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.”
“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.