded. “Yeah, maybe.”

“I wonder what she says about me when I’m not around. She’s probably telling people that I’m from a trailer park and that my parents are uneducated drunks, you know?”

“She doesn’t say that. I’m sorry for what she said about Dom. I think she’s just really upset about everything,” Brady explained.

And whether she’s really upset or not, her words are hurtful and unacceptable and I don’t ever want my daughter to be around it.

Maybe I was turned on by Brady kind of standing up to his mother because that night we had sex. Well, we tried to. After an hour of kissing and fooling around, Brady put it in and I said, “Oh, I’m not back on birth control yet.”

“Ugh, Reese,” Brady whined like a baby and it was actually quite funny. “I’ll pull out.”

“Does that actually work? Like, have you tried it with a woman who isn’t on birth control and she didn’t get pregnant? Actually, don’t answer that,” I went on.

Brady put a finger over my lips so I’d be quiet.

“But honestly. Winnie is not ready for a sibling yet. She needs to have the undivided love and attention from us for at least a few years.”

He continued, not saying anything.

“Wow, do you want more children like right away? I never even thought to ask you. How many do you want total?”

Finally, Brady stopped and got up.

“Wait, where are you going?” I asked, still completely naked on the bed.

“Forget it. I’m gonna go check on the baby.”

I guess my line of questioning was a turnoff. Also, once everything dies down I need to figure out birth control.

After their visit, I didn’t hear much from Brady’s mom, but she sent me a Mother’s Day gift: a bottle of Dom Perignon and a set of gorgeous crystal champagne flutes (that were $1,200, I Googled). There was absolutely no reason or explanation for the nice gift, and I considered not accepting it. After the comments about Dom and the things she said to me while I was pregnant, I don’t want to accept anything from her. But sending them back would cause more drama so I decided to just thank her and move on. I felt a bit bad that we’d only sent a card, but when I called her and the first thing she wanted to know was if I’m feeding Winnie regularly and if she’s gained any weight, I got over it.

The other thing I got for Mother’s Day is a car, finally. A beautiful white Audi SUV. Too bad I have nowhere to go in it, but it looks fabulous in the garage.

I’ve been eavesdropping on Brady’s work calls again. It’s so hard not to. The other day, he was working and I heard him shouting so Winnie and I ran upstairs to see/hear what the commotion was. Brady never shouts.

“If he doesn’t get his medication in the next fifteen minutes, he will die! Do you fucking understand me? Do you want to be responsible for his someone living as a vegetable for the rest of their life? Get him the fucking medication now!”

Winnie, not wanting to be left out, began screaming at the top of her lungs too, right outside the door. We had to make a run for it.

Another day, I heard Brady say Hunter’s name and I rushed to hear the latest drama.

“She’s fucking crazy. She went and got my cell phone records and has been calling every number this past week. She called my boss and all my business partners.” Hunter said this.

“Why is she doing this now? What set her off?” Brady asked.

Hunter began to respond, but to my disappointment, Brady took the phone off speaker so I couldn’t hear the rest of Hunter’s explanation. Just a bunch of Oh jeez’s. I tried to get the scoop later, but Brady wouldn’t reveal anything. A few days later though, after a couple of bottles of wine, Brady told me that Hunter has been meeting up with women from apps for sex. During a global pandemic. I lost it.

“Is he out of his mind? That’s so fucking vile!” I screamed.

“I know. He regrets it and feels really bad…”

“Of course he feels bad! What a terrible thing to do. And your mother is blaming Dom for being ‘poor and unreasonable.’ I think not wanting your husband to fuck random girls while there’s a deadly virus going around is far from unreasonable.”

Brady looked like he regretted telling me.

I went on. “And you refuse to hold him accountable. If someone I loved behaved like that, I would refuse to have a relationship until they stopped.”

“But he’s an adult. He can make his own decisions.”

“Oh, for fuck’s sake! That’s not how an adult acts. He’s a fucking child!”

I hadn’t heard much from Brendan. He wasn’t even responding to any emails that I copied him in and he wasn’t posting anything on Instagram. I was going to text him to see why he’d been silent, but before I did I ended up on his wife’s Instagram page. And she’d posted a picture of her laying in a hammock with a man and her legs draping over him. Neither of their faces were in the picture but based on the outfit, shoes, and gold bracelet (why do I have his wardrobe memorized?), I knew she was with Brendan.

And I felt a lot of things. Mostly, why is he even giving that manipulative girl another chance? She’s been so cruel and awful to him during their separation, I can’t see how he’d even want to go back to her. And I have absolutely no right to feel this way, but I guess I was a little bit jealous too. Just imagining her treating him like trash but him still worshipping her. But anyway, it has nothing to do with me and I have no right to feel anything at all about it.

I texted Brendan the other day though. I just wanted to see where he’s been and if he’d fess up. But he didn’t. He said, “Hey, I’m so glad you texted me, I’ve been thinking about you. Things have been so busy.”

And he absolutely did not fess up. Which is weird that he didn’t, but it’s also weird that I think he needs to admit anything to me at all.

That’s all for now.

Standard

it was an accident.

Hi y’all.

I don’t even know where to begin. We’ve obviously fled to Connecticut and I’m even more thankful now for my mother and all she did to help me prepare.

Before we left the city, before my mom went back to Texas, and before it became illegal to socialize, I had lunch with Brendan. I left Winnie with my mom, put on a little dress (thank you, Trainer Wayne), four inch booties and some fur and met him at Serafina. Brendan had texted me a couple times since I’d gone on my leave, but I was so preoccupied that I kept forgetting to text back. Until he said, “Hey – I have something to give you. Wanna grab lunch this week?”

Hell yes, I did. And so we met for lunch. With everything going on with the baby and moving, I hadn’t spent much time thinking about little old Brendan. But when I saw him sitting at the two seater waiting for me, I was so excited that I had to calm down and remind myself to breathe. He looked so good in his perfect fitting black tee, with his blonde hair pushed back messily off his face, squinting at the sun coming in the window, his signature gold bracelet dangling on his wrist. It reminded me of when Brady and I first got together – how my heart would melt when I saw him, in a way I couldn’t really explain.

So maybe that explains why when Brendan stood up to greet me, saying, “You look…amazing,” I threw my arms around him and we pecked him on the lips. It was an accident.

“Whoa,” said a blushing Brendan as if it was all me and he was surprised. He immediately reached down to grab a Saks shopping bag to give me. “My stepmom helped me pick it out.”

We sat down and caught up – me telling him all about the baby, my trainer, the Connecticut house, the cars I want to buy; him telling me about current projects at work, Mike, his current favorite smoothie recipe, his wife. He explained that they’d made plans to spend Christmas together to try to work on their relationship and then at the last minute, after Brendan had hired people to clean, decorate and cook a Christmas feast and bought her several expensive gifts, she texted him (texted him) saying, “My dad doesn’t think it’s a good idea for us to spend Christmas together, sorry.”

I rolled my eyes so hard it hurt. “So when are you filing for divorce? She’s awful.”

Brendan looked at me like he was offended at me even bringing up such a ridiculous thing. Suddenly uncomfortable with talking about himself and his screwed up relationship, he asked, “So. How is your boyfriend? With the baby and everything…”

Brendan and I have made a point not to call either of our spouses’ by their names.

“Oh, he’s fine. He follows us around with hearts in his eyes. I think he’s just amazed that she’s here and she’s real and she looks exactly like him,” I said.

“You must be frustrated that she doesn’t look like you,” Brendan laughed.

“No, it’s fine. They’re both cute,” I said, which is so true. Maybe I wish Winnie had a little bit more hair, but with her big blue eyes, button nose and permanent look of confusion, she’s perfect.

The evening after we had lunch, Brendan texted me saying that he was happy we got to catch up and hopefully we could do it again soon. And by the way, could I get away tonight? No pressure, but he and some of his employees were at a bar and it would be nice to see me again.

The truth was I was already out – with Brady – on one of our first outings as parents. We’d already had dinner and had moved on to drinks at a bar. Brady and Brendan plus all his employees? I never wanted to the two of them to meet. That sounded terrible. I didn’t text back.

The past several weeks have been really hard. We moved into our new house and got settled and my mom went back to Houston for good. I was ready for her to leave, to be honest, but I didn’t realize how hard it would be without her.

Brady is still working at the hospital in the city and I started to get freaked out that he was going into the city, working all day with infected people at the hospital and then coming home to us. I made him park his car in the garage, get completely undressed, shower and only then was he allowed to speak to us. But even after all that, I was thinking, what if has the virus, he could be asymptomatic and spread it to us without knowing. So I started avoiding him all together and refusing to let him hold the baby. This is what spending twelve hours a day reading news headlines and talking to a baby does to a person. I was making Brady use disposable silverware and cups, following him around the house to wipe down anything he touched and “putting Winnie to sleep” for four hours in the evening in her room so I didn’t have to spend time with him.

