59: A Bumpy Road to the Altar

59: A Bumpy Road to the Altar

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: Best Mom Ever!

A Bumpy Road to the Altar

A daughter is a miracle that never ceases to be miraculous.

~Author Unknown

I collapsed in my chair as I tried to grasp what my daughter just told me. “Please tell me what you just said is not so!” My heart was pounding and my breathing shallow… and I was only the grandmother.

All the dreams my daughter had for her teenager had just flown out the window. What about college? What about her plans to travel? My granddaughter was only seventeen and hadn’t even graduated high school. How would the family handle this? Was it really a disaster or was I overreacting?

My beloved granddaughter was pregnant. So what would happen next? Weeks of tears, hurt feelings and bewilderment filled our lives. Many friends and family members suggested putting the baby up for adoption. The answer that came back emphatically was that my granddaughter wanted this baby. No amount of prodding or pleading changed her mind. As her grandmother I felt helpless and frustrated. My heart was hurting for my daughter and breaking for my granddaughter.

Where was the father of this baby? What were his feelings about all this? It turns out he was there all along supporting the decision to keep the baby. As time passed it became apparent these young kids were really in love and most importantly, they wanted their child. But getting married? They were so young.

My daughter and her husband were determined to help these kids get it right. I stood back and watched miracles happen. I was extremely proud of my daughter and son-in-law for never giving up on this young couple. It appeared their faith was stronger than mine.

Because my granddaughter was a minor, she needed her parents’ permission to marry. They told her she would have to finish high school first. This was easily accomplished, as she was home-schooled. Putting her nose to the grindstone helped make the first few months of pregnancy go faster. The reward was achieved with an early graduation.

As the kids began to work on their relationship it was apparent they needed help. Their immaturity had become a problem. Therefore, another stipulation before they could marry was counseling. Would they make it? If my daughter had any say, they would indeed.

How my daughter remained in control of her emotions throughout this ordeal was a wonder for me to witness. The strength my daughter displayed was impressive.

The birth of my great-grandson was a bittersweet occasion. It brought to the surface the unconditional love that was poured into the lives of my granddaughter and her fiancé. They learned that no matter what life brought them, the love that was given by my daughter and son-in-law made them resilient as individuals and stronger as a couple.

Watching from the outside was a learning experience for me as well. Though nothing about the marriage was traditional, it was a story with a happy ending. What began as shock, hurt and disappointment ended with a story about making choices, experiencing consequences, and finding grace along a bumpy road to the altar.

The strength of my daughter filled me with overflowing pride. Being a mother is not easy in the best of circumstances. The love and support she gave to my granddaughter and her new husband and baby were extraordinary. Keeping her marriage and family intact was most important and the results were wonderful. I so admire my daughter for how she made this all work. She’s the best mom ever, in my opinion!

~Nancy Maggio

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