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Joined: 09 April 2010
Mission 46: Rollercoaster of Love
Heer leaned back comfortably in the arms of her husband and smiled as he affectionately tapped his head against hers. His hand glided across the warm waters of the tub and rested on her stomach. He grinned recalling how the doctor had confirmed the results of the pregnancy. And even though she wouldn't be showing for a couple of months he still felt a sense of wonderment that a tiny being was slowly growing inside her stomach. "You're thinking again," Heer announced.
"I'm always thinking. Everyone does it," Prem joked back. "Aren't you thinking too?"
"You know what I mean..."
"I'm just extremely thankful that's all," Prem replied. Rubbing his hand along her stomach, "its amazing isn't it? To think we created something together and nine months from now he or she will come into our lives."
"You're getting so senti...I never knew Mr. Ex-Secret Agent could soften like this," Heer chortled.
"Hey, I can still take on anyone. My skills have not decreased. I run just as many miles as the young recruits, do as many pushups, and 10 for 10 on my target shooting."
"I'm sure you are," Heer replied.
"I'm able to protect my family should the time come."
"You could flip over a 200 pound guy," Heer said in agreement.
"I'm sure you could too. That motherly instinct kicking in. I'm going to have to be very careful around you. You're going to be all moody and all I have to do is say one wrong thing and you'll hit me...and I'll go flying down the stairs..." Heer pouted and gently elbowed him making him snicker in return. "We need names," he stated suddenly changing the subject.
"Yes, otherwise what are we going to address the child as? We can't go hey you or come here rascal," Prem answered.
"Should we go with an American name or Indian or somewhere in-between?" Heer pondered.
"No American names. It will be hard enough to decide. We should try to keep our name list short," Prem said. "Choosing a name that fits somewhere in-between would be nice but I don't think it should be a requirement. People don't have issues with saying our names."
"Hmmm...I like too many names," Heer mused. "This is going to be hard. And a lot of them are boys names."
"Well, we have some time to pick and even still we have to see what the priest says. We may have a limited selection because of the letter it has to start with," Prem reasoned.
"That's right. I sort of forgot about that," Heer sighed. "Well, either way we have some time."
"Are you going shopping with your mother tomorrow?"
'You know she's super excited. She wants to go baby shopping...just checking out the prices and do a little price comparison shopping before we actually start buying things," Heer explained.
"That will help us a lot. You know I want to get a good stroller and a crib," Prem said.
"We will," Heer replied. She raised her hands up and inspected her fingers. "I'm getting a bit pruney."
"Time to get out then?" Prem suggested. Heer sat up and was about to stand when Prem placed his hands on her shoulders. "Wait, I'll get out first. I'll get you a towel and help you out. You got to be careful. I don't want you to slip and fall." Heer nodded and moved to the other side of the Jacuzzi as Prem slowly stepped his way out. He had placed a towel on the steps so it could soak up the water and keep them from being slippery. He patted himself down with a towel and then wrapped it around his waist. He then grabbed Heer's towel from the towel rack and walked back towards the tub. The plug had been removed and he could hear the water making its way down the drain. Heer stood up allowing him to wrap the towel around her. He took her hand and guided her carefully out of the Jacuzzi.
"Thank you," Heer beamed. She gave him an affectionate kiss on his cheek while he slithered his arms around her waist.
"Anytime Pumpkin. So, how are you feeling?"
"Good. Very relaxed and a bit sleepy," she replied.
"Then you'll sleep really well tonight?"
"Yes, extremely well," Heer nodded.
"Good my mission has been accomplished," Prem replied. "You need proper rest now. You can't be staying up so late. And we have to make sure you are eating properly. No more milkshakes for lunch."
"Yes Mr. Juneja."
"And make sure to take your vitamins. You're very bad at remembering that. And make sure you drink plenty of milk," Prem instructed. Heer simply nodded her head at his words. "Oh, and when it rains now you have to use an umbrella. You can't go out and play in the rain."
