Everything The Light Touches

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Name: Sarabi
Year you graduated high school: N/A
Year you found out you were pregnant: 1994
Number of children: 1

The Uh-Oh Moment: For as long I can remember, the Pride Lands have been my home. I am very territorial so travelling wasn’t a huge thing on my to-do list. I was all about hunting with the other lionesses. It was actually my first hunting trip my mother let me go on by myself. I thought the butterflies in my stomach was the anticipation of my first kill. I knew I wasn’t nervous about being alone because some of my cousins from my pride were with me. But I knew something was off.

Then I saw the gazelle. It was injured from barely escaping a lioness earlier. It trailed behind the rest of the herd after they stopped at a watering whole. I crouched down as I waited for the rest to give us more space. I watched as the pride got ready to scare the stronger gazelles away, but I couldn’t steady my breath. Every inhale I took, my body would shutter and I would rustle the brush around me, alerting my dinner about his eminent demise. I had to move or rely on someone else’s kill. I didn’t want to bring home second-hand meat on my first expedition without my moms.

Right when I was about to pounce, my legs gave out. I threw up in my crouch space and my prey got away. I relaxed in the shade until the hunt was over and went home with my head hung low. As soon as I laid next to my mother, she knew what was wrong with me. I was carrying a king.

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I was nervous. Mufasa was only a year into his reign as king and he had so much on his plate. His father’s rule was great and he was under a lot of pressure to continue that success. I didn’t know if he was ready for yet another huge change. But when I told him, he gained a new zest for life and kingship. His judgments were quick and always fair. He distributed the workforce among the animals perfectly and everyone lived in harmony as he made clear the principles of the Circle of Life. And never for a moment did I feel alone while carrying our son; Simba.

The Mom Moment: I became a mom when the local shaman Rafiki displayed Simba to all of the animals of the Pride Lands. He stood at the tip of Pride Rock and lifted him up for all to see. I couldn’t hear the roars, chirps, and hoof pounding. I was ready to snatch my son out of the crazy baboon’s hands until I felt Mufasa’s paw on mine. He hit me with a reassuring smile and nuzzled in my neck.

***Any man can be a father. It takes a real man to be a dad.***

Father/Dad: He is a DAD, paws down. From the time he was born, to his last heroic breath, Simba’s father earned every strand of hair that crowned his mane. I never imagined that a man who had to look over hundreds of species of animals would still find time to dedicate every waking moment to his son. But then again, being the son of a king, Simba would not have a normal adult life. Mufasa knew this and and he did everything in his power to prepare him. From teaching him how to terrorize our trusted adviser Zazu, to telling him crazy myths about the stars in the sky, just to put his mind at ease and let Simba know that he would always be there for him.

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Unfortunately, my husband died in a stampede accident. That same day, Simba disappeared. The Pride Lands fell apart and we were ruled over by famine, drought, and Mufasa’s jealous brother Scar, who allowed scavengers to move into the Pride Lands.

Them vs. You: Discipline, routine, and order. These are the things I learned from my parents which I immediately passed down to my son. If we don’t hunt, the prides don’t eat. If the lions don’t protect the pride, it leaves us vulnerable to other prides. We all have a role to play in our cohabitation. As a mom, I focused more on grooming and feeding Simba, while Mufasa took on more of his schooling. I didn’t have the chance to be there for Simba after Mufasa’s death, but the Pride Lands took care of him and brought him back to me safe, sound, and as wise, strong, and brave as his father. He also had help from a meerkat and a warthog.

Fearful Moment: I never got to grieve with my son. I actually grieved for him. When my husband, his dad, died and then he ran away, I thought I failed him. Should I have gone searching for him? Was I doing the responsible thing as the Queen of Pride Rock by staying around? I didn’t know if my son was in denial, mourning, or if he was even alive for years. I guess to avoid feeling like a failure as a mom, I did everything I could as a leader in dark times.

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Fearless Moment: I mistook my son for my husband. That sounds weird, but I saw my husband’s strength, resilience, conviction, and determination in the demeanor of my son. Once I snapped to it, I realized my son was alive and ready to take his rightful place. We fought against Scar and his tyranny. We pushed back and conquered all of his alliances in the Pride Lands. My son’s  roar signaled new unity among his newly acquired people.

Support System: The pride of course. Simba’s childhood friend and now wife Nala went on a search for him when we needed him the most and I could not leave the pride. And then upon his return, Simba told me about these two guys,  Timon and Pumbaa who looked out for him in the jungle. And who can forget my trusted shaman who blessed my child when he was first born and showed him the way when he was lost.

Final Thoughts: Hakuna Matata. After he came home, Simba would hum this, say this in random conversations, and even draw it in the sand. I never got around to asking what it meant. I’m just always so caught up in him being home safe and stepping up for a role he had to take on way too soon. But every time he says it, something in him resets and he approaches every situation with strength and clarity. So, HAKUNA MATATA.

