“‘Guess what? It’s happened!,’ I said as I threw the pregnancy test to my then 19-year-old boyfriend. We had been trying for a baby for coming up on nearly 8 months when it finally happened for us. Those two little lines on the pregnancy test finally showed up. Finally, all those negative tests and all the sadness finally made sense and it finally was all perfect.
Pregnancy was a breeze for me, zero morning sickness, no complications apart from my weight being too low. No one thought my body could handle pregnancy or childbirth, but it did. My weight caused no problems. It just meant I had extra ultrasounds and got comments like, ‘Are you sure you’re pregnant? You hide it so well,’ while I was 8 months pregnant.
My beautiful daughter was born on January 5, 2016, at 1:41 p.m. weighing a perfect 7 lbs. 5 oz. after a long 4 days of labor. Labor was exhausting and very long for me due to dehydration and some complications. During the time I was in labor, I had no support from my partner. It was only my mom with me the whole time. My partner was only there after my daughter was born. At the time, I didn’t care though, I was in my own little bliss after finally getting to meet my daughter. ‘This is the best day of my life,’ I whispered to my daughter after finally getting a cuddle for the first time.
When my daughter was 4 months old I remember waking up one day exhausted after a long night, thinking, ‘This isn’t how it’s supposed to be, I’m not supposed to feel like this.’ At this point of parenthood, I was suffering from postpartum depression and was struggling badly. I wasn’t getting the support from my partner emotionally or physically, he just wasn’t there or into it. I was doing it all on my own, so I ended my relationship. ‘Might as well be a single mom, I basically am one anyway,’ I said to him during an argument one day. From that day on, I was a single mom.
Being a single mom at 20 years old 100% was not the plan I had. In fact, being a single mom was never the plan AT ALL. I don’t think it ever is but it’s definitely has been the better option for me and my daughter. Her dad has barely been around for 3 years. When he has been, it’s been for a short amount of time before something switches and we don’t see him again for a while. He has since gone off and gotten engaged to a lovely girl who I get along very well with, and they have had a baby together.
Over the last 3 years I have heard things like, ‘Your daughter is beautiful,’ and, ‘She’s so well mannered,’ or ‘Wow she’s so advanced.’ I feel an overwhelming sense of pride knowing she’s the way she is due to me. I have battled depression, anxiety, emetophobia, suicidal thoughts, self-harm, loneliness, exhaustion and low self-esteem while trying to raise a child, and now trying to hold a job down to get the money to move out of my current house. Sometimes I doubt myself as a person. I don’t feel good enough, but one thing I do know is – I am a badass single mom, and my child is proof of that.”
This story was written by Emma Kennedy of Birmingham, England. You can follow her on Instagram here. Submit your own story here, and subscribe to our free newsletter for our best stories.
Read more inspiring stories of single moms:
‘At 7 months pregnant, I found messages online to a dozen women, telling them he hated me, wished I was dead. He was my best friend, and had promised we could co-parent.’
‘My child’s father was leaving me. I was a new mother to a 3-month-old baby girl. The only items I had were a bag of clothes and a computer. She didn’t deserve any of this.’
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