I feel like I have to start at the very beginning. When I was sittingon the bathroom floor of my work staring at that test that said “Pregnant”, so many things were going through my mind. As a single mother to my 11 month old son, Ezekiel, I couldn’t do this. I couldn't do this.
I called the Father and we mutually decided that, due to the circumstances and the fact that we didn't know each other, terminating and pretending it didn’t happen was the best option. The days that followed were the darkest of my life, as a THEN an avid pro-lifer, the weight of the decision was suffocating. All I wanted to do was sob, remembering it even now, over 2 years later, I weep. My sister accompanied me to “The Appointment”, I was a wreck. I couldn’t do it. No way. After the ultrasound, I left sobbing. I called Baby's Father, Greg, we were both terrified.
My sister said, “Let’s just let baby grow, and we can decide what to do later. It’s all going to be okay.” So I did just that…
In the months that followed, I carried on as usual, giving love, time attention to my son.
I moved into a home for single mothers home and oh, right, left the toxic crumbling relationship I had been in for four years. I will never forget waking up there for the first time and feeling hope. Hope for a new day. That wasn't supposed to be my life. I would have stayed in that relationship forever, I thought that was my lot in life, I thought it is what I deserved until I realized that if my son grew up treating people the way I was being treated or made anyone feel as defeated every night as they tried to sleep as I did, I would have failed him. The home was the perfect place to completely fall apart and build myself back up.
I stayed in touch with Greg and we (He more reluctantly than me) agreed that we would look into adoption. I was working with an agent from the home I was living in and even making arrangements to move into the "healing after adoption" home that they also offered. But a relationship was growing, I mean, he wasn't the worst person, I enjoyed his company, that was a plus. As I watched my son play and grow, I was really asking myself if I was strong enough to carry the "what ifs" Could I parent two children? The baby’s sex remained a secret, I didn’t want that to become a factor in any decision.
During the 7th month, Greg and I had a meeting weighing out the pros and cons of both options. It was an emotional, cleansing, fact figuring few hours.
A decision was made. We would parent and love this baby. The most cost effective way was determined to be moving into Greg's house to eliminate the hour commute for him to see the baby and the need for me to immediately return to work.
So, in we moved.
12 days before baby was due, I was having contractions all day but was very much in denial as my first was 12 days late. I did everything in the book to try and subside these "fake" contractions, chug water, lay on my side, etc. to no avail! I couldn’t settle, so Ezekiel and I went to the store, I ended up throwing things into the cart in between mild contractions, I think I even bought Oreos, I don’t even eat Oreos. Greg came home from work and timed my contractions, they were 5 minutes apart but still not uncomfortable. He urged me to call my Midwife. We arrived at the office, I was a 4! Remembering that I gave birth to Ezekiel 3 hours after I was 4, we decided to head straight to the Birthing Center.
It really blows my mind how Greg not being at the birth was never an option for him. Even early on when adoption was the only thing on my mind, he wanted to be there, he didn't leave my side, his support was insurmountable.
We arrived at 6:30pm and I got to labor outside in the sunshine until I could get into the tub. When I got in the water, things progressed quickly. I had the best Doulas in charge of my care, I knew I could do this. We were in the tub for about 2 hours when my water broke. I instantly needed to push. 5 minutes later, my baby was emerging into my arms. “What are you?!” I said excitedly. A boy! A son, I had two sons. "WE HAVE A BOY." The feeling of love was overwhelming, the journey I had been on lead to this moment. Everything I had been through was worth it when I saw his face. I sobbed for several minutes.
Labor was a total of 4 hours.
Escher Sinatra Johnson was born in the water July 19, 2013 at 9:48PM. He was 8 pounds 3 ounces and 21 inches long. He is perfect.
As I sit here holding my kids, reflecting on the Odyssey of the those months, I realize that this is so much more than the birth of a child, It’s the birth of a family.