Updated: Oct 17
I was in shell shock. I never in a million years thought I would become pregnant before marriage. "That was not supposed to happen to me." I naively assumed I would marry the love of my life in a field like I had always envisioned since middle school. My day would be filled with roses and elegance. It would be magical. A true fairytale. Now I did not want it soon, but I did dream of it like most little girls do, walking down the aisle in white, glowing from the inside out.
My plan evaporated when I learned I was going to be a mama. Nothing else mattered to me except the life that was growing inside of me. It was incredibility nerve racking but also one of the most special moments of my life. I loved kids and was born with natural mama instincts. I am a nurturer, and I felt such a profound sense of purpose arrive in my life. To carry the gift of life and bring humanity, another soul into this world is the most powerful aspect of being a woman. In my eyes, it is the most important work ever done.
With that being said, I anxiously awaited to hear Eric's voice on the phone. He was in Miami, Florida for a work trip. I could not hold it back, I blurted out "I am pregnant!" Silence. I began to explain I had taken multiple tests, and all read positive. "We are having a baby!" He was super surprised to hear. The excitement and joy in his voice I felt. Eric wanted to be a father. I think he was beginning to think it was not going to happen. He had many girlfriends and flings before I came along in which none blessed him with the gift of fatherhood. It was meant to be. A few days later, he met me as I am: Sober of mind and glowing while carrying his child. I was different in the best possible way. In that particular season of my life, I was content. From the moment I read positive on the pregnancy test I did not pick up another cigarette, pill, drink or sushi! I prayed to God to please forgive me for all the partying when I did not know and please let it not affect my baby. I was obsessed with the gestation process, and every trimester period along with the weekly growth chart of what I called, "my peanut."
Now to how I was a coward...
Have you ever not wanted to confront or tell someone something so major that you were aware would hurt the family member or friend? I believe everyone in America would raise their hand with a big yes. This was the moment for me where I was a complete coward. I hid behind a text message not wanting to hear the response. I relayed to my daddy I was pregnant through a text message. Huge no, no. I had already expressed the news to my mama. She was happy with the announcement. However, it was not in the order she wanted. Traditionally, based on my Christian upbringing, the conception of a child comes after marriage. I saved myself until I was eighteen years old. If only people were aware of the spiritual bonds and attachments that consciously and subconsciously tie us to the ones, we become intimate with, I think a lot of people would think twice before allowing a fling or one night stand enter their lives. You are exchanging DNA and ties that bind you in another realm.
I will never forget the day. It was an afternoon and I had been contemplating when would be the best time to break the news. I felt heavy disappointment come over my entire body; almost paralyzing. As I typed and sent the important news hidden behind my phone... my daddy responded, "come to my house immediately."
At the time, my daddy lived twenty minutes away in Wetumpka, Alabama. As I drove to my daddy's house I prayed. I walked into the house to my daddy sitting at the kitchen bar sobbing. There have been very few times I have seen my daddy cry. I honestly can count on one hand. I gave him a hug where he held me (his baby girl) in his arms. I was no longer his little girl...I was a woman. I was now a mother. After the initial shock came the logistics for a plan for my future. How my life was about to completely change, and he wanted me to be prepared for it. Then he scolded me on the etiquette to never EVER send him important and life-changing information in a text message. "Jill, you know better than that." I wanted to make my daddy proud of me. In a world where I always thought I was never good enough in his eyes, this confirmed the lies I believed. Because then I was pressured to not bring a "bastard child" into this world. Eric and I "should" get married to do the "right thing." I said no to everyone who asked. "I do not want to get married right now." I felt Eric would soon ask me. The thought of engaged was exciting but to make a lifelong commitment at twenty-two years old to a man I had seen only on the weekends was not on my agenda, at least not anytime soon back then. Everything I thought I did not want was exactly what cards God handed me. I was elated to be a mother but scared shitless to become a wife. I was afraid of a 'forever' commitment.
What I did not see was God working in all the unseen crevices of my future. Afterall, he created me and his will for my life no matter what bad choices or stray roads I follow, he will always be here waiting and pursuing me to come back home to him. In all ways acknowledge him and he will direct your path.
Mine and Eric's relationship was sweeter than ever. I was sober and happy. Carrying my girl in my wound was a wonderful gift from heaven. We had been blessed. God is good.
"In all your ways know and acknowledge and recognize Him, And He will make your paths straight and smooth [removing obstacles that block your way]."