Written by Missi Perez
Everything I had ever known in life changed the morning of January 13th, 2003.
I remember feeling like I had come down with the flu, except it was a little different. My abdomen was tighter, and I just wasn’t feeling quite like myself. I happened to be in class with my best friend and told her how I was feeling.
She said, “Maybe you’re pregnant!” It was a joke, but my heart sank instantly.
Could that be it?
That afternoon, two weeks after my 17th birthday, I found myself in the bathroom of a Burger King two blocks away from my high school taking a pregnancy test on my lunch break. It seems as though it showed a bright pink line almost instantly. I thought for sure that I wasn’t reading it right.
My friend and I went back to her house, ordered a pizza, and waited for the urge to pee again. This couldn’t have been real. I was taking nursing classes at the Tech Center and I had plans. This was not one of them. To my surprise the second test came back just as positive as the first.
All I could do was cry.
I felt so guilty. I was always a good kid. I didn’t drink or smoke, never really went out with friends. I had good grades. How could I let this happen?
Telling my mom and grandparents that I was pregnant was by far the hardest thing I have ever had to do. They were always so proud of everything I had done, and I knew telling them would crush them.
I remember my grandparents not speaking to me for weeks. It killed me. I didn’t even think about the impact being pregnant would have on my own life. I was so worried about what everyone else thought.
And, of course, it was the typical girl-gets-pregnant-boy-is-nowhere-to-be-found textbook teen pregnancy.
It was a long nine months, to say the least. I went into my senior year of high school 8 months pregnant. Friends disappeared, people gossiped and stared. It was not easy, but I was determined to finish school and get my diploma. I was going to prove everyone wrong and show them that with hard work anything can be done.
The morning of October 1st, I remember having back pain. My teacher noticed and called my mom. We went straight to the hospital and after four days of active labor, I delivered a beautiful 7lb 2oz baby girl.
Giving birth is a miracle from God, no matter your age.
I remember staring into her eyes and thinking Now what? I had read the books and watched the movies, but to have her in my arms was a different story. A friend who came to visit us in the hospital changed her first diaper because I was mortified I was going to hurt her. She was so tiny and perfect.
Three weeks after giving birth, I went back to school. That was when life got real: waking up every couple of hours to breastfeed and still waking up to get to class on time, coming home on lunch to breast feed and then back to school.
I have to thank God and my family that I finished my senior year with good grades and walked with my class. That was the first time in a really long time I was proud of myself. My 6-month old baby was in the audience watching her mom graduate.
From there I got a job and an apartment, and put myself through college.
God has blessed me in countless ways. I am now a stay at home mom and married to an amazing man. It hasn’t been an easy journey, but it’s one I don’t regret. I learned so much about life and true love.
Entering motherhood a little early has brought me so many struggles that I never expected to deal with. At the end of the day, after wiping snotty noses and endless nights of listening to a crying baby, it’s worth it. My daughter gave me purpose. She helped me figure out what I want to do with the rest of my life.
Of course it’s no where near ideal to be a teen parent, but it’s also not the end of the world.
Hoo, I’m Missi! A full-time work at home Mom, wife and blogger. I write about my life in hope to save other’s time, money and even a few headaches by learning from my screw-ups. I’m beyond blessed and look forward to what the future may bring for my family and I. Blog: LifeisPoppin.com Twitter: @lifeispoppin