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Pregnancy Scare #15; Fearless Mom: FranShaun Harris

Franshaun Harris

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Age: 25
Year You Graduated High School: 2008
Year you found out you were Pregnant: 2014
Number of Children: 1

The Uh-Oh Moment: December 2014 I found out I was pregnant going in to get my yearly
physical and asthma checkup. Now a days, doctors give you all the test in the world. I simply went to the doctor to figure out what I could do to reduce my asthma symptoms. He went over my labs and came back in the room and said, “Congrats are in order, your test came back positive.” Mind you he never said what test he was talking about, he just had this huge smile on his face. I thought of every worst possible scenario, but then he said “Are you ready to be a Mom?” From that moment, my life changed.

The Mom Moment: Becoming a mom has always been something that I’ve wanted to do. I
have looked after children since I was a child (at the age of 13). It was a joy to watch how they learned and how they explored the world with such innocence. At 21, I had my first God child, Iyana. She was a sweet baby and words could not even immense the feeling I had of being her God mom. Months later, her brother Elijah was born and he too became my God child. I kept them for weeks and sometimes months at a time. They saw me as a second mom when their birth mom, Ladonna, needed a mommy break. I adore them as if they are my own. In that moment I became a mom. Having these two God children of mine was a joy BUT having my own son was an indescribable feeling.

My moment when I realized that Nasir was mine is when I was sitting at my mom’s house and he was crying and crying and I couldn’t figure out what was wrong. I sat on the steps going crazy. I then went back in the room and picked him up and said, “Ok, what is that you want? You’re clean, you’re fed, and you have a nice little clean butt.” He just looked at me and smiled so big. That moment I was like ok Shaun you’re REALLY a mom now.

***Any man can be a father, but it takes a real man to be a Dad***

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Father/Dad: By the time I was six months pregnant, everyone who I thought would want to have a family with me, left me. My best friend Tony is his father. He and I have an awesome friendship. Because of personal issues outside of him and me he can’t be around to see his son. However my other best friend Timara has stepped up and she has been dad. She lost custody of her first son, so I knew in the back of my mind she was nowhere near ready to start another family. But when I called Timara and all I could do was cry, she simply said, “Babe, no worries. Wipe your face, I’m here.” At that very time is when I knew no one else would love my son as much as her and I.

During surgery, I panicked and Timara sang to me to keep me calm. It was the Sponge Bob pizza song. I will never forget it. The doctors finally delivered my son, and Timara asked me his name (even though we had discussed it before) he then became OUR son. She has been a huge part of this Journey with no questions asked.

Them VS. You: I was raised by my mother and step-father. My mother was very strict and stern. Whatever she says was always a go. She never reasoned with me and my sisters and everything had to be done her way.

As I got older and began to express myself, my mother and I didn’t speak for months at a time because of my preference in dating. I was being raised by a “Christian” woman who thought homosexuality was the devil himself, so I hid it for a long time.

My dad on the other hand was more open and willing to see our side of things.

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Nasir will be raised by two moms, I will give him any information that he wants to know about same sex relationships. I’m sure that he will be curious as to why but I will let him know that no matter what he’s loved. I want him to know that love is love and he can be whoever he chooses to be. In the future he may not understand that he has two moms but I know that I’ll become an open book. I want to educate him on these type of relationships because not only are there more same sex couples out but that his mom is a part of that community and he will learn to have a level of respect for it.

In these times peers of his may already know things that he may not and I will definitely answer any questions and fill in his blanks.

In becoming a pre-school teacher, I have become a big disciplinarian but I have an open mind. I have learned patience and I’ve learned to be more lenient with how I do things. I’m also more creative so that when my son gets older, he’ll be able to come and talk to me about almost anything.

The Fearless Moment: I had been so overwhelmed and I fell into postpartum depression. My support was jacked up and Timara and I lived in two different states so it was a struggle parenting separately. Nasir had another crying spell and I called Timara on the phone and she played J.Cole through her speakers and Nas instantly knew who was on the line. Anytime he cried after that, I played J.Cole and everything was all good. He became a music baby and music has been our calm in the sleepless nights.

Support System: Nasir has a spirit so joyful. He has attracted so much love since the day he arrived. We finally moved to Delaware so that our family could all be in one place. My family has been supportive but the help and passion I get here couldn’t be greater. The Manson’s have taken us in as if we’ve always been a part of their family. Most times I barely have to lift a finger when we visit them. The love and support that we get from our families is amazing. Especially with her family.

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There is always a helping or a praying hand. I find so much strength in God first,
and faith. I am coming to understand why he has blessed me and I can’t thank him enough for my family. I stay grounded in my faith and with a higher power behind me, I can press forward. I never thought with all my doubts, that I’d have so many people who love him and want to help me raise him. He literally is a part of a village of 4 different families that have so much love to give him. I couldn’t imagine in all my years that the saying was true, “It takes a village to raise a
child.”

Final Thoughts: Being a Mom is one of the best things that happen to me. Even on my worst day when I feel like I’m alone, I’m reminded that I’m not. For those who feel like they are alone, pick up a phone, write an email because you never know who’s willing to be your shoulder to cry on. No one is ever alone in anything. Being a mom takes away that feeling and can erase any pain. The love I experience from him is nothing short of amazing and I couldn’t have asked God for anything better.

