Becoming a Mom
I was 22 years old and single when I found out I was pregnant with my daughter. I sat in my apartment trying to figure out the best way to tell her father (who we'll call David to protect his privacy), and finally just picked up the phone to call and ask him to come over. We made some small talk about our day, and in the course of telling him about a trip to the grocery store I mentioned I’d bought matzo crackers. There was a weird silence on the other end of the phone and I knew that he knew although neither of us said it. A few hours later he showed up and what ensued was an all night conversation about what to do next. In fact, we never went to bed that night and I ditched my job at a bagel cafe the next morning. Sometime in the early morning hours there was a knock at my door. This is when it really got interesting.
For some reason we were afraid the knocking was one of our parents coming to confront us, so neither of us answered. We both looked haggard and I was wearing nothing but a long men’s shirt which wasn’t the condition I wanted to see either of our parents in. The knocking got more persistent and we began to hear whoever it was walk to the windows and try to look in. I pulled David into a closet so nobody would see us. I know it seems ridiculous now, but we were tired, stressed, and maybe a little stupid. While hovering in the closet there came the greatest crash from the front door, and we stepped out to find my dad and a couple of cops standing in my living room. We stared at each other for a brief moment. The cops looked disgusted and left and my dad explained that they became worried when I never showed up for work. They were all dumbfounded that we didn’t just answer the door. I remember the look of utter surprise on my dad’s face and the horror I felt because I knew what it looked like to him. I couldn’t tell him that we were up all night discussing my pregnancy.
After everyone left, David and I took off driving south just to get out of town. We ended up somewhere near Naples and got a hotel room and ordered pizza with anchovies (my request of course). I couldn’t stand the smell and ended up throwing the anchovies out. I bought some stress relieving bubble bath at the store and soaked in the tub for quite awhile. To this day the smell of these types of beauty products takes me back to that day. I look back at it with fond memories because for me our little road trip was a celebration. I still had hope that David would stick around and raise Lydia with me. I was happy I was pregnant but I didn’t show it because 22 year old single moms should not be happy that they’re pregnant. At least that’s what I thought back then. If there was one thing I could say to a single mom who decided to keep her baby, it would be to forget about the scorn of others and if you’re happy, show it. Show your excitement when you tell people. Tell everyone. Make your co-workers tired of hearing about all the plans you have for your child. Just let it out and enjoy this time. You’ll never regret it.