"Okay," Heer agreed sadly. "But I love the rain..."
"I know you do but you have to stay healthy for the baby. I don't want you to catch a cold," Prem explained. "And another thing you need to drink more milk."
"Haan," Heer replied.
"And make sure to wear a jacket when it's cold outside. The weather is getting colder in the mornings...and soon the entire day will be like that as we head into autumn."
"And um...no more coffee...caffeine is not good for you," pondering still, "and...um...there was something else...what was it? Oh yes, fish...don't eat too much...cause of the mercury content...and..."
"Okay...okay...I understand," Heer replied as she turned around. Cupping her husband's face, "Don't worry so much. I'm going to be fine and I'll do everything I need to do to make sure our baby is healthy."
"It's not just about the baby. I'm concern about your health too," taking her hands into his, "Your body is going through a lot of changes...they say sometimes it drains the mother...you may feel faint...your energy is low...and the morning sickness..."
Heer gave him a reassuring grin. "The morning sickness hasn't been too bad. Ever since Mom got me those nausea candies it really has gotten better. Please don't worry so much."
"I can't help it," Prem replied. "You're the most important thing in the world to me and you're carrying such a precious gift that God has blessed upon us."
Heer melted at the way his eyes were emoting such love towards her. "I love you Prem."
"I love you too," he answered as they hugged. He kissed the top of her head and then placed his hand on her stomach. They both looked down at her stomach knowing their child was there. "And Papa loves you as well...so very much." Heer grinned at his words and gave him a heartfelt look before leaning back into his embrace.
Preet smirked at his friend who was sitting next to him at the table. It was a Saturday afternoon and they were out having lunch with their spouses and some family members at an India restaurant. "The mutter paneer is really good Dad," Prem said as Kiran took a seat at the table.
"This was a fantastic idea...Indian buffet," Balraaj smiled as he sat down. "Is this a new place? I don't believe I've heard of it before."
"It's been open for a good year now Uncle," Preet informed.
"It's very good. The pakoras are very tasty...reminds me of my mother's," Balraaj sighed in happiness.
Prem dug his spoon into his rice and looked up noticing Preet smirking at him. "What?" he questioned.
"Nothing," he answered with a wily smile.
"I know something is up," Prem replied.
Preet lowered his voice and bent down as he discretely casted his eyes over to the buffet line where his mother in-law, his wife, Teji, and Heer were standing. The women had gone to the restroom first and had told the men not to wait for them and to go ahead and get their food. "How's it going? You're entering the 8th month. You said she's been very fussy lately about her food."
"Why do you think we're here?" Prem replied. "You know last night she woke me up at 2am to tell me she wanted to eat pickles."
"I didn't know what to do. It wasn't like there were any stores open," Prem continued.
"What are you talking about there are 24-hour convenient stores and I think there is a 24-hour Wal-Mart near you."
"Not those types of pickles. The Indian ones...achaar...she wanted the mango ones," Prem sighed.
"Oh," widening his eye, "those?"
"Yeah, those. So I ended up at my in-law's house at 2:30am hoping and praying Mama had a jar of pickles in the house," Prem said.
"And?" Preet asked hoping he would finish his story.
"Luckily she did. So I came home and Heer had already cooked some fresh rice and was waiting for me. She literally grabbed the jar from my hands went to the kitchen and made herself a huge plate of rice and pickles. She never really eats pickles but for whatever reason she was craving them and very badly. She ate like half the jar."
"It's that bad? Wow. But wait wouldn't that give you indigestion? All those pickles? The baby must have been fussing up a storm inside her belly after she ate all of that," Preet questioned.
Prem shrugged his shoulders, "I don't know. She seemed perfectly fined that night and the next day," shaking his head, "I've never seen her inhale her food like that before. It was kind of scary."
Preet chuckled at the expression on his face and said, "I hear pregnant women are scary."
"They are. Very scary when they are upset. It's like she's possessed or something. She's not the same girl I married. It's like someone or something has taken over her. She cries for no reason..."
