The pregnancy test came out positive. I could not believe it. I wasn’t even going to take it. I only took it because she was too scared to take it by herself. I told her not to worry, that I would take it too, so she wouldn’t be uneasy. I mean, she was my best friend, I had to help her out. I knew there was no way mine would come out positive. Rey and I were always so careful. When the lady gave me a cup to pee in, I was so secure. She told me how to take the test and I laughed. “Yeah, I know. Pass the cup through the little window in the bathroom, okay, great, thanks.” I didn’t even have to pee. Somehow I managed and I put my little cup in the window. I went and sat down in the waiting room, praying that Laura’s test would come out negative. I didn’t even give a thought to my own test.
The lady came back and called Laura first. I watched her lips mouth the word “negative.” I was so happy, and I knew Laura was too. Then she called my name. I walked up to her with no doubt in my mind that I, too, would hear the word “negative.” “Positive,” she said. “Excuse me?” I asked. She looked at me with such a look of compassion and said she was sorry but I was positive. I don’t think I actually realized what she was telling me, so I said OK, and I started to walk away. She asked if I was all right. I said “yes” and walked out. I heard the door slam shut but I didn’t care. All I heard was her voice over and over again in my head saying “positive.” Meanwhile, Laura was happy because she knew she didn’t have to worry anymore. What she didn’t realize was that my worrying had just begun.
On our way to the car. I turned to Laura and said quite simply, “I’m pregnant.” She stopped suddenly and turned to me. I don’t know if she believed me or not because she looked like she didn’t quite know how to react. Finally, after a few moments of silence, she turned and hugged me. “What are you going to do?”, she asked. “Keep it!” was my strong reply. I think I almost scared myself with the emotion that went into that statement. She looked at me almost apologetically. We got into the car and started to drive.
I couldn’t quite handle all the thoughts that were going through my head on that long drive home. I had a mixture of emotions. First of all, what would the father say? Would he want to be with me? We hadn’t been together all that long (in fact we had just had our first fight and I wasn’t even sure we were together anymore.) Would he expect me to abort? No, no, I couldn’t do that. Would he reject his child? Would he want the child? What would my parents say? Would they support me and my decision? What would my friends say? Would I still have friends? What would I do? I was graduating high school this year. I’d been accepted into university. I had a future. This was not supposed to happen to someone like me. What would my boss say? What would my co-workers say? What would my grandparents say? Would everyone be disappointed in me? Would everyone hate me? Would they treat me differently? I was only 17, what was I supposed to do? I couldn’t raise a kid. I didn’t even have my own life in order. I couldn’t be responsible for someone else’s. (I had a hard enough life as it was. I was a 17 year old who had no parental guidance, no support from anyone. I lived with a friend of mine, what would she say?)
“Are you okay? We’re at your house,” Laura said, interrupting my thoughts. “Are you getting out? Do you need some company?” I felt like screaming “NO OF COURSE I’M NOT OKAY. I’M 17 AND PREGNANT!” But instead I simply said, “Yes, I’m ok. I’ll be fine.” I went inside my room and cried. I knew what I had to do.
I decided that I had to go tell Rey. We had only been together for a few months and our fight was already 2 days ago – we hadn’t spoken again so as far as I knew we were over. I knew he wouldn’t like the fact that I was pregnant. I just wasn’t sure how much he wouldn’t like it. We had gotten into it, just last week in fact, about what would happen if I got pregnant. I had told him that I wanted to start taking birth control pills, but I needed him to help me pay for them. He told me we would look into it, but we didn’t have the money right then. He told me not to worry, I wouldn’t get pregnant.
Yeah all right. 😒
Before leaving for his house, I sat down at my computer and began to plan how I would tell him. I figured I should just come right out and say what I needed to say, but something inside of me knew that would be hard. I remembered how difficult it was just to ask him about birth control, just for the type of person he was. He was a very difficult person to deal with and had an image he liked to uphold of being a thug. He was one of those guys you would see in a movie like Scarface or something. He was intimidating to people… I was one of the few who was relatively unphased by it. He was also much older than me, at 21. I decided I had to see through all this intimidation in order to express myself. After two long hours, I came up with a note that was remotely acceptable.
