It’s a pleasure to introduce you to Emily who’s sharing her unique journey to and through motherhood as part of our month-long guest post series, Special Mamas. Emily is mom to a sweet one-year-old girl. She’s a single mom. She’s a mom who lives with mental illness. She’s a mom who’s been through paternity testing. She’s a mom who understands that little girls and “big girls” need fathers and father figures. She’s a mom who recognizes her weaknesses and applies her strengths. She’s a mom who experiences challenges and joys like any other mother. I’m proud of her for her honesty, her bravery, her willingness to share her real-life story with us today. Please extend a warm welcome to Emily.
There was a good chance I could be pregnant, so I wanted to take an at home pregnancy test. My friend and I went to the Dollar Store and purchased a test. She stayed with me for most of that day, as the results were positive. The next day, I went in to see my doctor and a positive test was confirmed. I had been living with my boyfriend, but knew there was a chance the baby could be someone else’s. Excited and hopeful that the baby was my boyfriend’s, I quickly called him at his place of work to relay the news.
My water had not broken, so I scheduled a day to be admitted into the birthing unit to be induced on a Monday. After 42 weeks of pregnancy, Leona Marie was born on Wednesday, February 5, 2014, at 2:00 p.m. We were not discharged until Friday of that week.
After doing a paternity swab, we found out that my boyfriend was not my daughter’s biological father. We have managed to stay together regardless of that fact. I do not have contact, nor receive any support from my daughter’s biological father. To me, being a family does not mean it has to be by blood. It’s those who support one another, care for each other, and stick by one another that have the greatest meaning. I need someone in my life who loves me for who I am and cares for me. Leona is part of me, therefore she is part of my package deal. Having a man that is an involved dad is really important and necessary, someone who wants to enjoy the things I like to do from time to time, and be a father figure to my little girl.
I love being a mom and I love my daughter whole-heartedly. Motherhood has made a great impact on my life and overall well-being. It is rewarding for me to watch Leona grow. I am blessed to have my family, and to have my dad to take care of Leona while I work throughout the week is an even greater blessing to me.
But being a single mom and living with mental illness has also been a struggle at times. I am currently living with my boyfriend who lives within a mile of my parent’s house. To take care of myself and another human being is a lot of work. With various appointments, my work schedule, and activities I am involved in, it can be quite a load at times. Although, support from family and friends and people in the community is a great thing for me and Leona. I have come to realize that I am growing as a person just as Leona is growing up as well. Being her mommy is rewarding to me. I have a lot of fun when I am with her, and I love with an open heart.
I would like to thank my dad, mother, brother, sister, and mostly God for all that I have been given. I really feel like there is a purpose for me in this world, and that I have a beautiful gift by being a mother to my daughter. After all, without love where would we be?
I would like to share this quote…
“A love of life does not mean a mom who is always happy, it means a mom who strives towards experiencing the exquisite beauty of a song, the warmth of a smile from a loved one or stranger on the street, the gift of a nourishing meal, or the magic of a sunrise.”
I would also like to share a prayer I say to my daughter at night…
“May angels guard you through the night and keep you safe ’til morning light.”
This post is part of a month-long guest post series titled Special Mamas. The series runs all May and is in honor of moms who have unique journeys to and through motherhood. To read all 13 posts in the Special Mamas series, CLICK HERE and you’ll be directed to the introductory post. At the bottom of the post, you’ll find all guest posts listed and linked for easy reading!