Nasir is teaching me so much about myself and also showing me how to evaluate those around me. If some ones spirit isn’t right, he’s not happy. He shows me true joy and happiness. He’s always smiling and being silly and it brings out the best in me.

Pregnancy Scare #14; Fearless Mom: Timara Manson

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Name: Timara Manson
Age: 25
Year you graduated high school: 2007
Year you found out you were pregnant: She found out she was pregnant in 2012
Number of children: 1

The Uh Oh Moment: We found out we were pregnant in 2012. I was with My ex-wife Camille. She carried our son.

I went in the bathroom and I guess she just peed on the stick and left it on the counter…and it was the plus signal. I was like, You pregnant. But I said it to myself in the bathroom like, She Pregnant. So I had to go back in there and be like, You pregnant. You was gonna wake me up and tell me you pregnant?! And she was like, “Babe I don’t know what you talking about; I just peed on the stick and put it on the counter.” So I told her to take another one because it could not be accurate because you’re not supposed to let them sit for too long.

So she peed on a stick again. I called my mom. I was so excited and so happy. I was floating around the house. It was great.

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The Mom Moment: I became a mom, to be exact, May 2013. My son was two weeks old and my wife had came downstairs, gave me a kiss on the forehead, and left out. I thought she was just going for a walk. I woke up the next morning and she still wasn’t home. I called her, her phone was off. I really thought something went wrong. And then I got an email.

An email basically saying she couldn’t do it, she couldn’t have this family, she couldn’t handle everything. She didn’t want to be a mom. She really did all this for me and she was going to go about her business.

I had to pack up my son from Philadelphia , call my mom and get a U-Haul. Tian, my best friend, came down with the U-Haul and we put him in the car seat. I was looking at him in the car seat. I had him bundled up. I kept saying to myself, How could you give birth to a child and just leave…just leave us…and all you gave me was an email. She disabled her email, her phone number, everything. She just let go of everything. This was my wife. And I just looked at him and said this is my son. He’s me. This is a reflection of me. This is my baby and I was gonna do everything I could for him.

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***Any man can be a father. It takes a real man to be a dad.***

Father/Dad: Camille is a mother. She has always been a mother. Camille did not and does not want a child. She feels like our son is a responsibility and she [had the baby] for me. At the end of the day we are co-parenting; he is a responsibility to her and he is my child.

In the beginning, I thought everything was fine. She was my wife at the time. Camille cheated December 22nd, 2012. I packed my stuff Christmas Eve, and left my wife, and moved back to New York.

From that day forth, everything was a roller coaster. The pregnancy was fine. Us having the baby was fine because she was doing it naturally for me. But she was very unhappy. She thought the baby was going to be a healing for her bipolar, her PTSD, and her depression from her time in the military (while she was pregnant she didn’t take medication). But that wasn’t the purpose of having a child.

I told her to be positive but I just couldn’t make her happy. At this point Camille was still dealing with the dude she cheated on me with. She decided that she wanted to be with the both of us but I couldn’t accept the fact the she cheated on me while she was six months pregnant. We went through our ups and downs, but I was at every doctor’s appointment. Anything she needed to do we did it together because that was my baby, and she was my wife. I needed to make sure she was good regardless.

Them vs. You: I am my mom, my grandmother, and my godmother. I don’t tolerate the talk back, I don’t tolerate all that crying, we not about to go back and forth, I don’t want to even to hold your bottle when it comes down to it; I’m propping it up. I am my mother’s child down to the tee.

The only thing I would do different is I want to explain myself to my son. I need him to understand why I’m doing what I’m doing, what’s the reasoning behind it, and this is the cause and effect for whatever’s happening. My mom listens to my sister and what she goes through. So I will be doing the same to my son. I want to hear his side of whatever he’s going through and not be judgmental. Like, really have an open mind. Yes he’s my son but he’s not an angel.

At the end of the day all I wanted was an explanation from my mom in order for me not to put my hand in the fire.

Fearful Moment: May 9th 2014. That’s his birthday. I was [in New York]. I woke up like regular. I was supposed to be driving down to Philly to see him. We were doing his birthday that Saturday. [Camille] wouldn’t answer her phone, she wouldn’t answer her text messages. I didn’t hear from her all day. I went through every emotion imaginable. I was angry. Then I was confused. Then I was…just sad. Then I was just trying to figure out what was happening. Finally, she wrote me a message saying, “You’re never gonna see your son again.” I wanted to go to Philly but I just didn’t know what to do.

Coming to the close of the day, I just broke down. I was hurt. My heart was broken. I just wanted to hold my son. I just wanted to hug him, I just wanted to say Happy Birthday. It was funny because I kept saying all day, I’m sleep. I’m gonna wake up, I’m gonna start the day, and everything is going to be fine. That’s it. I just wanted to be there. I just wanted to see him smile and play some Beyoncé for him.

