I mentioned in a post the other day that my boys were going to become uncles soon. Fate has decided that day is today. Today the twins’ older sister, at the tender age of 18 years (and 3 months), the little girl I raised from the age of 2 to 11, gave birth to a healthy baby boy.
I’m still trying to come to grips with the fact that a child I helped raise is now a parent. I changed her diapers. I helped potty-train her. I helped her learn to talk. I cooked her dinners. I fed her. I cared for her when she was sick. I gave her a hug and a kiss before bed every night. I helped her with her homework. I played with her. And now she has her own child.
Everyone is excited about this. But me. The twins are excited. They can’t wait to get up to the hospital to see their nephew. My former step-daughter has been excited for months, oblivious to the mountain life has just placed before her on her life’s journey. Her mom, my first wife, has been excited, too. Even when she first found out her 17-year old daughter was pregnant.
I feel like the outcast here. I was disappointed when I first found out. My former step-daughter had plans to got to a culinary school and become a baker. She had already been accepted to a culinary school. She had an after-school job and was saving up her money for a car and for a place to live so she could get out from her under mother’s shadow of tyranny once she turned 18.
All those plans are now water down the drain. She is still living with her mom because she hasn’t been able to work. She has nowhere else to go. She obviously can’t go to school now as she needs to care for an infant and get a job to support said infant.
I knew this day was rapidly approaching, but now that it’s here I feel sick to my stomach. My boys are too young to be uncles, in my opinion. They are only 13. My former step-daughter is too young to be a mother. She has, with one careless decision, deprived herself of a chance for an education. Sure she can still go to school, but it won’t be for a few years. Her son will have to be a bit older before she can go, which means in the interim she’ll have to take a job that requires no education. That means, mostly likely, a minimum wage job to support her new bundle of joy.
We are going to make a trip up to the hospital later to see this new addition to the family, but I’m not excited about this at all. I’m having trouble focusing on the positive here as I can only see the negative. All I see is the bright future that laid before her decimated like a bomb had been detonated. I see a young woman robbed of her care-free years of self-discovery and sewing her wild oats. I see a young woman suffocating beneath the weight of a responsibility she’s not ready to bear. I see only the tombstone commemorating the person she could have been. May that young woman rest in peace.