Pregnancy 'Surprised' Alanis Morissette: Why 'Oops' Babies Rock

Sasha Brown-Worsham

Alanis Morissette is pregnant with her first child -- a pregnancy she told Chelsea Handler on Chelsea Lately that she wasn't expecting.

She qualified the statement by saying it was a "pleasant surprise," which I'm sure it was, but it does make me wonder who these people are that plan their pregnancies.

The fact that pregnancy was even possible after so many years of not being pregnant came as quite the shock to me. This is discounting the fact that I've never planned anything when it comes to my family.

I didn't plan to meet my husband at 10 and commit to him at 22. I didn't plan to get married at 25 (although I did plan a wedding), and I didn't "plan" either of my children. They were both surprises, but tell people that in passing and they look concerned for you, as if every baby must be planned to the day or you're somehow irresponsible.

But very few people can actually "plan" a pregnancy.

OK, so we all know where babies come from and we know that if we aren't using birth control that a baby can result, but we have no idea how long it will take.

There are people who can't get pregnant for years, who struggle and try and go through medical procedures. And then there are people who were using birth control and are "surprised" to find that it failed and they're in a family way. There are also people for whom pregnancy comes far more quickly than they expected and who are also "surprised."

Nine months later, they all have babies, but only one grows up to call him or herself an "oops baby" as if that were a bad thing. Just because a couple wasn't planning to have a baby or it happened too quickly doesn't mean they love their baby any less than the couple who worked for months to conceive them.

We need to get away from this idea that "unplanned" means "mistake" or "oops." In the end, all three babies are deeply wanted no matter how they get here. Obviously, not every baby in the world is equally wanted and not all surprises are wonderful, but it can sometimes feel like admitting that pregnancy came as a "surprise" is akin to expressing regret.

It isn't.

Sure, it might take a few months to get over the shock and start planning, but being "surprised" does not automatically mean being "unhappy." Alanis: You need not qualify your surprise as "pleasant" to me. I had two "surprises" of my own, both of whom were very, very wanted.

Were you surprised by pregnancy?


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