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Fearless Moment: I used to play Beyonce CD 24/7; non-stop! [Aram] knew that song, any time…what’s the name of that song?! All night! We be all night. Drunk In Love! I played that album everywhere I went. You play that song and that baby be jumping and popping. He’ll pause and the beat drops, and he’ll jump on the couch. He watch for his boo. On T.V., on the phone, on the computer, Beyonce was his boo. He would go to sleep to that album. Everything was good.

Support System: My mom didn’t know [I was trying to get pregnant]. I just called her and told her.  I called her at 4:30 in the morning. I sent her the picture, she was happy.

[Camille’s] family…they were happy, but they wanted her to be with a man. They didn’t understand why she thought she could raise a baby, a son, a child, a SON with another woman. They said you NEED a man. You need a male figure in his life…he was going to be too soft.

She defended [us] at that time. She wouldn’t let her family disrespect me regardless. They could feel however they wanted to feel, she didn’t let them do it.

Shannise [Timara’s friend] was excited. She was GREAT. She was there through every step. [Shannise] has my back 100%.

Question: Does she encourage you to reach out to the mom or…

She let’s me handle it. Whatever I want to do, however I want to do, she let’s me.

Final Thoughts: You will always be a reflection on who raised you and the five closest people in your life. The five closest adults in your life.

There’s a whole lot of mothers out there trying to be mischievous and go after their baby dad for money or time. But you have great men out there that all they want to do is spend time with their child. And you won’t allow that; you want to take them to court and you want to fight them. Then they don’t want to be around you anymore.

For a mother who is going through things with her child’s father, you need to forgive. Period. It doesn’t matter what you guys been through, that child did not ask to be here. There’s no reason for you guys to be going back and forth, there’s no reason to be bitter. You need to forgive him, let go, so that he can be a better father for his child. Period. I’m not saying that it’s easy, but there’s no reason to go around the boat when you can forgive, let go, and let God do what he do.

For a father who hasn’t seen their child, it gets better overtime. If it’s meant for you to be there, it will happen. It hurts but it’s just something you gotta experience.

I find my strength in helping other people. Now I have the testimony and the knowledge to tell a father, an absent mother, or even another lesbian couple that this is what it is, this is what it feels like and no, it’s not easy. But you can get through this.

Those eyes have a story already!
Those eyes have a story already!

Continue reading “Pregnancy Scare #14; Fearless Mom: Timara Manson”

Her Responsibilty; MY Son.

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Everybody is going to sit and tell you, “It’s okay. Baby you’ll get through this. It’s alright” But you do not know that pain.  It’s like my son is dead to me. You have to lose a child in order to know the pain I experienced. I couldn’t even sit on the train and hear a child cry. I would cry. Like that good, hiccup cry, I couldn’t even hear it. I would bust out in tears. I didn’t have faith in anything.

[But] when I rebuilt myself back up,  I got myself together, I said no. God got me. Everything happens for a reason. If I aint never been through the things I’ve been through, I would not be sitting here today.

FULL STORY COMING SOON!

Pregnancy Scare #12; Fearless Mom: Melissa Canselo

Name: Melissa Canselo (Mellocan)

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Age: 25
Year you graduated high school: 2009
Year you found out you were pregnant: 2010
Number of children: 1

The Uh Oh Moment: I will never forget this day! It was a spring morning, May 20 something. My son’s father & I had a strong suspicion I was pregnant, but obviously the test confirmed it all. I traveled all the way from Harlem to his house in Brooklyn to take the test. I wanted us to share that moment together; we were excited.

During the pregnancy we argued a lot! It was a tough time because we didn’t know each other as well as we should, so we bumped heads a little on certain views on parenting and what not. And it was a stressful situation because I was going to school full time and neither of us were employed.

The Mom Moment: For me it was all in the decision making. In other words when my mind was made the rest was a given to love and taking care of my baby. But if you want a more specific instance where I felt like a mom for the first time, it was probably when I started “nesting”. At 8 months pregnant, me and my family painted the room, put together the crib and baby changer, and arranged the stuffed animals… [we] just had everything for when the baby came home. I felt so ready for his arrival.

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***Any man can be a father. It takes a real man to be a dad ***

Father/Dad: My son’s father & I have a healthy relationship. I would say in comparison to most young adults in our age group with children we do a great job at co-parenting, but that didn’t come easy at all! I had high expectations for Antonio as a father only because he showed a side of himself that convinced me he would be a good dad.

When my son got sick his father and I didn’t leave the hospital for a week. He risked losing his job with the police department. He was there every step of the way. He takes my son every weekend and I have him during the week. He picks him up and takes him to doctor appointments if necessary. He gives me money in hand and anything my son needs he gets it so we’ve been pretty successful in that way.

Overall he is a very good dad. He does his best to be fully involved and consistent. I feel that as a man he actually enjoys being a dad.

Them vs. You: I was raised by mom who is a Jehovah’s Witness so I try my best to stick closely to the moral values I received from the Bible as a child. I feel like spirituality is very important to give to your children and I am privileged to be able to pass that on to my son. He loves God.

