Classes at Tesst were all done. It was the summer of 2005. As part of the program, I was required to work at a medical clinic unpaid for 30 days. Tesst called it an "externship". My clinic schedule was 8 am to 4 pm. I still wanted money so I worked at Popeye's on Weekends. I was exhausted. I was working six days a week. I was doing 8 hours a day for free Monday through Friday, then my best friend and I worked 15 to 18 hours on Saturday and was off on Sundays. I would come home and go to sleep. I couldn't even make it upstairs. I would come in and crash on the couch. I was always so tired. It was normal for me to work several hours without eating or drinking anything. This one particular Saturday, it was hot outside and hot inside too because of the hot grease and the hot lights on the chicken and biscuit oven. I was used to that because it wasn't my first summer working there. So, I'm in there working as usual when all of a sudden I start to feel weird. I sat down on the floor with my back against a cabinet and pulled my legs to my chest. I rested my head on my knees. Next thing I know, I'm at a table in the lobby surrounded by the whole staff. Everbody was looking at me. There was a large cup of water a piece of chicken in front me. Apparently, I had lost consciousness while I was sitting there. I drank some water and ate some of the chicken. I got back to work. I was on my period and I'm already anemic so I figured that was why I passed out. I had gone to the bathroom and noticed my period had stopped. My cycle has always been like clockwork. It lasted 7 days and always started the first week of every month. My period had never lasted only 3 days. Something, women's intuition perhaps, told me to take a pregnancy test. As soon as I got off work I went to Giant and got a test. I couldn't wait until I got home. I went straight to the restroom and peed on that stick. Tests today are almost instantaneous. Back then, they took up to 5 minutes. I slipped it back into it's wrapper and hid it in the baby changing station table. I walked around a bit to kill time. Five minutes is actually a long time. It felt like forever. I had set a timer in my phone. It dinged.
"It's time" I thought.
I made my way back to the bathroom and took the test out. According to the instructions, two pink lines is positive. My test had two pink lines. I didn't believe it. I was convinced it was wrong because it was a store brand test. I bought a First Response test. Again, I figured because this test was name brand and expensive, it would be more accurate. I took this test at home. That one was positive too! OH..MY...GAWD! All kinds of thoughts flooded into my head.
"I'm only 20 years old." I thought.
"How do I tell my mom?"
I was panicked. I ran into my moms room with the test still in my hand.
"I'm pregnant!" I blurted out.
"I already knew you was pregnant because you been laying around a lot", she said , completely unphased. I thought I was so tired because I was working so much. I was working up to 60 hours a week for Pete's sake!
The next thing I had to do was tell Wade. I wasn't sure how he would take the news, but I had to tell him, it's his kid. I called his cellphone to see where he was. I had caught him before he went outside to run around in the streets.
"I gotta tell you something real quick. I'm on my way up the street", I said, then hung up.
I walked up the block faster than I had ever done before. I knocked on the door. His mom opened the door.
"Hey Toya, how you doing sweetie?" She asked with a smile.
"I'm ok." I lied.
"Wade is in his room." She said as she opened the screen door to let me into the house. I ran straight upstairs to Wade's room. He was sitting on the edge of the bed putting on a pair of shoes. I closed the door and sat down.
"I'm pregnant." I blurted out.
"You sure?" He asked. His eyes were as wide as saucers.
"Am I sure?" I thought."I should punch him."
I took out the pregnancy test and showed it to him.
"Yes I'm sure. I took two tests. Why would I lie about something like that? That is some serious shit!" I said.
"Look, we young. I don't wanna be a single mother. Tell me now if you don't want to be a dad and I won't keep it." I continued.
How ironic it is that I thought about the idea of being a single mother right away. Was it perhaps a premonition? My dad has been in my life since the day I was born. He is still very much alive, well and active in my adult life.
"You don't gotta go to the clinic. You can't not keep my kid yo." Was his response.
So it was decided, we were going to be parents...