"No reason?" Preet exclaimed.
"Yeah, for no reason. This happened like two days ago. I came home from work and she was sitting on the couch crying. Waffles was by her side trying to comfort her but she was just crying. She was dabbing her eyes with tissues. When I asked her what had happened she said nothing. And I was like what do you mean nothing? You're sitting here crying. And she got all emotional and asked why she needed a reason? Why was I being judgmental?" shaking his head sadly, "She's gone crazy because of the hormones."
"She really was crying for no reason?" Preet inquired a little surprise Prem was being so nonchalant about this. This was not the type of person he was especially when it came to his close friends and family members. He was definitely intrigued and amused at his behavior and his wife's hormonal state.
"Well, she was watching the Hallmark Channel," Prem explained. "I really wish she wouldn't watch that channel. But again for whatever reason she's been compelled to watch it recently. They run a commercial about their next made for TV movie...I don't remember what it was but seriously those movies on that channel are so sappy...she's cry at anything. It could have been about a boy and a sea turtle and how he rehabilitates the sea turtle so it can live again in the ocean..." rolling his eyes, "and she would cry about it saying how touching the movie looks and how people should be more caring to animals and everything."
Preet started snickering at his words. "That bad huh?"
"You don't even know half of it," Prem sighed.
"Sounds like you're a little fed up," Preet replied.
Prem shook his head, "No. This is what everyone says can happen during a pregnancy. It's just a...um, learning experience."
"So has your grocery bill doubled?"
Prem gave a chuckle, "She could win a pie eating contest."
"Really?" Preet replied with wide eyes. "So, she's gain a lot of weight?"
"She's eating for two...she says that and you know everybody else says that...but seriously she's been eating a lot," Prem replied. "But you know...maybe my kid is going to be 10 pounds when it comes out."
"You worry about her losing her weight and going back to her figure before she got pregnant?"
"Well..." Prem started to explain.
"What are you two whispering about?" The two men immediately lifted their heads and felt a rush of nerves. They weren't sure what the person had heard. Mrs. Gupta eyed them suspiciously with a warm grin.
"Nothing Ma," Preet replied with a wide smile.
"That's why you had your heads so close together?" she inquired.
"These two scheming again?" Meher asked as she walked up with her plate of food. "I wouldn't believe a word they say."
"I think they were talking about something...very secretive and hush-hush," Mrs. Gupta teased making Prem and Preet squirm uncomfortably.
"Saying bad things about your wives?" Meher probed.
"No, never...why would I do that?" Preet replied as innocently as he could. He then pointed at his companion and divulged, "He called Heer fat." Prem's eyes bulged at his statement while the two women had appalled looks on their faces.
"Of all things to say!" Meher gasped. "She's pregnant."
"I didn't say that," Prem replied shaking his head furiously. He took a moment to glare at Preet who was hiding his wily smile. "I didn't say that."
"She's eating for two," Meher pointed out.
"I know that and I don't have a problem with that," Prem said. "She can eat as much as she wants. I won't stop her. She could eat two, three, ten plates I wouldn't care."
"Are you saying she has no self control?" Preet quipped.
"How dare you say such a thing," Meher angrily said looking at Prem instead of her husband.
Prem groaned that Preet was egging his wife on in this manner. "No, no, that's not what I meant. She could be 200 pounds and I would still love her."
"You think she's going to be 200 pounds?"
"What are you guys getting so hyper about?" Heer asked as she walked over. "Do you know how loud you guys are?"
"Two plates?" Prem absentmindly uttered looking at what was in her hands.
"Haan, she has two plates. You have a problem with that? This is a buffet," Meher defended making Heer look on with alarm.
"Why are you yelling?"
"Your husband called you fat," Meher fumed.
Prem's face completely fell into panic mode. "Nnnoo...nooo...no, I didn't. I didn't say anything like that."