It hurt my feelings when my mom would always nag me. It made feel like she didn’t see me as independent and responsible. It took a while for her to learn certain boundaries and to respect me as my own woman. But then it’s kind of difficult to do that when I live under her roof.

Surprisingly my father began to gravitate towards me once he found out I was having a baby. But before then he was usually nowhere to be found. You know, very in and out.

Fearful Moment: In April of 2014 my son suffered from these severe seizures. I thought I was going to lose him. It was very hard for me to cope with his illness. All praises to God he isn’t sick anymore! I learned a lot from that trying experience. I learned how strong children are and how much of a fighter my son is. I learned that God won’t give you something that you can’t handle; and with his help I handled it.

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Fearless Moment: My son is literally the tiny male version of me!! It astounds me sometimes. He is four and he already finishes my sentences. My favorite first was him standing up in the crib, using the potty, and first day of school.

It just made me cherish and appreciate all the blessings that come with being a parent. There are no perfect situations, and there will be hard times, but giving it your all and seeing those little smiles and hearing those little laughs makes it all worth it.

I had to realize that every time my son tells me he loves me, kisses me, hugs me, I must be doing something right.

Support System: Well my closest friend moved away to DR last year. We were trying to keep in touch via email; I would write and send pics from time to time. I haven’t spoken to her in months though….She was very concerned and worried, and she had every reason to be. However her concerns and worries didn’t get in the way of her showing me love and support.

My mom always tells me that I do a better job with my son than she did with me and my siblings. But I don’t agree with that, I wish I was half the mom my mother was.

Final thoughts: At times I felt like the worse mother on earth. I find my strength in God and my mother and all the other mothers who struggle and do their best to provide for their children.

My son saved my life.
MY SON SAVED MY LIFE.

I was young and carefree, living life recklessly, going down a destructive path. When I brought a life into this world, it was no longer about me. That forced me to start thinking ahead and wanting better for myself; to be a better ME in general so that I could be the best mom for my son. I just hope that when he is 25 years old he can look back and say that his mommy was a great mommy. Nothing would make me happier!

Pregnancy Scare #11; Fearless Dad: Maurice Jourdan

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Name: Maurice Jourdan
Age: 27
Graduated high school: 2005 (same as editor lol)
Number of children: 1

Pregnancy Scare: I found out the mother of my son (Tyler Aiden Jourdan) was pregnant in May of 2011.  I was turning 24 and I always said by 25 I would have a kid. How ironic huh?

The Uh-Oh Moment: I found out one day when she had come in after work. She told me and all I remember is excitement.  I knew it came with a whole new set of responsibilities.

This is a new life I have to raise.

The Dad Moment:  I became a dad the minute I found out my son’s mother was pregnant.  It starts with showing love and support to the mother while she is carrying your child. Her cravings had me running all over the Manhattan streets to find Pinkberrys. We would contact Google and find new Pinkberrys to go to. That’s all his mother had real cravings for.  Then she just wanted food…nothing particular; just food.

 ***Any man can be a father. It takes a real man to be a dad.***

Father/Dad:  I remember once I got to see the sonogram, that’s when reality hit me. This is your son and all I wanted was to see him and hold him in my arms. The realest moment was when the delivery room transformed. Yes it transforms! For all the mothers and fathers you know what I mean.

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The bed she was laying on turned into this birthing station and I still can’t figure out where all these gadgets came from. Then, what I believed to be a regular cabinet, turned into this equipment booth. I was all confused but I was just waiting for Ty to get out of his entrapment.

There was a lot of stay there, hold this, move here, come here. Now I’m not one to take orders but I was all over the room helping to get my son out. Then he got lazy. He decides he wasn’t going to come out without help, so they had to get the vacuum (not a real vacuum but a way to help get him out when the mother can no longer push). All I remember is seeing his face and then the nurse came and cleaned him up and took him to be weighed.

Then it happened; I was the first person to hold him. His mother wasn’t too happy but the doctor had to tend to her before she could get Ty. This was the moment I knew there was no love stronger than the love I have for my son.

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Them vs. You: Raising him is different because he’s learning from both parents; in my case I just had my mother.

The hardest part was telling our families there was going to be a new cousin, nephew, and grandchild.  At first my family wanted to make sure I was prepared and knew what I was getting myself into. Now I can say without them, things would’ve been different. Without their guidance and tutelage I would’ve been lost or probably not half the man I became.  As time went on, acceptance came and everyone just said, “He’s on his way. Let’s prepare.”  This statement let me know I had their support and this made me want to be the best dad I could be.

Of course there were friends and people who didn’t agree, but at the end of the day as long as your family has your back you will be fine.

Fearful Moment: Even though now his mother and I aren’t on good terms I still have a son to raise.  Don’t get me wrong she is an amazing mother; it’s just difficulties with her and me.  We tried to make it work for our son’s sake but constant arguing isn’t the environment to raise any child so we parted ways.

If it was possible I would’ve loved to raise my son as a family, but sometimes you have to find a better way to do things if they aren’t working out, so co-parenting is the way we went.

