The Day I Bought a Pregnancy Test

I woke up early one Saturday morning, sat in the morning light, and wondered if I was pregnant.

To clarify, I have convinced myself I am pregnant multiple times in our first nine months of marriage. Not that we are trying, but simply because I enjoy maintaining the thought that at any given time I might find out that I am having a baby (plus as formerly revealed here, I have baby fever).

On this particular morning I decided to stop wondering, get myself to Dollar General, and buy a test.

Dollar General is only two blocks away from our apartment. I had read that they had one dollar pregnancy tests which were surprisingly accurate. I grabbed my purse, drove the two blocks, and hurried into the store. Once inside, I meandered around the beauty department until I found where the pregnancy tests should have been, but in their place there was row after row of signs that read: “see cashier for pregnancy test”.

Great.

In our small-town Dollar General, the checkout is right next to the door. This Saturday morning happened to be particularly busy, and by the time I got to the front of the line I had three people standing behind me. I smiled wryly at the cashier, a thin woman who looked exhausted, and asked for the dollar pregnancy test. She wrinkled her brow, rummaged for a few minutes in a crate behind the counter, held up a pregnancy test and asked: “Is this it?”

“I really don’t know” I replied. Trying to keep my cool, but also trying to stick to my budget “could you scan it?” I offered, helpfully. She sighed gustily, scanned it, and told me that it was six dollars for two tests. Did I want it?

“No” I replied, my cheeks beginning to flush a little at my stubbornness in light of the situation “I would really like the dollar test please”. She sighed again, cast about for another test, scanned it, and said “This one’s five dollars for two, will that work?”

By this point I was feeling incredibly uncomfortable, two people I knew had already walked through the door shouting cheerily “Hey Bethany!”, and I was beginning to regret this entire experience. Gone was the adrenal rush of buying a pregnancy test. Instead, I was left with a dull throbbing tiredness. And yet, I did not want to spend five dollars on a pregnancy test when I knew a one dollar test was there as well. “No, I really would like the dollar pregnancy test, please” I replied firmly. By this point four people were waiting behind me in line. I began to feel strangely liberated. Word was doubtlessly spreading that Bethany was buying a pregnancy test no way to cull the rumors now. Let the whole world know! Scrawl it with jet trails in the sky! Type it down as a headline for the next People magazine!

“Well, I don’t know how to take these off your bill now. I have to find my manager” she said, with a sigh. She shuffled off, and about five minutes later came back with a kindhearted, outgoing boss. The boss smiled at me cheerfully, asked which test I wanted, and sold it to me without so much as an awkward glance. Phew. I took the test, was not pregnant, and that was that.

A few months later, I bought a second pregnancy test from Dollar General. This time, there was no one behind me in line, but a friend from college was leaving the store as I was coming in. I said hello, chatted cheerily, then headed to the gum section and lamely picked out some gum while I waited for her to leave. Then, I slid over to the cashier, and whispered furtively that I would like one of the dollar pregnancy tests. She knew exactly where it was found. She studied me curiously, “Think you got a bun in the oven?” she drawled. “Uhm…aha…well. hmmm…” I answered eloquently. She smiled, “that’s the test I took” she said, rubbing her plump belly happily. “It’s VERY accurate”. “Aha” I said, giving her a weak smile. “Well, ahem, good!”.

Next time I think I am pregnant I am ordering the tests online. No commentary allowed.

Comments

  1. Bailey says

    I just got married in June and I’m strangely excited for the time when I will have to buy my first pregnancy test! Although I’m sure I’d be very nervous because we aren’t planning to have kids for 4-5 more years once we finish our degrees!

  2. Morgan @ Blessed Messes says

    The first pregnancy test I bought was at 17 and that was the worst thing. I was so afraid I’d run into friends of our family and they’d tell my parents. Fast forward through my teen pregnancy and to after my marriage I buy pregnancy tests like it’s going out of style! Lol Over the past year with my pregnancy loss & then us trying again I’ve bought at least $100 in pregnancy tests between Walmart, Target, Walgreens, Dollar Tree & more. It gets a lot less awkward the 30th time though! And really even though I’ve run into people while buying tests, nobody says anything.

    • Bethany Lotulelei says

      Oh, Morgan, I wish I could just hug that seventeen-year-old you! That must have been scary. I am glad that it gets less scary as time goes on. I think I might just buy mine on Amazon from now on! Ha ha!

  3. Nathana Clay says

    Smart! I love this! Mitch was so excited that he researched pregnancy tests and went out and bought a very accurate $25 one . . . we were young and naive! To make matters worse, we read that one should confirm it at a clinic. So we went to an Urgent Care clinic. We thought insurance would cover it. But nope, that brief visit and test cost us $200. Stupid tax. The symptoms were so obvious I didn’t even really need a test, but alas, we live and learn!

  4. Brittney says

    I hate that some dollar stores make you ask for them! Fortunately the only awkward commentary I ever got was, “Have a GREAT day!” Wink, wink. Guess what, though? Walmart carries .97 (or something like that), and they are the same, basic, accurate test. And no, I’m not pregnant. And no, we’re not trying. I just need a daughter some day… 😉

    • Bethany Lotulelei says

      Really?? I had no idea that Wal-Mart carries dollar pregnancy tests too! At WM I would be able to go through the self-checkout line. Good to know. I hope you get that daughter some day, Britttney! I love seeing pictures of your two little guys. SO cute.

  5. Alana says

    To me, it’s strange that you have to “see cashier”. Like, years ago, when a man wanted to, um get something to prevent the thing you were wanting to test for, had to see the pharmacist for that item. Here in New York State, no cashier needed for either item nowadays.

    • Bethany Lotulelei says

      I thought it was incredibly odd too, Alana. It seemed like a bit of an invasion of my privacy. I could understand (sort of) having to ask for things that prevented pregnancy, but not pregnancy tests themselves.

  6. alice Hartman says

    Haha I’m the same way Bethany! We are not trying either but I get so excited when I think I might be pregnant…even though PT school and having a baby is probably not the best combo (for us at least). This was an exciting and relatable read for me 🙂 thanks for sharing

  7. Amy says

    I wish they would have had them in bulk when I was going through the childbearing years *sigh*. And buying them online, anonymously: priceless!! Ha! Great story, Bethie!

  8. Elizabeth Mayberry says

    hahah! I love all this story! I bought a pregnancy test once. I think I paid $5 for it. I honestly can’t remember. It was in my first year of marriage when I was convinced I was pregnant all the time. hahaha. Now (four years later) it may take me obvious symptoms until I buy another one! lol.

  9. Sonia says

    I bought the set of 25 cheap (but accurate!) AccuMed ones on Amazon… so nice to have one whenever you need it 😉

  10. Hannah says

    Haha, I loved this. I’ve had more than my fair share of awkward pregnancy test situations as well. I’m glad I’m not the only one!

  11. Grady says

    Hah! I thought I was pregnant at one point recently (not because it was necessarily likely, but just because I get excited about these things hahaha) and I made Christopher buy the test! I think in this case you get the Best Wife Award and I get the “Too Socially Awkward for This” Award! 😛

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