Posted by: jenn11970 | August 6, 2007

Part Two

So, I call my mother and tell her I am in the hospital and tell her I am in labor. She begins to sob. I am now a mess. The nurse takes the phone and tells my mother to come immediately and to calm down and be careful. Nice.

I know you feel like the world just opened up and swallowed all that you knew was reality, but you need to snap out of it, get here, bring your insurance cards, and oh yeah, drive carefully.

My mother arrived and I hugged her with all of my might. I must have said “I’m sorry” about 100 times in the first 20 minutes she was there. She told me she had called my father and that he was on his way too. I began to shake, and she assured me everything would be okay. The contractions were coming at very close intervals and they moved me into the birthing room. When asked if I had taken Lamaze, I just remember my Mom saying, she had given birth to 5 children, and she would be my coach. They didn’t need to worry. I was too far along to get an epidural, so this was going to be au natural. My mother has the most soothing voice, and if I was ever to be able to have another child, I would want her there again. She held my hand, smoothed back my hair, and rubbed my arm. She talked to me in a quiet, alto voice…. “Just listen to me. I will tell you when and how to breathe. Focus on my voice, Jenny. You are doing great.” She was amazing.

The final push will stay with me forever. Seeing my daughter for the first time was mind-blowing. Remember…. I was Cleopatra, the Queen of DeNial. I think for the first 15 minutes after she was born, I was in pure fear, shock, and utter disbelief. I let my mother hold her first. She was the most beautiful baby. Tiny little peanut. So pink! They were wheeling me back to my room when I saw my father standing by the door, crying. I felt so horrible. I had been so deceitful. How could I have kept something this big from them for so long?

The hospital put me on a general ward in case I decided I was going to place, and I didn’t want my friends to know anything. My siblings were also not told about the birth. They were told, like everyone else, that I was in to have an ovarian cyst the size of a grapefruit, drained. It made it easier to have people visit. I was told I could go up to the nursery as often I wanted to and that I could stay as long I wanted. I was up there everyday for the 3 days I was in the hospital. I enjoyed all my time with her, and shared a lot of it with my mother. I got to feed her, change her, rock her to sleep, and just hold her. It was very special. I memorized every curve of her face, and knew every inch of her. I would caress her feet, and let her hold my fingers as she ate. That was MY time. The 12 pictures I took of her during that time would be my saving grace for the next 20 years.

Many of the things having to do with the attorney, I do not remember. I don’t know if it is because it is too painful, or if some of it was the meds I was on. I do know my daughter was born on a Wednesday afternoon, at around 3:15. I got my first phone call from a lawyer at around 6:00 pm that night. I had my first visit from him on Thursday afternoon. He worked quickly and efficiently. I remember my father came up to sign the paperwork with me, because my mom just couldn’t do it. My father had to look at his oldest baby, and let her make an adult decision. We have since spoken about that time and he told me he was devastated to lose his first grandchild, but knew he had to let me make the decision on my own. He would support whatever I decided, but never pushed me in one direction or another. My parents offered to adopt her, but I didn’t think I would be able to watch them raise, love, reprimand, and be my daughter’s parents. Besides, I knew, even as a teenager, that my parents could not handle adding another child to their already chaotic lives. Little did I know that just a few years later, their marriage would enter a downward spiral and never recover. Today, both of them are able to see that my choice, in the end, was the right choice for them. Whether or not it was the right choice for me, I am not too sure.

I never named the father of my daughter. Selfish, wrong, deceitful, and horrid… I know. He did visit me in the hospital because there were a ton of rumors already going around the school about why I was in the hospital. He basically came up there to see if any of them were true. He showed up and started telling me what people were saying.

~ I was in the hospital to have a baby

~ I was in the hospital to have an abortion

~ I had just given birth to twins

~ I was pregnant and had had a miscarriage

I then sealed both of our fates by telling him that none of those stories were accurate. I told him I had to have an ovarian cyst taken care of. He sighed and said Thank God. He was afraid he had just become a Dad. He just wanted to hear it from me that everything was okay. I know it was wrong. I know it was highly illegal, and I have to live with that decision every day. I also know he was only 16 1/2 at the time and had the emotional capabilities of a 12 year old. I was angry at him for a long time. I lost my childhood that day. I lost my self-respect, and the trust of my parents. My integrity was shot, and I really had no one to blame but myself. It took me a long time (and a lot of therapy) to forgive those 2 kids. I still think it was the right thing to do, because as much as I couldn’t bear my parents raising her, I would NEVER have let his family raise her. I would have kept her and raised her myself. They weren’t a bad family or anything like that, but it was just something I wouldn’t have been able to stomach.

My siblings were all told about my daughter when it was age appropriate. My siblings have been amazing, and have come to understand all the complicated feelings associated with my daughter over the years. Sometimes I wonder if they really understand, and then I remind myself that I did not include them in the process from the beginning. Remarkably it is the younger brothers, who were only 3 and 6 when she was born, who have it handled it the best. They continue to ask questions and offer support constantly. I would rather have them ask questions than assume.

Next…. 20 years later and house made of cards.

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Responses

  1. Well, reading part two — which is heartfelt and sad — I must go and read part one now.

    I’m an adoptive mom to a wonderful 5-year-old boy from Vietnam. I know some of the people on your blogroll and just came to this post from a tag search.

    Beautifully written.

    ~ Judy

  2. Thank you for sharing your story. I know it can’t be easy. It intrigues me as to what happens next. Sounds like you have amazing parents.

    Em

  3. Thanks. I feel I have been blessed even though I had it a little rough, albeit by my own doing.

    Jenn

  4. still reading.

  5. You have me hooked, Jenn.

    I am so sorry for what you went through.


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