As I look back at the past 9 years, I am certain I have been incredibly blessed!
As I look around me, I see a lot of young girls pregnant and excited to be pregnant. Showing off their baby bumps, picking out things for their baby, doing all the exciting things that go along with having a baby. Seeing these young girls makes me reflect 9 years ago when it was me in their situation. Nine years ago, I was 16 and pregnant. And it wasn't glamorous and fun.
Ky and I had been dating for about a year and a half and were truly in love. I was a Junior and he was a Senior in High School and we were planning our lives together. We were both going to go to college and then we were going to get married when I was 20 and he was 22. Little did we know, our plans were about to be rocked!
We found out at the beginning of February that I was pregnant. We went on a date and stopped by a CVS on the way back to his mom's house to buy a pregnancy test. We both knew the answer without the test, but we were clinging to all hope. We got to his mom's house and I went in the bathroom and used the test. It was already positive before I was even done. I came out crying and we stayed up most of the night crying together. We were so scared!
Ky's mom lived in Canyon at the time and I somehow managed to talk my parents into letting me stay the night at her house. After Ky and I had cried together, and talked, and just held each other, we knew we had to tell his mom. The hardest thing to do as a child is to admit to something you knew you weren't supposed to be doing to your parents. Imagine telling them the most devastating news of their life and your life, that you were doing something you knew wasn't right and the consequence is going to take away everything you ever wanted as a child and make you become and adult. Make you become a Mom and Dad.
His mom cried with us and we decided we had to keep it a secret until the basketball season was over and keep things as normal as possible. A couple of days later, we were going to tell my parents the news together after a basketball game. I told them we needed to talk to them and they knew immediately something wasn't right, so they took me while Ky was still playing his game and I had to tell them the devastating news all by myself. To this day, that is still the hardest thing I have ever had to do... They were devastated and wanted to know if we were going to get married first. I told them that we wanted to and they said OK.
March came and so did state basketball. I played in the state basketball tournament 3 months pregnant. We won the state game, but lost the Texas Cup. All the Seniors were crying because it was their last game ever. All I could do was watch. I never cried even though I was dying inside knowing that it too was my last game of a game I loved so dearly. I was afraid if I cried they would know our secret.
Our secret came out eventually as did my growing belly. A belly I did not enjoy. I am not really sure how the secret got out, maybe it was my throwing up everyday before math class or before lunch, but it didn't take long for everyone to know.
May came and as Junior class president, I had to make a speech to the Senior class during baccalaureate at church on Sunday morning. There I was 16, 5 months pregnant, standing at the front of church addressing the entire congregation. That was probably the second hardest thing I have ever done in my life.
Graduation came and went and so did all the other fun, memorable things Seniors do. Walking the field last football game, receiving the State Championship trophy in Austin on center court, Senior prom, baccalaureate Sunday, hanging your Senior class picture up in the hall as the entire school watches, walking the stage to receive your high school diploma just to name a few. All things I was never able to do as a Senior.
From the day they found out, my parents made it very clear that if we wanted to get married and be adults, we were going to have to be adults and do everything by ourselves with as little as support as possible. We knew we would have help from both our parents anytime we needed it, but we were so determined to do it on our own. We both knew were grown up enough to be making grown up choices about sex, then we were grown up enough to have a family and make it work the best we knew how. Between doctor appointments, wedding planning, and school, before we knew it, it was June 1.
June 1, 2002 brought one of the happiest days of my life. I didn't care what I had on, what my hair looked like, who was in attendance or anything. The only thing that mattered to me was the man that was standing beside me. The man that had stood beside me through everything. My best friend, the love of my life and the soon to be father of my baby. I was 6 months pregnant when we were married. There was no time for a honeymoon, because 2 days later I had a 7am Economics class at AC. Ten days after that, I turned 17.
We made our home in a little blue trailer house in a trailer park in Canyon. Ky took a job at K-Mart in Amarillo to pay the bills. I took 4 summer classes at AC for dual credit so I could graduate from high school in August before the baby came.
Everyday as I would walk around campus, there was no denying I was pregnant. I was just hoping I looked older than I was and that everyone would see my wedding ring. I didn't want any cute maternity clothes to draw attention to my belly, so I lived in baggy sweats and t-shirts. We never got a baby shower, so we bought most of our baby things at a second hand store and some of it we were blessed with from a family friend.
August came and Ky took on a full-load at WT and I was finally finished with high school. Before we knew it is was Sunday, September 8, 2002 and we were timing contractions in our bedroom at 11 o'clock at night.
On September 9, 2002 our little surprise was welcomed into the world by family and a few friends. Ky proudly walked out of the delivery room with a little baby and proudly announced, "It's a boy!" Rylan was 7 pounds 14 ounces, had blue eyes, two bottom teeth, a sprinkle of brown hair, and had melted his parent's hearts.
There is not a single day that passes that I wish things had happened differently. I love that little boy more than life itself and would not think of my life without him. He has brought so much joy into our lives and has grown up into such a handsome and charming young man. I just know now looking back, that everything should have happened so differently.
Seeing so many young girls pregnant today makes me so sad. I am sad for knowing what they will have to give up. Sad to know they are no longer children.
A lot of good has come out of our story. We now both have graduated from College, moved to a bigger city, bought our first house, got our first real jobs with insurance, bought our second house, and have had 2 more beautiful boys.
Ky and I often struggle thinking about the values and morals we are instilling in our precious little boys. I often find myself praying that they will be able to make the right decisions when faced with life choices, and not follow our mistakes.
Looking around I know I am blessed. Blessed when things could have turned out so badly. I could easily have become a single mom by choice or from divorce. Blessed with a God that had a plan. Blessed with family that loves us. Blessed that Ky and I's love for each other is bigger today than it has ever been, and knowing that it will continue to grow everyday...