"You were complaining about how she inhaled her food that night you came home with the pickles," Preet chirped in. Prem wanted to throttle Preet for saying all these unnecessary things. His comments were making matters worse. He could see it in his wife's eyes that she was going to explode any minute.
"Shut up, I didn't say anything like that," Prem snapped.
"You said you never seen her attack her food like that before. It scared you," Preet replied.
"What's the matter with you?" Meher questioned giving Prem a disapproving look. "Is that any way for a husband to support his wife?"
"Will both of you stop twisting my words and making this situation worse? Prem pleaded.
The three bickering friends suddenly turned around in alarm when they heard a wailing noise behind them. Heer had burst into tears and was mumbling, "I'm fat...you think I'm ugly."
"No you're not," Prem replied trying to calm his wife down. "You're beautiful. You know I love you."
"You're just saying that!" heaving heavily.
Prem got up from his chair and tried his best to comfort her. "You're pregnant...of course you're going to gain a few here and there," his eyes widened when he realized what he had just said was perhaps the wrong thing to say, "um...I mean...you look fine."
"A few pounds here and there equals 200 pounds," Preet muttered under his breath trying not to laugh.
"You do think I'm fat because I gained weight," Heer wailed sniffling back her tears. "You think I'm going to be 200 pounds. You're scared of me because I eat too much."
Prem shook his head profusely, "No, that's not it at all. You misunderstood me." He shot an evil glare at his friend who seemed to be extremely amused at what was happening; an emotional and hysterical pregnant Heer crying her eyes out because she thought her husband thought she was fat.
"I took two plates of food," Heer cried shoving the plates filled with curry, rice, and pakoras towards her husband. "Here, take it!"
"What? You have to eat," Prem ordered.
"No, I'm not hungry anymore," Heer huffed and began walking away from the table.
Prem shoved the two dishes into Preet's face. "If you find this so d*mn amusing go get Meher pregnant and mess with her emotional state instead of Heer's."
"I didn't say anything," Preet huffed trying to sound innocent. Mrs. Gupta sighed shaking her head and grabbed her son-in-law's ear. "Ahhh, Ma..." he cringed.
"You're a little too mischievous some times," she replied.
"She'll calm down in a minute," Teji said. "She got all worked up last week when I mentioned that she should go on walks...the doctor had recommended that...it was a good way to keep her fit and healthy. She just blew up."
Kiran chuckled heartily, "Reminds me of my sister when she was pregnant. She was so emotional. My brother-in-law was at his wits end from the emotional rollercoaster."
"They all get like that," Balraaj replied with a grin. "I remember some days Teji would just cry because she accidentally brunt the toast in the mornings."
"Ah, yes...it was a bit ridiculous now that it's all over," Teji chortled.
"You're such a kid sometimes," Meher frowned looking at her husband who was rubbing his ear.
"What are you talking about? You were so up in arms about Prem saying those things about Heer. Even you thought he was mistreating her," Preet replied.
"Me? Never," Meher snapped.
"Oh I forgot you have selective memory," Preet said rolling his eyes.
"You are the one who caused all of this. Now Heer is crying and she won't eat because she thinks Prem thinks she is fat," Meher replied. "Think twice before you do something like that again. She's pregnant and is in such a fragile and emotional state."
Preet looked out the window of the restaurant and saw Heer shove her husband away from her. He tittered a bit and straggled backwards before he found his footing and was able to stand straight again. "Oh yeah, really fragile," he muttered under his breath.
Meanwhile, outside Prem was trying his best to calm his wife down. He winced as Heer slapped her hands at his arms trying to keep him away from her. "Heer! Please calm down. I didn't say those things. I think you look absolutely fine. You're smoking hot for an expected mother."
"Stop trying to flatter me!" Heer hotly replied. "I know what you mean."
"And I mean you still look beautiful to me. I love you Pumpkin, you know that."
"Don't call me Pumpkin. They are big, fat, round, and orange," she cried. "And I'm wearing orange today."
