Girl, you are trippin’. There is absolutely no entire way. Breathe crazy. You couldn’t be. I don’t even think it is possible for you to be. Shake it off and take your butt on to school. You’re on homecoming court, you are cheerleading, you have college scholarship offers, and you’re on the honor roll. Focus girl. Focus! It’s YOUR year.
This morning is a little drowsier than most, but I guess we all wake up on the wrong side of the bed sometimes. Lord, this pain in my side will not go away. Thank you cheerleading! I’m pretty positive that I pulled something lifting those flyers in the air. Oh, the life of being a base is tough.
The bus slowly exits the school premises and I am left to face the halls of Concord High School with the throbbing pain and overwhelming sense of nausea. Those thoughts from this morning try their best to seep back into my mind but I push them away immediately. Following a deep breath in and out, I enter the school with the best possible happy face I could muster.
“Hey boo!” – “Girl, let me tell you about this weekend!” – “JJ what are we doing after school today?—“Honey, yes!”
My day begins. As typical Meisha would, I proceed to speak to any and everybody in my pathway with a smile brighter than the sun at 12 pm in the afternoon. Typical of any teenager, I continue to crack jokes throughout the day with my girlfriends and talk about what matters most to us—clothes, cheerleading, and boys. However, deep down I know I am a nerd. I know that part of me wants to be the “cool kid” but the other half of me wants to be the first person in my family to “make it out.” Diligently, I tackle every assignment my teacher hands me and secretly, I write down notes that I will later take home to study for hours on end. You see, boys and clothes don’t matter as much to me but I can’t tell my friends that. I need that circle. If they knew that my mom just struggled paying this month’s rent, that I have had to boil water before because our hot water was turned off, or that I was wearing my older sister’s hand me downs, what would they think? Would I have friends? I will fake the front, but I will keep my grades first! Heck, it’s my senior year and I have never NOT been on the honor roll in my entire school career.
Lunchtime arrives and I have had my mind set on a burger all day. As usual, my friends and I enter the cafeteria ready to gossip like girls over a quick meal.
Oh no! What the (bleep)? What is this smell?! Why is everyone acting so normal as if they cannot smell these hamburgers? I think I am about to throw up. I cannot be here. All of this food just stinks today! Seriously, what is going on?
I couldn’t handle it. Without a mention to anyone, I walked at a speed that was a little less of a run directly to the bathroom. I didn’t throw up or anything but that had nothing to do with my eyes. An outpour of fear, anxiety, embarrassment, and disappointment liquidly flowed from each pupil. Yet, an inkling of me still told myself that I was overreacting.
When I arrived back at home after school, I wrestled and wrestled with myself. Part of me wanted to know what was going on with my body but the other part of my conscience said that whatever it was, it would go away. After an hour of inner turmoil, I did what I knew best. I waited for my mom to leave for the grocery store and called my best friend Alisha who had a car at the time. I asked her if she could come pick me up and take me to the hospital. I needed to be around someone that wouldn’t judge me. I didn’t need an angry mom or an instigating friend. I needed warmth to soothe a stressed out me. My best friend was all of the comfort I needed an more. She came from her hometown in Kannapolis just to take me to the hospital in Concord and all during the ride she made jokes to make me feel at ease.
“Tal’Meisha Frontis, I know that this may not be the news that you want to hear but I want you to know that it will be okay. You will be okay.”
“Just tell me.”
“We are going to get you pushed back in as second here for an ultrasound.”
“What? What is that for? Can it be fixed?” (I want you to understand that I was truly clueless. I was still so young and naïve.)
“You are pregnant, dear. We need to see how far along you are and make sure the baby is healthy.”
Baby?! In me?! What about NC State? They just offered me a full ride scholarship. What about being the black, pregnant girl walking the halls of high school? I don’t even know how to change a diaper. I have never had a job! My family is not even the wealthiest. What about the disappointment on my mom’s face? What about my brother that always brags on how smart his little sister is? What about my baby’s father and his family? He’s at a completely different high school which means I will be walking the school halls alone? I know he will be supportive though. We have been together for a year and I don’t see him being the type to leave me out alone. But doctor… I can’t handle this. Doctor…come back and tell me you mixed up the results. Oh doctor… I don’t know how to raise a baby. This is all a huge mistake. Please doctor…how can I tell my family? Meisha, what will your next step be?