I saw you in the mall today and I was instantly drawn to you. You could not have been much older than 18, but your round, ripe, glistening belly belayed that you were wise beyond your years. You wore a cute jean skirt with elastic waist, pulled under your swollen abdomen, and a too-tiny tank top and hoodie sweater over top. You walked with a young man who seemed out of place and worried.
Sitting at the kids play-area, I was tickled that you came to the edge, not too far from me, so I could listen to your conversation. This is what I heard:
"I know you're worried - so am I. I didn't plan to be a mommy this early, but the fact remains - I AM a mommy. No, I am NOW... he might not be breathing air, but he is my child.... and he's yours. If you can't handle this, that's fine. I can do it without you. No, I don't NEED you, but I want you here. You 'being here' means more than just showing up to do lunch with me once a month after my doctor's visit. It means being there for the visits, eating healthier with me, no more drinking, no smoking around me, and I would like you to quit anyways... "
He butted in at this point and started making excuses for his lifestyle and how no one was going to tell him what to do.... You stepped up...
"I am not telling you what you NEED to do, I am telling you what you need to do IF you want to be there for me.... I want you to come to my childbirth classes. I know, it's 8 weeks... " (definitely not hospital classes) "... but it is important. I want you there for the birth, but not if you are going to pressure me. I am going to get that enough with my mom and the nurses. I just need to be able to BRING OUR BABY HERE SAFE. (emphasis mine). And I want you to be here for me, but I don't need it. I am strong enough on my own. Look at these kids... we are having a BABY.. one of these!!!"
You finished your speech (which, by now, I was openly wiping tears from my eyes) with a radiant and glowing smile. I didn't even know you but wanted to reach out, pull you into a hug, and tell you how proud I was of you! Your love, strength, dependence, fortitude, and conviction were such that are lacking in so many women who are your elders. If only the average woman could take a few moments to sit at your feet and breath in the wisdom of such young beauty and wisdom. We could all benefit.
What was your story? I wish I knew. Where are you now? I know, I just know, you are doing fine!