I deal with a great amount of stress and anxiety when it comes to going through the courts for joint custody.  Here’s the kicker; every judge I’ve seen says the same thing. “I am honored to see a father fighting for his child.”  I guess I thought that’s what you’re supposed to do.

It gets difficult at times because I can’t pick him up when I want, and due to the fact he’s no longer in the city, it makes life harder to get him even when I’m supposed to. Sometimes it’s snowing, or raining too bad, or he’s ill. If it was up to me, I’ll trek through the snow and I’ll deal with the rain and no matter how far away, I’ll get to my son. I’ll find a way and I always will. IMG_4879

Fearless Moment: My son is my twin! He is very witty and a fast learner.  He also enjoys sports and music, more so playing them than watching them (he doesn’t sit still. He also got that from me).  At the end of the day you just have to be stern in your words when you talk to him if he isn’t listening.  Other than that, you just want to be around him.  He is just full of energy and life. You fall in love with his personality.

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Whenever Ty is around every moment is my favorite, but my all-time favorite thing this little boy tried to do was climb out the crib.  I was walking in the bedroom after coming out the bathroom and I look in the crib and I see my son with his leg half way out and he’s just laughing.  I rushed over and put him back in and he gave me this look like, “Why dad, Why?”

Support System: A strong support system makes the difference.  This system is still in effect now as we go through the court system to obtain what is needed for us to make sure my son can know his father. And when I say “WE”, I mean my family and me, because I am not going through this alone. It affects the entire family.  Things like this remind me to keep strong in the fight because this isn’t about me anymore, it’s about raising my son and showing him his dad is here and always will be.

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Final Thoughts: All in all, being a father is the most important thing in my life and I will continue to raise him to be the best man he can be.  I don’t want him to follow in my shoes; I want him to be his own man.  I want him to take the knowledge I’ve instilled in him and use it to do whatever makes him happy.  Love is an understatement; my feelings for my son can’t be explained or truly expressed.  Father… No! I love being called DAD!!

Love you Ty Ty.

Pregnancy Scare #10; Fearless Mom: Kimberly Fobbs

Kimberly Fobbs

Name: Kimberly Fobbs
Age: 28
Year you graduated high school: 2004
Year you found out you were pregnant: 2008
Number of children: 2

The Uh Oh Moment: I found out I was pregnant during my third semester at Fulton Montgomery Community College. I remember specifically my roommate told me in March 2008 that she had a dream I had a child. I told her she was tripping and went to visit my family and boyfriend at the time in the city. That weekend I conceived my first born Tyler.

Around May, I started to feel sick every morning. My roommate and best friend, Evana said, “Girlllll, I think you pregnant!” I just looked at her. I paid the morning sickness no mind and just kept going to class. It wasn’t until I craved for green apples and chocolate milk that I really believed I was pregnant. I went home for the summer. Once I was back home I went to St. Luke Roosevelt’s to take a pregnancy test. May 14th, 2008 I found out I was almost two months pregnant!

The moment the nurse confirmed I was pregnant all I could think was…..DAMN (Farooq from WWE 36665voice). See, the relationship between Tyler’s father and I was complicated. He cheated on me previously. We had broken up and didn’t see nor speak to one another for a year. He eventually called me and I decided this is the time to get revenge; make him feel all the pain and frustration I felt. We got back together and I could not pull myself to cheat on him. No matter how much he has put me through or the pain I felt and still was feeling, I just couldn’t do it.

Fast forward to the doctor’s office May 14th, 2008, I knew I didn’t want to be with him. I knew before I left school to come home for the summer that I was going to end the relationship. Now they tell me I’m pregnant by the man I have grown to despise. Do I stay with him and try to make it work? Do I end the relationship amicably and we raise the child together as responsible adults?

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The Mom Moment: The moment I became a mom was when Tyler’s father told me if I am not going to be with him he will not be a part of the child’s life (we didn’t know the sex of the baby yet). This was a week after I found out I was pregnant. I told him “Ok… it’s your decision but if you ever change your mind you can always be a part of the child’s life.” From that moment I knew I had to be a mother for my son. Bad enough he didn’t have his father. I had to be an exceptional mother and father.

***Any man can be a father. It takes a real man to be a dad***

Father/Dad: When Tyler’s sperm donor (that is what I call him because I don’t feel he deserve the title of father or even dad) told me he wouldn’t be a part of Tyler’s life. I took it for face value. I never called him. He was absent for my entire pregnancy. I had my baby shower December 13th, 2008 (Tyler was due December 29th, 2008) he came to the baby shower (he wasn’t invited but my sister told him where I would be having it). I was admitted to the hospital December 29th, 2008. I was not ready to give birth so they induced me (medication to make the cervix open so the baby can exit).

The next day came, I wasn’t dilating. New Year’s Eve, I remember lying in the hospital being depressed. Knowing my son is coming into a world to a man that doesn’t and wouldn’t care.

