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Twilighted Validation Beta: Totoro

There wasn’t a doubt in my mind that I wanted to be a mother someday. It wasn’t something I could explain, I just knew that it was something that I wanted, a force that drew me. More importantly knew I wanted his children, my love for him running so deep that the only way I could adequately express my love would be by having his children. By piecing the two of us together and creating a new whole that would, as cheesy as it would sound, be the expression of our love. The thought of bearing his children created something primal in me.

Though, I had not expected to be pregnant with his child so soon. Of course I knew that birth control failed, there were enough children in Hollywood born simply because birth control didn’t do its job good enough. I’d just been naïve and assumed that it wouldn’t happen to me. A one percent chance of failure, and after six years of non-failure you get a bit cocky.

The only thing I found myself relieved about in that moment was that I had not signed up for any more films other than the one that would start in less than a month, so that I wouldn’t have to work around a heavily pregnant stomach. I didn’t know how soon people started to show, though, I needed to look that up. I guessed I was maybe four weeks pregnant, I didn’t know much about pregnancy so I couldn’t really guess it. There had been no reason for me to worry about it before. Pregnancy is what friends of mine went through, other couples. Not me, not Rob, not now.

Accidentally pregnant, what a wonderful thing. I slouched on the lid of the toilet seat I was sitting on, staring at the pregnancy test and the unmistakably positive result. With a sigh I picked the phone up from my pocket and sent a neutral ‘I have to tell you something when you come home, hurry’. This wasn’t the kind of news I was interested in telling him over the phone.

What a timing, he was just about to fly back to Australia for filming in three days, so it was lucky I found out then.

During the four hours it took for him to finish his business for the day and then arrive at home, I was able to do a lot of thinking. I figured that it was the shock that made me so calm about it all. There was no crying, no hysteria, which I would have expected from myself. My birth control failed, I was about to turn 23, I was young, I was a kid still. How would I be able to raise a kid? I thought about the children on set of Breaking Dawn, they had been wonderful, and seeing Rob with them had woken a yearning inside of me, but one that could easily be quenched. Then seeing him with Marlowe had been yet another thing that woke that monster up. It was definitely there, the want, but I wasn’t ready to face the reality of motherhood just yet. It seemed like my body had completely different plans for me, though.

When he got home I had made spaghetti bolognaise and had garlic bread in the oven. He gave me a quick kiss on the cheek before he went upstairs to change into something more comfortable. I wondered about how I’d tell him, if I’d just blurt it out, get the test, or slowly get onto that subject. But when he came downstairs and kissed me again, this time without the intention of stopping anytime soon, I pulled away from him and whispered “I’m pregnant”.

With those words it dawned on me, too, just as it did with him. When I heard the words out loud it suddenly became real. Pregnant, with a child. Holy mother of fuck.

It didn’t come easily, accepting my pregnancy. It was with quite a bit of ambivalence that we continued onwards, unsure of what the future had in store for the two of us. Two weeks after the test came out positive the doctor did a blood test to make sure I was actually pregnant, not willing to take me any earlier but still advised me to start taking prenatal vitamins. Not so shockingly that came back positive as well, and with that positive I got another appointment two weeks later for an ultrasound. Both Rob and I were sad he couldn’t be there, but he got both a video and pictures of the ultrasound. He did say that he would definitely be there for the anatomy ultrasound nine weeks later. He wouldn’t miss it for the world.

Rob and I decided not to tell our parents for a while, not until the first trimester was over. Both of us knew that if I ended up having a miscarriage we would tell them anyway, but we would be able to mourn that ourselves first, at our own pace. I did end up making it through the second trimester, despite the incessant nausea that threatened my sanity. Rob and I did a Skype session with his parents to tell them I was pregnant, and his parents cried happily. Completely ready and excited to meet their grandchild in six months. My parent’s reaction was similar when they came over to dinner that night. Dad hugged her tightly with tears in his eyes, and mom stroked my cheek and smiled wistfully at first, then broke into a grin. “I can’t believe how grown up you’ve gotten” she said to me.

After that there was only our friends to tell, many had already suspected we’d be telling these news because of how reclusive we’d gotten over the past weeks, and how I had completely given up beer whenever we got together. They were still surprised, because they had still been doubting their suspicions, knowing Rob and I hadn’t been talking about having children, and definitely knew I had no intentions of becoming a mom soon.

Being pregnant wasn’t anything dramatic, though the pregnancy itself felt like a big scary thing that had taken over my body. I didn’t enjoy pregnancy at all. I found it limiting me and never made me feel like one of those ferocious women you could hear about. All I got was a overactive bladder and a case of horrible skin. Never before had I been using this much proactive to keep my skin as clean as possible. My body didn’t feel like mine, and the painful stretching of my uterus made itself known too often, like I had pulled a muscle inside of me. Filming made it easier for me to push it to the back of my mind, not let it affect me as much. But I finished filming only one week into the second trimester, and then I found myself realizing that there was nothing more for me to do for the rest of my pregnancy.

