The First One

June 4, 1996…..a day that changed my life forever. The day began like any other day for an almost-21-year old home on summer break from college. I was living with my dad and stepmom. My best friend, Tabby, lived nearby and we had been running the roads. When I woke up, my dad and stepmom had both already left for work. I ate some breakfast then went to the tanning bed and shopping at Target. I needed shampoo and body wash. I also wanted to buy a card for my boyfriend, Eddie. As I was headed to get shampoo the aisle with the pregnancy tests caught my eye. I did some quick math in my head and grabbed a test. I’d been home from college for close to a month and hadn’t started yet. I was a little nervous but not concerned. I came home, took the test and before I could flush and pull up my pants it was positive. Yes, that’s right positive. OMG!! I thought to myself (only back then we didn’t text so it was actually “oh my goodness”). What the heck am I supposed to do. I’m in college. I have no job. I am not even 21 yet?!?! Eddie lived in Massachusetts and his dad worked late so I wasn’t allowed to call his house before 2:00. So, of course Tabby was the first call. She was slightly more excited than I was. I was terrified. I mean not only was I going to have a baby, I was going to have to tell my mother. My mother was NOT going to be okay with this at all. There was going to be a lecture….and it would probably last nine months. Keep in mind, my mother and I have always had a somewhat rocky relationship and we weren’t even on speaking terms at the time. In fact, I was living with my dad that summer because my mother told me I couldn’t come home to her house for the summer. Shortly after I spoke to Tabby, my stepmom came home for lunch, so I told her what was going on. Her response still shocks me to this day, “I already knew that. I told your dad this weekend.” Excuse me? I just took the test an hour ago, how did you know??? Apparently she had been watching the trash for evidence so she could tell me not to flush tampons down the toilet. I’d been there almost a month and she’d seen no evidence. Sneaky, she is. She’s a mother, that explains it.

Finally it came time to call Eddie. He was a little shocked to say the least, and we began discussing how to get him to Kentucky. We had already talked about him moving and my stepmom had said no, but now the circumstances had changed. But I told him if that was what he wanted, he needed to be the one to call and ask. Eddie’s mom on the other hand was not happy. She actually doubted that I was pregnant. She wanted me to send proof, a statement from my doctor, showing I was actually pregnant. She probably would have asked for a paternity test at some point too. Apparently Eddie had an ex-girlfriend who faked a pregnancy to try to keep him from going away to college, so because of her actions she didn’t believe me. We eventually convinced her (without a doctor’s note) but then she started the “have you weighed all your options” talk suggesting that we think about adoption and/or abortion. Eddie brought up the topic and I changed the subject. That was that. I told him he could do what he wanted but I was having this baby.

When my dad arrived home from work that night I told him. He’s pretty laid back so he basically said “oh no, ok”. End of conversation. I mentioned that my mother and I weren’t on speaking terms so I wrote her a letter and left it at her house when I went to visit my sister. I actually had to leave the note in the grill where she had left my birthday present, because I wasn’t allowed to go in her house. (I’m serious, I can’t make this stuff up.) When my mom opened and read the letter, she called my dad. She yelled at my dad because I was pregnant. Like it was his fault or something. He told her to add it up, I was pregnant before I got there (true, but barely). I think his point was I didn’t get pregnant living in his house.

Eventually my mom came around. Eventually his mom came around. I got excited and scared and excited and scared every day. When I was 7 months pregnant, we moved in with his parents in Massachusetts. We got married about 5 days before we moved. I lived in Massachusetts 18 months. My divorce was final when my daughter was 2-1/2 but that’s another post altogether. The week before our daughter was born, we rented our first apartment. We actually moved in the day before she was born.

Labor was 22 hours. Long and exhausting. She was face up and had to be turned. My mom wasn’t there. Eddie was useless in the delivery room. His mom was there but only because she got there first. You could only have 2 people in the delivery room & you couldn’t change once they were in there. So my BFF Shannon arrived not long after we did and waited in the waiting room for 22+ hours until the baby arrived. She was beautiful. Olive skin. Green eyes. Full head of dark hair. I was in the love the minute I saw her. I knew from that moment on I would never be the same. I knew that she would always be more important than anyone else. I knew that if someone tried to hurt her I would come after them like Chuck Norris. I knew that it was going to be me and her against the world.

That little bundle of joy that graced the world with her presence on February 8, 1998 weighing 7 lbs and 7 ounces at 6:16 pm is now 14. She is tall and thin. She is beautiful with long dark hair, beautiful olive skin and big green eyes with the longest eyelashes I’ve ever seen. When she puts on makeup and fixes her hair she looks 18 and my heart breaks. She will be in high school in less than a month and as happy as I am for her, it doesn’t seem possible that I would have a child in high school. I feel like I was just there roaming those halls flirting with boys between classes.  I am proud of the young woman she is becoming and look forward to guiding her future.

After all, I want her to be successful so she can get a job with good benefits, preferably one with psychiatric services cause she’s gonna need a lot of therapy to undo the damage I’m sure I’ve done!!

She was my first.  I call her DramaTweenie.  Someday I will tell you the stories of the other two……Miss Priss and Lil Man (aka Lucifer).  They are quite interesting in their own ways too 🙂

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