“I still remember the moment your parents walked in the door. It was the first time we were meeting. I knew. I knew straight away, without even saying a word to them. I knew they are your parents. Though coming to the decision to find them wasn’t easy.
My husband and I met at our high school. Well, Metro has all three schools (elementary school, middle school and high school) in one building. So news can travel fast. He is 28 days older than me. Oh yeah, I got me an older man! We dated for about a year and broke up. We tried to avoid each other but that is not easy at a small school. Life went on though.
He graduated and I continued to try to move on.
Then, an opportunity rose to see him. It was a magical night and everything was perfect.
One month later, everything changed. I missed my period. I took two tests, each a week apart, just to be sure that I was, in fact, pregnant.
And. I. Was.
I told my best friend at the time, and my brother, Barrett. My friend convinced me to tell the father. That didn’t go well. I knew it wouldn’t, because what freshman in college wants to be a parent? I remember telling him I understood where he was coming from, but abortion wasn’t an option.
My biggest supporter, Barrett, kept my secret and stayed by my side. He helped me through my doubt over not having an abortion. Yes, I doubted. Why? Because I was a senior in high school and thought I was about to destroy my life. Thankfully I stayed the course.
I finished my first semester and was, kind of, excited to start my Christmas break. One mountain to climb: I had to tell my parents. I was close to starting my second trimester and knew I couldn’t go to the doctors without my parents’ knowledge. My brother came home to help me tell my them. They ragged on him for 4 hours about his life choices before I finally pulled the plug.
‘Mom, Dad – I’m pregnant.’
I have never seen my father so speechless, and I have never heard my mother cry like that.
The next week was a daze of my parents trying figure out what to do while I tried to keep food down (morning sickness isn’t just in the morning). After a little thought, I decided to stay home the following semester. Most of my classmates thought I was kicked out.
They say you go through something difficult to find out who your true friends are. I did. I found out I had none. My family was my only support system, and I am forever in their debt. I thought for sure they were going to kick me out or ship me off to my grandparents for nine months.
My father worked longer hours during those nine months and made sure all of the paperwork was set. My mother found this amazing organization called Crisis Pregnancy Outreach (CPO). For over 35 years this amazing woman, Cheryl Bowman, created this ALL volunteers, ALL loving organization so that women of all ages and walks of life could come to a place to learn about how to raise a baby or how to find a home for that precious life. They have so much to offer. Their main focus is on the birth mom. What does the birth mom want and need for this new adventure she is on?
After getting all of this information, my mother and I went to several different grocery stores and baby stores. She helped me do the research to see how I could possibly, maybe raise this baby on my own.
On top of all that, the father of my child was wanting back in the picture. Which was amazing! I quickly caught him up on everything and we both decided that adoption was best. We knew we couldn’t give him the life we dreamed for him on our own. CPO offers Life Books. Life books are a sneak peak of potential parents wanting to adopt. They hand out about 5 books in the first round. The orange book stuck out. I held on to it. I looked at it every day. I fell in love with their sweet faces. And hello, they were dog lovers?! That’s an added bonus!
Finally, I had decided after two months of holding onto the orange book I wanted to meet them in person. This still doesn’t mean I have permanently chosen them. It means I have more questions to ask and they are potentially going to be the ones raising my child.
Oh boy was I nervous. My parents, a CPO representative and I decided on the perfect place.
We sat outside on the patio. My back was to the door, but I still turned around when I heard y’all had arrived. Then I saw y’all. Her first. Then him. I knew. I didn’t need to ask you any questions because I knew. I didn’t want to, but I remember doing so. I don’t remember what I asked, but I know they were the right questions, and they had all the right answers. I told my parents as soon as we got in the car.
‘They are the going to be my son’s parents. They are the ones.’
The next day I got to meet your older brother and once again I knew right away how perfectly loved you will be in this family.
The next few months were filled with so many ups and downs. There was a question about who the actual birth father was, so he stepped out of the picture. Thankfully he had already agreed to the family and adoption before finding out the truth. Yes, after the baby was born, we did a DNA test. And yes, he was the father. I was hospitalized for a night because I was so dehydrated that I went into early labor. Thankfully they were able to stop it.
Summer had arrived and my brother went to live and work with my grandparents in Shreveport. Things were going well, and everything was on schedule.
