When you are 20 years old and single and enjoying life – you literally have your whole life before you. The prospects are boundless. Traveling and exploring beyond the boundaries you have stayed within are ready to be crossed. Plans are being made and there is nothing to stop you.
That is how I felt. I was preparing to move away from the only state I had ever called home and live my permanent single life. BUT I noticed that my not-so-favorite friend that tended to come monthly for all women hadn’t stopped by in awhile. I reluctantly bought that stick test and thought I will just prove that this is all stress about the big move and go out afterwards. I did my thing and waited. In just a matter of seconds, there were 2 little lines. I read and re-read the instructions. I was sure for the first time in my life I had forgotten how to read the English language. And then I admitted to myself that I had flunked the test!!! This annoying little stick was telling me that I was pregnant. How did this happen? This has to be wrong! NO – not me! Did I skip a pill? These are the thoughts that started to run through my mind.
I had always seen people get excited about a new baby. Most women long for motherhood. I was not one of these ladies. In those moments after realizing the truth of the situation, I just sat on the floor and cried. There was only one other person who knew that I was afraid I might be pregnant and she could keep a secret. There was no need to tell anyone else. If I partied hard and had a miscarriage, no one else would ever know the truth. What if I went ahead and moved away, I could put this thing inside me up for adoption and my family would never feel the disgrace of me getting pregnant like this. Decision making in the moment of fear and confusion causes you to run some crazy scenarios. And run them I did. There were only 2 things I knew for sure at that moment: this pregnancy happened from a one night-stand and I was not going to let anyone make this decision for me.
Eventually, I came out of the bathroom and decided to party first and deal with life later. And party I did! But then life slowed down enough I knew I had to make a true decision. The more I thought about it the more I felt I needed to keep the kid. This pregnancy was one of those .01% kind. I had been using protection as had my partner. This kid was meant to be here and I wasn’t sure that I could raise him but try I would.
Now, to do this, there were a couple of decisions I made in those first few weeks that would affect the rest of my life and of the fetus growing inside me. I chose to tell the guy that was the dad that I was pregnant and I was keeping the baby. He had no obligation to help raise it or be a part of it’s life. That was totally going to be up to him. And he opted out, so I felt it was in the best interest of myself and him that the only other person that should know who the biological dad was would be my best friend Sandy.
I started to tell my family. I can’t say that any of them were exactly happy to hear that I was pregnant and on top of it I would not tell them anything about the dad. Most of my friends were supportive of my decision and only a couple played the guessing game of who could be the dad. After finally let the cat out of the bag with everyone and me settling into the idea that I would be staying in Texas and having a baby, I had a big scare. I started to have problems with the pregnancy. I went in to see the doctor and he explained that I could miscarry or take the appropriate steps to protect the fetus and the pregnancy. I am not gonna lie – I saw a big opportunity here. I could truly miscarry this baby and I wouldn’t have to do this whole single mom thing. I only had a few minutes to make my final decision – to have this baby or walk away. I again chose to have it. I did what I was supposed to, had to do bed rest, take it easy and let the fetus grow and get stronger. After a handful of weeks, I was out and about again and trying to figure out the what next thing.
I went ahead and went back to college for the Spring Semester. I had a great group of friends that would hang out with me and started to get excited about us toting around a baby. I heard the heartbeat and I found out that this thing inside me was a little boy. That ultrasound was huge for me. Watching him move and put his tiny little hand by his face had me in awe!! Was I really growing a person inside of me? I started to focus on reading to him and talking to him on a daily basis. I threw names around and some of them were horrible, some were worthy of a rock star and then I found the right one – ANDREW! I called him DruDru when I talked to him when no one else was around. And I started to read a book called Love You Forever and desired to be like the mom in the book. I spent hours singing karaoke with friends and having friends sing to him. I even turned 21 while I was pregnant. That was not the 21st birthday I imagined but we all made the best of it.
Dru kept growing and I kept trying to envision what my future held. As the weeks passed by and my tummy got bigger, I started to tell everyone I was done being pregnant and for him to hurry up and get here. Then his due date came and went and I thought “this damn kid is never coming out!!!” and it really felt that way. The doctor saw me on Thursday and said they would have me come in Monday to induce if I still was pregnant. Very early the next morning, I climbed into bed with my mom and fell asleep after a restless night. And then I woke up feeling like my mom had kicked me and she laughed and said it must be baby kicking and then I felt another pain. I was in labor. And it lasted for hours – actually just over 32. And I ended up with a C-section. My friends and family hung in the whole time and rallied around me in the hospital. My kid was coming into a world where a whole group of people were already vested in his life. The moment he was laid on my chest after his birth – everything ceased to exist and I realized that I had just looked into the eyes of the first love of my life and no matter what I would never let anything happen to him. So in less than a year, I went from a single party girl to a single mom. My life was still going to change and I would still explore and cross new boundaries, just not the way I expected.
The only thing I knew for sure was that I loved him and the future was still full of adventures!