Good Stuff in the Hard Stuff

I will never forget that day my life changed forever.

It was May 3rd, 2010. I was a senior in high school and was just a few weeks away from turning 18. I had prom, graduation, and my birthday to look forward to all in the same month … but little did I know my whole world was about to change.

My stomach dropped as I had the realization I was a few days late.

One day after school I went to Tom Thumb and got a pregnancy test … stole it actually. I didn’t have any money. I stuck it in my purse walked out and went home to take it. On the way to the bathroom I couldn’t stop telling myself there was no way I was pregnant, it just couldn’t happen.

I took the pregnancy test and closed my eyes.

When I opened them I had two pink stripes burning into my eyes. You have GOT to be kidding me. My emotions went numb. I felt like I should be crying or something, but I felt nothing. I was in complete shock. I had a baby growing inside of me and I couldn’t really see past my prom, graduation, and my birthday coming up much less 9 months down the road.

I had to tell Brad. Brad and I had been together for 2 1/2 years. He was 3 years older then me and a junior in college and although our relationship was rocky at times, he was my rock and my love. I pulled out my phone and texted him (he was working out so I knew he wouldn’t answer). I just took a pregnancy test and it came back positive The response was not a good one. It was one word and it wasn’t a good one. I called my best friend Krista. I needed someone to tell me everything was going to be ok.  She did exactly that for me but she also encouraged me to be brave and tell my parents.

It was an even more complicated situation because I had hid my relationship with Brad from my dad for 2 years. My dad never approved because of me and Brad’s age difference. My dad had an abusive history so I knew the reaction was not going to be good.

Every thought went through my head about what I could do to get out of this situation I found myself in. Brad just wasn’t wanting a baby. He was still finishing college and had just turned 21. He was partying a lot and this just wasn’t in the plans. He decided to call a few abortion clinics to see if we could get an abortion. Because I was 17 and not 18 yet, I couldn’t get one without a parent’s consent.

We were stuck.

I was extremely close with my mom. She was my best friend. I knew I could be brave enough to tell her and she wouldn’t freak out that bad. The next day, I texted my mom when I got to school and told her that I was late on my period. She texted back and said that it was okay she had been late too and she was sure I would start soon. I told her that I had never missed a period before though and I was nervous, she then sent me the worst text I would’ve ever expected to get from her. For your sake, you better hope you’re not pregnant. My mouth dropped. What was I going to do? How could I tell her now?

My mom was struggling with alcoholism at the time so I knew if she had a few drinks in her, she would be easier to talk to. That night, I took a deep breath and just blurted it out, “Mom, I still haven’t started and I’m getting really scared.” She reassured me again, “You are okay. I have $11 in my wallet. Go get a pregnancy test.” I got in the car and went up to Tom Thumb again and this time I actually bought one. I went straight for the bathroom and my mom followed me in. I took the pregnancy test already knowing what the result would be. My mom immediately took it from me, she stared at it and I was just waiting for her to yell at me. But she just looked at me with teary eyes and said, “Well, you’re pregnant baby cakes.” I will never forget those words.

Finally all of the emotion that I had been holding in ever since I found out, just came rushing out and I couldn’t stop crying. We hugged each other for a long time, and she told me whatever decision I made she would support me no matter what.

My best friend Krista called later that night and she convinced me to keep my baby.

That ended up being the best conversation I could’ve had with someone. I called Brad immediately after and told him I had decided to keep the baby. He was still not happy at all. My heart broke with his reaction. He said something that one day he would regret, “Look, I love you, but I DONT love what’s inside of you.”

I told him that he didn’t have to be apart of our life if he didn’t want to. I wouldn’t make him pay child support, he would never have to see me or the baby ever. All these tough words were flying out of my mouth but deep down my heart was broken. He snapped back and said, ” I WILL be a part of my child’s life.” My heart was still broken because I knew he wasn’t happy at all.

I went over to my mom and whispered in her ear that I was going to keep the baby, as my dad was on the phone across the table from her and I didn’t want him to hear. She said, “Okay but we have to tell your dad.” I said, “Okay but just not tonight.” I went inside and lay on my bed. I was realizing that I was actually feeling HAPPY. Yeah, I never planned for this to happen but once I had made the decision to carry this baby inside of me and be his or her mommy, I actually felt feelings of love and excitement!