Finally, my due date July 9th arrived – and then it went. I was ready and devastated that the baby hadn’t come yet. The next day, I was extra tired. I felt like I couldn’t even move. My parents had already moved me downstairs so I wouldn’t have to worry about trying to come down the stairs while in labor.
My mom made a lovely spaghetti dinner and boy was it delicious. After dinner I was able to talk to my brother for a bit. He was still in Shreveport, which I was worried about. See, he was supposed to be there for the birth. He had been my biggest supporter. I asked him to cut the cord and he accepted. But with him still being over 14 hours away I didn’t think he would be able to be there. He assured me, ‘It will all work out as it’s supposed to.’ Not 20 minutes later after hanging up with him, I was sitting on my bed watching tv when it happened.
I groaned and was upset. I walked outside and yelled out to my mom, ‘Mom I think I peed myself. I need your help!’
‘Are you sure? Did you smell it?’
Yes, the neighbors heard.
Sure enough, my water had broken. I called my brother. My mom called my doula. Then I called The Prices. My baby’s parents.
‘It’s time. My water broke and he is on his way!,’ was the first thing I said.
I don’t remember much after that. More walking. I took a shower. After about an hour, we finally made our way to the hospital. Dad parked, I got out and BAM. First contraction.
We made our way to the nurse’s station to check in. That was a fun 45 minutes of them not believing I was in labor. The nurse barely checked before she realized I needed a room.
My son’s parents and brother finally arrived. I was so happy they were there for this. Luckily the hospital wasn’t full and they were able to stay in the room next to me (it was 10 p.m.). Labor wasn’t easy. Contractions hurt and at one point you, my son, had flipped back around. That was painful to get you flipped back down. Finally I had enough and asked for my epidural. It felt like seconds but maybe it was longer. Then, my brother walked in. Not knowing my grandmother was behind him I yelled out, ‘YOU MADE IT AND I LOVE DRUGS SO MUCH!’
Next thing I knew it was time to push. Barrett was behind the curtain, my mom and your mom right next to me.
Push. I pushed. Push! I pushed harder. PUSH! I can’t breathe! Neither could he, he was stuck. Quick action by my nurse and I had oxygen. After the next two pushes, you were out. Screaming. Then a calm came over the room when the doctor placed you on my chest.
Barrett cut the cord, and they swooped you back up. They cleaned you up and checked your vitals. Then they had everyone leave but me, you and my mom. I didn’t want to hold you long because I knew I wouldn’t let you go. ‘I love you so incredibly much,’ I remember telling you. I remember counting your fingers and toes. Then I looked at my mom. ‘It’s time.’
With tears in her eyes she said, ‘Are you sure?’ I nodded, and she went and got them.
Rebekah entered first. Bittersweet tears were in both of our eyes. She walked over to the right side of the bed. I give you one last kiss, and handed you to your mother for the first time.
See, you are so special, my love, that literally no one but I could give you to your true family. That was my one request. And it was granted.
Watching your mom fall in love with you comforted me. Seeing your dad beam with pride filled me with joy. And witnessing your older brother meet you made all the pieces fall together.
Going home was strange. I thought I would cry, but I didn’t. It was strange but still felt normal. We got home and I went up to my room. I unpacked, and then sat in a daze at my desk.
I guess my parents had called me to dinner. I didn’t hear them until they were standing behind me. That’s when it hit. And I cried. I cried so much I couldn’t eat. My parents just held me.
I don’t regret my decision. It’s been 10 years and my decision is always reconfirmed every time I see them. I do have the what if’s, but I don’t regret my decision one bit.
I’m lucky. His birth father and I ended up making amends and guess what? We just celebrated our 7th anniversary, and after 3 miscarriages, we were able to have a baby.
We see him every year on his birthday. And if life works out, we get to see him more. It’s crazy that 10 years ago I thought my life was ending, when in reality, it was only just beginning.”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Raegan Pile. You can follow her journey on Instagram. Submit your own story here, and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories.
Read more inspiring stories from birth mothers:
‘I found out I was pregnant one month after I turned 19 years old. ‘The second line is faint. You’re very early in your pregnancy,’ the nurse said. I had not even missed a period yet. Utterly shocked.’
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