“It’s funny how we have these defining life moments and we never know how vitally important they are until they have already passed. I, obviously, have been pregnant, but I have never experienced the joy of sharing my good news with my partner or even myself. I have never cried tears of joy while holding a pregnancy test. All my anticipation has been placed on rooting for a negative result. I’ve never cheered for the other side.
Looking back, I feel like something was stolen from me. I feel like I was robbed blindly of the blissful success in conceiving, but it is no one’s fault but my own. When I became pregnant at 21, I felt like the world around me was ending. I was scared, confused, helpless, and overwhelmed with panic, as was Tyler. I didn’t even know where to start. I was not feeling overjoyed, assured, and blessed when I REALLY should have been.
I feel shame in admitting that. Especially because being a mother is something I have always known I wanted. I am ashamed to admit the memory of lying on my kitchen floor–mascara running down my face, my body slung over Tyler, hanging on to him because I felt like I would drown in my own tears if I let go–is burned so deeply into my head. It was such an intense feeling of confusion and conflict. My life as I knew it came to a screeching halt at the sight of a little pink plus sign. I felt like I was so close to it all. My fingertips were gliding over the life I had created, just barely caressing my so-called dream at the time.
I JUST turned 21. 3 days before, Tyler had turned 21. We were in an amazing place in our relationship. We JUST, 6 days prior to finding out, signed a lease to our (conveniently two-bedroom) apartment located next to several bars. We had plans to travel. I had plans to graduate. Tyler just moved onto his own health insurance. We’d both just gotten good jobs. So why? Why? Why was this happening to us NOW?
Looking back, the universe knew what we didn’t, that it was perfectly orchestrated. Everything was ready, including us, whether we knew it or not. We were given Ella at the exact right moment in our lives.
Had I known everything I do now–how much happiness and joy she would bring, how much love came with this little bundle, how she would mold and shape us into the best versions of ourselves, how her laugh would make me melt inside, how watching the man I love become a father would make me fall even more in love with him, ow her little body would fit so perfectly cuddled up next to mine, how she would bring us closer to God and strengthen our relationships with our parents and more importantly ourselves–I would never shed a tear of sadness. We would have screamed and jumped up and down. We would have been the happiest people in the world if we could have seen a preview, if we could have seen all the good that was to come.
Being pregnant at 21 would have felt the same as being pregnant at 25, 29, 33 or 35. Pregnant is pregnant. A baby is a baby. The age of the mother or father should not dictate the emotions associated with such a blessing. It is all what you make it. So, yes we are young parents. But we are also AMAZING PARENTS. I am sad we did not celebrate our most blissful surprise. I feel like society and suggested timelines ruined this for us. We were so thoroughly convinced we had to follow this schedule of ‘happenings.’ We were, still are, and will always be exactly where we need to be. I wish I had known that then.
If you are a young mom or a new mom in general, scared, unsure, confused, know it will be ok. It will work out. It will be the most amazing adventure of your life. And if you’re still not sold, here’s a preview of what you have to look forward to.”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Jessica Edmisten, 23, of Ohio. You can follow her journey on Instagram here. Do you have a similar experience? We’d like to hear your important journey. Submit your own story here. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.
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