Life as a mom is a never ending job. It’s one of the most troubling, yet satisfying jobs around. Being a young mom is where it gets even harder…
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 gentleman, 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
Three months into our relationship I was on a plane with my mother and stepfather to Colorado, for a last-minute college interview. I had 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 altogether. She was surprisingly receptive, I think because she wasn’t ready for me to leave home either. She told me to make my final decision 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 of that excitement was a great fear. A fear of telling my parents, fear of financial instability amounts many other things, my mind was spinning.
The Big Secret
I returned to school on Monday, smiling because of the little secret I was holding inside. I was also very nervous because I was enrolled at a private, Christian, high school. At the beginning of the school year, I was required to sign a document promising to practice abstinence. I confided in a teacher who I was close with, and I knew she wouldn’t report me to the office about my situation. She urgently warned me not to tell anyone about this and explained If the staff found out about my violation, 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 arrived, and it was brutal. I would run back and forth to the bathroom sick to my stomach, hoping no one would notice.
Where Things Got Hard
At that time, 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 we should tell my parents, maybe they could help. We called my mom and had her meet us at a park, near my house. I asked her to please listen and let me explain. She jokingly responded with “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.
In the midst of all the chaos , the big day had finally come… graduation. I made it. My biggest fear was getting sick during the ceremony and having to run off stage. Despite all the crazy drama that was going on in my life, my family was able to set it aside and celebrate my accomplishment.
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 struggled as our landlord continuously raised our rent. We had no other choice but to move to Oahu and stay with Christian’s family.
The transition of moving was a tough one. The house we moved into was small, so small we didn’t even have our own room. Instead, we hung bed sheets, in the living room, to block off an area for us. Christian and I worked hard to save our money for the baby. I was employed at Macy’s and worked up until two days before going into labor. Sadly this was not enough, Keolanui’s arrival snuck up on us, we were nowhere near being financially prepared for a baby.
January 18th 2018
The day had come, I was in labor! After the 9 month rollercoaster, the big day was finally here. I went into labor around 5 AM and was so exhausted, I didn’t realize what was happening! I drove all the way to my scheduled doctor’s appointment, at 10 AM, where they told me I was in labor. We stopped at home on the way to the hospital to grab my bags, I ate my last meal, a chicken
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.
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 tend to degrade young mothers, making remarks along the lines of “they’re just not good enough.” But that is where they are mistaken. A young mom had the ability to do just as good of a job compared to a middle-aged woman. I’ve learned it’s not about who can provide their child with the most luxurious baby gear, or their very own, custom nursery, it’s about all the love a mother is able to pour into their child. How a mother teaches their child and assists in molding their life to be the best that it can possibly be.