Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Adoption: Part 2...The phone call that started it all...

Before reading Part 2: Please watch the short video below.

As the days past by I hardly gave any thought to whether this man was going to call me or not. I honestly didn’t think he would call and to be honest I actually didn’t care. I had so much on my plate already. My four kids and I were adjusting to living on our own in our new apartment, and I was quite busy managing the four kids. 

Much to my surprise, two days later, the phone did ring. It was as if he followed that “two day dating rule” of not calling a girl for two days after she gave her number. It’s as if I was set up from the beginning to play this game that I had no idea how to play. 

I didn’t hesitate to answer the phone. I wasn’t nervous or anxious….just more curious than anything.

“Hello.” I answered.
“Hello Rebekah…this is Ron. You gave me your number a couple evenings ago. Sorry it took me so long to call.”
“That’s ok,” I answered. “So tell me about yourself.”
He went on to tell me that he was a tow truck driver. His job was to tow away cars that were parked illegally in apartment complexes and trailer parks, as well as cars that were in accidents or broke down. His job sounded interesting and it sounded like a good steady job. So far he seemed responsible. 

He went on to tell me that he had a son and how proud he was to be a dad. The conversation went well and he seemed like a very likeable guy. After all he was a single father. There is a bit of sweetness around that. 

They say hind sight is 20/20 right? That’s exactly the case in this situation. The next part of the conversation will stick in my mind forever because if I had of followed those “red flags” that you get when something isn’t right, I might have saved myself a lot of heart ache. 

“So Ron, do you go to church?” I asked
Without hesitation he answered “Absolutely, I attend New Life here in town. In fact I just got off the phone with Ted Haggard.”

It was as if a bell went “DONG” in my ears. I can’t explain it any other way. Something about that statement was just so OFF!! Ted Haggard WAS the pastor of my church. I’m sure you have heard about his fall. It was all over the news. Ted “fell from grace” as they say, and had an affair with a transgender man. He was no longer the pastor of our church, and we were in transition trying to find a new one. I believe at the time he wasn’t even in town, but being mentored by some people in my OTHER home church in Phoenix, AZ.  Later I would learn that this was a lie told only to impress me and was the first of many many lies he would tell me. 

The conversation continued…

“Oh wow,” I exclaimed. “So you know Ted Haggard? That’s crazy. How often do you go to church?”

Again without hesitation he answered “Oh two to three times per month.”
For him to say that he went two to three times per month was a good sign to me. I figured that someone who goes to church that often probably has a relationship with God similar to mine. It made me forget the “red flag Ted Haggard” comment made earlier and I felt my walls going down and I started to trust him. 

The relationship continued for a few months. I felt that our relationship was getting stronger and he seemed to feel the same way. I was very busy with my life as a single mom of four and he seemed to be REALLY busy with his tow truck business. 

As time went on I noticed that he started talking a lot about wanting to have a baby with me. I was VERY much against this idea. I already had four kids…I certainly didn’t want a fifth and lately he had been doing some strange things that I couldn’t set right in my mind. He just didn’t seem to be into the relationship as much as I was. He would say he was coming over but would cancel last minute and he was talking about this other girl at work a lot. It made me uneasy and I was getting confused. 

I asked him one day about this other girl. Her name was Tammi and she was the secretary at his office. I told him it was making me feel uncomfortable to hear the stories of him and this girl at his work. I told him the stories sounded like flirting and I thought that possibly she liked him. He answered with “No way, we are just playing around. She is a HUGE lady and I am not attracted to her.” In my very trusting way I tried to put it all aside and just be happy with life….as I always do.
This portion of the story goes very fast and is incredibly confusing to me. To this day cannot understand how I got myself into this situation. Here I was with a man who sometimes seemed like he loved me and other times just seemed to be using me. I have no idea why I didn’t pack up and run for the hills but I didn’t. I have no idea why I couldn’t just see the bad signs and say “this isn’t working for me.” What kind of “UNHEALTHY” was I to stay with this man? My only explanation is that I didn’t know people could be so mean. I see the best in all those I meet and I couldn’t even fathom that someone would be lying to me around EVERY corner. 

My memory is very vague but I do remember that somehow…someway I let my guard down and I ended up pregnant. I don’t remember much about that time…but I do know that I was very scared and I was worried about telling my family. A few weeks after finding out I was pregnant I started to bleed. This was very unusual for me. I had been pregnant four other times and never did I have any bleeding until I was in labor and pushing a baby out. Scared that something was wrong I went to the hospital and had some testing done. Two days later the results were in and I was told that the baby didn’t make it. 

My baby didn’t make it? Those are words I had never heard before. I was only six weeks pregnant. I was just getting over the shock of being pregnant and now I wasn’t.

What was my life coming to? 