Prem gave a defeated and helpless look not knowing what he should do next. He tried bringing his arms around so he could comfort her in a hug. "That nickname no longer means that anymore. I love you sooo much. Please come back inside."
"Why did you have to tell Preet all these things? Do I really scare you?" Heer inquired as she slapped his hands away from her again.
"Lair!" Heer exclaimed.
"Eh, God just shoot me now," Prem sighed.
"What? You want to leave me as a widow? I'm carrying your baby," Heer huffed as she started hitting him.
"Ahh! That hurts!" Prem shouted as he squirmed around the walkway. He felt like he was in a scene from some comical Akshay Kumar movie where the pregnant wife is beating up her husband in public. While he yelped and jumped around trying to defend himself his hand was suddenly captured by his wife making him even more alarm as to what type of punishment he was going to receive. "Heer!" he panicked.
Prem's eyes watched as she slowly brought his hand down on her stomach. He looked questioningly at his wife wondering what was going on. And then it happened. He felt movement. The little being growing inside Heer's womb was stretching and moving. Husband and wife were both silent waiting to see if it would happen again. And their wish was granted. They stood there for some time completely amazed at what had occurred. They knew their child was inside the womb, they saw the stomach growing, and they've witnessed the ultrasounds but this feeling this touch brought about a whole new reality to the situation. They were becoming parents. This child was real and would be coming out into the world soon. "Heer..." Prem uttered.
She looked at her husband in understanding and gently nodded her head. "It's our baby," she replied placing her hand on his cheek.
He grinned lovingly. "Haan, it is."
"I'm sorry," she apologized with a guilty look on her face.
Prem looked her in the eyes and tenderly said, "I love you. I love you then and I love you now. I don't want you to worry about a thing. You are beautiful to me. You are my wife and you are carrying our child. I couldn't ask for anything better than this. Don't listen to Preet's crazy talk."
"But you are scared of me when I'm eating?" Heer softly questioned.
Prem pulled her closer to him and cupped her face, "You're eating for two now. The most important thing is that you are healthy and the baby is healthy."
"I should go on walks. The doctor says it will be good for me," Heer murmured.
"I walk with you," Prem replied.
Heer lowered her head onto his shoulder and surrender herself to his embrace. "You're too good to me. I know I've been acting crazy," she sadly stated.
"What are you talking about? I was childish and crazy before we got married and I'm still am. And I think you knew I would continue to be this way. I'm still amazed that you said yes when I asked you to marry me," Prem replied making Heer grin.
"Love makes you do crazy things," Heer answered. "I'm a little crazy myself. We're the prefect pair." Prem smiled in agreement and moved his hand up and down her arm in a soothing manner as they stood there underneath the covered walkway in front of the restaurant. Heer just curled herself even more against him and sighed happily that she had married someone like him.
Prem opened the refrigerator and took out two cans of Coke. His ears perked to the sound of the popcorn finally popping in the microwave and smiled. He quickly grabbed a large steel bowl from the cupboard and placed it on the counter waiting for the popcorn to finish popping. It was a late Friday afternoon and he was getting the snacks ready before sitting down with his wife to watch a movie. Normally he would be at work but he had taken a personal day off because Heer's due date was fast approaching. If things went well she would go into labor by Monday or Tuesday of next week. Heer had already started her maternity this week. She spent most of her time relaxing and simply waiting. She was at the point that she just wanted the baby to come out.
Prem had been extremely jittery and anxious the entire week. His thoughts were always pointed towards home wondering how Heer was doing. He wanted to be with her. He didn't want to receive a call from his father or mother-in-law telling him that Heer was in labor. He wanted to be a part of every second and every minute of the process. He didn't want to miss a thing. He couldn't take the stress of it and finally took a personal day off from work to be with Heer.