January 1st came and went. At 1:30 am my best friend and former roommate from college entered my hospital room. I was so excited to see her along with my mother and father. I didn’t expect to give birth anytime soon because I still hadn’t dilated. By 1:45 am the doctors came in to inform me Tyler wasn’t getting any air and that he could possibly die. I began to panic. They put an oxygen mask over my face to try to get oxygen to him until my cervix dilated. By 2:05 am the doctors told me they were taking me for an emergency C-section.

At that moment Tyler’s sperm donor walked into the hospital room. I really did not want him to come into the room with me to deliver; I wanted my mom there. When it came down to it I felt like I would regret not allowing him to see his son be born. I am glad I did because he hasn’t seen Tyler since!

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Them vs. You: My parents are the coolest, strictest parents —if that makes sense— ever! They passed on morals and traditions that their parents did and didn’t give them. My parents never believed in hitting their children. They believe children respond better when you talk to them and you both get an understanding of where each one is coming from. My parents taught me patience and understanding when dealing with my children.

At one point in time, my mother and I weren’t seeing eye to eye. I was staying with my parents because I was having a hard time finding a job and keeping an apartment with no income. Although I needed to stay with my parents, I decided to leave with my children. By going through that, I found my strength and my weakness at the same time. Although I proved to myself I can make it, I yearned for my parents. That ordeal made me appreciate my parents and children; they make me who I am today!

The confidence of my parents made me extremely confident that I would be a terrific parent. I was nervous during both pregnancies. I was nervous because this is another life that solely depends on you. These little people are the only people to hear your heart beat from the inside and love you unconditionally; no matter your flaws or how others feel about you. You will always be your child’s hero as long as you do what you’re supposed to do.

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Fearful Moment: I was becoming more and more depressed because I couldn’t find a job. I felt depressed because I would look at my children and I couldn’t provide for them. My children would ask for things and I knew I couldn’t get it for them if their father didn’t have it. I never felt comfortable depending on anyone. It sent me in such a depressing spiral, I began to lose weight, my hair fell out and I was going to the hospital having problems with my blood pressure. After my health was declining I began to think about the moments with my children and then imagining dying by the age of 30 and leaving my children behind at the tender ages of 7(Tyler) and 5 (Sasha).

Fearless Moment: My first born saved my life literally! I was running the streets, fighting, on probation for an attempted murder charge that was reduced to assault, selling drugs, taking trips out of town…a lot of things I shouldn’t have been into. My children made me a better person. They made me want much more out of life. I didn’t care for myself much. Dying wasn’t a fear but a reality. Having children made me value life, family, morals and most importantly ME! I know I have to take care and love myself so I can be here for my children. Before I had children my worst fear was going to jail. Now my worst fear is not being here on this earth to see my children grow and mature.

Support System: I have a great support system, from my parents to my best friends.

When I told my parents I was pregnant with each of my children, they knew I would be a terrific parent. They felt from watching me assist with the raising of my two brothers I would be an exceptional parent. They were totally right!! I went to all my prenatal appointments with my mom, dad, or sister.

Now when I told my closest friends I was pregnant, on both occasions they were sooooooooo excited! My friends have been there throughout both pregnancies; from the cravings to buying any and everything my kids wanted or needed.

God blessed me and I met a man who stepped up as Tyler’s father and gave me a beautiful baby girl, Sasha. Although things did not work out between us, he is constantly around his children never missing a moment with them. My son and daughter have an amazing bond with their FATHER and I wouldn’t change it for the world.

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Final Thoughts: I found my strength in my children. I live for them! Without their love and existence I don’t believe I would be alive. I thank God every day for giving me my angels in human form. No matter how hard it is or if I struggle I appreciate every moment, minute, hour, day, week, month, and year God blesses me to spend with them. All I want is for God to allow me the strength and health to see my children graduate college, get married, and have children (even if it doesn’t happen in that order I will still be happy just to be in their presence) and I pray my children live long after I’m gone. Every night I pray for these two things to come into fruition!

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I can’t tell if I’m repeating the sins of my father because I’ve never seen his sins in person. I wonder how differently I would have turned out with his influence? Do I have the will in me to leave something I care about behind? Is abandonment embedded in my DNA? Is it a dormant beast waiting to be unleashed? Or have I already beaten these sane-less urges. Twenty-seven years in and I haven’t left too many shattered hearts behind. And those I might have, I know for a fact have mended. 

Would he have held me back from my potential if he was around? Or is he holding me back by not being here? I usually take his absence as encouragement to be better than the thing that was never there. I’m essentially working with a clean slate; a blank sheet for my own blueprint. But still, a slight muse would have been amusing.

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Pregnancy Scare #9; Fearless Mom: Phylicia Gomez

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Name: Phylicia Gomez
Age: 27
Year you graduated high school: 2004
Year you found out you were pregnant: 2006
Number of children: 2

The Uh Oh Moment: I found out I was pregnant when I returned home from Daytona, spring break April 7th, 2006. I was 18. Back then I still lived with my parents but I was home alone.

One of the most nerve-racking tests one could make.
One of the most nerve-racking tests one could make.

