February 25th, 2015 I decided it was time to tell my family. Specifically, my sister Lauren. She was my only close family member who lived in Utah at the time, and she was my tennis coach… so either way, she needed to know.
I also figured my sister Lauren could give me the best advice on what to do next, and how to proceed with telling my parents. I remember driving over to her house feeling nauseous because I was so nervous. Since I was scared, I decided to bring one of my friends with me who was also on the tennis team.
I remember we sat down and my sister was telling me about her new couch and inside I was dying. How was I supposed to just spit out that I am pregnant? After a few minutes of chatting, it got quiet and that’s when I said, “Arik and I have been messing up, and I didn’t get my period this month.” Before I had the chance to get the rest out I started crying. Lauren responded, “did you take a pregnancy test?”. Mumbling between cries I said “yeah and it was positive”.
My sister was so calm and collected, it almost made me even more nervous because she didn’t show too much emotion. She told my friend she needed to go home so we could talk alone. My friend left and she said we needed to call my parents and tell them. I really didn’t want to at this point but she said we had to so that’s what we did.
Telling My Parents I’m Pregnant
We decided to call my dad first because he is more understanding about stuff like this in general. The phone was dialing and the only thing going through my head was, “please don’t answer, please don’t answer”… “Hello?”, he said.
I took a deep breath but failed to even speak, I started bawling. Then I managed to get out, “Dad, I messed up” and continued crying. He responded, “Are you pregnant?” as if he knew from the distress in my voice.
I honestly don’t remember too much from that conversation, he didn’t get mad at me, he was just disappointed. He was pretty calm on the phone…but he was mad at Arik.
My parents didn’t know Arik and I were dating, but they knew we were maybe seeing each other casually because they started freaking out about it to me. They lectured me the whole month of February about it. They did not like him, because they thought he was a “bad boy”…and frankly, for a Mormon, he was. But at this point, I was no ray of sunshine either, so who was I to judge?
I told my dad I was pregnant, so I thought the worst of it was over…but it wasn’t. He wasn’t with my mom, he was on a business trip…so now we had to do a three-way call and tell my mom. GREAT. Now I have to re-do this whole “pregnancy talk” again for the THIRD time tonight.
We added my mom into the call and she was in a good mood…but that lasted a moment. She was livid. She yelled at me and was overall just super pissed. No other way to explain it haha. I think she was even more furious because she thought I was a virgin.
To Mormons, a girl who has sex outside of marriage is typically considered a slut… and I feel like she thought my actions reflected her parenting. As it was, I was the only Mormon girl in my area who wore tube top dresses to high school dances and played sports on Sunday. I got judged all the time for it by other Mormon girls but I never cared.
At the end of my conversation with my parents, my mom finally calmed down and told me she loved me. My dad said he was booking a flight to come up to Utah (the next day) so he could take me back to California to figure everything out. We hung up the phone.
Then my sister finally broke down. She stood up and hugged me, and we embraced each other for about a minute. I distinctly remember her saying, “being a mom has been one of the hardest things I have ever had to do.” She was very worried for me since this was going to be a big change in my life.
I left my sister’s house and met up with Arik at my apartment. He had just told his dad while I was telling my parents. It seemed like we had two completely different conversations. He told me his dad wasn’t even mad. He just wanted to make sure we had a plan moving forward, and he supported us together.
That night Arik begged me not to go back to California. “Stay with me and everything will be okay, we can live at my parent’s house and they will take care of us.” It did sound appealing, but I knew I had to go back to California to figure my life out, and if I stayed in Utah, I wouldn’t be able to figure out what was truly best for me.
We stayed up all night talking and snuggling. He wasn’t happy because I kept telling him that I had to go back. Something was frantic about him, trying to convince me all night to stay. I wanted to stay. I definitely did. But something was telling me I had to go back.
The next morning I had to go to BYU Athletics and talk to the Athletic Director, Dean of Students, and a couple other people in the administration to tell them that I was pregnant. I was so nervous that I was literally sweating everywhere. I honestly thought I was going be kicked out of BYU.
I was pleasantly surprised that they all reacted kindly and positively to me. I told my Athletic Director that I made a mistake by getting pregnant, and he responded by saying, “a baby is never a mistake.” I was honestly so relieved and happy that BYU athletics was so good to me, and they even told me they wanted me to come back after having my baby.
The Last Goodbye
Later that day my dad flew in, and my sister and I cleaned out my whole apartment and packed my car up. Both my dad and sister did not want me to see Arik before I left. Meanwhile, he was texting me all day wondering when he could see me.
I visited with some friends to say my goodbyes and told my dad and sister that we were going to meet up with another friend to give her a lot of my clothes that I wouldn’t be needing anymore. I met up with my friend to give her my clothes but I also told Arik to meet me, despite my dad telling me that I better not see him.
He pulled up to the parking lot that my friend and I were in and I walked over to his car door. He opened it and pulled me in. He started crying. I had only seen him cry once before when I wrote him a 3-page love letter for Christmas…so it wasn’t very typical to see him like this. He was sobbing on my shoulder, begging me not to leave.
He kept telling me that everything would work out if I stayed, and his parents would take care of literally everything. Financially we would never have anything to worry about. He also said something along the lines of this being “our life together and this is our baby”. Trying to remind me that it was his baby in my belly as well.
It was SO incredibly hard, especially since our relationship had been so good since we found out we were pregnant. I didn’t want to leave. I wanted to stay in Utah with him… but I knew I had to listen to my parents and figure my life out since I wasn’t on the right path.
We only had about ten minutes together, and then we said our final goodbye. February 26th, 2015 was the last time I saw Arik.
NEXT WEEK TEASER: “I loved her and wanted to marry her before she got pregnant. I’ll love her, provide for her, motivate her, support her… She is the one. I know it. I feel it.”
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