A Father’s Love is the true story of a father’s battle to be a part of his son’s life. You can read access all of the chapters in the Table of Contents.
Camille and I met on Black Planet and only knew each for a few months when she got pregnant with Isaiah. There were no fireworks… plans to live happily ever after or any of that fairy tale nonsense. It was simply a booty call thing. She didn’t sweat me about anything and I didn’t sweat her. She didn’t have a car and lived about an hour away. She would catch the bus to my place, so I didn’t send her home after sex like I did most others.
It was very convenient.
After a couple of months, we decided to do something other than have sex. I think it was all the pillow talk. Having “no strings attached sex” is no big deal. It’s when you lie in the bed talking to and playing each other that you begin to develop feelings for each other. Since she didn’t have a car and lived about an hour away from me, she would catch the bus to my place, and of course I let her stay the night.
I was contemplating moving out of state for before I met her and once I made the decision, it took me about 2 weeks to take care of everything to move. As in every other aspect of our “relationship”, we were real with each other once I decided to leave. We didn’t have any foolish ideas about maintaining a long distance relationship. If we had no attachments whenever I came back home to visit we’d hook up. If not, then no hard feelings. It is what it is.
I put all my belongings in storage and drove across country from the West Coast to Charlotte, alone.
After the 1st day on the road, Camille called me and told me she was pregnant. She said she was about 2 weeks along. Now I’m thinking, “How can she possibly know? On the TV shows, it’s always a couple of months before the woman finds out.” Of course real life is not like the TV shows.
I asked her how does she know and she said she knows her body. She worked in a hospital and I told her to see a doctor the next day and make sure. I kept driving to Charlotte. She told me the next day she had a test and it was official now. She was pregnant.
I was speechless.
But we kept it real as always, and she said repeatedly, I don’t have to come back. I can fly back for some the appts if I chose to and when the baby is born we’ll decide what to do from there and left it at that. There were no promises made, or expectations given.
I made it to Charlotte the next day.
My best friend had been trying to get me to Charlotte for years so he was ecstatic when I finally made it. As soon as I took a shower he was telling me to get dressed for a party where there was a 4 to 1 girl to guy ratio. Even if it was a 1-to1 ratio, I wouldn’t have been worried about ending up between someone’s legs, but that was the farthest thing on my mind.
I was exhausted from the trip and in several months I would be a father. I skipped the party and sat along with my thoughts.
After thinking about it a couple days, I decided my obligation as a father started with the pregnancy, not with birth so the next day I drove back home. My boy was heated… very heated, but he got over it. Four days after I got to Charlotte, I was back on the raod driving to the west coast. Driving to Charlotte, I was on adrenaline. Driving back home, I was on “reality” and it made me literally sick – all of the fast food and cheap Motel 6 beds caught up with me.
But I kept repeating to myself, “focus on your child”, and it got me through the trip.
Although I didn’t have any children, I always believed if the mother is taken care of the child will be taken care of… a trickledown effect; so I took care of Camille. Bought her a car, furnished her place… catered to her constantly… she didn’t ask for any of it, I just did it. I wasn’t the one throwing up, gaining weight, etc so it was the least I could do. We spent just about every night together during her pregnancy and naturally you develop a bond with someone. There still weren’t any fireworks on my part, but I was willing to make it work – after all, it’s what you’re “supposed” to do.
We moved in together when Isaiah was born, but after a couple of months it just wasn’t working out. We weren’t yelling and screaming at each other – neither one of us were the type – but it was still an environment I didn’t want my son to grow up in. Staying in an unhealthy relationship does more harm to children than having the parents in separate homes.
I made a promise to her that she could take the rest of the year off from work after Isaiah was born. He was born in May so there were still several months left in the year and I kept my promise and told her I told her that she’d have to find somewhere else to live and I’d pay for it for the rest of the year. I felt like a failure, but I knew it was for the best long term. Our issues never changed and I didn’t think they ever would, but I had to do what was best for Isaiah and me. I didn’t think it’d interfere with our parental relationship.
Boy was I wrong.