Up until that point I hadn’t been worrying about anyone finding out. There had been rumors, but there was always rumors, and no one actually paid attention to them. Then I woke up with a small bulge between my hip bones, and the bulge kept on growing. It was easy enough to hide, all I needed to do was wear the large shirts I normally wore, but I was unprepared to share this with the rest of the world. Getting pregnant so soon after the final Twilight film meant that the press hadn’t calmed down about us yet. There was still a big interest in our lives, still people talking, and that hadn’t had chance to die down. That was part of the reason why we had wanted to wait with children, so that our children wouldn’t become a commodity. It made me sick to think about people writing about my child like they did with Katie Holmes and Angelina Jolie’s children. I didn’t want that, it made me feel disgusted, and I felt a desperate need to protect my child from it.

With a child I wouldn’t be able to dodge the paparazzi as easily. A child needed to go out and play, a child would need to see other things than just the house. There would inevitably be paparazzi photos no matter how I’d try to avoid it. I just knew that there was no way I would let anyone see my baby without me giving permission, and no photos of my baby would float in the media. I wouldn’t announce a birthday, a name, or anything. My child would be as protected as he or she could be, while still being our child.

Celebrity comes with a price, but I wasn’t willing to let my child pay it.

For about a month I could easily hide the bump I was growing, and during that month I found myself not hating the body I had acquired as much as before. It wasn’t just doing things to mess me up, and the bump was like a note saying ‘it’ll be worth it’, which was a reminder I needed every once in a while. By the time we had our ultrasound I was pushing it with the hiding. It was still hid, but soon it would peek out even in loose shirts.

This time Rob was there, ecstatic and practically bouncing, cracking inappropriate jokes about the drawn images of the developing fetus on a poster on the wall. I couldn’t help but giggle at his jokes while the ultrasound technician tried to find our baby for us. After measuring and making sure all organs were developing properly, and nothing was wrong, we finally got to find out the gender of our baby. A girl. We were having a girl.

After that point it all passed excruciatingly slowly, but way too quickly at the same time. Rob flew to Orlando to film, and I spent my days trying not to bore myself out. There were a few scripts sent to me, one that I found myself fawning over, needing to do this one movie. I hoped that it was still in early production so that I would be able to have my girl and recover from it before it would start filming, otherwise I wouldn’t be able to do it. It was a film I felt that I had always wanted to do, but never knew it.

Immediately I called about it, and arranged a meeting with the producers and the director the next week. I had to inform them that I was pregnant and due at the end of the year, but they said that filming wouldn’t start until the new year, so I still had a shot at the part.

During that week my stomach ballooned over night, from a bump that you could hide, to one that was unmistakably a pregnant belly. I sent Rob a picture, and he seemed to think it was hilarious how round the bump was and how odd it looked on my body. It didn’t even look real, because the rest of my body seemed unaffected, except my breasts that had grown about a cup since I got pregnant. Those had definitely raised some suspicion. From what I’d heard there seemed to be speculations about if I got a boob job. But they would definitely know that it was due to pregnancy now.

Not one to dress up, I put on my regular jeans that still fit, although they were starting to become a bit tight, and a loose shirt. There was no doubt I was pregnant though. Despite only being twenty-two weeks I felt as big as someone who was about to enter their third trimester. I knew I’d hate myself for that thought come a few weeks, and I cursed being so small because everything became so large. I’d probably be rolling by the time I hit the end of my pregnancy.

Going to meet the producers and director I was, of course, papped. I knew that in less than an hour it would be out there that I was pregnant, and tomorrow’s gossip magazines would write all about it. It was a tired game. It wasn’t until I clicked on one of the articles about it, too bored and curious for my own good that night, that I realized it was exactly a year since those other news broke that threatened my relationship with Rob, and the very foundation I was standing on. It talked about how surprising my pregnancy was, how no one had expected it, and then how it was odd how it happened just a year after the you-shall-not-name-what. I looked at the date and suddenly felt a desperate need to call my Rob and talk to him, hear his voice. So I did, and I almost cried in relief because I had him. When we hung up two hours later, because he had an early call time, I did cry.

Pregnancy was overwhelming, and as I approached the third trimester I came closer to the reality of becoming a mother. At the beginning I had thought that nine months were definitely enough to get ready for a child, mentally, but seven months later I was quivering and deadly scared of the fact that I was about to take care of another person, another person would be completely dependent on me. Everyone assured me that it was normal to feel that way, but I wanted to shake them up and say “but you don’t understsand!”. There were so many questions; if I wanted to breastfeed, or pump, or do formula, if I wanted to co-sleep or not, if I wanted to use disposable diapers, be eco friendly, if attachment parenting was anything for me. Regardless what I chose someone would berate me for that choice. I was just thankful I wasn’t having a boy. Now that was a can of worms.