I decided to go back outside to hang out with my mom and dad. I sit down and my mom immediately says, ” I told your dad.” I said, ” WHAT??” I immediately start to cry and looked into my dad’s eyes. He was hurt. He wasn’t saying a word. I finally broke the silence, “I’m sorry dad.” He yelled at me, “You lied to me!” and then slammed the door in my face.  He was beyond livid … and I was beyond scared.

After he finally calmed down, he said, “Whatever decision you and Brad make, he would support us but we needed to think about it because it was a life changing decision.”  … But I had already made my decision and I wasn’t going to change my mind.

We then told Brad’s parents and they took it a lot better. I could tell his mom was nervous and scared but she kept reassuring us that we would make it and be ok.

I was living with my parents and Brad had an apartment in Denton (he went to UNT) and his lease was about to be up. My parents decided that Brad could move in with us. My brother’s old room would be the baby’s room. I was so excited.

During the course of the pregnancy, our hearts started changing for the better. We knew we had to grow up fast. Brad started becoming more excited about being a dad and supporting me more. I started going to Embrace Grace and started to work on my relationship with God. I loved being surrounded by the girls that were all going through the same thing as me. The group was so amazing and I felt so lucky to be apart of it.

One night during class, was a night I’ll never forget because of what I learned.  Salina was talking and it was something along the lines of, “Your future spouse should be a Christian as well, so you enter the covenant of marriage as God first and in unity together.” I knew what she said made sense, but Brad was not a Christian. I’d talk about it with Brad from time to time, but I never forced it on him. I just thought that if it was going to happen, it would. Amy suggested I just bring him to church with me on a Sunday and see what happens. It seemed like a good idea but I just kept thinking that Brad would never go for it. I never brought it up even though I was worried about my future of being a Christian family. I loved Brad so much, I just prayed that it would happen.

Before I knew it, it was January 5th and I was on the way to the hospital to meet my beautiful baby girl. Everyone was so excited. I couldn’t wait to hold her! 10 hours went by and they wheeled me back for my c-section. Blakelee Nicole Davidson was born at 6:55 pm weighing 8lbs 10 1/2 oz.  My life was forever changed. So many precious memories of that moment but shortly after, bittersweet reality confronted me right there in the hospital room.

After everyone went home that night it was just me, Brad, and Blakelee. I was so excited to start this new life with my baby and my boyfriend. My dad started calling around 8 and the conversation was off and on until 1 am. He was drunk and NOT happy. He was upset that I had contacted my Grammie through facebook that I was not allowed to talk to due to some family drama. I had reached out to her when I found out I was pregnant because I had not spoken to her in years and wanted to tell her the news. He had gone home and gotten on my Facebook and saw the messages I had been sending to her.

I was confused, and upset. Why was he doing this to me the night I gave birth? I told him not to come to the hospital the next day. Everyone came to visit and I put on my happy face but inside I was hurting that I couldn’t enjoy this moment with my dad. Before we left the hospital, we got a call from my mom saying we should probably go stay with Brad’s parents for a little while because my dad was so furious with me. I didn’t understand why? He told my mom that Brad and I weren’t allowed back under his roof and that I was just an 18 year old girl who wore out her welcome. I was devastated. I was crying so hard I was breaking out into a sweat and could barely hold my baby girl. I didn’t know what I was going to do. I was so emotionally drained. That was the last day I saw my dad for a long time.

My dad finally let us come back home to stay at the house but he was still so angry, he went to stay with his father. It was so hard. On one hand, I was so in love with my beautiful baby but on the other, I didn’t have my family fully to enjoy her with. I struggled with depression and confusion. It was a hard time.

Brad and I grew closer than ever and a few days before Valentine’s Day, he proposed to me. Things were starting to look up. He was my constant and my rock. I loved him so much and I had always loved him. He was there for me through this emotional time. I couldn’t imagine my life without him.

One night, Brad and I were sitting outside talking and enjoying each other’s company. Blakelee was asleep and we were just relaxing and loving the fresh air. In the middle of the conversation, he stopped and said out of nowhere, “Is it weird that I want to go to church?” I was blown away. I needed this and for him to want it completely on his own was amazing. I needed God so much in my life but I also felt like I needed Brad too – so to be able to do this together was a dream come true.

