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The Day My Life Changed Forever - by Amy Lynn Gray

It was the summer of 1998. I was just 19 years old and so in love. Or so I thought at the moment. I had my whole life ahead of me. The whole world was waiting for me to explore! After I had been dating him for a few months, he had decided to move to Florida, and somehow convinced me to come along for the ride. Being young and carefree I jumped at the oppurtunity to get out of the city I had lived in all my life and had become so bored in. Shortly after we arrived in Florida, things started to change drastically. We started drinking and doing drugs before 11:00 in the morning. The breakfast of champions so to speak. And He just started becoming verbally abusive. Then the physical abuse started. I wasn't sure what to do. I loved him, I probablly deserved it or had done something to provoke him. In my mind this was just something I would have to endure if I wanted to be with him...and I did so desperately. My body started to change. I started feeling sick and tired. Nothing I did would make it stop. I assumed it was from all of the partying I had been doing and the stress that was associated with the abuse I had learned to love somehow. But I was very wrong. I was pregnant. And I was stuck in a state I did not know with an abusive boyfriend. I was so scared and when I told him he pleaded with me hours upon endless hours to have an abortion. When I refused the abuse just got worse. Sometimes I was afraid for my life and for my unborn child's life. And this certainly was no environment to raise a child in. I had to have my baby, something inside of me told me that I must bore this child, that he was sent from heaven as a gift from God to save my life. And he was. One day while he was at work I packed my things and walked to the bus station. From there I called my mom and told her the situation and begged for her to send me a bus ticket home. She immediately agreed through her tears and told me she loved me. When I finally arrived my in Cincinnati I was relieved. I welcomed the familiarity. I was home. The months passed by and I greatly anticipated the impending birth of my son. I felt like I finally had a reason to live. On October 28th, 1999, Nicholas Alexander was born to me. And he truly was an angel. I have never seen a creature so beautiful in my life. And as I held him in my arms I knew. I knew just how much my own mother loved me. The emotions flooded my body and I was overwhelmed. With joy and happiness, fear and hope. I looked at my mother and saw in her eyes relief. Relieved to have her baby back home and safe. Everyday I thank God for my little miracle. Everyday. Alex is now going on 5 and I hold him in my arms everyday and shed a tear. My little boy truly did save my life. And for that I am eternally grateful.

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