Updated: Sep 23, 2019
To say that I don't know where I'd be without that woman is an understatement. I was raised by a woman that knew she would move Heaven and Earth to make sure her kids were taken care of without even giving it a second thought. I got that from her. No matter how hard things got, even if she felt like she was going to crumble, she never gave up. I got that from her too. For as long as I can remember, the odds have always been stacked against her, but she still found a way around it. And I never knew how much I needed her until I became a mom.
The day she picked me up from school and took me to the ER, I'm pretty sure neither of us expected what came next. We sat for what seemed like forever for me to be taken to get an x-ray. But then the doctor came in and his words exactly were, "I found out why they haven't come and got you for an x-ray. You're pregnant." You could hear a pin drop. She looked at me and I thought it was a look of rage. She turned around, pulled her cigarettes and lighter out of her purse, and left the emergency room and when she came back, her expression was much softer than I would have ever imagined in this scenario playing out in my head and she calmly said, "I'm going to be a granny." Honestly I thought she was going to send my ass to ICU after hearing that kind of news. Seriously. I thought she was going to RKO the shit out of me. That's what I always thought would happen. I was 17 years old, a senior in high school, and in a toxic relationship, so I knew that this was the last thing she wanted for me, but being the person she is, she knew that she was going to help me without thinking twice about it (she still had me shook though).
We formed the relationship I always wanted during my pregnancy. She was there at every doctor's appointment. She sat up with me every night that I had heartburn. If I was in a panic because of every little ache and pain, she was there to take me straight to the hospital to give me peace of mind. She even gave my sperm donor a roof over his head and food to put in his mouth just for me. Hell, I was even curled up in her bed the majority of the time. I turned into a big baby. After so many years of thinking that I'd never be close to my mom, I was proven wrong.
On May 12th, 2014 at 1 o'clock that evening, they admitted me for an induction and as I sat in that hospital bed, waiting to meet my first born child, she sat in a chair next to me and didn't move until they moved me to the delivery room at 3 that morning. Again, she didn't leave my side. I remember waking up in a haze and looking to my left. When I saw her still sitting there with only us in the room, I thought to myself, "this woman is really all that I have in this world that's always truly cared about me. She's always loved me unconditionally and probably always will."
For the last 5 years, I think we both saw what it meant to grow up with your kids. She taught me how to raise Draven and I taught her how to communicate. Along with my brother and sister, we braved so many battles and storms together. We're finally at that point in life where we can look back at how rough things were and smile because it made the 4 of us stronger.
We had such a power struggle when I was in my teens and I thought that would last forever. I'm glad that I was wrong. You'll probably still catch me calling my mom 5 or 6 times a day just to talk about nothing just because I enjoy the sound of her voice. I'm glad I figured out how much I needed her when I did. All that I am and all that I will ever be is because of her and the sacrifices she made, the tears she shed, and the laughs we shared.