“Dear Rey, I am writing you this letter because I don’t know how else to tell you this. I am pregnant. Before you scream and lecture, please listen to what I have to say. Now I have not decided what I am going to do yet, but I was hoping you would help me figure it out. I know what you are thinking right now. Man how could this girl do this to me? I am sorry – I didn’t do it on purpose and therefore it is half your fault. I told you I wanted to start birth control, and you said I didn’t need it, well obviously, you were wrong. Thing I didn’t know was that it was already too late. I realize that this is a time in our lives where we are not supposed to be having kids. I do have a future and having a baby would destroy that. I’ve always said I would never have an abortion and I think I mean it, but now that I am in the situation, I am not so sure. I want you to help me, but if you are going to have a one set mind and not help me look at all the options, then I don’t need your help. I don’t want us to get back together either. I don’t know exactly why we broke up, but obviously, it was for a reason or it wouldn’t have happened. Maybe if we were still together it would have been easier for us to make a decision, but we are not. I don’t want to get back together just because this happened. I’m sorry this had to happen, especially now, but right now I am scared and I need you to know that. Love, me.”
I knew this letter wasn’t perfect, but it was a start. It was also far better than what would have come out of my mouth, had I dared to speak this out.
Travis was Rey’s roommate and my best friend. He was actually how I had met Rey to begin with. Travis was funny, I’ve always thought of him as a chihuahua. He literally looked like the Taco Bell dog. He also had the bark of a chihuahua. He was so little he probably couldn’t do much, but boy could that man talk. Made sense he had a friend like Rey to back him up. I told him I was coming over. I asked if Rey was there and Travis said no, he would be back shortly. I said I would be right over.
As I walked to their studio apartment, in a little run-down building in Little Havana, I became even more aware of the anxiety building itself up inside of me. I really didn’t want to do this. Why did it have to be me? I arrived at the door and I paused. I hoped Rey wasn’t there yet. I still needed time to turn around. Maybe I didn’t have to tell him. I could just wait until after the baby was born. I knew that talking to him brought in the possibility of abortion and I didn’t think I could face that.
I knocked. Travis opened the door: “He’s not here yet.” “Thank God,” I thought. I sat down with Travis and I showed him the letter. “What do you think?” I asked. He wished me luck and told me it was probably hopeless to even try to talk to Rey. “He’ll just tell you to have an abortion maybe he’ll even pay for it.” Well he wasn’t telling me anything I hadn’t already thought of; so, I figured I would wait and see what happened. I think I waited forever. I had new thoughts going through my head now. I realized that I actually did love Rey and somewhere in the back of my mind, I realized that I did want to be with him. I knew, however, that I couldn’t tell him that. I said a prayer and asked God to help him and me be open to possibilities. Finally, I heard a key in the lock.
Too late to turn back now. Rey walked in and said hello to me. I knew he was surprised to see me. He started to talk to Travis. I can’t remember what they talked about but somehow I got involved in the conversation. At one point, Rey’s back was to Travis and I could see Travis mouth the words “Tell him now.” I knew he was right. Although I knew this pleasant conversation would end as soon as I brought up my news, I knew I had come here for a reason. “Rey, can we talk outside for a minute?,” I asked. He looked at me with a puzzled look but said okay. We went out to the balcony and I opened my mouth to try to tell him. When all that came out was stuttering, I handed him the note. He told me he would go inside and read the note. I said okay and we went inside. He lay down on his bed and started to read. I stood and watched as he read. When I saw that he had finished reading, I waited for him to explode. That didn’t happen. What happened was that he started to read the note again. I got scared and I went back outside. I sat down on the wire fire exit staircase (a.k.a. balcony) and started crying. I still didn’t know his reaction. After what felt like an hour, Travis came outside and told me he was leaving. He said that Rey wanted to talk to me inside. I asked Travis what his reaction had been and he told me that actually, Rey was not having the reaction Travis had thought he would have.
I went inside and Rey was sitting down on a chair by the door, the phone in his hand. He motioned for me to sit in his lap. He talked for a few minutes more to the person on the phone, in Spanish, then hung up. He hugged me and we sat in silence. I cried, still not knowing what to think. He held me there in silence for what felt like forever, then whispered, “I want to have this baby with you.” I wasn’t sure if he was telling the truth or not, but then he went on. “I want you to be the mother of my baby. I know you’ll be a good mother.” I was so in shock that I stood up and went to the kitchen. I started to wash dishes. I didn’t know what else to do and I felt like I was going to explode. I had to do something. I felt him come up behind me and he started kissing my neck and touching my stomach. I could feel tears of happiness running down my cheeks. He took a step back and said, “Don’t tell me that’s the ass I have to look at for the rest of my life.” I turned around to face him and asked, “Are you complaining?” He laughed and said “Nope. Not at all!”
I knew at that moment that everything was going to be all right.
#abortionstory #1999 #BrokenBeauty #2009 #Fearless #2019 #redemptionstory