Eventually Brady confronted me about it and assured me that the hospital did checks on employees everyday for symptoms before letting them begin work.

“But what if you aren’t showing symptoms?” I exclaimed.

So then Brady decided to stay in the city during the week so I’d feel better. Naturally, this did the opposite and I was miserable. Brady would constantly try to check in – texting me throughout the day and calling in the evening – but I was mad at him for abandoning us and staying in the city. How could he just leave his family like that? Who knows what he was doing there alone? In my imagination, he was hiring escorts.

After two weeks of staying in the city, Brady sat me down.

“We are going to have to figure something out. I don’t like being away from you guys for so long and I don’t think treating me like I have cooties is very fair,” he said.

I laughed at his use of the word “cooties.”

Brady went on to assure me that he was just as concerned as I was and that I needed to trust that he was taking necessary precautions. He explained that he hardly had to come into contact with infected patients – his team was placed in different units all over the hospital, not just that unit – and my eyes began glazing over. He mentioned the words, “infectious diseases,” “personal protection equipment,” and “medication therapy.”

“So I’d like to come home,” Brady concluded. When I didn’t say anything, he continued. “Of course, I’ll continue taking necessary steps to protect us, but she’s my baby too and I don’t want to miss out on anything.”

Little Winnie sat in my lap wearing a pink baby turban looking at Brady like she didn’t understand what “medication therapy” means either.

Winnie and Brady absolutely love each other and she recognizes him and gets so happy when he comes home from work. It’s actually so fucking cute. And it’s not like I wanted him to be away so I had no choice. We were going to have to figure it out.

It helps that Brady gets to work from home one day a week now doing computer work. It’s amazing because on these days I can shower, wash my hair, do housework (I had every intention of hiring a cleaning person, but obviously that can’t happen now), paint, walk the neighborhood, etc.

So Brady’s been working from home – setting up shop in one of the bedrooms upstairs. One day, I walked past and heard him on the phone. He rarely needs to get on calls because he’s mostly doing computer work and I heard him say something like, “Thanks for letting me know. It’s crazy how many things happen when I’m not there for one day.”

He had the phone on speaker and I heard the person respond. A woman.

“Of course. No problem, Brady,” she said.

Now I was interested. I stayed and listened.

“So do you have plans this weekend? I think the weather is going to be shitty again,” Brady said.

She sighed. “Well, originally this weekend I was supposed to go to Vegas for a friend’s bachelorette party. We feel bad that her trip got cancelled so we were thinking of doing something at my apartment. Something small, of course, but with a lot of alcohol. We need it.”

They both laughed.

Ew. Who was this? And why was Brady talking to someone who thought they were above social distancing guidelines?

“What about you? Do you have plans?” she asked.

“Nothing major,” Brady replied. “I’ve run out of things to do so I’ll probably give my dog a bath after putting it off for so long.”

“You’re so lucky. I was just thinking how nice it would be to have a dog to keep me company during quarantine.”

“Yeah. It definitely makes things less lonely,” Brady said.

Lonely? Why the fuck would he be lonely with a four month old and basically a wife? It occurred to me that whoever was on the other end had no idea we existed.

Another day I eavesdropped, I heard him talking to a woman – unclear if it’s the same woman – and they were bitching about one of their coworkers.

“She’s so unorganized, it makes me want to blow my brains out,” Brady said.

“I hate her, Brady,” she said. “The only reason I haven’t blown up is because of you. You’re literally the reason I’m still employed.”

“They’re trying to transition her out. We talked about it in a leadership meeting a few weeks ago. Super confidential, obviously.”

I could not believe Brady was gossiping and confronted him about it later.

“So who did have calls with today?” I asked innocently as I formed meatballs for dinner. Despite working from home, Brady doesn’t usually leave his little makeshift office until well past seven.

“Just my team. We have to go over our daily numbers on a conference call,” he replied.

“Oh really? I thought I heard you on a call with one person?” I said.

He tilted his head slightly and pretended to think. “I had a call with two of my colleagues and then spoke with my boss briefly. Why?”

“I heard you telling someone about confidential information you found out during a leadership meeting so it wasn’t your boss. Very unprofessional to be sharing that kind of information, by the way.”

“She’s not going to tell anyone,” Brady said, getting defensive. “And I think you’re the last person who should be lecturing me on professionalism.”

Brady was so mad that he didn’t speak to me for the rest of the night, but he’s stopped gossiping on the phone, at least for me to hear. I went through his emails on the iPad though, and saw that Anna emailed him congratulating him on his “bundle of joy.”

“Your mother sent me a couple of pictures and she is so beautiful. You’re very lucky,” Anna said.

Brady had responded, thanking her, but then asking all these questions about what she’s been up to and acting really interested in her life. It actually did make him seem a little lonely, like he was dying to keep the conversation with her going.

And maybe it’s my fault. I have zero sex drive and when Brady tries to touch me, I run away. At first, I was insecure about my body, but now I just have zero interest. He’s stopped trying for the most part, but he must be frustrated and lonely, I guess (but less lonely because he has Tucker).

The one good thing about this whole quarantine thing is that Brady’s mother isn’t around. Thank God. She drove me nuts when we were staying in the apartment and now she can only communicate via text. And she is sure to text me frequently to check on the baby and ask personal questions she has no business asking. I send her pictures sometimes, only when I’m in a good mood because when she responds “I hope you aren’t feeding her anything besides what we agreed,” or “It doesn’t look like she’s putting in any weight,” I want to keep my cool.

I was supposed to return to work at the end of March, but obviously that didn’t happen. I needed to check up on emails and we were still moving ahead with projects around the country so I still had work to do at home. I didn’t think to bring my laptop with my when I went on my maternity leave so Brendan delivered it all the way to me in Connecticut – dropping it off on the porch for a contactless delivery. He’s the best.

Anyway, how are y’all holding up? Are you ready to kill your spouses yet?

Standard

i can’t believe i’m so lucky.

Well, hey you guys.

I feel like I’ve finally gotten into a bit of a routine so I thought I’d update!

I gave birth at the end of the December and to be honest, it was all quite a blur. The day before they threatened to induce me, I went into labor and thank God my mom was camped out in one of the spare bedrooms at Brady’s parents’ apartment because I was so out of tune with my body that I didn’t realize what was going on. It was in the evening and Brady was home with his head in his laptop and immediately sprung into action when my mom ran around screaming what was going on.

I may have been in labor and pain, but that didn’t make me any less annoyed at my mom for causing a scene.

“Relax or I’m not going,” I told her.

We got to the hospital and I immediately accepted all drugs offered even after the nurses asked, “Are you sure?” sixteen times. Apparently a lot of women go in there with the intention of having a baby naturally with no drugs, but that was never a part of my plan.

I was feeling really good and optimistic and then Brady told me that his parents were on their way and wanted to meet the baby as soon as she was born. I started vomiting all over myself and then uncontrollably crying because it was so gross. Brady stood next to my head with a stoic face, not saying anything.

“Can you like get away from me if you aren’t going to help?” I screamed at him. He walked away with his hands in his pockets and went back to his laptop. He’d brought it because apparently he had soo much work to get done before taking a few weeks off. I hadn’t thought of work since my last day.

Other than a few hours of uncontrollably crying and throwing up, my labor was fairly easy and uneventful. In total it only took about seven hours for her to arrive. I’d read a ton of birthing stories so I’d made myself super anxious about pain, tearing, pooping, blood, etc. which is probably why I threw up. Luckily though, the medicine helped and everything was okay. I wasn’t concerned about any of that shit in the end.

She’s so cute. As soon as they pulled her out, my mom shouted to Brady, “She looks exactly like you!”

It’s like, mom, she’s covered in blood and fluid, she doesn’t look like anything. But she was right. Baby had huge blue eyes and wispy golden hair and has Brady’s literal face. She was tiny at birth (just over 5 pounds), but totally healthy. Dr. Sabrina warned me that she’d be small, but had zero concerns.

She was born on the Saturday before Christmas and I let the nurses know we’d need to be home for Christmas. Not because we had any plans or anything, but because who wants to spend their Christmas in the hospital? Plus, she had a fabulous temporary nursery waiting back at the apartment. Brady’s mom had hired someone to put together a beautiful lilac nursery – even after I reminded her that we’d be moving into our own place soon.

“She’ll still need a place to stay when you’re in the city,” Brady’s mom sniffled.

