Tar Baby

Tar Baby193

I wasn’t supposed to see you when you were born.  You were to be whisked away to a family that was anxiously awaiting your arrival.  Taken to a family who were praying I would not change my mind. Earlier that day, the social worker told me, an African American family would be best, because mixed kids usually looked Black…

I was 7 months pregnant when I finally told my parents the secret I had so desperately tried to conceal. I remember sitting in Spanish class when you kicked, and all I could think about was if someone had seen my shirt move. Time was running out, and I couldn’t keep my secret any longer.

There were so many details I remember vividly. Events which continue to play out in my head over and over again- the local hospital not accepting me as a patient because I hadn’t received any pre-natal care.  Sleeping in a sleeping bag in Grandma and Grandpa’s room, because not only was it hard for me to sleep, I was also afraid to be alone. The very embarrassed medical student who was doing his rotation in OB/GYN the day you were born. Grandma telling me not to curse during my contractions, I was only 15 after all, and I shouldn’t have been using that type of language in front of her.

But the one moment I will never forget was your birth. The instant you came into the world, the nurse took you in her arms and smiled as she said;

“Would you like to hold him?”

Within seconds, I had exchanged glances with my mom and the doctor. You see, the nurse wasn’t supposed to ask me that question.  I always wondered if she got in trouble for not just taking you away.  Before anyone could answer, I reached for you and said, “Yes.” She placed you into my arms, and I knew it was with me you belonged.  I didn’t know what tomorrow would bring; I didn’t know much of anything.  I was a mother, we were connected, and I thank God every day for the nurse who asked;

“Would you like to hold him?”


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