If you read part one of my blog series Safe Haven for Haven | A Birth Mom’s Adoption Story, I’m sure you’re waiting and wondering what happened next. If you haven’t read it, go back and read it here to get some context. At the end of Part 1: The Beginning, I was shocked and distraught at the positive pregnancy test I held in my hand. The story continues with a very painful series of events. If you are easily triggered by domestic violence then, Part 2: The Decision, is not for you.
*TRIGGER WARNING* This post contains detailed descriptions of domestic violence and assault. Please proceed with caution. *If you or anyone you know is experiencing domestic violence, call 911 and the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE(7233) or TTY 1-800-787-3244*
I walked into the bathroom and sat there. A thousand thoughts were running through my mind. Three minutes later, sure enough, that little pink plus sign showed up and my heart sank into my feet. I was pregnant.
It was late morning and I was beside myself with grief, anxiety, and fear. How was I going to be able to give this child the life it deserves? I walked back into the living room, set the test on the counter, and buried my face in my hands. I sat down on the couch and pulled out my phone and sent Matt a text.
“Can you come home for lunch today. We need to talk.”
I couldn’t bear to utter the words.
“What would he think? What would he say? Would he want nothing to do with me? Would he be happy? What would we do? What would I do with another baby? A single mom, struggling to provide for my two year old son, and here I was pregnant. Again. I could get an abortion. It would all go away. Or would it? I don’t think I could bring myself to do that. As terrified as I was, I already loved this baby. What would my mom say? She’s surely going to disown me now. I was surprised she hadn’t already. My dad is going to be so disappointed. I had already made so many mistakes. Things were finally going well.”
Matt came home early after he finished with his clients, walked in the door, set his gym bag and keys on the counter. The door opened to the kitchen which was open directly to the living room. He looked at me where I was sitting next the couch. I hated that look. It was as if he was saying,
“What have you done now?”
He stood and stared at me for a minute and then took a few steps closer.
I took a long minute to try and thing of how I could phrase what I had to say to make to seem like it wasn’t as heavy of a situation as it was.
“I’m pregnant, Matt.”
His first words weren’t what I had hoped.
“Are you sure? You’re absolutely positive?”
I gestured to the test on the counter. He stood there for what seemed like ten minutes but it couldn’t have been more than thirty seconds. He leaned over and looked at the test showing one of the most obvious positives I had ever seen. (No test I had taken before had ever looked so sure.) Again, I buried my face in my hands and broke down in an uncontrollable fit of tears. I heard him take a few steps toward me and he sat down on the couch right next to me. His mind was somewhere else. I begged him to say something. Anything.
“It’s going to be alright. We will figure this out.”
All my panic vanished. He wrapped his arms around me and suddenly I felt so safe. I knew everything was going to be okay. This baby was going to have a beautiful life. The rest of that day was a haze and so were the next. I was drained both physically and mentally. A week went by and I was numb. Going through my daily tasks so unsure of how everything would pan out. We didn’t talk about it much. Just a handful of sentences here and there. We shared many evenings in silence. Both of us too caught up in our thoughts to interact. We grew distant. Two weeks had passed. It was December 15th, 2014. I was attending a work Christmas party that evening when I got a text from Matt.
“Can you come over so we can talk about this?”
I assured him that after a while I would head to his place. I was all dolled up. My hair was curled, I was wearing red lipstick and a slinky black and red dress. I felt great. So confident despite the weight of my unborn child heavily on my shoulders.
Around 10:00pm I left the party and drove to his apartment, which was maybe a mile down the road. I walked in beaming.
“How do I look?”
I asked with a giant grin on my face.
“Come sit down,” he said as he patted the couch to his left. I sat down and instantly I knew something was wrong. He had that look in his eyes. I didn’t know what he was about to say but I knew it was not going to be good. And it wasn’t. He wanted me to get an abortion. I had made myself a promise that I would never result to that. I saw this baby. I had seen the heartbeat. I had seen it wiggling around. So full of life. I couldn’t. The mere thought of it made me want to vomit. I told him no. When he heard that it was like something snapped in him.
“IT’S NOT JUST YOUR CHOICE! IT’S JUST AS MUCH MINE AS IT IS YOURS AND YOU ARE GOING TO GET AN ABORTION.”
Was he right? Did I not have a choice?
We continued back and forth for what had to have been twenty minutes. Him yelling. Me arguing. We were standing, face to face now. He was heated and I didn’t like the way he was acting. I didn’t deserve to be treated like this. It wasn’t any more my fault than it was his. After all, birth control had failed. He was acting like I did it on purpose. I told him that this conversation was no longer productive and that I was going to leave. I grabbed my phone and my keys, and took several steps to the door which was behind him by five feet. He stood between me and the door backing up as I got closer. Again, I stated I was going to leave. He moved to my right slightly as if to say I could walk past. I stopped and looked at him square in the eyes. They were filled with hate. He hated me. He hated I was pregnant. He hated that I wasn’t complying. I took two final steps toward the door. My hand was on the knob when he moved in front of me, completely blocking the door.
“You’re not leaving.”
“Yes, I am. And if you refuse to let me leave I will call the police.”
That was the wrong answer.
What happened over the course of the next several hours was one of the most terrifying moments of my life. The abuse lasted for what felt like days. Eventually my body gave out. The next thing I remember was waking up beside him, bound by his arms, and terrified for my life. I laid there awake for hours until his alarm went off for work. He woke up some time later and looked at me.
“I love you. At least, I should love you. But I could never love someone like you.”
I checked my phone. It was 6:30am. As usual he hopped up perkier than any person should ever be and got dressed. He grabbed his bag, looked at me and said,
“Put on a sweater to cover yourself (referring to my bruises) and don’t tell anyone.” and he walked out of the bedroom and out the door. I sat there. Tears streaming down my face and I knew what to do. Regardless of what he had done to me, this baby deserved a chance to live. It deserved a good life. It deserved love, safety, security, and happiness despite my circumstances.
*If you or anyone you know is experiencing domestic violence, call 911 and the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE(7233) or TTY 1-800-787-3244*
To my sweet girl:
If you’re reading this years from now. Know that despite all the uncertainty and fear I had, I loved you dearly. I still do. I wish this hadn’t happened the way it did. But I am so thankful for you. I’m so thankful to have had to blessing to carry you. You are a sweet, loving, loved little girl and I am so proud of who you are today. My hope is that, by sharing our story, people will see the beauty amongst all the hardship and know just how wonderful you truly are. ♥️
Part 3: The Journey will continue my story.