Building a Family – An Unexpected Surprise
This is a continuation of yesterday’s post in a series of how my family came together. I’ll give you a moment to catch up, if you so need. – – How I Met Your Mother
It was a day like any other day with me slaving away behind a greasy grill at McDonald’s trying to get some lady her extra sized, triple layered, with all the fixins burger, and a diet coke with a side of large fries. Ashlee was at home because she had been vomiting for the past week. It’s a scene that every boyfriend enjoys. That moment when you are rubbing your lady’s back while she is bent over the toilet. It’s priceless. I was halfway through my shift when a manager brought me the phone. I hear a crying voice on the other line.
“Joseph, I’m pregnant.”
Now there are two types of people in this world. There are those who view the glass as half empty, and then there are those who turn on the faucet to let it overflow all over the place.
I danced. I may have even performed an Irish jig right there in the back of the store for everyone to see. Mind you, I did it quietly because by this time into our relationship, I already knew Ashlee could turn homicidal quickly. So I celebrated in stealth mode.
“I’m sorry (I lied). I’ll be home soon.”
I clocked out, allowed the excitement to overcome me, and returned home. As I said yesterday, I have been ready to start a family for quite a while by now.
I found Ashlee laying in bed with five pregnancy tests. She was holding the fifth one very tightly. It was the only one out of the bunch that read negative. I had to talk her out of ransacking the pharmacy for another dozen. Four tests did not lie. It was time to accept her (for me) destiny / (for her) fate.
This next part may catch you off guard, but it is the way life works. It’s true. It’s raw. It happens. There is a reason we were so shocked by a positive pregnancy test. Ashlee was the victim of a date rape drug. In her younger years, she lived it up the way most youth do. She partied. She rebelled. She was taken advantage of. The night of the drugging, she was found laying beside a tree clearly lethargic with no memory of any events after the effects of the drug set in.
I was aware of this.
I laid down beside the lady who had stolen my heart, and spoke these words as sure and as matter-of-fact as possible trying to relay every sense of reassurance and responsibility as I could.
“We are keeping the baby.”
And I held her until the moment acceptance took hold.
The remaining few months went by quickly, and her water broke. We rushed to the hospital via taxi (we were young, and broke y’all.) The whole time I was thinking to myself, “Please let him be Asian. They are all geniuses, and can take care of us in our old age.”
Isaiah was born the New Years baby in 2006 completely covered head to toe in hair and purple skin. He wasn’t Asian, but from the first moment I laid eyes on him, we was mine. He’s 11 now. All the emotions of a preteen rage within. However, all these 11 years, I have never thought of him as anything less than my first born. He’s my oldest. He’s the first. Sometimes, family is more than just sharing blood. It’s sharing a part of your soul.
The saga continues… See you tomorrow! I’m going to hunt down some coffee.