By the time Rob came back from Orlando I had worked myself up so much that it took over a week for him to calm me down. I had visited him on set a few times, but found that sitting still for four and a half hours wasn’t something I enjoyed at all whilst pregnant. I never liked flying, but I liked it far less when I had a little girl pushing against my internal organs, and limbs that were far more prone to swell up than before.

Rob quite enjoyed my newfound curve, the concave body I had developed, but didn’t quite understand why I didn’t like it. The fact that my back already felt like it was breaking in two, and it was ten weeks left of pregnancy, wasn’t a selling point for having more kids. Still, he enjoyed my body, and I got to reap the benefits of it. Being pregnant had one side of that I wasn’t quite sure if it was negative or positive. I was constantly horny and overly sensitive to every touch. An orgasm now was ten times better than one before I was pregnant. However, being in a meeting and horny wasn’t a good mix.

By the time I could count the number of weeks left on my hands I was getting anxious. Both Rob and I were out of work for a while, doing a bit of charity work and trying to find some future projects. With my maternal side kicking in early, or as a weird version of nesting, I was finally able to kick my half-way house project into action. It would keep me busy until the baby came, and well there after, so I didn’t go insane.

Waddling around all over LA I was sure there were plenty of jokes being passed around that I was about to be snapped by half by the enormous belly I had gotten. It seemed to be reaching two feet in front of me, and caused a curve in my back that was never comfortable. I was never comfortable, unable to sleep, waking up too often to go to the bathroom, and often just after I was able to fall asleep. I knew that pregnancy wasn’t a walk in the park, but I felt like someone was beating me up inside out, and considered naming my daughter Renesme for a moment.

When I got the flu at 35 weeks I was sure I was going to die, that this was never going to end. Rob got it too, but tried the best he could to be a doting boyfriend and good father by keeping me hydrated so I wouldn’t get Braxton Hicks on top of puking my guts out. It did pass after three days, and after spending a week on the couch feeling miserable, I felt good again. As good as you can feel during the last weeks of pregnancy.

By the time I hit 40 weeks I decided that I was going to be pregnant forever. Either that or I would go a week overdue and they’d induce me. Despite the offer of a cesarean, because I’m rich and they think I want one because of that, I refused. I didn’t like the thought of going through any kind of surgery, and being awake for one scared me, and not being able to hold my daughter straight away? That thought scared me even more. I wanted to hold her, and make sure she’s safe.

I made it three days overdue before the contractions started, and six hours later I had my baby girl. We had her in our arms. She was perfect, she was ours, and no one would take that away from us. No one would be able to understand how much I loved her and Rob. I cried when he held her, and cried even more when she cried.

As much as I hated being pregnant, I absolutely loved to be a mother. It was definitely worth it. My mother came the next day, my daughter had been born so late at night that visitation hours had been over by then. After two days we went home, I was biting the nails on one hand and the other one was holding my daughter’s hand in my own while she was sleeping in her carseat. I suddenly very scared about being in a car with someone so precious. I knew I’d had to get over it, but right then I felt like when I sat behind the wheel for the first time; I realized that this was a fucking death machine.

In the end, I did learn how to drive with my daughter in the car again, but it took about three weeks.

My daughter was three days old when the press caught wind of her daughter being born. But no one knew anything, they just knew that our child had been born, nothing more. They didn’t know that she was a girl, or that her name was Violet Ann Pattinson, or that her hair was so blonde you almost missed that she had a lot of it. Her nose reminded me of his, and her mouth of my own, the ears it seemed like she had unfortunately gotten from me. But she was perfect, in every way.

We weren’t seen on the town with her until she was two months old, and then she was hidden under a blanket in her car seat. When she was three months old the papps got a picture of me holding her on set, if they’d been five minutes early they would have gotten pictures of her breast feeding. I wasn’t at all happy with that. Luckily all they got a picture of was the back of her head. It wasn’t until she was ten months old that they got her on picture, and I was devastated, but realized I would have to get over it. I would have to be a good example for my daughter, to teach her not to be scared of them because otherwise I’d ruin her for life. It didn’t mean I’d rush for them to get a picture of her, I would just have to react less aggressively.

It did take until she was a year old for her name to leak. People had only found out she was a girl because of a slip of a cast member in the film she had been filming when Violet was a newborn. It wasn’t a big thing, she knew it would happen. They didn’t know her middle name, or what surname she had, not yet, and that was something I could hold onto a little bit longer.

I hadn’t planned on becoming a mother at 23, I had an idea that it might happen when I was 27 or 28, but never that young. Violet turned out to be worth everything, and I wouldn’t have traded being her mom for anything. The only thing I hoped for was that our next child would be planned, and not come as such a surprise. I didn’t know if she could take that again.

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