Luckily though, because I didn’t have any operations and my itty bitty baby was healthy, we were cleared to leave the very next day. I’d definitely overpacked for our 38 hour stay, but I was glad I had essentials like my Slip pillowcase, turban, jade roller, and Flaming Hot Cheetos.

That Tuesday was Brady’s birthday and Christmas Eve and to be honest, I’d completely forgotten about his birthday. Obviously he wasn’t going to bring it up and I hadn’t finished getting him gifts. Brady’s parents wanted to come over and when he asked me if I was okay with it, I told him to make the decision on his own. They had been very nice at the hospital when first meeting her, but I wasn’t exactly l dying to spend more time with them. Especially because my parents there. I was too exhausted to fight about it.

So they arrived later that evening with dinner (from the fancy Italian down the street) and gifts for the baby and no one else (it was Brady’s birthday!). We all picked at the food, squealed at the gadgets and cooed over the baby and it actually felt kind of….normal? Like, if I were back home in Houston it was exactly what I’d be doing with my family. And for things to be so normal with Brady’s parents was not normal.

And then later, while I was sitting on the couch with my mom and Brady’s mom, discussing sitter/nanny options (my mom is trying to stay with us indefinitely), and the baby was sleeping on my chest and the men had been watching something in the media room, Brady came over and said that he had something for me. He had a little square gold box in his hand. I was thinking, “I know this man is not going to propose right now. Not when I look and feel disgusting, I can’t even think straight, the baby is *actually* sleeping and his judgmental parents are here. There’s no way he’s this stupid.”

But still, I assumed he was and I was kind of excited. Like, fucking finally. I’d have a beautiful ring and a fiancé and our little family would make sense. His mother would shut up. We’d do a smaller wedding than I’ve ever envisioned and it would be in a historic church in Paris or a vineyard in Italy. I’d need to lose twenty pounds and I’d get a 1920s inspired gown (covered in beading and no lace) that fit my new hot body like a glove. What would the baby wear? I started to get nervous and hot – with everything else going on, I had not prepared for this to happen today.

Brady leaned down so I could see what was in the box, looking pleased with himself. It was a pair of diamond stud earrings. I wanted to slap him.

“Oh,” I said, sounding like the ungrateful bitch that I am. “They’re stunning.”

Like, are you kidding me? As if I didn’t already have a pair of diamond studs.

“What is it?” Brady’s mom asked from her post on the couch.

“Oh, they’re beautiful!” my mom crowed. “About a carat each. They are just perfect!”

Brady’s mom got up to see the earrings close up and nodded an approval. She looked from me to Brady and then retreated back to her seat.

“Thank you. I love them,” I said to just Brady. Suddenly, the look on his face told me he realized his error and was super embarrassed. For someone so smart, Brady is sometimes really stupid. I love the earrings, of course and I know they were expensive. But still. He had to have known.

The first few days were chaos because there was Christmas and everyone was in town and wanted to meet her and we couldn’t get into a routine and she was screaming and not sleeping and Tucker was not a fan and I discovered I’m not going to breastfeed and I’d done no research on formulas. I almost lost my shit fourteen times. We spent a lot of time crying together.

My mom and Brady were a huge help though. Brady took a month off work (well, three and a half weeks) – nothing compared to the four month maternity leave I’m taking, but he got so much accomplished. He bought a new car – a new and sportier version of his old car. I didn’t even know that he’d gotten it until we were going to a doctor’s appointment one day and he pulled up in his sexy new car.

“What? When did this happen?” I asked.

“A few days ago. I stopped by the dealership while I was out,” he said casually.

“You didn’t tell me that.”

“I told you that I’d be getting a new car…”

“But you didn’t tell me you actually bought one,” I said as I strapped the baby in back. Brady just looked at me. “You’re so weird.”

Like, who does that? Who wouldn’t come home excited to show off their new car? He withholds so much information that it’s obviously deliberate, but I don’t understand why.

We closed on the house in Connecticut and Brady and my mom spent a ton of time painting, accepting millions of furniture deliveries, putting together shelves, etc. Eventually I had to make a trip up there to check the progress as I needed everything to be absolutely perfect. The majority of the place was painted a soft, inviting gray (Benjamin Moore’s Stonington Gray). I’d ordered a fabulous (expensive) tufted bench with lucite legs for the foyer area and some artwork for the walls from a friend in Houston. My mom found a vintage glass Art Deco chandelier at an estate sale and it pulled the whole area together fabulously. I’d ordered a massive wooden ten person table for our formal dining room (we might start having dinner parties, who knows) and with the wallpaper, mirrors and fresh floral centerpiece and table settings my mom had put together, it was so chic. I know everyone is into the whole farmhouse look these days, but I am absolutely not. If I see another white and wood dining room, I will scream.

“I’d like to completely redo that guest bathroom upstairs to get it to match the others. Completely gut it and start over. Do you know a contractor we could work with?” my mom said.

I was already feeling emotional about all the work she and Brady had done on the place to have it ready for us and when she asked about a contractor I immediately thought of Brendan who I haven’t seen since I left work at the end of November. I burst into tears. I miss him.

Brady’s mom stopped by a lot the first few weeks. At first she was really helpful and amazing and would bring food and even hired someone bring groceries by twice a week. She was so sweet with the baby and would encourage me to get out of the house, go for a walk or shopping or whatever. I already had so much help from my mom and Brady that I was hardly having the overwhelmed new mom feelings. My mom and I would take turns feeding the baby and putting her to sleep during the day and when Brady went back to work, he’d come home and immediately take her off my hands. I couldn’t believe how lucky I was.

But when Brady’s mom found out I’m not breastfeeding, she said it was “selfish” and that she knew I wasn’t ready to have a baby.

“You should know that nursing your baby is the healthy and correct thing to do. In fact, I know you that and you have still chosen not to do it,” she said.

This was on a day when Brady was at work and my mom was back in Houston. She’d come over and let me know that my baby was hungry as if she knows my baby’s feeding schedule better than me. Obviously, she already knew that I wasn’t breastfeeding and wanted to confront me about it.

“It’s not that I’ve chosen not to do. I wanted to breastfeed obviously,” I said back.

“Why didn’t you see a consultant?” she wanted to know.

“I didn’t think I had to,” I said back and we were silent.

Now she brings it up as often as possible and claims that’s the reason my baby is so small. And Brady and my mom don’t see the big deal.

“Oh, who cares what she says,” my mom said dismissively.

And it’s like, I don’t care what she says, but who wants to have someone judging their parenting all the time? Brady says the usual: he will talk to her. But then I found out that she texts him talking shit about me. Don’t ask how I found out. She continuously calls me selfish and immature. Nothing I’ve never heard before. And instead of defending me, Brady will reply, “Can we talk about this later?”

And do you know what else she does? She says, “Son, she is beautiful/sweet/etc,” and “Son, you really have the perfect baby,” when I’m standing right there.

One day I mumbled, “She’s such a bitch,” and maybe everyone heard me because my mom shouted my name as if I was the one who’d done anything wrong.

But oddly, Brady’s parents invited us on a trip with them next month (they’re paying) and I kind of want to go. Listen, I know Brady’s mother is an evil sociopath, but a vacation is a vacation.

Our new house is pretty much ready to move in, but I don’t have a car yet and that’s my excuse for still being in the city, in Brady’s parents apartment. As impressed as I am with our house, I’m not ready to live in the suburbs and leave everyone and everything I know. Plus, I just hired a cute trainer who is going to whip me into much needed shape.

Standard

it’s the craziest thing.

Hi y’all.

I have a baby. It’s the craziest thing. She’s a month old, so fucking cute, tiny, sweet and perfect. I honestly can’t believe she’s mine. I’ll come back with more details but wanted to update and let you know that we are doing great. ♥️

love, Reese

Standard

any moment now.

Hey you guys.

I’m still pregnant. I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had a chance to write, but I thought I’d give some updates before I give birth.

1. After Brady’s failed proposal attempt, he didn’t try it again. I pulled a Carrie Bradshaw and searched through literally everything he owns to try to find the ring my mom kept alluding to, but I never found it. He only mentioned getting married again one more time when we were discussing our work leaves and health insurance. I guess that ship has sailed.

2. We got the house in Connecticut. I’m moving to goddamn Connecticut. But until we close we had to move into Brady’s parent’s apartment. I KNOW. We moved in the day after Thanksgiving which was so stressful because I’d just finished working the day before, we packed all day on Thanksgiving and didn’t have time to relax or breathe. And the following day, Brady’s mom invited us out to lunch which turned out to be a surprise baby shower with a few aunts and cousins. But she didn’t ever call it a baby shower, just said “a few people wanted to spend time with you.” It was so awkward. And none of the family even talked to Brady or me the whole time. We did get some amazing gifts from it though.

