Everyone expected me to be the first one to have a child, I know how crazy that sounds, and I guess you think that because, as you might know, I’m not the most respectful and responsible child. Or, maybe it was because I was the only girl in my family, and you know “men don't make mistakes.” But, hearing this as a young child pushed me to work harder than any of my other siblings in order to prove my family wrong. Because of my parents, I was determined to not be one of the many teen pregnancies. So when my brother told me he had a son, in my head I laughed so hard, but on the outside I cried. I cried because there I was at my nephew's first birthday party and I previously knew nothing of the birthday boy with beautiful blue eyes and he new nothing of my existence.
My parents are not the biggest supporters of teen pregnancies. When people look at my parents, they see joy and fulfillment. They have been married for 26 years and they dated for 5 years prior so I think people can say that their marriage defines them. They are so much better together, they are strong, hard working, and encouraging. They fell in love at a young age and married young as well but their love is so strong it has brought them this far. They had three amazing kids, except the one that lied to them about having a kid. But other than that bad apple, me and my other brother are great.
So, when my brother told me that he had a son I knew that it was going to take him a while to tell my parents. Little did I know that it would take him an entire year. What can I say, procrastination runs in the family.
It was Christmas day; the snow had just fallen and it looked so perfectly still, smooth, and as white as tooth paste, lying so effortlessly on the ground. That was the day my brother decided to tell my parents that he had a two year old son. What a great day, right? Not only would my parents be extremely disappointed on Christmas day but it would also make family history. I mean there always has to be some family drama during the holidays, or else it would not be the holidays. I remember begging him to wait until we all opened our presents, and asking him to let me be the one to tell them that he had a kid. I remember planning it in my head perfectly: “Merry Christmas, mom and dad. You guys get the best present ever; a grandson!” But unfortunately, he said no and “that nothing about this situation was a joke”. But for the longest time I have been the joker of the family; I'm the one that always cracks jokes about everything and anything. So for some reason I found myself making fun of the situation I was involved in because I was done crying about it. And I didn't want to cry about it anymore.
My parents got to my brother’s apartment. Niall, my nephew the victim, was upstairs in his mother’s sister’s apartment. The door to his room was closed. It felt unusual. Because for the past year I would come over and Niall would come out of his room with tons of toys to play with. In today's case the door was closed and Niall was nowhere to be seen. As my parents walked in, you could tell that my dad was already in a bad mood. He had this nasty look on his face on as if he were disgusted about my brother's apartment. Which he had all the right to be because my brother lives in an area in Chicago called “Back of the Yards”. The Back of the Yards is literally the back of the yard of Chicago. The city has forgotten about that area and gangs and violence have adopted it. Therefore you can see why my father was not excited to see where my brother had moved to. I guess you can say he went from bad to worst.
My parents had brought some pizza and fish to eat dinner together. They were shocked that my brother had invited them to his home because for the past two years my brother had been MIA. It was delicious I remember savoring every bite and taking my time because I knew sooner or later, this moment would be ruined. I, as always, started joking around. I remember telling myself I might as well make the best of it because this might be the first and the last dinner with my family in a long time. We soon finished eating dinner and we moved on to the gifts. We all exchanged gifts and we each opened them. I was fortunate to have gotten a Michael Kors wallet from my mother as well as a new pair of diamond earrings from my father.
As we finished opening presents, my brother started talking and things turned serious. On the inside I wanted to laugh but I knew that this was not the appropriate time to crack out a joke. But I was also excited because this was the moment that would determine my family's future. This news could either break us apart or reunite us. My brother stated that having them over to his new home was not the only reason he invited them over. And then out came the waterfall of tears. My devil side would say, “Stop crying, that's not going to stop them from being mad,” and my angel side would say, “aww, look he does have a heart”. So you can choose which ever side you want. Then he said it “Mom, Dad, I have a son” (suspenseful music). Then I said, “In the case of 2 year old Niall, you are the father!”
After that I specifically remember my mother starting to cry and my father looking as if he had suspected it. The weird thing about my father is that he expects many things. In other words, he sees things coming before they actually happened. So then my nephew came in with his aunt I felt as if, in a way, the two year old boy knew what was happening because he became very intense and shy. He reached out to me and tried to hide behind me and everytime I tried to sit him down on the floor he wouldn't let go. I was surprised to see that my parents were not yelling. I think they were in shock, but happy.
Today my parents are happy grandparents. My brother comes over twice a week and we have family dinner on those nights. I guess what I learned the most is that every lie and every secret is bound to come out, whether it be today, tomorrow, or even two years down the line. Another thing that I learned is that family will always be there. My parents could've disowned my brother from the family. They had enough reason to do so. But they didn't because he was their son, and I didn't because he was my brother.