Early in the morning, I arose to the dreaded call of the pee stick. My period was late (I thought) though nowadays I’m always numb. It’s hard to care for myself, tracking shark week, eating right, moving my body, and even showering.
In the fog of the depression, I sat waiting for the result of a tiny stick reading the HCG in my urine.
I quietly sat in the dark of the bathroom in my parent’s house, and after two grueling minutes, I took a deep breath and picked up the stick.
I rubbed my eyes. Perhaps they were adjusting to the dark?
A pink plus sign stared back at me. Clear as day. The fog lifted.
My mind went completely blank.
For years I had selfishly wanted a child to love and nurture. To feel a motivation to get up in the morning. Someone to love me unconditionally. Shortly after concluding it was a selfish act, and knowing I didn’t have the means, the man, or the experience to have a child yet, I found myself here.
Clarity followed shortly after finding out my big news. I knew deep in my heart I had to keep this child. So my next step was telling his father. I had had a shift in affection towards his father instantly after finding out I was pregnant. Call me crazy, but I knew his father would not put much effort into helping me raise this baby.
When I finally gathered the courage, I called up his father.
Most of the conversation went better than I had expected. I remember feeling the need to give his father two choices. He was to either be in this child’s life or not. I felt prepared to do this all on my own. Shortly after telling him this, we hung up the phone, leaving me alone in my room.
I had gone from no longer wanting to live to find out it was no longer just my life I needed to care for in a matter of minutes. Two excruciatingly long minutes, to be exact. I knew this was going to be the most demanding and most rewarding thing in my life. I had just found a new determination to keep on living.
I grew up caring for many people in my life and learning how to navigate a new diagnosis of major depression as a high schooler. Everything felt numb and far away, out of reach. I felt as though I had no motivation to live. I was just an inconvenience to everyone around me, and I
didn’t belong anywhere. All up until the point where I saw a simple plus sign, A signal telling me ever so quietly, I was no longer alone. I had my plus one.
Maybe one day, I will be able to parent alongside another, but until then, I choose to be present each day. Each moment because I am an unexpected warrior. For now, I get twice the love, twice the smiles, and twice the laughs.
I haven’t been alone all this time. He has been right beside me the entire time. He has patiently been waiting for me to look into his eyes and tell him I love him so my life would change forever.
It is an understatement to say my son saved my life. He didn’t just save my life. He gave me a new one. Another shot, a glimpse into a better story than the one I was currently living.
I recently read (I don’t remember where) about this beautiful image of life being like a tapestry, and I would love to share with you the encouragement that helps me get through each day, even when I make mistakes.
Instead of having memories last a moment, or hang on by a thread, I focus on making them become an interwoven tapestry coloring the pattern of who you are becoming. It may look knotted and messy with many mistakes at first, but when you turn around the fabric created one stitch at a time, you look at a string of thread woven together, strong and beautifully crafted to clothe the next generations to come.
Here I am six years later typing this, sitting on my grey couch covered in dog hair, in my own house, with my own car, in the garage. Some days are more challenging than others. While being a boy mom, I relish when I can sit down and take one single deep breath before my son comes in yelling or cartwheeling towards me.
Who knew kids could be so demanding without even asking for anything? The simple act of him waking up exhausts me some days. Even the idea of any other life doesn’t even seem possible. I have come so far and learned so much by simply being a parent.
I’ve learned so many beautiful things. The best place to hide is in the closet or bathroom when sneaking treats I don’t want to share. Now I can imagine a better world, how to fight for what is needed or just, and most importantly, I have learned how to love someone so deeply and so primally I can confidently say I have learned a deeper-dare I say a better way to love.
Friends, I know being a parent is difficult. The thoughts of being a good enough parent, the idea of wanting to give up even. I am here to tell you that you are not alone! As a single parent, I know how exhausting, difficult, scary, and just plain stressful it is to raise our hearts outside of our chests.
So I’m going to tell you. Do not forget the beginning where this journey all began. The moment you met your children, the moment you knew your life would change forever, the minute you
gazed into their glistening eyes and soul of your little bundle. Remember this you are NEVER alone and are hand-picked to raise your child. You have become an unexpected warrior.
**To read more from Juliana Lamont check out her blog https://momologyfeedpraylove.wordpress.com