3. Brady’s parents promised to stay out of our way while letting us use the apartment, but his mom has stopped by several times since we moved in. One day she wanted to help me organize, another day she wanted to drop off lunch and another day she didn’t have a reason to come over except that she thought I wouldn’t be there. I installed a Nest camera because I had a feeling she was dropping by while we weren’t home and to my surprise, she was. It was so she could sneak in and install Christmas decorations and a tree. It was actually kind of cute, but again weird.

4. So many other things are in the works like buying two new cars, a nanny, lots of furniture shopping and decorating, choosing a baby name, having a damn baby.

She should be here any moment so I’m gonna go. Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, love you guys so much!

Standard

i foiled his plan.

Kendra decided to throw my baby shower in New York and I was excited to have all of my closest friends and family together in the city. People began trickling in on Thursday evening, starting with Kendra who I was probably most excited to see. I haven’t seen her since I’ve been pregnant.

We grabbed dinner and talked about who all was coming, who wasn’t coming, Kendra’s job, John, Mia, Brady, Brady’s mom, the house, my diet, etc. I loved sharing all of my grievances (again) and getting a different perspective. Kendra is for the most part rational and she has a baby so she knows what I’m going through. She also knows my mom really well and everything I’ve told her about Brady and his parents.

“The fact that his mother is offering their apartment to you says a lot. She’s come to terms with the fact that you’re pregnant and is trying to make up for being a witch before. Honestly, it would take more effort to stay mad at her,” Kendra said.

She’s had similar issues with John’s controlling mother, who wants to dictate everything Mia does or eats. Because of that, she and John have stopped trying for a second until they can figure out the relationship with his parents.

For the baby shower, I wore a leopard dress with white booties and my hair in waves courtesy of a new large barrel curling wand. Kendra had rented out the penthouse of a hotel not too far from our apartment so a few people stopped by before we all headed over. It was all a bit chaotic because Carly and Chris brought over champagne and I was still getting ready and my parents showed up and then two other friends from college who I haven’t seen in probably two years. So I was curling a lock of hair and then running back out to entertain and then going back. Eventually Carly offered to help and made my hair look amazing.

As I was leaving the bedroom, I saw Brady’s phone on the charger and that he had an incoming phone call. Curious, I took a peek. I just needed to know who it was. Maybe they were running late or needed directions?

It was Sydney. I picked up. What in the world did she want at 11am on a Saturday morning? She obviously was not invited.

“Hi Sydney,” I answered.

“Hey. Reese?” she said back.

“It’s me,” I sighed. “What do you need on this beautiful morning?”

“Well, I was hoping to speak to Brady. I’m doing the marathon tomorrow and he’s been helping me to-”

I didn’t let her finish. “Sydney, our baby shower is in an hour. We are literally getting ready so we can spend the day with all of our friends.”

“Oh.”

“So I think you’re going to have to figure out this marathon thing on your own. I believe in you.”

She sounded annoyed. “Will you have Brady call me back when he gets a chance?”

“Sydney, no,” I said, losing patience. “You can’t rely on Brady to help you through life. We are having a baby now and his priorities have changed. You’re going to have to learn things on your own as he won’t be able to hold your hand anymore.”

Kendra poked her head in. “You ready?”

“Anyway, I have to go. Take care, Sydney.” I hung up and put the phone back where I found it.

The penthouse was decorated in rose gold, silver and white – I told Kendra I didn’t want nauseating pink shit everywhere. There was a display of different toasts and a spread of colorful macarons and other desserts and even a mimosa bar. I also requested no cheesy baby shower games and wanted it to feel more like a wedding reception or cocktail party. Kendra laughed but delivered – there was no diaper cake in sight. I was surprised by the size of the pile of pastel wrapped gifts in a corner – mostly wondering where all of it was going to go because there no way it would fit in our tiny apartment.

It wasn’t until I was dancing inappropriately in the middle of the penthouse with Carly that I realized none of Brady’s family was there. Not his parents or aunts or cousins who live in New York.

“I asked both of you individually several times for your guest list. If Brady wanted his family here, he had at least three different opportunities to tell me,” Kendra explained. And that made me feel really bad. Even my grandparents made the trip and they almost never leave Texas.

Kendra gave a nice speech to all the guests which was great because I definitely didn’t have anything prepared. She actually teared up which made me and Carly tear up and made my mom full on cry. I’m sure all the mimosas helped facilitate that.

Once she was done, she gestured for me to come in and say a few words, but I shook my head vehemently. I was on the verge of tears.

“Brady? Can you say a few words to all your guests?” Kendra asked politely.

I looked at Brady, who was standing next to me, and he looked like a deer in headlights.

“Yeah, give a speech!” Carly enthused, clapping.

So Brady had no choice, but get up there. Brady is not comfortable with public speaking, unless he’s completely hammered.

“I, um, want to thank everyone for coming. I think I speak for both myself and Reese when I say that I was not expecting this turnout. Your support really means a lot to us,” he began.

“Especially because this was so unexpected,” I said, joining him at the front. “Anyone who knows me knows how unexpected my getting pregnant was. So I appreciate everyone rallying.”

“Super unexpected, but so exciting!” Kendra chimed in with hearts in her eyes.

“It is. We’d like to thank everyone in advance for the generous gifts and name suggestions. We will take all of them into consideration before making a decision,” I continued. This wasn’t necessarily true. Three people suggested Ava and I’m just not doing that.

After that we opened all the gifts and while I was so, so appreciative of everything (we literally only have a couple things to get now), I still couldn’t fathom where we were going to put it all and even how we were going to get it back to the apartment. That’s how my mind thinks now. Logically.

My parents and Kendra ended up taking care of all of that while we went back to the apartment to change before meeting some of our friends for an early dinner and drinks. It was nice to candidly talk about the baby with Carly and Chris and my friends who don’t have kids yet. And everyone reassured me that living in Connecticut won’t be that bad – lots of fun things happen in the suburbs!

I had completely forgotten about the whole Sydney conversation until we were in a car on the way back to our apartment that evening.

Brady studied his phone for a moment before saying, “Reese, what the fuck?”

“Hmm?” I said back, still not putting it all together.

“You talked to Sydney?”

“Oh yeah,” I said. After having such a good day, there was no way Brady could be mad about that.

“Why would you answer my phone and then be rude to her? What’s your problem?” he demanded.

“What’s your problem? Why does Sydney think it’s okay to call you an hour before our baby shower? Boundaries. They’re called boundaries,” I countered.

“I think you need to learn boundaries too. Just because we are having a baby doesn’t mean you get to rule my life.”

We’d arrived back to the apartment now and Brady hopped out of the SUV and headed inside without even helping me out like he should have.

“You’re such an asshole,” I said following him. “I wasn’t even rude to Sydney so thanks for blindly believing her without even hearing my side of the story.”

“I believe her because that is absolutely something you would do. You’ve done it before.”

I glared at him. “With who? Jessica? The girl you were literally fucking at work? The one who sent me a picture of you naked after you had sex?”

“Oh my God, you have to be kidding me. You’re being such a psycho. This is ridiculous,” he said.

Naturally I blew up. “No, you’re being a fucking psycho! If you think I’m going to continue putting up with you talking to me like that, there is clearly something wrong with you.”

Brady went into the bedroom and came back out wearing a casual long sleeved tee. “I’m meeting Chris at the bar.”

I didn’t say anything.

“I think you need to apologize to Sydney. I treat your friends with nothing but respect and I’d appreciate the same.”

“Fuck Sydney,” I mumbled.

Brady left and I changed into silk pajamas. The whole time he was gone, I thought about what it would be like to raise the baby on my own. I didn’t need Brady and Sydney’s shit. I’d get a small 2 bedroom apartment in the city with a den and decorate the whole place exactly how I want it (all white with lots of texture, gold accents, and roses) and join mommy and me classes. I’d get a gay manny who would take care of Baby, but also shop with me and give me dating advice for a single mom. My mom would visit monthly to help out and give me and the manny a night off to pick up guys.

The next morning when I woke up, Brady was already up and working on his laptop in the kitchen. We had plans to meet up with my parents for dinner later, but my mom and I were going shopping during the day.

“Good morning,” Brady said, not looking up from his computer.

I didn’t reply because I was still mad. I told my mom about our fight while we were out shopping and she just kept saying, “Oh, he didn’t mean that. He’s trying his best.”

And it’s like, I’m trying my best too. And if he didn’t mean it, he would apologize. When I got home from my day of shopping, Brady had moved all of the baby shower gifts into a corner and cleaned the place a bit. My parents would be back to pick us up for dinner in an hour.

