So, I was talking with Viking about G, my researcher. To call him that doesn't quite do our work relationship justice, being honest, he's my work husband. He started working with me when I came to my organization over five years ago, we were both new, but he was brand-spanking new, a junior researcher out of college. I trained him with everything I've got, because dudes like this don't grow on trees, just trust me. I could write sonnets about how impressed I am with him as a colleague and how trusted he is as a friend. Our dynamic in the office - we finish each others' sentences kind of thing, and can easily swap out for one another in meetings - has long been noticed by the higher-ups.
And while I'm still his boss, I've trained him to do everything last thing that I do, and even to think the way I think, analytically speaking. He's approaching thirty, and I like to think in some small way I raised him, I've certainly tried to live up to the definition of mentor.
Well, a few days ago, I shared with Viking how I revealed a little bit of this life with my Director, J. I also expressed some concern to Viking that G will have work-related insanity thrown at him regardless of how this pregnancy goes down. If I lose this baby, he will certainly be stepping in my shoes sooner rather than later, while we're swamped as fuck. And if I am on a six month maternity leave come January (yes, I know, I'm crazy lucky to have that time, a post for another day), he's gonna be running this shit-show.
Yesterday G was walking out for coffee, asked if I wanted any. "I'll come with you!"
We started walking and when we got half a block from the office I jumped off with my new favorite line: This may be more awkward for you than it will be for me...
So, I'm really trying to get our work-plan solidified, we have so much on our plate next year, and well, there's a possibility I will be on an extended leave, starting in January. You see.... well, I'm about 15 weeks pregnant.
Here's what was shocking: He honestly had no idea. About any of it. NONE of the miscarriages (even the one I thought was sort of public knowledge). Not this pregnancy. (I guess I'm really not showing). This particular go-around of doctor's appointments, he's thought I was anemic or something. My secret life, like Batman, was revealed. More than anything his mind was blown. How did you even function? I can't even imagine doing what you've been doing in this place all these years while going through that. And he started connecting dots (as strategic thinkers do) about things I had stated in the past, about times when I had requested leave, about all kinds of things that were said and unsaid. One of the more hilarious moments of realization came when his mind went back to a specific conversation we had about three weeks ago:
Me: So, G, we are launching this new campaign, and I think that we should try to request another researcher for help from NYC to get on our team. Maybe even someone who only works half-time on our project, but someone we can oversee to take the edge off of all the work you'll have.
G: Wow, this feels like when Mom and Dad tell you that they want another baby. "We're not replacing you, we love you very much, but we want another."
Me: G, I love you very much but I think we need another baby.
I'll say, for a conversation essentially centered around dead babies, it had its share of guffaws.