I cant even explain to you how I was feeling. I think all my feelings were gone. I wasn’t taking care of myself. I was acting reckless and sleeping with a man who I wasn’t married to and who clearly was not always into me. Was I that desperate for love? I thought I didn’t need a man. I thought I was happy being alone. I wanted to scream at myself…”WAKE UP REBEKAH!!!”

Yet…I continued to see this man. I continued to try and nurture this relationship that I thought meant something. The weeks went on. I mourned the loss of a child, and hoped for happiness with Ron.
It was a cool October morning and I was startled awake by my phone ringing. It was a number I didn’t recognize but I answered it anyway.

“Hello!” I said
“Hello Rebekah.” Came a voice I had not heard before. “This is Tammi. I know you don’t know me but Im the secretary at Rons office.”

NOW I knew who she was. This was the woman who I had heard multiple stories about. Stories that made me feel like something was “up.” Stories that seemed like flirting. Stories that I was assured meant nothing. 

“Hi Tammi. How did you get my number?” I asked
“Ron gave it to me awhile back as an emergency number. Listen, I know you and Ron are not together anymore , but I need a favor.  He hasn’t showed up to work yet today and he isn’t answering his phone and I was wondering if you still had a key to his apartment because I want to go in and check on him.”

You could imagine my surprise. Not together anymore? When were we NOT together? We had never broke up. In fact he was starting to talk about marriage and had even said he picked out some rings at some pawn shop that he really liked. 

I answered in a shaky voice ”Tammi, Ron and I never broke up. What are you talking about?”
“What???” She said sounding as surprised and confused as I was. “He and I have been together for awhile now. He said you and him ended your relationship months ago.”

“NO, we never ended our relationship Tammi. What the heck is going on?” I practically screamed at her through the phone. “I have to go…Im going over there right now.”

“Ill meet you there…SHIT!!”  she responded…just as I was hanging up the phone and running out the door. 

I couldn’t believe this was happening. It was like something straight out of Jerry Springer. How had my life became a TV show. We would fit right in….

I drove over to his house and found him getting into his car ready to drive off. I was so upset…but I wanted to make sure it was true before I accused him of something. He looked confused as to why I was in such a frantic state until he realized why I was actually there. 

Tammi pulled up not long after I did. We both immediately started badgering him with questions.
He denied nothing! It was all true. For once he didn’t defend himself…he just sat in his car looking at us as we tried to get more answers. 

Tammi and I stood there in the parking lot looking like we were just run over by a train. I told her that we never broke up. I told her that we were just pregnant but unfortunately lost the baby just six short weeks ago.  She seemed to listen to me and also seemed a bit sympathetic. I didn’t know her but I almost liked her in that moment. She seemed to be in the same situation as I was and we could relate. Instead of hating her, I felt a little close to her. 

It seemed nobody knew what to do in that moment. All three of us knew that it was over…the cat was out of the bag (so to speak)….now where do we go from here. 

Knowing what I knew…in that moment ….I decided in my head that our relationship was over. It seemed like my eyes were opened and all the lies he had been telling me had come to the surface and I was done. I wanted my keys back to my apartment and I wanted to wash my hands of the whole thing. 

Ron never got out of his car. Me and Tammi just stood there yelling at him. He gave me my keys back, I gave him his keys back and then from behind me Tammi said something that made the hairs stick up on my arms….

“Ron…I better not be pregnant!”
My head snapped around and I just looked at her. 
PREGNANT! What If I was pregnant again? I knew the thought was absurd. I just had a miscarriage and I was still recovering physically from that. It had only been six weeks and I had not even had a period yet. No way could I be pregnant. Tammi might be but I certainly am NOT pregnant. 

That’s what I kept telling myself anyway….

Click here for Part 3. 


Rebekah Miller said...

I appreciate your transparency. Thank you for sharing!

Lu Holt said...

I love reading your story and look forward to more. Adoption is very painful. Someone like you can help others understand what it's like before they make the choice to place or parent.

Maya's Musings said...

Thank you for sharing, I have followed both of your blogs since way back, I feel like I know you :)

birthmothertalks said...

Thanks for sharing your story. I can relate to looking for love in all the wrong places. It's good that your documenting it cause our memories do fade as time goes on and this way you have it recorded. I literlly have some time frame where I don't remember much from a time period.

Rebekah said...

Oh, Rebekah...I wish I could just squeeze you. I never heard this story and it breaks my heart. Ben is sitting here, we read it together, and he said it's so hard to read such a sad story from someone we love so much. Tyrus is such a JOY, but I know his life cost you great sacrifice. I know it's such a small token...but I hope it helps make good from your pain to see his love and admiration for you.

You are a gift to all of us.

Jill said...

In your video you say you're not a writer. I disagree! You are doing wonderfully with this story.