“Are you sure you want to come to dinner with me and my parents?” I asked.

“What?” Brady said back.

“Are you sure you want to come to dinner with us or do you think meeting up with Sydney would be a better use of your time?”

He rolled his eyes. “Reese, please. Are we still talking about this?”

“Yes! This doesn’t go away just because you want it to.”

Brady reached out to grab my hand and I pulled it away. “I need to shower and get dressed.”

I changed into a bump hugging black dress and black booties with a furry jacket and my hair up in a bun. When I emerged, my parents had arrived and Brady and my dad were speaking quietly near the bar area.

“Baby doll, you look beautiful! I love the red lip!” my mom exclaimed.

Brady and my dad stopped talking and looked at me. I breezed past them and headed out the door and Brady caught up with me.

“Are we okay?” he asked.

“We can talk about it later. And by the way, I’d prefer some alone time with my parents, but I guess it’s fine if you come,” I said.

He nodded and retreated, falling into step with my dad again.

“Honey, make sure you are being nice to Brady. He really is trying,” my mom said.

“Tell him to make sure he’s being nice too. He’s the one who called me a psycho,” I said.

Dinner went well – all of the attention was on me which I obviously love. Our table was secluded on the second level by itself overlooking the rest of the restaurant.

Brady didn’t say much and I started to feel bad for being mean to him even though I was annoyed that he hadn’t apologized yet. If he would just acknowledge that he overreacted about me talking to Sydney, things would have been fine. Or at least asked for my side of the story. I honestly don’t think I was rude to her. Dismissive and condescending? Maybe.

So I started including Brady in conversation, but he was still a bit quiet (even more so than usual and even after all the wine). My parents exchanged a couple of looks, I noticed, and I got the feeling I would be getting a lecture later.

When we got home, Brady finally apologized for blowing up at me, but said he was still upset that I’d “invaded” his “privacy” by answering his phone. And that he’d done “nothing” for me not to trust him. And it was “just” Sydney on the phone. I apologized for being a bitch, but let him know that Sydney is a predator and obviously exaggerating about that happened. He emphasized that he less mad about the “content” of the phone call and more that I didn’t trust him. I had to end the conversation after that.

My parents flew out the next morning and I met them at their hotel before work to say goodbye. My mom pulled me aside while my dad checked out at the front desk. She was wearing studded booties, red lipstick and a grey ushanka hat. It was a lot of look.

“I must say, I was pretty disappointed by your behavior yesterday,” she said.

My mom is never disappointed in me.

“You were not raised to treat people that way, especially someone who loves you as much as he does.”

“Mom, you don’t understand. Brady needs tough love otherwise these things will continue to happen,” I explained.

“He planned that dinner because he wanted to do something very special for you.”

“It was just dinner and y’all were already in town. You act like he went out of his way to do anything.”

Very special,” my mom repeated. “Because he really loves you. I think it’s safe to say you were successful in completely pushing him away.”

“What do you mean ‘very special’?”

“Brady wanted you to have a memorable evening and he pulled back because of the way you treated him,” she explained, sniffling.

My dad rejoined us and then I realized that Brady planned to propose. Hence the romantic dinner with my parents and them trying so hard to get me to make up with him. The very special plans. And I was such a brat that he chickened out.

Standard

i’m sorry this post sucks.

The next morning, we got up and got dressed to meet them at the church. My mom kept saying, “Keep an open mind. Don’t be defensive. Let’s hear what they have to say.” I rolled my eyes.

I sent Brady a text that said, “Good luck with the marathon. My mom and I are meeting up with your parents and I’m obviously thrilled.”

I actually was a little bit excited to see how Brady’s mom would behave in front of my mom. It’s one thing to act like an ass to me, but it’s another thing to act that way to my mom, who has nothing to lose (she’s not the one dating Brady, after all) and is the epitome of a southern belle. Who can be mean to someone who is so nice to you? When we arrived, she was waiting at the front pew and gave a cold greeting.

“Good morning. I’m happy the two of you could join me. Unfortunately my husband was unable to make it, but he sends his best,” she said. She didn’t greet either of us with a hug and I caught her eyeing the bump in my black dress.

“That’s too bad!” my mom crowed. “How’s he doing? We’re so happy to be here!”

“He’s fine.” There was an awkward silence and then Brady’s mom said, “Shall we sit?” There were no pleasantries at all.

After the service (I zoned out and thought of baby names the whole time – can’t wait to reveal my list), the three of us hopped in a car to go to breakfast. Brady’s mom made a reservation at a bougie bakery café and my mom rattled on about how beautiful the restaurant was and how thankful she was for the reservation. I gave her a look because she was overdoing it.

Once we’d ordered and were waiting for our food, my mom began.

“So I don’t know about you, but I am so excited to be a grandmama.”

Brady’s mom remained stone faced. “I do already have two lovely grandchildren.”

“I know, I saw them over Christmas! Beautiful!” Mom interjected. “You’re so lucky! This is all I’ve wanted for years.”

“Really?”

This was a lie. My mom obviously has asked when I planned on having kids, but was mostly concerned about when Brady and I planned on getting engaged and married first. She’s traditional too.

“Of course, I think we’d all prefer that they were married before doing all this, but a blessing’s a blessing,” my mom continued.

“Yes. They should have been married. That was always my requirement and they both knew that-”

“My husband said it best. He said, ‘We only have so long on this earth. We can’t waste time trying to change things we can’t change.”

“He said that, did he?” Brady’s mom deadpanned. She sighed. “I guess he right in that we can’t change anything.”

“The best thing we can do for them is be supportive. We are having a baby, after all!” my mom exclaimed.

Brady’s mother took a tiny sip of her water and looked at me. And then she did the unthinkable. She actually smiled. An unconvincing smile, but still – it was a smile.

“Yes, we are. We are having a baby.”

My mom started rambling on about the upcoming baby shower, the names she’d been thinking of, her predictions about what features the baby would have – barely letting Brady’s mom get a word in edgewise. But to my shock, Brady’s mom was smiling tightly and laughing along with her.

“We don’t have many girls in our family, but we’ve got some family names we’d love to pass down,” she said.

And, “With us living so close, we are more than happy to help in any way we can. Especially the first few weeks after she’s born. We all know those are the toughest.”

She was totally into it. My mom was nodding really exaggeratedly, just happy that she was making some headway.

And then when my mom reached over to rub my belly, Brady’s mom moved her seat closer to me so she could join. Even her hand felt cold and stiff.

“You’re measuring small,” Brady’s mom said after touching my belly uninvited.

I gave her a grimace even though Dr. Sabrina had said the same thing the prior week.

The two of them started bombarding me with questions: what’s my birthing plan, have I began interviewing nannies, will I breastfeed, etc. And each question turned into, “Well, when I was pregnant I did this…” They’re both know-it-all’s, I realized, and had answers and anecdotes for everything.

Eventually I put my hands up in each of their faces.

“Oh my gosh, enough! I’ll write a whole diary entry with my plans and email it to both of you.”

My mom gave me a disapproving look. “I know you’re grumpy, but don’t take it out on us. The food will be here soon.”

So after that, they began talking about me like I wasn’t there. Whatever. As soon as my quiche and cinnamon rolls arrived, that was all I cared about. I let them knock each other out with stories and advice while I devoured my feast. Brady’s mom continued being slightly resistant – disagreeing with most things my mom said and shaking her head a lot.

After breakfast was cleared, they argued about who was going to pay (“No, I get points on this card, I insist on paying,”) and didn’t even notice that I’d slid my card to the waiter when he brought the check.

Right before leaving, Brady’s mom said, “I don’t know if Brady has told you, but we’d love to offer our apartment here in New York City to you. I understand that you are still in the process of finding somewhere to raise the baby and as I mentioned before, we want to help in any way we can.”

Before I could say anything, my mom turned to me. “How nice of you to offer! Reese, that’s not a bad option! You must consider it. How amazing!”

Should have seen the look I gave my mother. The betrayal. She’s the one who even told me not to accept anything from that family.

“It comes with parking and a maid service biweekly. I understand you are also looking in Connecticut so this would be temporary, of course. Like your mother said, consider it,” Brady’s mom said.

“I certainly will,” I said even though it’s definitely a no.

Ever since our church/lunch date, my mom and Brady’s mom have been in contact – texting and calling each other several times a week. It’s honestly shocking. My mom always calls me after they talk to tell me how antiquated and dated her thinking is.

“Bless her heart. So are you going to take her up on her offer?”

My mom legitimately thinks moving into Brady’s parent’s apartment is a good idea and Brady brought it up again because his mom asked him about it. And I really don’t want to do that so we put an offer in on the house in Connecticut. Our realtor thought we could get a deal since it’s been on the market for a while, but our offer has not been accepted yet.

