Tera's Personal Essay on Teen Pregnancy
When it comes to teen pregnancy, there is no stereotype. Some teens can be persuaded into waiting. Others will have an opinion about sex and not change their minds for anyone. All teens have their own opinions about everything that they do and don't do. One teen might be the result of a teenage pregnancy and choose to wait. On the other hand, they might think that it is no big deal.
Being a teen mom myself opened my eyes to many things. I got pregnant, partially out of choice - I thought that a baby would bring me and my fiancé closer together. It was mostly an accident though. There was nothing that my parents or anyone else could have said to stop me from having sex. I was engaged to the man of my dreams and gave myself to him entirely.
Sometimes, the teen parents stay together, but unfortunately, as in my case, they often do not. The father of my child was just as excited and was looking forward to the birth of our son, just as much as I was. We had many plans for the future. We had already known each other for approximately four years, dated for around three years, and were engaged for a little over two years, before my baby was born. Everything was going great. Our love was only strengthened by my pregnancy. Once we found out that I was having a boy, the father was even more excited.
He now lives in Nebraska, with his girlfriend of three months. He has only seen his son two times, since he was born. He was also called three times. It is so difficult for me in some ways, but easier in others.
I had to go through the delivery without him. The baby had jaundice, and I had to go through that alone. I also had to experience my son nearly dying from a blockage that he had developed in his lungs and airway.
I am very proud of myself. I stayed in school until the day I had my son. I took one week off and then went back to school. Many parents are no as supportive as mine are. Mine let me stay with them. They never once made me think about abortion or even adoption. They even watch him, while I attend school and take part in school functions. A majority of girls are kicked out of their parent's home, unless they follow their parents' decisions.
I lucked out in some aspects but suffered in others. If I knew that I was going to have the same baby and end up in the same position that I am now, I would do it all over again.
I know that just telling most teens to wait, to have sex, won't change their minds. I don't want to tell anyone what they should and should not do. They would probably feel that I was bossing them around and sticking my nose where it does not belong. I just wanted to shed some light on the many experiences that, at least some teens, go through when they are put in a situation similar to my own.Tera
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I was 5 months pregnant with my first at the time I jotted this down. (Oh, how I had no idea the love I was about to learn!) Here are my thoughts as I contemplated giving life:
Feeling a Brand New Feeling
In my experience, there aren’t a whole lot of new feelings to feel after you’ve grown up. Sure, I believe each experience is it’s own, but routinely my life doesn’t have a whole lot of brand newness in it. I know how it feels to feel a lot of things. Which I have never given much thought to. Until now.
For example, I know what it feels like to hold a piece of buttered toast, I know chocolate milk in a cold glass, I know corn on the cob between my teeth. I know the ocean waves slamming against my body, I know sand between my toes, I know the hot sun on my face, I know taking a shower with a sunburn. I know what a cold slab of marble feels like against my skin, I know cool grass and sizzling cement on my feet, I know cold rain on my head, I know soap in my eyes, and lemon in my wounds. I know mud in my hair and lotion on my legs. I know unsweetened baking squares in my mouth. I know gusts of wind and feeling winded. I know what it feels like to knead bread and sink my fingers into clay, I know paint on my hands, I know dried plaster on my arms. I know gum in my hair and floss in my teeth. I know the itch of chicken pox and the fear of a nightmare. I know the hurt of a high heel and the sparkle of a diamond. I know pierced ears and glossed lips. I know New York cheesecake and mom’s rice pudding. I know the hug of a friend and the loss of a love. I know butterflies of a first kiss, the ache of a sad heart, the tug of a string. I know how it feels to feel elated with joy, to be surprised, to be disappointed, to laugh until I cry, to worry until I’m sick, to blush until I am red. I know forgetting my lines on stage and I know a standing ovation. I know the smell of my grandma’s perfume and my dad’s shoe polish. I know flying in an airplane and riding in a train car. I know views of the Swiss Alps and I know a baby sleeping on my shoulder.
I know how it feels to feel loved and to be in love.
I didn’t appreciate all of these small feelings I’ve felt until I felt this new feeling for the very first time.
I never want to forget how incredible it feels to feel a little kick from the inside; saying hello. reminding me of the miracle growing inside. Reminding me of the miracles that are all around me. Reminding me of the miracle of new life and the miracle of my life. And how blessed I am.
When he kicks from the inside, I smile every time at this brand new feeling. And realize all the feelings he will have to look forward to. All the feelings I will get to teach him about; like finger painting on butcher paper and rolling cookie dough into shapes and blowing bubbles in the shade and jumping into salty waves of the pacific and learning how to sound out words on the page. I imagine the newness of how it feels to swing on a swing-set and sit on dad’s knee and ride a horse and run a race and spit out watermelon seeds and see snowflakes fall and build blanket forts and hear the boom of fireworks. I want him to feel all of these feelings. Because I want to give him the same thrill that his little kicks give me.
I already love him. He will always know the feeling of love.
From Marta Dansie of Marta Writes.
Note from Design Mom: for the duration of my pregnancy, I’ll be posting advice, memories and stories about pregnancy, childbirth, adoption and growing a family on Wednesdays. You can find them all by clicking here. I’d love to hear your story or memory or advice, feel free to submit it to firstname.lastname@example.org.