I was suffering from a major case of “pregnancy-phobia.” It was around midnight and I was driving home from a movie when I decided to swing into the Safeway and buy a pregnancy test—just to set my mind at ease. I was embarrassed that the cashier might see me go straight into the bathroom with it, so I drove across the street to the Chevron station for anonymity sake.
Walking in, I noticed the clerk was a guy I’d known from high school. I moved swiftly into the restroom hoping he’d been too busy to notice me—I was in such a hurry. I ducked back into my pickup truck, hoping I’d gone unnoticed.
But then I noticed two pink lines staring defiantly at me from the test. What did that mean? I re-read the package.
Pregnant? The world stopped. No. WAY.
I was two weeks post break-up and felt like the most alone individual on planet earth. I was in-between jobs and hadn’t ever even thought about becoming a mother. I hadn’t even found the right guy. I was in a freezing cold pickup truck at a gas station at midnight bawling my eyes out. Totally lost.
My thoughts were reeling. None of the big ideas I’d had for my life involved toting around a small person. Everyone thought I was so responsible and unless I did something soon, they were all going to learn the truth.
Bizarre. I’d been against abortion my whole life, but in that cyclone of gripping fear, it stood as my only possible option.
I could discreetly just get rid of it real quick and no one would even have to know. It seemed like my only choice. Like there was no choice at all. I was terrorized by thoughts of what an inept mother I would be, and all the scorn I’d get from everyone that used to look up to me.
These hopeless thoughts were interrupted by a tap on my window.
“Are you okay?” It was the cashier, Quinn, my old friend from high school choir.
I covered my face and said, “Yes”… But Quinn wasn’t satisfied. He opened the door and said, “Come in the store.”
I walked in behind him and noticed another customer walking in behind us. Without missing a beat, Quinn grabbed a baseball hat off a rack and slid it over my head, pushing the brim down to cover my eyes. He said, “Have a seat” and pointed to a little café table off to the side. After I sat down he put his big, black leather coat around me, and went back to serve the customers.
In those few moments I tried to think of any lie that I could tell Quinn to get him off my case, but as he walked back toward me with eyes full of compassion I knew it was all going to come out. Through sobs (and between customers), I told him everything.
Quinn told me a verse from the Bible—“‘For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future'” (Jeremiah 29:11).
I figured God had plans for me… but Quinn was telling me that God had plans for this baby. I wanted so badly to believe that it was just a senseless clump of cells. I wanted my “easy out”… but it never would have been. See, there was a little boy growing inside me. Kaleb Josiah was growing in there.
The fact that I didn’t know his name didn’t change the fact that he existed.
So, after talking with Quinn for a couple hours, I got back into my truck. Immediately, the whirlpool of thoughts began closing in again. But, in a split second decision, I picked up my phone and called a friend at one in the morning to tell her I was pregnant. I let the cat out of the bag, and so, from that moment I knew I was accountable.
Days turned into weeks, and I gradually let my family know. I approached my ex-boyfriend with the news and he was terrified. He said, “I never wanted to be a weekend daddy.” I told him I understood and it was just my conviction to let him know… and so I did. I didn’t name him on the birth certificate and I didn’t go after him for child support. I only asked that he call me yearly just to stay in touch, in case there were some crazy medical scenario that required a biological family member or something.
Almost three years after Kaleb Josiah’s birth, I met Paul. Paul fell for Kaleb right away, and then he noticed me.
While other little boys dreamed of becoming firefighters or astronauts, Paul had always wanted to be a daddy. My phone call with the birth father that year was simply to request his signature on some legal documents to sign away legal paternity—which he was relieved to do.
I married Paul that year and he legally adopted Kaleb. Kaleb doesn’t ever remember a time when Paul wasn’t his daddy. We’ve added three younger brothers to our tribe, and have been so blessed to take them to serve in places like India and Nepal.
We opened ourselves up to life in simple trust, and life responded by overflowing in us with its sweet richness in ways we couldn’t have experienced otherwise. Each of these boys is a complete wonder! They’re the reason I could never believe in karma—such a gift.
So thank you for reading our story, and also, I offer a very humble “thank you” to the Giver of Life.
This story was written by Tabitha C. and was shared with us via our My Story page. Do you have a story to tell? We want to hear it!