I’m sorry this post is late and it sucks. I’ve been having a hard time lately. I feel huge and miserable and I don’t think I’m allowed to say this, but I’m so sick of being pregnant. I can only fit like four things I own (this is including shoes), I’m uncomfortable all the time, I can’t sleep, I can’t concentrate, I randomly cry at work, I can’t stop eating, people touch me without asking, people stare, walking hurts, etc.

I had my baby shower last weekend and I can’t wait to fill you guys in.

Standard

not an option.

Kristina was let go. Since I haven’t been on Mike’s good side lately I couldn’t save her. We knew something was up when Paige scheduled a “Performance Conversation” for a Friday afternoon, but I figured she was just getting some feedback. But then at the last minute, Paige added our HR manager to the invite and I knew something big was happening. I had a separate meeting at the time same as Kristina’s but watched from my office door anxiously, waiting for her to go past. Kristina’s blonde hair and pastel colored striped sweater flew by my door and I immediately ended my call.

“Kristina!” I hissed, chasing her all the way to her cubicle.

She began pushing stacks of papers in the recycling bin. “Paige is such a bitch. She said I don’t have the skills required to my job. And I’m not qualified to do anything else so…I’m leaving.”

The nerve of Paige – as if she’s qualified for anything. And I could not believe Mike was having Paige do his dirty work. So after I helped Kristina pack up and walked her out, I texted Mike. He was obviously already gone for the day.

“You could have given me a heads up about Kristina. I was still working with her like you asked. Paige was super rude to her, by the way. Basically told her she has no talent. I think that’s a bit unnecessary,” I said.

Mike replied, “I know Kristina is your friend, but this is just business. It’s nothing personal and we wish her the best.”

I rolled my eyes at his politically correct answer. I wasn’t going to say anything back, but then Mike texted again.

“I’m sorry for not warning you. I didn’t expect this to happen today, but I still should have told you it was coming.”

And when I didn’t respond, he said, “We can talk more on Monday.”

So without Kristina, I’ve been leaning on Sam a lot to keep me company. She doesn’t trust me enough to talk shit though (even though it’s all I do) and Brendan, bless his heart, is so wrapped up in his soon to be ex-wife that it’s exhausting. I just want to slap some sense into him – she’s playing with you! Move on! Her latest stunt was sending him a picture of her and a bunch of other people and she was draped all over this nauseatingly preppy guy who was wearing boat shoes and had a gross combover hairstyle. He looked like one of the Trump kids.

“Sorry, wrong text,” she said and that shook Brendan up for days. I had to avoid him because I just couldn’t handle it.

Luckily though, I’ve been busy with things at home. Brady has been obsessed with me lately. I gave him a little snippet of my lunch with his mother (I couldn’t tell him everything – I was embarrassed) and he’s been trying to make up for it since. He usually comes home before 8PM with takeout and advice he’s gotten from the moms at work.

“Let’s ask Dr. Sabrina about this at our next appointment,” he’d say. Our appointment.

Normally after dinner, we sit on the couch watching complete trash on TV (my favorite) while Brady massages my tummy or feet and stares at me. He tries to talk to me (“One of the moms asked if we have taken any parenting classes. Do you think that is something we should explore?” “I ordered some nightlights. We forgot to add that to the registry. These ones are cool because…”), but I’m way too into my shows and end up ignoring him.

One night, he came home and I was sitting at the bar area after FaceTiming Kendra. Brady sat the takeout bag down and then rushed over to me like he was on a mission to kiss me. Obviously I have not been interested in doing anything sexually with Brady for the past four months (I just cannot get in the mood with Brady, but fantasize about Brendan and sometimes Hunter almost every night. Plus I don’t feel sexy now that my breasts have ballooned to the size of my head) and I kind of felt bad for him. When he kisses me, I literally run away. So I figured I’d better give something before he went looking for it elsewhere.

“I missed you all day,” he mumbled as I reached for his belt. He rubbed my shoulders as I undid his belt and zipper, his perfect penis springing out. I actually hadn’t even seen it in so long. I wrapped my hand around Brady’s dick and he moaned at me just touching it.

I don’t know what I planned to do (I certainly wasn’t going to let him see my fat ass naked), but I stroked his penis maybe four times and he came. It came oozing out like candle wax.

“Um, sorry,” Brady said backing away. Poor guy. He was obviously embarrassed for coming so quickly. I just feel bad for depriving him for so long. But I secretly hoped that would hold him over for a while because I am just not interested right now. Hopefully that passes eventually.

We went back to look at the house I liked in Connecticut again. I can’t wrap my head around moving out of the city and into a little suburb, but I figured I need to consider it. I walked room to room deciding where I’d put furniture (and what furniture we need to buy), what colors I’d want to paint, visualizing us living in the space. I was annoyed that I really liked it. We sat with the father of one of Brady’s friends who does mortgages for a living. He pulled up a calculator that showed us how much our monthly payments would be after the massive down payment Brady suggested.

“How much were you thinking of putting down?” the dad asked.

Brady replied, “20%.” And 20% of the cost of that house made me lightheaded. It’s literally twice what I make in a year.

But we haven’t pulled the trigger yet. When I think of moving to Connecticut, I feel like crying. It’s just so not me. But maybe it needs to be me now that we are having a baby.

One evening Brady was asking me if I wanted to put an offer in on the house as he usually did every other day.

“Mmmm. Maybe,” I said, instantly feeling anxious at the thought of moving and anxious at the thought of having no where to move to.

“You know, my parents offered their apartment to us. I realize it’s not ideal, but we are running out time here,” Brady said. “They won’t be around since they aren’t in the city as much and it will buy us some time.”

I made a face and then shook my head. I pictured their boring, but huge Park Ave apartment and then immediately imagined sharing a space with Brady’s mom. Brady’s mom all but called me a gold digger so I will not be accepting anything from her. I’d rather stay in this one bedroom apartment.

He shrugged. “Well, it’s an option.”

It is 100% not an option.

Brady was in Chicago over the weekend. I was not in any shape to tag along so I stayed in New York and my mom came to spend the weekend with me. I was excited to spend time with her so she could assure me that everything will be okay. As crazy as my mom is, she’s a therapist and can normally make me feel better. She arrived on Friday night and the three of us went to dinner before Brady left Saturday morning. My mom did her usual interrogation of Brady – is he still nervous? Does he feel ready? What does he need to feel ready? How does he feel about his mother’s actions? Are his parents planning to have a close relationship with the baby?

They split of a bottle of wine and Brady started talking more, letting my mom know that he was embarrassed about the way his mom treated me (without even knowing the extent of it) and has become numb to his parents’ words. He said he’s really only concerned about my and his own happiness, but that his mother wants to be supportive. Brady used to always be really vocal about not being close with his parents and purposely keeping his distance. And now he seems to think their actions are acceptable, we both just need to deal with it because they will be around anyway. Which is exactly why I will not want to take them up on their offer to stay in their apartment.

On Saturday, my mom and I went shopping a bit, looked at an apartment, picked up a ton of groceries and finally went to an Italian for dinner. Brady had been day drinking at a party and blowing up my phone all day.

I finally picked up and heard Brady saying, “Hold on, hold on, I gotta call Reese.”

By the way he was slurring, I could tell exactly how much he’d had to drink (around 14 beers and a couple of shots, probably both whiskey and tequila).

I gotta call Reese,” I heard a girl say in a mocking voice in the background. It sounded loud – I could hear a lot of people talking and glasses clinking.

“Who the hell is that?” I demanded.

“Hold on.” There was shuffling and then Brady came back to the line. “I miss you. I wish you were here.”

“Where are you?” I needed to know.

“At the bar.” It sounded like he was sipping a drink. “Kendra’s here.”

“I don’t think bar is a good place for a woman who is six months pregnant. Who were you just talking to?”

“What?”

What? Who were you just talking to? She said my name.”

“Uhh, I don’t know. It doesn’t even matter.”

“It does matter. Don’t call back until you figure out.” I hung up.

I really just didn’t feel like dealing with Drunk Brady and I knew that I’d find out who all was at the bar from Kendra anyway.

At dinner, my mom revealed that she’d reached out to Brady’s mom and we had plans to join them for church the next morning.

“After the conversation we had last night, I felt bad. Someone’s gotta talk some sense into them and I want to help,” she explained.

“I can’t believe you think you can help these people! His mother is a monster,” I said.

My mom grabbed my hand. “Honey, you can’t give up on people. They are your daughter’s family.”

“Do they deserve your help, Mom? They choose to be this way! It’s not like they don’t know any better.”

