“So I have chosen three students for next weeks experiment.” Frau Schmidt announced, “So after class can I see Jorge Stevens, Monika Busch and Drew Bond please.”
Huh! Me? I wonder what next weeks science block is? I really should pay more attention.
“So this weekend I'd like everyone to read through section five of your course books, class dismissed.”
“See you in the canteen Drew.” Steffi mentioned as I took my time collecting my books up.
“Sure, get me some juice?”
I joined Mona and Jorge at the front where Frau Schmidt, our science teacher, was waiting.
“Sit yourselves down, I won't keep you too long but I need to do this now as there won't be a chance later.”
We pulled up chairs while Frau Schmidt retrieved one of those plastic storage boxes with ‘Schwangerschaftvortäuschen' marked on the end, whatever that means.
“So next week we are studying reproduction and each of you will be helping in a practical demonstration.
“We get to have sex in school?” Jorge suggested.
“Gott! You boys have a one track mind!” Mona huffed.
“No there is no sex involved Jorge. I chose each of you for different reasons, Jorge you might find this hardest and Drew you also might have some difficulties with the simulieren due to your size. Monika you are our control for this.”
What has my size got to do with anything? So okay I'm hardly what you'd call tall but so what.
“I'd like you to keep a diary for the week while you wear the Schwangerschaftvortäuschen. I'll give them to you now so you can try them over the weekend then you should wear them each day for school. We will discuss your findings each lesson, any questions?”
“Um what sort of thing are we wearing, like a heart rate monitor or something?” I enquired.
“I thought I said Drew, a Schwangerkostüm .”
“Oh right.” I didn't want to admit that I still wasn't sure what she was on about.
“Bang goes my street cred!” Jorge sighed with some exaggeration.
“There are full instructions in the bags, I'm sure Monika and Drew will be okay but Jorge you might need some help putting it on properly. Please look after these carefully, they belong to the Schwangerklinik and I don't want to have to pay for them.” Our teacher advised. “Okay here we go.”
She opened the box and presented each of us with a box with a load of writing on the lid.
“See you on Monday.” Frau Schmidt concluded as we stowed the boxes in our bags. Mona and Jorge seemed to be having some private joke that I couldn't quite catch the gist of – something about children and starting a family I think, weird.
“So what's the big secret Drew?” Pia enquired.
“I get to be a guinea pig in the cause of science, I have to wear some suit thing all next week, what it's got to do with reproduction I've no idea.”
“What sort of suit?” Connie asked.
“Shangercostume? Here its in a box.” I opened my bag to show the girls the lid.
“Schwangerkostüm, oh Drew!” Connie giggled, the others joining in.
“What is it?” I requested feeling that I was missing something big
“Not here, I'll explain later.”
“You are to be a parent!” Steffi spluttered.
Before I could pursue that the bell rang for the afternoon session.
“You've got to be kidding? I have to wear this all next week? Sugar!”
‘This' turned out to be what I now understood to be a pregnancy simulator and quite a technical one too! Why me? If I understand it correctly, and I'm not certain that I do, this thing is the next best thing to being ‘with child', just what I need!
“Stand still, I need to adjust the straps a bit more.” Connie instructed.
“But I need the loo.” I complained.
“Well hurry up then.”
I found myself waddling as I headed to the Thesing's bathroom; the suit was quite bulky and threw out my balance. Even worse I had to sit down as I could hardly reach my kit let alone control it – how embarrassing.
“You alright in there?”
“Yeah, it's a bit awkward doing stuff with this thing on.”
“I think that's the point,” Connie noted, “You get some idea what being pregnant is like.”
“Well duh! That's not gonna happen is it? Not unless there's some sort of nasty miracle in my future!”
“I think it's a cool idea.” She noted, “anyhow it says that you can wear it over normal clothes or for a more realistic simulation you can wear it next to your body.”
“Whatever, this is just too weird.”
“I thought I heard voices.” Frau Thesing stated joining us in her lounge, “what are you wearing Drew?”
“She has to wear it at school next week, for science, it's a pregnancy simulator.” Connie explained for me, I just turned red.
“If they had this when I was at school you wouldn't be here!”
“Just kidding liebchen.”
“Do you have any Mutterschaftkleider still we could borrow Mama?”
“Hmm, I might have, up in the attic, when do you need them for?”
“I'll get your father to go up tomorrow.”
“Um can I get out of this thing?”
“You are kidding right?”
“But you look cute Gabs.”
“I am not wearing this to school!”
I was stood in Connie's bedroom wearing one of Frau Thesing's maternity dresses and that is one avenue I am not going down! Look I know half the school think I'm a girl, what with the wine queen thing an' that but I am not going to school in a dress!
“Well at least let me take some pictures, you could wear the trousers and the blue top to school.”
The ‘baby' kicked and I could feel an urge for the lav – again!
“Okay, okay but after I've wee'd!”
“Yes!” Connie pumped the air.
Oh to have such friends!
“You what?” Jules spluttered through her tea.
“I wish you'd listen, I have to wear this false belly thing for our science class this week.”
“I got that bit, but why do you need maternity trousers an' all that?”
“Well duh! None of my clothes will fit.”
Jules just knew there was a flaw in her brothers thinking but she wasn't quite sure what it was – so far she had to agree with his statement.
