I worked as a new meter reader for the gas company shortly before the girl I was seeing went away to school to Michigan Technological University. That school is way up in the Upper Peninsula. I lived in the far, southern part of the lower.

     I visited her every other weekend. Part of my decision to stay working and go to school closer to home was because we had planned a life together when her schooling was finished. It was the plan I had set in motion when I accepted the job and decided not to go back to Ferris State University.

     I drove the eight hour ride up to see her every other week, if not more. But on one of those first trips up there, another life-altering move was set in motion. I got her pregnant.

     It rocked me to my socks that this had come to be when I found out about a month later. I was gonna be a daddy to someone! ME!! I didn’t expect this at all. It was so unplanned so early on in my life. I was only 19. But something inside me said I can do this if I put my mind to it.

     The hardest obstacle to overcome was letting our parents know what was going on. She told her mom early on. I on the other hand had my hand forced during a confrontation with my dad.

     I used to spend alot of time on the phone with her in the evenings. Every night we were talking until it got to where my dad was getting outrageous phone bills and started to get on my case to talk to her less. He made a deal with me to talk less or I would have to pay my part of the bill. So of course I agreed to pay him. I had a good job. Paid well. I didn’t care. But he did.

     He thought I was throwing my money away. We got into arguments about it. He thought I should save up, I told him I was, but I kept the calls going. He even wanted to charge me some kind of interest on top of my due amount to teach me a lesson! I don’t remember his figure, but I was irate about this. Who was he to tell me how I was gonna spend my money?

     After it was established she was pregnant, we happened to be on the phone one particular night discussing what our next move would be. My dad busted into the room as I was on the phone and started hollering at me to get off the phone. I was embarassed, shocked, my nerves were already fried due to the pregnancy, and so I yelled back.

     Once i got off the phone with her, I had it out with my dad. He was asking me why I am on the phone all the time. He wanted answers. He could not understand why I was doing this every single night. I told I didn’t know. But I knew full well why now. We were making plans and throwing around ideas about the pregnancy.

     He yelled at me for not knowing. For throwing my money away. I yelled back and told him to leave me alone about it, that I had some stuff on my mind that we were working out. The he put his hands on my shoulders and asked why I did not know. Then he hit me with…”Is she pregnant?”

     I put MY hands on HIS shoulders and in a tearful response I said…”Yes! You’re gonna be a grandpa.”

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