“Baby. I’ve always taught you empathy. We have no idea what they must be feeling and it’s our duty to find out. If she’s still horrible after this meeting, you have my permission to distance yourself.”

So the plan was set.

** Sorry to have been away for so long. Obviously I have been busy. I’ll pick up where this left off on Sunday.

Standard

i’ve been getting in trouble.

Oh, hey you guys.

I’ve been busy getting in trouble. Ever since my parents visited and I got a pep talk from my mom, I’ve been out of control. The pep talk came after I told my mom about a meeting I had with Brady’s mother. She finally reached out to me and asked to take me to lunch. Her exact words were, “Hi Reese. I’m sure you’ve heard that we are not happy about your announcement. Although I think the reasoning for my disappointment is obvious, I’m quite happy to explain myself.”

So I agreed to have lunch with her. I didn’t tell Brady, but I’m not exactly sure why. I thought wearing something that displayed my belly was kind of rude, so for the lunch I wore a black belted sweater dress (slimming), a trench coat and booties. I made the Uber driver turn the AC on full blast on the way there because I was dying in the backseat because I was so hot.

Brady’s mom was sitting down at the table already waiting for me and didn’t get up to greet me.

“Hi, nice to see you, Reese. Please sit,” she said.

I sat.

“Thank you for meeting with me. I thought we should speak about what is going on.”

I nodded.

“My husband and I have always been clear about our concerns and you understood. You had no right to force someone into something they don’t want – especially something as serious as parenthood.”

Excuse me?

“I’m not forcing anyone into anything. Brady is just as culpable as I am,” I began, but Brady’s mom put her hand up to stop me.

“Well, Brady knows better. Brady fell into temptation and that’s unfortunate. He’s going to have to deal with the consequences of that, isn’t he? But I’ve already spoken to Brady. And he knows how disappointing this all is.”

“I actually don’t think it’s that disappointing and I think it’s a bit rude for you to say that,” I said, very politely.

“It’s not rude, Reese. Brady was not ready to marry you any time soon and you know that. You were careless and manipulative.”

“I think that’s unfair. I may have been careless, but so was Brady.” I, for some reason, was still being super polite to this lady.

She shook her head. “I would like to discuss a few things with you and decide how to proceed from here. Obviously it’s too late to do anything to change the situation and we need to prepare for the inevitable.”

I didn’t say anything.

“I don’t want you to think you can profit from this. Brady cares about you and will be doing his part in taking care of your child together. However, you will not take advantage of his generosity. You’ve chosen to have a baby despite not being married and you, too, must deal with whatever consequences ensue.”

I felt my eye twitch.

“I’m confident Brady would like to marry you…eventually. I think we can all agree that at this time, we must focus on making sure you have a healthy baby. I’d like you to see our family physician in Massachusetts. I understand you’ve seen a doctor, but a second opinion would not hurt as this is a potentially risky pregnancy.”

“Okay,” I said, knowing I would not be going all the way to Massachusetts when Dr. Sabrina is wonderful. And how in the world in my pregnancy at all risky? Dr. Sabrina let me know that everything is progressing perfectly.

“I think carrying on some sort of texting and picture exchange relationship with Hunter is quite unbecoming. That will end. Brady and Dominique are both aware of it and I trust I won’t hear anything about it again.”

“I-” Wait, what? I was so stunned that she went there that I didn’t know what to say. “Okay.”

“I’m also happy to sit down with you to go over your finances. Brady mentioned that you still have a lengthy list of supplies you need and while we are willing to help in some ways, this is your responsibility and I expect that you will contribute.”

I actually felt like I might cry. It was like she’d pushed me down and then kicked me continuously. After her lecture, she touched my arm with her cold, bony hand and wanted to know how I’m doing and feeling. It’s like I was just fine until I met her for lunch.

When I told my mom what happened, she was furious.

“Don’t you ever let someone speak to you like that. That woman is out of her mind. I don’t know why she thinks you come from poverty, but they aren’t the only ones who have money. Don’t you dare accept anything from her. The only thing you need to worry about is yourself and that baby,” she said.

And that last sentence was all I really needed to hear. My mom wanted to meet with Brady’s mom while she was here, but she was so fired up that I told her it wasn’t a good idea. They’ve been emailing though. Brady’s mom reached out to me a few times since our lunch.

“Would you like to join us for church this Sunday in the city?” she texted me one day.

I replied, “No.”

And another time she said, “I’m checking to see if you are available this Saturday to come to Massachusetts to see our doctor. After the appointment, we can drive into the city to browse some of the shops and pick up some of the things you need.”

I replied, “I’m not available.”

One day at work, I made a minor mistake on a spreadsheet (and the fix involved copy and pasting a formula) and Mike was annoyed.

“Where is your head?” he said, rolling his eyes at me. I’m super organized at work and hardly make mistakes so I’m sure that’s why Mike was so annoyed. He knows he can trust me, but I was letting him down.

“Well, I’m sorry I didn’t catch one small error. I’m just growing another human inside me so forgive me if my head isn’t on quite straight,” I said.

Mike glared at me and I smiled sweetly before running away.

Another time, I was talking to Kristina after getting back from an hour long lunch with Brendan. We hadn’t been talking for even one minute before Mike walked past.

“I trust that you have everything ready for our 2:00,” he said.

“If not, I guess we’re both screwed,” I couldn’t help saying.

Mike turned back like he wanted to say something else, but ended up just walking away. Kristina gasped and then burst into laughter.

Later on, Paige messaged me.

“You might want to be careful with the way you speak to Mike,” she warned.

And I’ve known Mike a lot longer than she has so this annoyed me. I can handle him. I replied, “Thx.”

But obviously I was a little concerned because the next day at lunch, I asked Brendan if Mike had mentioned anything about me.

He looked guilty for a moment then quickly recovered. “Now why would you want to know if he’s talking about you? It doesn’t matter,” he said playfully.

“Because Paige sent me this cryptic message so I need to know if I’m getting fired,” I said.

“Well, he knows we are friends so he doesn’t talk to me about you,” Brendan said.

I’m definitely getting fired.

Brendan really wants to work things out with his wife, but she is enjoying playing games with him. It’s pretty sad. Once, he let me read through their recent messages.

“Hi,” she texted after several weeks of only speaking through her parents.

“Hi,” he replied within a minute. And then she didn’t say anything back. Eight hours later, Brendan sent a single “?” and she still didn’t reply. Almost all of their interactions go like that. She calls him sometimes, he said, asking for stuff that she knows the answer to, like whose name the Nordstrom credit card is under. And when he tries to talk about anything other than what she needs, she will talk over him or quickly try to revert the conversation back. I guess her parents are still very mad at him (he still hasn’t told me why) and she pretends talking to him will her get in trouble or something.

“I shouldn’t be messaging you, but I can’t find my hot pink bikini and I’m going to Vegas tonight. Can you check to see if you can find it?” she will say. And then he will reply saying he has it and will never hear back from her.

Then she will post cute pictures of them on her Instagram story with a kissing or broken heart emoji as a caption.

One day, she texted Brendan while we were at lunch.

“Hi, I need a HUGE favor from you ❤️,” she said.

Brendan got excited, thinking the heart meant something. He loved that she needed a favor.

“Will you get the package that is being delivered to the house today? My dad will come and pick it up later in the week,” was all she wanted.

I could tell this is not what Brendan wanted to hear and the whole emoji thing was just an act to continue to play with him. And he’s my friend and I felt like I needed to stand up for him since he wasn’t going to do it himself.

“Can I text her back for you?” I asked.

Brendan shrugged and gestured that I could.

“Are you interested in working on our marriage or do you just want me to do things for you? I’m happy to help, but if you just want to play games then you should continue sending messages through your dad like you were before,” I typed.

“I think it’s a little soon for you to be asking to work on things, Brendan,” she said back.

He definitely cheated on her.

“Stop texting me then,” I replied.

Obviously she didn’t reply and I handed Brendan his phone back. Of course, a few days later, Brendan admitted that he told her I was the one who was messaging her and that got her even more mad. She’s since stopped texting him, but continues posting pictures of them on Instagram. I guess I didn’t help, but someone needed to say it.

Sydney came over the other day. She’s so annoying. She wanted Brady’s help with something work related (they don’t even work together anymore). She wouldn’t stop staring at me. Whenever I walked across the room I felt her beady little eyes following me. Have you never seen a pregnant bitch before? Eventually I retreated to the bedroom to watch TV in peace. After three episodes of Real Housewives, I went to check on them and could immediately tell that they were stoned. Sydney was sitting cross legged on the couch giggling while Brady sat back next to her with his eyes closed.

“Okay, I think it’s time for you to go home, Sydney,” I said, politely.

