I had my daughter at sixteen. I’m now in college a year and a half later and a single dad.
Losing freedom was the hardest part for me. I couldn’t hang out with my friends, listen to sh*tty music, sleep a full night, study when I wanted. Sh*t, I still can’t take a shower without Baby invading the tub. She sleeps in my bed every night. I have no personal space anymore. Can’t even take a bite without her trying to snatch it out of my mouth. Class is so hard because she squirms and I can’t concentrate, and then I’m too tired to review the notes I managed to make later. I wanted to be an author, I love writing so much, but I think that’ll have to be postponed.
I felt like I lost myself and everything I used to be. Her mom got to move away and start over, and she’s never made an effort to talk to me again. It’s just.. hard. I was so angry for a long long time. Not at Baby, but at myself and everyone else.
But today Baby and I went on a picnic at the park. She kept messing up the blanket so I put it away and we sat in the cold grass instead. She liked the grass a lot. I fed her those nasty green grapes, which are her absolute favorite. The wind blew her curls around and glued them to her sticky cheeks. For a while I just watched her eat. She hummed at me every time I popped a new bite into her mouth, staring at me with those big brown eyes and that dumb four toothed grin.
Today I realized that I love this baby with every ounce of my being and I’d rather have her. I’m okay with what I lost. I’ll never get it back. I can never be as naive and young as I used to be again. I wish I could have had Baby ten years from now, but she’s here, and I love her more than I loved who I used to be.
She’s passed out next to me right now. I’m listening to her breathe. I think that I’ve never loved anybody so much in my life. It hurts but it’s special. Something clicked today, and I’m really glad it did. It feels like a million pounds was lifted off my shoulders.