Thursday, September 23, 2010

Mother to Mother

I was amazed at how well Michael took the news and how genuinely excited and happy he seemed to be.  He wanted me to move back in with him immediately and couldn't wait to share the news with our family and friends.  I told him I wasn't quite ready to move back in, to just take it a little slowly at first, but I knew we were on our way to getting back together and restarting our life together.  I convinced him that it was best to wait a few weeks to share the news with everyone, until we'd figured out our relationship and allowed our parents to absorb the news. 

My mother was only 17 when she gave birth to me.  Growing up, I'd lived mostly with my grandmother until age 13.  My mom and I hadn't gotten along so well; I was an angsty teenager and she was raising 4 other children besides me.  I liked to play the role of "martyr" when my mom asked me to babysit the younger kids all the time.  My step-dad (whom had been in my life since I was a toddler, and the only dad I ever knew) was murdered when I was 17, and that's when my mother and I started to bond.  After I moved out of the house at age 18, though, our relationship had really strengthened and grown.  She had moved across the country a year later to live closer to my grandmother, and I think the distance made us closer.

"Am I hearing this correctly, Emma Jean?  Please tell me this is a goddamn prank," my mother's voice was wary with a touch of disappointment.  I think every person, regardless of age, reverts back to feeling like a child when their parents use their middle name as well.  That always means you're in trouble, right?

"Mom, I know it's a shock, but it was an even bigger shock for me.  You know I didn't plan on having kids until after I was married and closer to 30, but please, try and be happy for me.  Michael and I are working on things, we really are.  We were already starting to mend things even before I found out I'm pregnant, so don't go assuming that we're only getting back together because of my 'predicament'.  I really need your support, Mom," I exhaled loudly, making sure she could hear me sighing into the phone. 

"Well, Emma, I'm not ready to be a grandmother and I sure don't think you're ready to be a mother.  Have you thought about how much this is going to change your life?  How could you be so careless?  How could you make the same mistake that I did?"

"Thanks, Mom, I am SO glad that I'm a mistake," I rolled my eyes, despite the fact that she couldn't see me.

"Oh, damn it, you know I don't think you're a mistake, Emma.  You were just unexpected and I was so young.  I want you to have a better life than I did, I know you wanted more out of life..." she trailed off, probably thinking about the life she'd lived.  I knew my mother loved all of us, but I also knew she sometimes daydreamed about what life would have been like if she hadn't had so many kids.  No doubt, she was thinking back to how often I'd proclaimed as a teenager that I never wanted to be like her, I never wanted kids and I sure didn't want to be nothing but a housewife.

"You're right though, I'm not ready to be a mother and I did want a different life, but I can still have the life I want, it'll just be a little tougher now.  Anyway, Mom, I have to go.  Michael is picking me up to go have dinner with his parents and we're breaking the news to them tonight.  I wanted you to be the first to know.  Love you."

"Well, if you're happy, then I guess I'll have to be happy for you.  Tell Michael I said hello.  I love you, too," she sounded defeated, and I knew this was a lot of information for her to handle, but I also knew she'd soon warm up to the idea of being a grandmother. 

I put my phone back in my purse, and finished getting ready.  Michael had texted me earlier, telling me that I should dress up a little tonight because his parents were taking us to a nice steakhouse for dinner.

I decided on one of my favorite dresses.  It was a brilliant grassy green which really enhanced my complexion and made my brown eyes and dark hair really pop.  I paired it with a tiny black cardigan and black flats.  I left my hair loose and my makeup light, and waited for Michael to arrive.

I had no idea how much that night would change my life.


  1. Oh, crap. He's gonna propose. So much for easing back into the relationship. Mom will definitely come around and get used to the idea. mum

  2. i don't know why, I hope he DOESN'T propose!!