I find myself thinking back to the mindset I was in when I learned I was pregnant 10 years ago. I was a couple of years into my career, finally living the kind of freedom that I didn't have growing up being the oldest of 7 and then working full time and going to school full time (at the same time) and a baby was not on the agenda, but we were irresponsible by not using contraception, and I eventually ended up giving birth to a son. (I know the option of abortion was available, but I always said to myself that once I decided to become sexually active, I would take responsibility for whatever happens, and at that point, I just couldn't see myself getting an abortion. That was 10 years ago - who knows what I would do if the same thing happened to the older me).
When I told the 'father' about the pregnancy, all of that "we'll always be friends" thing went out the window. It was like I flipped a switch and this maniacal person appeared. Funny thing is, all I asked was "do you want to be involved in the child's life?" There was no "I-think-we-should-get-back-together-and-be-a-real-family" plea from me because we weren't in love (at one point I was in love and he never was, so there you go), and I couldn't even fathom being in a loveless marriage IF that was something that he would even agree to. But that never would have happened since it was then that I learned he already knew he was having a baby - with someone else (different story for a different day). And so it was then that will mark the beginning of the past 10 years where I still get the words "selfish," "bitch", or even "low-class" thrown at me -- but nothing will ever erase the words "I told you to get up on the table and have it yanked out of you" (an actual quote).
Going through a pregnancy alone is not something that I would wish on anyone, and I have a strong suspicion that I'm still not completely over it because I wasn't supposed to let something like that happen to me (naivete at its finest). BUT, today my son is a little straight-A brainiac like I was at that age, loves dinosaurs, is funny, and an all around great kid - if I were a kid, I would hang with him, so now I just pretend to be a kid so I can hang with him, lol! It was difficult - but despite all of this, I don't regret the outcome. I'm a good Mom - not perfect - and I love my son (and on a completely selfish note, he loves me!).
I put all of my energy into my son and not into myself - I've been told that's not a necessarily good thing, but I am still trying to figure out if I have learned anything all of these years that will help me to be a better person.
Everyday I ask 'why can't I just get everything to click into place?' And I never have an answer - at least not yet. All I do know is that I don't want to be asking myself the same questions 10 years from now, so I'm going to roll the dice again and continue to make a go at it until I get some answers.
There are so many other people out there in pain or just feeling a void that they want to fill, but I figure that - for all of us - the tide must change and progress must be had - it must, I insist. I don't know if that's courage or strength or arrogance, but it is hope.