“I know, right?” she giggled, not moving.

“Now.”

She stood up quickly and packed her stuff before leaving. See how quickly I’m getting the hang of this parenting thing?

“That was a bit rude, don’t you think?” Brady said once she was gone.

So this started a fight. Obviously Brady has been getting the brunt of my wrath. Some of my phrases have been:

“I’m not eating a frozen pizza for dinner like a peasant. I want steak.”

“If you aren’t home in 20 minutes, Tucker and I will be staying at the W for the night.”

“If your mother wants to fight, we can fight.”

“No, I can’t turn the music down. The baby loves gangster rap.”

“I mean, even I’m smarter than Hunter.”

He’s certainly been coming home on time though. And slowly bringing home things from our list. Oh, and we looked at another place in Connecticut. This one was more convincing. It’s a new build with an all white kitchen (my dream), a massive living room with a fireplace, and the chicest modern light fixtures. I wouldn’t need to upgrade anything except all of our furniture. The master is also huge with a walk-in closet, but the other three bedrooms are pretty small. That doesn’t really bother me – there’s already a nursery next to the master. Plus all of the houses in the neighborhood have curb appeal and it’s within walking distance to the train that goes to NYC. I actually really, really liked it. The only issue is the place is significantly more expensive than the last place we looked at. For the price, we may as well get a 2 bedroom, 1,100 square foot apartment in the Upper East Side.

“Do you want to put in an offer on the house we looked at?” Brady asked me the next day.

And since I told him I wasn’t sure (I’m nervous!), he hasn’t brought it up again. I’ve been secretly checking it everyday though and it’s still available.

Standard

it’s called balance.

“What did you and Paige talk about at your touch base?” I asked Brendan at lunch the following week.

“Nothing really. She just wanted to introduce herself and stuff like that. She seems cool. Had a ton of questions,” Brendan replied.

We were having salads and smoothies – we both needed a detox after eating like shit over the weekend. It’s called balance. I hadn’t seen Brendan in about a week and a half and hadn’t really heard from him on the normal emails we correspond on.

“Do you want to know what she’s done since being hired?” I didn’t wait a beat for him to say yes. “Literally nothing. She’s always running around like she’s busy and important, but never speaks in meetings or contributes at all. And she’s always in Mike’s office with him. It’s so weird. He even stays past 3:00pm working with her.”

Brendan laughed. “I’m sure she is just getting into the groove of things. Mike knows what he’s doing – he wouldn’t hire someone who isn’t valuable.”

I side eyed him. “Yeah, I’m sure.”

Brendan lifted his smoothie to drink, with his left hand and I noticed something.

“Wait. Where is your ring?”

He quickly hid his hand and shook his head slowly like he didn’t want to talk about it.

I leaned in close. “What’s going on? Is everything okay?”

Brendan was never seen without his ring prior to this and his reaction told me that something really was going on. I’m sure I should have seen it coming.

“We’re separated,” he revealed and then immediately tucked back into his salad.

I couldn’t believe it.

“What? Since when? What happened?” It was clear he didn’t really want to talk about it, but I needed more details and talking about it would make him feel better, wouldn’t it?

“It’s just a trial thing. Her dad’s idea. She’s staying with her parents right now.” I was shocked to realize that Brendan was getting choked up slightly talking about it. He rarely ever talks about his wife at all so it was surprising that he was getting so emotional. And this is completely awful and terrible (especially since he was so upset), but the only thing I could imagine is a single Brendan and having sex with him (not pregnant of course).

“Oh my gosh. I’m so sorry.” I grabbed his wrist and he didn’t push me away.

“It’s fine. We agreed on it and it’s temporary.”

I wanted way more details (like why the dad even suggested separating), but it was clear Brendan was uncomfortable so I dropped it. We grabbed lunch a few more times during the week and he started cheering up a little bit more and dropped subtle details like, “She had her dad text me so she could make sure I wasn’t home when she came to pick up some stuff.” I was thinking what did Brendan do that made his wife not even want to see him? Did he cheat on her? With who?

Carly visited that weekend. When she saw me she cried, as if I hadn’t been sending her pictures of my bump for months (“Is this normal?”). We mostly just sat around the apartment eating while Brady worked (he’s back to working 16 hour days which I’ve confronted him about. More about that later).

I told her the story of the Connecticut house and she said, “I mean, I’ve heard of people living in Connecticut and working in New York City. In fact, I know people who live in Philly who work in New York City.”

“That is completely absurd and I’m not doing that,” I said. I’ve pretty much made up my mind about not leaving the city even though we have no prospects here and Brady’s house has just been reduced.

“Have you thought of [Carly got a look in her eye that told me she was going to say something ridiculous] not going back to work and being a stay at home mom?”

I hadn’t. Because for the most part, I’m liking what I do. Mike lets me do what I want, I love working with Brendan and Kristina. But now that I was thinking about it – maybe it was something to consider. Without having family around, who is gonna watch the baby while I’m working? A random nanny?

Brady started working late again coming home between 8:00 and 9:00 each day. When he walked in at 10:00 one night, I lost it. I’d already cooked, eaten, put the leftovers away, had dessert and cleaned the entire kitchen.

“What’s happening at work that you need to be there this late?” I demanded when he walked in.

“There’s work to do. There’s always work to do. You know that,” he said dismissively.

“Yeah, but a normal person would call or text to let their pregnant girlfriend know they are going to be late,” I said very calmly.

Brady rolled his eyes and threw up his hands. “Reese, I don’t have time to check in with you all the time. If I wasn’t completely swamped, I wouldn’t be home late! God!”

“I get it – your job is so important and the whole hospital would collapse if you weren’t there, but I’m literally pregnant with your child and I think you should show me a little bit more respect.”

And instead of showing me respect, Brady started shouting at me.

“Reese, do you really think I want to be at work this late? Why is it so hard for you to understand? I can’t just do whatever I want and come and go as I please like you can. I have fucking work to do! And the last thing I need is you bombarding me as soon as I walk in the door. I haven’t eaten or even put my stuff down and you start with this shit.”

Calmly, I said, “Don’t you ever speak to me like that.”

He walked off and I changed into silk PJs and got in bed. I handled his outburst like a tough bitch, but as soon as I got in bed I started crying like a baby. A little while later, after I was sleeping Brady finally came and got in bed. I glared and turned over.

“Hey,” he said, poking me. “Hey.”

“Please leave me alone. I am sleeping,” I said.

He wrapped his arms around my torso like he normally does, acting like all was well. “I’m sorry for yelling at you. I’ll be home earlier tomorrow and I have something special planned for us this weekend.”

I ignored him and waited until the next morning to let him know his actions were not acceptable. Usually I sleep in as late as I can, but I got my ass up at 5:00 with Brady. I caught him in the kitchen.

“You’re up early,” he said brightly as he prepared Tucker’s food.

“I couldn’t sleep because I kept having flashbacks of you screaming at me,” I said. It wasn’t entirely true, but I needed him to feel guilty.

His face fell. “I’m sorry about that. Work has been frustrating and I apologize for taking it out on you.”

Brady was sure to be home before 6 on both Thursday and Friday. And do you know what his “surprise” for the weekend was? To register for the baby shower. Apparently Kendra has been asking me to, but I didn’t fast enough so she told Brady to take me. It was kind of fun, I guess, but kind of tough because we don’t know where we will be living. What if the nursery is small and the RH crib I found doesn’t fit?

I also used this time to talk to Brady about my plan after we have the baby. I explained to him what Carly and I talked about.

He thought about it for a second and said, “You didn’t grow up wanting to be just a mom, right?”

I’m sure he was trying to be helpful and get me to think in a different way, but I was so offended. Just a mom? Excuse me? Who says that to a pregnant woman?

With Brady’s recent shortcomings, I haven’t felt guilty that Brendan stops by to bring me lunch almost daily. One day he even came by on his way to a site and he called me to come down and retrieve my food because he was double parked. He was sitting there waiting in his big blacked out Jeep Grand Cherokee and I just can’t believe he’d fight all the city traffic just to bring me food. He’s basically my personal UberEats driver.

And my new thing is to go through Brady’s pockets and wallet. He’s been coming home late and hasn’t been very nice so I figured something must be going on. Or maybe I’m insecure. Or maybe I just feel guilty myself. Anyway, I found a business card in his wallet.

“Jennifer.”

“Consultant.”

After further investigation I found that she recently graduated from Harvard Business School. I’m sorry – what business does Brady have with a consultant? And she’s far younger than us. Since I’ve been approaching 30, I’ve been really insecure about age. I’ll update once I find out more.

My parents are coming next week to help me celebrate being old and pregnant and I am so, so excited to see them. Bye.

Standard