Mom to Estelle
June 23, 2015
San Antonio, Texas
Eighteen and preparing to leave for college, I found out I was pregnant on June 20th of this year. To say the least, I freaked out. My boyfriend was with me when I found out, and immediately after I told my parents the news. There was much talk of abortion among some of my family, and adoption, but keeping the baby and not attending school was everyone’s worst nightmare for me. I think I knew right away I wanted to keep it.
Soon after confirming the pregnancy with a blood test at Planned Parenthood, I began to try to get everything in my life in order. I secured my job by telling my boss (they were expecting me to leave because of college), I began researching how I could take classes in my hometown, or online through the school I was planning to attend, which was four and a half hours away.
All of this happened within the span of three days. I found out about the baby on June 20th, and on June 23rd, I miscarried at around 5 weeks. I remember reading about the different options I had on the afternoon of the 23rd, even though I already knew what choice I had made. Soon after this I began miscarrying, and quickly rushed to the hospital because I was so terrified of what I knew was happening. I think I thought subconsciously that if I went, she could be saved, or something.
There I was told what I already knew, and before I left, the nurse told me how she herself had three miscarriages before having her beautiful boys; the first one at 18, like me.
The next day I went to the OB, who told me, “It’s a shame this happened your first pregnancy, but you’re young, so maybe it’s for the best. You can try later on.” Hearing that really upset me. I know there wasn’t much harm meant by it, but it really hurt. Immediately after, my boyfriend and I went to a flower and herb shop, where we found several herbs that were good for me in the physical state I was in. When we paid, the woman who owned the shop (who spoke no English) pointed to these little crosses on the counter with babies painted on them, and told us to take one. She didn’t know what had happened or anything, and I know it was no coincidence that I went to that little shop that day. I know it was my baby’s spirit that made it happen, and now I have a little cross to remember her by.
I didn’t even really consider miscarriage. I had never really thought about it, or been talked to about it, or anything. Now, of course, I know that it is much more common than most think, effecting 1 in 4 women. I was unaware of all of my sisters in the world who were suffering in silence, because of the taboo nature of pregnancy and infant loss.
We, my boyfriend and I, both thought that the baby was a girl. We named her Estelle, which means star, and now whenever I look at the sun, or at the sky at night, I know she’s with me. Come to think of it, I see her in everything. In the plants in my room, in music, in the trees, the air, all of it. She has been such a blessing to me, and I have felt her energy from the short time I carried her until now, and I know I will continue to forever.
I am now at college, four and a half hours away from home, studying to be an elementary school teacher. I think her spirit has pushed me to pursue that career; I had always wanted to but felt I was inadequate. I feel the whole universe is on my side because of her, and it’s a really beautiful thing. Even as I’ve been typing this (which is really hard, as I am sure you all know), I got a call for a job interview at a place that I was really wanting to work at. I know that’s superficial, but still. It made me feel a little better about sharing my story.
I decided to share now because healing so far away from my boyfriend and family is really hard. I’ve wanted to share my story ever since it happened, and haven’t, but I know all of you know what this is like, and so I feel it is a safe space to talk.
It’s weird to think I’m 18 and a mom, because I am and always will be a mother to my baby Estelle. Even though I’ll never get to hold her in this life, I’m still her mom, and I’ll hold that title proudly, and loudly.
I love you Estelle, someday we’ll meet again.