We went that Sunday and Brad fell in love with Pastor Robert at Gateway. His life changed forever that day as he gave his life to Jesus and accepted Him as his Lord and Savior.  Our whole lives changed. Even since then, we have had our ups and downs. With my brother leaving to go into the marines, and having to take my mom to rehab, and still not speaking to my father, life was hard and slowly stopped going to church again. I was struggling with depression and taking it out on people I cared about. But through it all, I knew God loved me and that He would take care of us and our family. I had hope for our future.

This year has had a lot of ups. Blakelee just turned 1! Brad and I got married on March 18th. We have our own home. I saw my dad on my birthday this year after 18 months of not speaking. We can never get back the time we lost but we have started over and fresh. My mom has been sober for almost a year. Brad and I have started going back to church. Everything is finally coming together for us. And the best news of all is that I found out on Fathers Day last month that we are expecting our 2nd child that will arrive in February!

God has great ways of working in your life if you will just let Him. My world was crumbling at my feet, but he picked up all the pieces and is making me a beautiful life. And for that I am forever grateful. He’s really starting to work through me, and it’s amazing. I can see with everything I have been through that I am a better person because of it. I had 2 choices, I could let my past form me into a person with grudges and “baggage” or I could learn from it and help other people in similar situations.

Oh and remember the part about Brad’s reaction about not loving what was inside of me? Well, he quickly realized how completely false that statement was. I have never seen a sweeter daddy/daughter relationship. Blakelee has Brad wrapped around her little finger. The first thing he does when he comes home is run and scoop her up and give her tons of kisses on her squishy cheeks. He is such a good dad. He is even hoping our new baby is a little girl because he wants one just like her. 

Sometimes in the hard stuff, there is good stuff too. You just gotta open your eyes to it. Without the hard stuff, I wouldn’t be me. Without the hard stuff, I wouldn’t have so much. Without the hard stuff, my life wouldn’t be so easy.

My hope in Jesus is bigger than any circumstances.

Written by Brooke Davidson, 20 years old.  

 

 

Dancing with Daddy

That super cheesy country song was stuck in my head yesterday and I had it on “repeat” in my head (not intentionally) and mainly it was the chorus over and over again.

Life’s a dance you learn as you go. Sometimes you lead, sometimes you follow. Don’t worry about what you don’t know, life’s a dance you learn as you go.

 I started thinking about the lyrics and the part about “sometimes you lead, sometimes you follow” and was thinking that wasn’t very accurate if you have God in your life. He always should be leading. I thought of it quick because this issue is all too personal for me right now and I have had to learn the hard way plenty of times.

If you don’t know me, basically I’m what people call a “go-getter.”  I’ve recently been studying Strengthsfinder book and realizing how God made me – and it’s apparently how I was created. I can’t help it. I get an idea, or God speaks to me, and I go with it. I always thought this quality was great until I realized that apparently, I need to wait on God to lead J Just because I get the idea, doesn’t mean it’s time to GO right then.

It got me thinking about how life IS a dance – and we’re dancing with our heavenly Daddy.

Here are 5 points on dancing with Jesus …

1.  He has asked you to dance, will you say yes? He is a gentleman and will not force you to accept the invitation. He just waits for you to accept. You have to say yes and make Him Lord and Savior of your life. It’s the best and most beautiful dance you could ever have

2.  Let Him lead. Just relax and don’t be tense. Be flexible to the exciting plans God has for you. A turn here, a twirl there. He wants to take you on a fun ride – He wants you to be carefree and happy.

3. Safe in His Embrace. He has His arms wrapped around you. You are safe and protected. You don’t have to worry about falling because He will catch you.

4. Feel His Heartbeat. You have to lean in close to hear His whisper. He is speaking all the time, just listen. Read His word and spend intimate time with Him. He will not let the wrong guy cut in if you are close enough to hear His cues.

5. If you trip up, you can just try again til you get it right. He doesn’t make a fool out of you or get mad if you trip up. If you take a wrong step, He just starts right where you left off before you took that wrong step. And you just keep trying it again and again until you get it right. He is full of grace and love.

6. When you get too weak or the dance gets too hard, He will carry you. Just like when you were a little girl and you would put your feet on top of your daddy’s big shoes and he would dance around while you just held on tight. God will carry you through your dance until you are strong enough to dance again.

I heard this saying and thought it was cute:

G (God) + U + I + DANCE = Guidance.

Will  YOU accept this dance?

Written by Amy Ford