Life as a young mom is extremely difficult, it’s filled with many ups and downs. Watching your friends go off to college, having fun and having the ability to make careless decisions, while you’re stuck at home with a fussy baby who needs 24/7 entertainment, can take its toll on you.
The Start to my Story
I remember the day I sat my parents down to tell them about the amazing guy I had met. I was nervous as I anticipated their disapproval because of our age difference, I was 17 and he was 21. They reluctantly agreed to meet him, over dinner. He was a total gentlemen, paid for their meals, and brought my mother flowers. I was impressed, and so were they. Their approval meant so much to me and when it was received I was ecstatic. However, they warned me. They reminded me that in just a few months i’d be off to college in Colorado, and that I need to stay focused in school.
Three months had passed by and I was on a plane with my mother and step father to Colorado, for a last-minute college interview. I paid the down payment for my dorm, picked out classes, everything was set and ready for me to attend in the fall. Our last day in Colorado I was emotional, I explained to my mom the environment of the school was not what I wanted, that I was reconsidering going all together. She was surprisingly receptive, I think because she wasn’t ready for me to leave home either, she told me to think about it when we returned home.
When I returned back to my little island my boyfriend had picked up on my emotions and could tell something was off. It was on a Saturday that he encouraged me to take a pregnancy test. Sure enough it was positive. We were both excited, him more than me. I had always wanted to be a mom, but lying underneath all the excitement was a great fear. Fear of telling my parents, fear of financial instability among many other things.
The Big Secret
I returned to school on Monday, smiling because of the little secret I was holding inside. I confided in a teacher I was close with, telling her what was going on. She urgently warned me not to tell anyone about this. Because my school was a private, Christian school, I was required to sign a document promising to practice abstinence at the beginning of the year. If the staff found out about my violation of this contract I would not be able to walk the line at graduation.
The last month of school was difficult. During finals week my morning sickness had finally arrived, at the most inconvenient time of all. I would run back and forth to the bathroom sick to my stomach, hoping no one would find out.
Trouble in Paradise
My boyfriend and I were struggling to stay afloat. He recently got laid off from his job and was kicked out of the housing that was provided for him. I told him it was time to tell my parents. We called my mom down to meet us at a park nearby my house. I asked her to please listen and let me explain. She jokingly said “wait you’re not pregnant right” and laughed. I looked at her as tears started rolling down my face. I can still hear her gasp of shock to this day. After a moment to calm down she was surprisingly okay, disappointed but okay.
The big day had finally came, graduation, I had made it. My biggest fear was getting sick during the ceremony and having to run off stage. Luckily for me I checked that off of my list during the ceremony practice earlier that morning.
Two months after graduation my boyfriend and I were able to find a place of our own. It was a room we rented in a shared house with multiple tenants. We loved being on our own and having our own space. We stayed at this house for two months but we couldn’t stay afloat as our landlord continuously raised our rent. We had no other choice but to move to Oahu and stay with Christian’s family.
Since our big move it has been a struggle. We living in a living room with curtains surrounding us to block off our space. Christian and I worked hard to save up for the baby but Keolanui’s arrival snuck up on us and we were nowhere near financially prepared for all of the costs that a baby comes along with.
January 18th 2018
Finally the day had come, I was in labor! After the 9 month rollercoaster, the big day was finally here. I went into labor at around 7am and didn’t even realize what was happening! I drove all the way to my scheduled doctors appointment for them to tell me I was in labor. We rushed to the hospital, I had to overcome my fear of needles and getting an IV (ouch). My mom and brother got
a last minute, inter-island, plane ticket and met me there. After being in labor for 18 hours, the moment had finally come. January 19th at 1:21am my baby boy was born and placed onto my chest. At that very moment all the stress, drama, and troubles I had gone thru during my pregnancy was wiped away. The feeling of holding my son in my arms for the very first time was indescribable.
How Life Changes
Our situation is not ideal, but we make it work. We make the best of it for our son and try our best to provide for him. The reality of being a teen mom is that you may not be able to buy all the fancy baby toys, or the cute outfits you see in the store window. One must learn to put the baby before yourself. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been able to treat myself to a new outfit, instead I’m out buying diapers and wipes.
I know that being a mom has changed me for the better. I’m not promoting being a teen mom, but it’s not all bad. Being a teen mom has helped me mature, become more independent and given me a go getter attitude. I no longer focus on how many likes I get on Instagram, or what so-and-so put on their Snapchat story because my undivided attention is given towards my son and his needs. Many people put down young mothers, saying they can’t do as good of a job as the average middle-aged woman, but they are mistaken. We are just like everyone else, it’s not about who can provide their child with the most luxurious baby gear, it’s about who can pour out their heart to their children and give them their utmost support in helping to mold their life into the best it can be.