The Diary Of An Expectant Father

By: Pete Sortwell


I thought I’d keep a diary; I’m never, EVER going to show it to anyone, but I am going to bury it in the garden, sealed in a tightly wrapped plastic bag. I’m even going to put a photo in. Then one day, in three thousand years’ time, it’ll be read by the aliens that take over the world and they’ll have an insight into what life was like for someone who was becoming a father for the first time. They’ll probably make me an alien lord or something. If DNA technology is advanced enough, they could even bring me back to life. If you are an alien warlord or anything like that, there is a sample of my blood on the piece of cloth sellotaped to the back of this diary. Please only recreate me if you plan on giving me an easy life. I’ve also put a strand of my best friend Keith’s hair in the back; if you need to anally probe anyone then please use this to bring him back instead. I’ve always suspected he’d be really into that, so you’d probably be doing him a favour.

Other than that I’m Graham Peterson, I’m twenty-eight, and it’s the year 2012. If you’re interested, England, where I live, is hosting the Olympic Games this year. That’s a sporting event; or, more accurately, a series of sporting events. We’re all completely underwhelmed. Most of London, our capital city, is closed off to make way for the people taking part, so normal people have to sit in traffic for far longer than they normally would.

Earth is a strange place at this time. You have to work all day for five days a week; we do this for most our lives and then we give up a couple of years before we die. I suppose you’ve moved on by now. Again, if you’re able to recreate me into a world without work, then please do. I’ve a certificate in saving lives, so if any of your kind are planning on falling into swimming pools while wearing their pyjamas, I’m your man. For any other medical problems you’re probably better off recreating someone else. David Attenborough might be a good bet.

Back to me, though … I’m an expectant father, I’ve not really got a clue what I’m doing and I thought writing this might give all your people in the future either an idea of how rubbish we were in the new millennium or go some way to helping me find a way out of my own worries. Either way it’s a release for me and that’s all I really care about.

So that’s me. I’m a pretty normal guy who has found himself in a pretty normal situation. This is the story of the pregnancy and how I came to terms with being an expectant father.

Wednesday January 26th 2012

5.30 p.m.

I’m not quite sure what to do with myself. I remember seeing a TV programme about how writing a diary is a release and can help people. That’s all I can think to do as I don’t think this is something that can be sorted by my normal solution to problems (a few pints in the pub with Keith); this is going to be long term.

Alison rang me this morning and said she needed to speak to me urgently. I reminded her we were on the phone and that it was a technical possibility to speak there and then, but she insisted that we do it in person. I hate it when people do that, more so as I still had six hours of work left and couldn’t help but obsess about just what it could be. I’m meeting her in an hour, so going to shower and get ready.

10.00 p.m.

Well, it’s happened … somehow I’ve managed to pass on my miserable seed to a woman who’s kept it rather than rejected it, along with me, which is usually the case. Alison told me that she’d missed her period. I almost dropped my battered sausage. Why she waited until I was taking a bite to tell me, I don’t know. I wasn’t interested in carrying on eating after that, anyway. The shock was enough to put any man off a portion of Terry’s excellent chips.

‘How long have you known?’ I asked.

‘Well, I knew I’d missed it last week,’ she told me.

After a few back and forth questions from me, which all seemingly had really obvious answers, we decided that we had to know for sure and that meant one thing: pregnancy test. We spent an hour in Boots looking at all the different types. You wouldn’t believe how many different sorts of tests there are, digital, non-digital, double digital, it’s crazy. Pink ones, blue ones, white ones, I don’t know how anyone is supposed to make the choice based on anything other than price. All of them were ninety-nine point something per cent accurate. I mean if it’s five quid and ninety-nine point nothing per cent accurate, it’s going to be pretty good, what real difference does the point four or point five make? There can’t be much difference in it. I noticed the most expensive one was almost twenty-five quid. Just as I was jamming it back on the shelf before Alison saw it and wanted it, because of the shiny box and wild claims of being ninety-nine point NINE per cent accurate, a couple of greasy looking women walked past me and snorted, telling one another that, ‘You can get the same thing in Poundland, only for a quid.’ All smug. I don’t believe you can actually get pregnancy tests in Poundland so I didn’t drag Alison over there, but we did manage to settle on a middle of the road test for eight pounds. It’s ninety-nine point four per cent accurate.