I had my son at 19 and at first I thought I had messed up my whole life. My mother told me I had too, so that added to it.
At the time, I struggled to grasp the gravity of the situation. All I had was a $5 onesie and tears in my eyes. How could I have let this happen? What was I going to do with a baby? I had FOUR months to figure that part out because I was already FIVE months when I found out. I didn’t have a plan.
I continued to go to class every day and often got ridiculed by people on my campus. Yet, I persevered. I worked every single day up until I gave birth trying to save and prepare for this “blessing”. (At this point, I couldn’t quite say the word blessing out loud, let alone think of it as one.)
Truthfully, it took me over five years after my son's birth to no longer be embarrassed about being a single mother. Sadly, I had prescribed to what society told me my life should be like. (Married, owning a home, and having "planned" babies.) However, that wasn't my story and having a baby at 19 didn't make my life any less successful. Besides, if I didn't tell my story, who was?
My son will be 19 this year and when I think about it, I can't believe he will be the same age as I was when I had him. I tell him NOT to do what I did, but then he always replies with, "Mom, you are the most successful person in my life. Why wouldn't I want to be like you?" In his eyes, he doesn't see the once single mother who is successful, but rather a successful woman who happens to be his mother.
His perception of me is HIS reality. We have to remember, the realities we have are based on the stories we tell ourselves. I am changing my story.