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When I learned I was pregnant with my first child, my first feeling was panic. Not dread, but definitely that “Oh shit” moment of the unknown, worrying how every aspect of my life was going to change. I needed to get my act together, because before I was just living for myself. Now I was about to become responsible for another little human, defenseless as he was, and I needed to step up my game. A lot.

I was in therapy at the time, and I remember telling my therapist about all my worries. He seemed to wave most of them off, knowing I would be a great mother because I cared so much. He also acknowledged my fears, though, because of my dysfunctional upbringing, but assured me that I would not be “like them.”

Every friend I told was sworn to secrecy as I needed to keep this information out of the hands of my estranged family. My paranoia with them went deep, and I figured they all knew already somehow, even before I did. They didn’t, of course, but those are the fleas of my abusers. The guilty conscience gives us away.

Now, I’m completely estranged from everyone but my brother. I haven’t told him yet, but I will once I get to the doctor and hear that oh-so-important heartbeat. With the experience of dealing with my family’s fall out when they did learn about my son under my belt, I feel more confident. (A fool’s confidence, it feels like, since it’s so early, but still.)

All of my friends have been super supportive and loving, which is exactly what I need. I’ve made good choices in my life, because I trust the people around me to keep me and my family safe. Today’s a rare one, where I feel invincible.