As I remember it was a warm and sunny day in May of 1997. I was wearing black pants, t-shirt and a over sized light jacket. Hot and tired, I proceeded with “Thank you for calling Pizza Hut this is Tisha would this be pick up or delivery?” My mom was in the back making sure things were flowing properly. In came a customer with a pick up order. I walked to the back to grab her bread sticks when my mother and I brush up against each other.
She just looks at me and never says a word.
Meanwhile later that night was a different story. I wasn’t around, but she says to my boyfriend, “Why didn’t you tell me Tisha was pregnant?” His response. “I don’t know.” I mean really? She totally tricked him and he fell right into it. Nobody told her I was pregnant until he responded with “I don’t know.” Earlier that day we brushed up against each other she felt that my stomach was really hard. So she put it together herself. But till this day I have no clue why she never said anything to me. I guess she probably thinks the same why I never told her I was pregnant. Nobody knew but him and me. I had been going to school, work, out with friends and yet nobody knew I was pregnant. I have always been pretty stylish in school so I assume the over sized clothes looked great on me. 8 months pregnant and the cat is out the bag. Now everyone knows.
People were more concerned with the fact that they didn’t see or notice I was pregnant. A little over 8 months pregnant and I’m seeing a OBGYN for the first time. Dr. says “wow you and baby are doing great.” I know you haven’t seen a doctor but whatever you have been doing keep it up.
I said eating grapes and drinking vanilla nutraments were my prenatal care.
She said well keep it up and I did with the addition of some prenatal vitamins. I had been carrying a tiny being in my belly for 8 months but it never really felt real until that day in the doctors office when I heard the heartbeat for the first time. I really don’t remember all that was going through my mind. I can imagine it went something like “buckle up you about to go for a ride.”
It definitely has been a ride. As far back as I can remember I don’t remember ever saying I cant wait to have kids. And here I was a kid having a kid in a month. We were thrown a baby shower that was so packed. Our baby was the first niece/grandchild. So everyone was so excited. We got everything you can name of to last until she was easily 3yrs old. Pampers through the roof. It was great having all that family support. I received lots of advice and books on pregnancy and parenting. While everything was great and appreciated. I still knew that I was a mom and this was my child and my motherly instincts needed to kick in.
July 7, 1997 they kicked in. My beautiful, healthy, 7Ibs 7oz, baby girl named Desa, which means a weapon of God, was born. I jumped in just began “mothering” it was almost like I have done it before. I just “knew” what to do. She was spoiled rotten and still is. I remember in order for her to go to sleep we would have to run water, hahaha. Picture me holding and rocking her in the bathroom with water running. A mess lol but it worked. Seventeen year old mom and I was doing what I had to do.
Before long, I’m 19 with my second child on the way. Christmas Eve of 1999 my son, Michael, was born.
Now I’m twice a teen mom and I’m looking at life differently.
I’m sure by now you have a few questions popping in your head for me. Like, why didn’t you tell your mom? What type of relationship do you have with your mom? Are you with the father still? I’m going to be honest with you. I have been stuck on the last sentence about 1999. My story goes so deep and this would be a book and not a blog. So I don’t even know what the purpose of me writing this particular blog post is. I felt called to share my story that I do know.
So lets sum this up.
Statistics show that children who are born to teenage moms are at risk of physical, social and behavioral problems. They are less likely to earn a high school diploma and high risk of becoming a teen mom themselves. I’m here to say to you those statistics were right when it came to myself. My mom was 16 when she had me. She didn’t finish high school and had her share of issues. I met my dad two years before he died. I was partially raised by my grandmother – and guess what I was pregnant at age 16 and gave birth at 17.
I dropped out of high school and always felt like I didn’t belong.
I had my share of struggles.
The one thing that was nonnegotiable was the mother I intended to be.
Nothing made sense to me other than being the best mom, whatever that meant. I learned as I went, and by 19 I had two children. I was married at 21 and also government property at 21 (enlisted in the army). Fast forward through the ups, the downs and repeated lessons. I’m a business mogul and mother of four kids. Ages 21, 19, 13 and 8. My firstborn is in her last year in college, a cheerleader, a beautiful soul, with no baby and never been in trouble. My oldest son is going into his sophomore year in college, plays football, has a passion for music, and no baby and has never been in trouble. My two youngest are just exploring and living their best lives.
Statistics mean nothing to me.
Just another form of a belief system. One that I intended not to believe in. We are the co-creators of our reality. And I knew the reality I wanted was to be the best mother. I now know that meant loving them, supporting them, guiding them, teaching them and learning from them. We grew together. Life wasn’t easy, but I’m here to show you that it all starts in your mind. My mom was 16 and pregnant. I was 16 and pregnant and I said the cycle stops with me.
I made a conscious choice to not allow a belief system to dictate motherhood.
Whether its your environment, family, friends or society none of that defines you. You define you. Who do you want to be? What do you want to do? Now be that and go do that. Live your live with intention and on your terms.