“And you have to wear it all week?”
“Well apart from sports stuff, Frau Schmidt said we'd get a better feel for it if we wore it as much as possible.”
“I guess that's true. We never did anything like this at home, mind you we did have Mags Walters in the third year.”
“Who's Mags Walters?”
“Oh you remember, that slapper from Meden, always hanging around the offie.”
I searched my memory and came up blank.
“Can't place her.” I admitted.
“Well she got herself up the duff after the Halloween disco, rumour has it that it was Simeon Harper did the deed although she never said.”
“Right.” I did vaguely remember said scandal, not that she was the first girl at Warsop College to get into early motherhood and I doubt the last. There's something, can't say as I remember seeing any ‘gymslip' mothers since we moved to Dernau – I'm sure there are some but maybe this Schwangerschaftvortäusche stuff has another element?
I'm glad my Schauff has a loop frame; I'd never be able to ride my road bike with this thing strapped on, as it is I had to lower the saddle a bit. And talk about mucking up your balance!
“Oh my god Drew!” Anna exclaimed by way of greeting.
“Morgen.” I slid off the saddle and got my bulk under control, “geez this thing's uncomfortable.”
“I'll park your bike.” Anna offered.
“Thanks.” I puffed.
I got a couple of funny looks as I waddled into Thesing's – well duh, you saw me last week without this thing!
“Ah Drew, that outfit looks good on you.” Connie's Mum mentioned, “and how is the mother to be today?” she smirked.
“Hot and uncomfortable.”
“Summer pregnancies are like that.” She noted.
I rolled my eyes – now she tells me.
It was only when I got to school that I realised that I'd been had. By the time I got to class I felt like some sort of freak show with all the pointing and sniggering and when I got there Jorge and Mona were already there. Dressed in their ordinary togs with the belly strapped on top. And here I am wearing maternity togs and everything – sugar!
“Good morning everyone.” Frau Dürst greeted us.
“I see someone is taking Frau Schmidt's science project very seriously Drew.”
“Um yes Miss.”
“I'm sure you'll find it an interesting week, all three of you. Right lets take the register. Anhauser?”
“And there is a reason my son looks like a pregnant schoolgirl?” Dad enquired.
“Well it's for a science project.”
“ Jen! You need to come and hear this one.”
“What is it now? Drew? Something you need to tell us?” Mum asked coming in from the kitchen from where I could smell lamb chops.
“Okay Gaby lets have it.”
The explanation took longer than you'd think, I had to cover everything up to and including borrowing Frau Thesing's' clothes.
“Well I just hope it puts you off the idea of getting pregnant any time soon.” Mum mentioned.
“Mu-um! Its me, Drew, your son here!”
“You look more like Gaby our daughter from here.” Dad noted.
“And you're gonna be dressed like this all week?” Mum further enquired.
“I guess, that's what Frau Schmidt wants us to do.”
“Well in that case I'll find you some of my old maternity stuff, no daughter of mine is relying on charity!”
“So how far along are you?” the girl in the paper shop enquired.
“Um,” I scanned my memory, what did Frau Schmidt say now oh right, “twenty five weeks.”
“Not long now, do you want a boy or a girl?”
“A um…a girl, I think.”
“Yes I agree, but I'm only twelve weeks.” I hadn't noticed that she was ‘expecting' herself.
I would certainly never of had a conversation like this before this week. Even though I could have wimped out from all the maternity clothes I decided to stick with it and although at times I've had distinctly hostile feedback I've also had plenty of positive experiences like this.
“Come on Drew, how long does it take to buy a bottle of water?” Connie called from the doorway.
“I um have to go, hope it goes well for you.”
“And you Drew, tschuss!”
By Wednesday, Mittwoch, I had sort of got used to the damn thing. The weight wasn't the worst thing, in fact I got used to that quite quickly. No it was everything else that went with it. The weight sat heavily on my bladder so I seemed to want the loo every half hour and then there was the kicking. Yup the flippin baby even kicks and whilst I'm sure it's reassuring when a real baby does it this flippin thing is just annoying! Tuesday night I even slept with it on – never again! I couldn't get comfortable except laid on my back and with everything pressing on my bladder – well you get the idea.
Anyway I'm just glad that today I get to ‘lose' my ‘baby'.
“So Fraulein Bond, did you enjoy your pregnancy?” Frau Schmidt asked.
Jorge, myself and Mona were sat at the front of the class and our tutor was holding a Q & A session.
“I'm not sure I'd want to do it again, I mean some stuff was okay, people look out for you, like with doors an' that. But its not very comfortable and I think I've got a lifetime pass to the toilets!” that raised a laugh.
“Whose idea was it to wear the Mutterschaftkleider ?”
“Well er my friend Connie, her mother had them in storage, she thought it would be easier than wearing it over stuff.”
“Did you get any negative responses at all?”
“Well I guess a lot of people thought I really was schwanger and I heard some comments about me being um a bit slack .”
“Thank you Drew, Monika, anything to add?”
The session continued in a similar vein – at least Frau Schmidt let the three of us out early to get the simulators off. Of course as I was fully clothed I had to do a complete redress, the maternity clothing didn't exactly fit me without the big boobs and belly!
Maddy Bell 22.01.08 © 2008
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