Week six pregnancy journal: Unwelcome news


My countdown to Friday was due to nothing other than sheer exhaustion. I am most happy to help my friends whenever I can. That being said however, by Wednesday morning I couldn't move. As I was struggling to get out of bed without waking Jacob, the phone rang and I heard that my friend's son had a high fever and wouldn't be coming over. This news left me feeling terrible for the little boy. I'd certainly not wanted him to get sick. But, I was slightly relieved that I could go back to bed and have a more restful day. Little did I know that my troubles were just beginning!

The house we're renting is covered in a hideously old layer of canary yellow paint. Thus, we were overjoyed when we heard that our landlord planned to paint it. I received word that they'd be working on the exterior next week and suddenly had a panic attack. When we decided (a mere six months ago) to move from a massive apartment building into this older duplex we inquired about the use of lead paint. We'd been told that there was no lead paint on the premises. I had a constant nagging feeling that the landlord was wrong. In fact, my fear was so strong, that I submitted Jacob to a lead screening two months after we moved. The results showed no trace of lead in his blood, so we assumed that our landlord was correct after all and that I was just being that paranoid.

Something snapped when I heard that they would soon be scraping old paint from the window trim, and, since we had the day off, we rushed out to buy a home lead test kit. My hopes of having a lead-free home were dashed within seconds, as the test kit turned up window after window, door after door with lead paint. Fortunately, only exterior trim paint and the window wells showed up positive -- nothing inside the house itself. But lead is dangerous to young children even in minute quantities, so I panicked. A call to our landlord revealed that they had never actually had the paint tested. Within two days we received an email explaining this and stating that it was probably best for everyone if we terminated our lease and found a new place to live, preferably within a month's time.

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