I was at home watching “Crash” and I couldn’t stop crying. I was like, Why am I so damn sensitive right now???! Maybe my period is coming. Then I was like, Well my last period was February 17th. If it was coming it should’ve been here by now…. So after the movie went off I walked to the 99 cent store. I got the test, went upstairs, and took it.  I was thinking If I’m pregnant, I guess I’ll schedule my appointment for my termination tomorrow.

Three minutes later I looked at the test and there were 2 lines; one very faint, but 2 lines. My heart skipped a couple of beats. I didn’t cry…I didn’t smile…I wasn’t sad…I wasn’t happy…I just put my coat on and went to the emergency room. They gave me a urine test and it was negative! But then they said they’re going to do an ultrasound just to confirm that I’m not pregnant.

The Mom Moment: As soon as the ultrasound began, there it was; Mickaylah’s strong, 7-week old, 150 bpm heartbeat. I knew then that no matter what anybody said I was going to be a mommy in 9 months. I became a mom at 4:49pm on November 17, 2006.

"I knew what he said was wrong. I was always a motivated girl I knew I was going to be a great mom! So his words didn't really affect my confidence."
“I knew what he said was wrong. I was always a motivated girl. I knew I was going to be a great mom! So his words didn’t really affect my confidence.”

***Any man can be a father. It takes a real man to be a dad.***

Father/Dad: My first thought was, “Who is this kid’s father???” I had a boyfriend but I had recently cheated on him and I was unsure. I wish I could say I didn’t know any better, but I was 18, I knew exactly what I was doing. I just didn’t care. But I’m still with him as of today. He forgave me and we have grown up together. That was almost 10 years ago.

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Time flies when you’re taking care of business.

The first thing [the other guy] said to me was congrats to you and your boyfriend! He was my friend. We had sex one time and I got pregnant. Then I told my boyfriend. He told me he wasn’t ready and that I should terminate my pregnancy! But I decided to continue my pregnancy and for the whole time I was alone because not long after finding out I was pregnant, they both got arrested and had to serve time in jail.

My boyfriend was released in December right after Mikaylah was born. Her father is currently still serving time. I spent most of my pregnancy back and forth to Rikers Island. So my daughter now has a father and a daddy. My boyfriend and I are still together. He cares for Mikaylah like his own. Her father is being the best father he can be from where he is, but his situation prevents him from being her daddy.

Them vs. You: My father is very family oriented I try to do family activities with my family as often as possible.

I’m a lot like my mom in many ways!!!!!! She is the best mother I could ever ask for, but she was very young raising me and my sister. She was passive and let us do whatever we wanted as long as we did well in school. After school extracurricular activities were our decision. Growing up we had no bedtime, we could dance how we wanted, listen to whatever kind of music we chose, and watched what we wanted.

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I try to limit my daughter’s “Nicki Minaj” intake and keep her involved in different clubs because I feel like as long as she’s busy doing things, she won’t be able to be pregnant by 18 like me and my sister were.

My father told me that having this baby was going to be the worst decision I could ever make. He told me I wouldn’t finish school and that I’d be a bad mother because I’d have no education. This conversation happened when I was 7 weeks. The next time I saw or spoke to him, I was 9 months pregnant. I didn’t speak to my father during my whole pregnancy.

I knew what he said was wrong. I was always a motivated girl. I knew I was going to be a great mom! So his words didn’t really affect my confidence.

Fearful moment: My scariest moment was when my daughter drank perfume!!!!!! She had poured it in a cup and drank it! I was too scared to take her to the hospital thinking they would open an ACS case on me so I dealt with her at home. I never took my eyes off that girl again!!!!

My lowest moment as a parent was in 2011. I was pregnant again and I’d found out that my unborn child was very sick when I was about 5 months pregnant. She died intrauterine. I was depressed for months after the death of my baby and I wouldn’t even talk to my big daughter. I felt like I was dead with a heartbeat. It was the worst time of my life. And I completely shut my daughter out of my life during those months. I’ll never forgive myself for treating her the way I did.

Fearless moment: Her first step; she would only walk if you had food for her. She was such a greedy little girl.

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“What about your friends”

Support system: I was the first of all my friends to have a baby.

All of my friends were shocked. My best friend Stephanie was happy to find out she wasn’t the reason I couldn’t really enjoy our Daytona trip.

All of my friends are still around. We’ve all grown up and we try to make time for each other as often as possible. My biggest support system since my daughter was born has been my mom and my step dad. They’ve been there for us since day one!

PG10V__C20BV__19C4 From party to pregnancy, here since Day One!

I find my strength in my babies. I know that they need me to be the best mommy I can be. Oh and caffeine……LOTS OF CAFFEINE!!!

Final thoughts: Being a mom is the hardest job in the world!!!!!!  There are no days off, but it’s the only job I’ll do happily for the rest of my life!!!!!!! The love I have in my heart for Mickaylah, Mason, and my angel Maeci is incredible! It’s like, how could you love somebody else more than you love yourself?? I do it every day and it’s a wonderful feeling. I wouldn’t change it for the world!!!!!

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