He placed some ice cubes into the glasses and placed them on a large serving tray next to the two cans of Coke. Just as he turned his attention to the microwave to count down the time and pull the bag of popcorn out before it got burned, Waffles came running into the kitchen barking. "No popcorn for you," Prem stated as he stopped the microwave and pulled the bag out. Waffles continued barking making him slightly irritated. "You don't like popcorn. Every time I feed one to you...you just sniff it and lick it once but you don't eat the thing. No more popcorn for you." The puppy started to get up on his hind legs and lean his front paws on Prem's leg. "You can't trick me like that again. Don't act all cute. Down Waffles."
Waffles ignored his commanded and just barked. "Waffles..." Prem replied in an authoritative tone.
"Prem..." He immediately turned around when he heard his wife calling for him. His eyes widen and concern fall upon his face. She was holding her stomach and she seemed to be in distress. "Prem..." she called again with weakness in her tone.
"What's the matter?" he replied as he rushed towards his wife. "What's wrong?"
She reached out and gripped his shoulder tightly. "My water broke," she gasped.
Prem's entire body froze still. "Just now? Baby's coming?" he exclaimed. "Baby's coming...the baby is coming..." Waffles barked at his comments. It was as if he was telling him that was the reason why he was barking at him in the first place. "We need to get the bags. Can you walk to the car?" Prem inquired in a panic state. His mind was racing and he suddenly couldn't think straight. "No, you need help. I should help you to the car."
"I'll manage Prem," she replied as she turned around.
"Where are you going? The car is that way," Prem said pointing towards the garage door.
"It's blocked by your car," Heer replied.
"Oh, that's right," hitting his head with his hand. "Okay...yes to the front door...and I...I..."
"Prem go get the bags," Heer ordered as she saw the lost look in his eyes.
"The bags! We can't forget the bags!" Prem yelled and ran towards the front door. They had prepared an overnight bag for the hospital and placed it in the closet by the front hallway. Prem rushed towards the closet and fumbled around inside muttering curse words wondering where their bag had gone to. "It's not here? Why isn't it here? Did Dad move it?"
Heer sighed and answered his questions, "Prem, it's in the other one. The one on the right."
Prem came stumbling out of the closet and threw a coat that had fallen off its hanger and onto his head down to the ground. He grumbled and turned to the other closet to find their bag. "Where is it? I don't see it." The minute he finished asking that question he looked up and saw that it had been placed on the top shelf. He grabbed the bag and walked out of the closet thinking his wife would still be there. "Heer?" he called with great curiosity. He glanced over by the front door and realized she had walked out of the house. He ran outside and saw his wife getting into the Blue Honda Pilot. "Heer..." he called again.
"Prem don't forget to close the door," she replied.
"Ah, the door...yes," he said as he ran back. He stood in front of the door and patted his pockets realizing he didn't have the keys. He ran to the car and stood in front of the passenger seat. Heer gave him the keys as she started practicing her breathing technique she had learned in Lamaze class. It didn't take long for Prem to lock up the house and return back to the car. He tossed the overnight bag into the back seat and strapped himself into the car.
"Don't speed Prem," Heer warned between her short breaths.
"We have to get you to the hospital," he replied as he reversed out of the driveway. "We're going to have a baby."
"We have to be in one piece to get there." She then eyed her husband as he stated to call someone through the Bluetooth in the car. "Hey Rob it's me Prem...remember that favor you owe me?"
"Hey Prem...of course. Congratulations man. Heer, how you feeling?"
"I'm in labor," she heaved.
"Oh, yes sorry. Don't worry I'm on my way. Where are you?"
"We are at the corner of Jackson and Duval," Prem replied. "I'm making a left onto Duval."
"Okay and then you'll make that right onto Grand?"
"I'll meet you at Grand and Jefferson then," Rob replied. "We'll make sure you get to the hospital fast but safely."
"Thanks Rob," Prem grinned.
"Thank you Rob," Heer said.
"Anytime. Congratulations you two," he answered and then ended the call.
"See, it's good to know someone from the police force. We're going to get a police escort to the hospital," Prem said smiling brightly at his wife.
Joined: 13 November 2005
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