Not a lot of us have actually had to make a choice for ourselves based on the life of another person. I'm not suggesting that people don't care, they just simple haven't had anything of that stress placed on their shoulders. When you are the only one who can make this choice, it usually leaves you in some sort of heart break. But at the end of the day, you realize that what you did was a completely selfless act. Your choice helped or even saved the life of another human being.
A couple days before the school year ended, I simply stopped talking to David. I went back home with my mother, step father, and step sister. I did not realize exactly how horrible I was living at David's home until I was finally able to go into the kitchen and get a snack, all while not having to worry about what I was going to eat tomorrow. I'm lucky that my mother and the rest of my family welcomed me back with open arms.
I called my father when I got to my mother's house. I talked to him about everything that was going on with David. "I don't know what to do Dad. I don't want my child growing up without knowing his father. But I can't do this anymore." My father comforted me. And after a long talk we decided that the best decision, not only for me, but for the baby was to take a break and go up to Georgia to stay with my family in Woodstock.
After a lot of thinking, I had decided not to tell David I was going up to Georgia until last minute. I knew what type of problems it would cause for me. And with the amount of stress I had already had placed on me by David in the past, I knew that the baby couldn't handle anymore either.
So it had been days since I spoke to David. He kept trying to call me, telling me how sorry he was. And I just ignored it all. Finally, I had broken free of the hold David had on me. My dad bought me a plane ticket for the day after school ended. I was excited and scared all at the same time. I knew that it was up to me to do this for my son, since he couldn't make a choice for himself.
I remember calling David when I got to the airport and telling him that I was leaving. Of course he wasn't happy about that. I eventually got sick of the yelling and screaming and hung up on him, turning off my phone so he would stop harassing me. A person sitting near me in the terminal heard the whole thing. He came over in front of me and asked if I was alright. As I looked up I tried desperately not to cry. I didn't want to break loose in front of a total stranger. I looked at this man, he had to have been in his 50s or 60s. He sat down in the seat next to me. We started talking about life and what I was going through a little bit. He said something I could never forget. "You know, there are certain struggles we have to go through. Certain issues that make each and everyone of us different. You have a very hard decision to make. Because this one isn't just about you. From now on you're gonna be on a mission to do whats best for your son, then yourself. And right now, you're taking the first step."
I've never told any body about this meeting with this older man. I'm not entirely sure why. But that moment was probably the instant my whole thinking changed entirely. I wasn't staying with David because I wanted our son to know his father, I was staying with David because of my own selfishness. Because I didn't want to see David find anyone else. Because I was afraid that no body else would ever love me.
When I got to Atlanta, an overwhelming rush of freedom came over me and I was so emotional. I remember crying myself to sleep that night, totally unsure if I was just so happy, or so unbelievably depressed. The most amazing thing to me was that for once throughout my whole pregnancy, I could go to sleep not terrified of the day that I was going to wake up to. I could sleep in peace, whispering soft words to my son and not be told to shut up. I could go to sleep and dream.
"From now on you're gonna be on a mission to do whats best for your son, then yourself. And right now, you're taking the first step." I went to sleep that night thinking about this statement the old man had said. He was right. I did this for my son. For the person who was going to have such an impact on my life, before I ever even knew it.