So, I have news….I’m pregnant! My husband and I will be welcoming a new addition to our family in June 2015 and we’re so excited!

You might be wondering how such good news could be related to domestic violence. Well, here’s how. Like I’ve mentioned, dv stays with you forever even after you break free, even after you find happiness, even after the scars have healed.

Actually up until I met my husband, I had convinced myself I did not want children. You see when I was in my abusive relationship, I was “told” we would have 2 children, 2 boys and that was it. It was a forced upon decision that when I finally escaped that relationship, I decided I would probably be “punished” for staying in that abusive relationship for so long that I wouldn’t be able to have children. So I convinced myself it was easier to say I didn’t want something even if I did. It would be easier down the road to hear I couldn’t have children if I never wanted them. When I met my husband, my heart yearned to one day have a family with him. My heart wanted a baby with him but I was terrified my past would ruin any chances of that.

Fast forward to present day and I still am amazed every day to know I have a human growing inside me. People of course are asking, “What do you want?” “Oh I bet you want a girl, huh?” “Are you so excited to have a mini version of you?”

To be honest, one of my first thoughts after finding out I was pregnant was that I hope it’s a boy. Now, don’t get me wrong, first and foremost, I want a healthy, strong baby but after that I would prefer a boy. The answer to why is how domestic violence has affected my life.

You see, I feel if I have a boy, I can raise him to be respectful, honest, caring and treat not just woman but all people with kindness and never abuse someone. I’m afraid if I have a girl, even if I try to teach her the red flags, the warning signs, she may still not recognize them, she may not believe me, she may become a victim. And that scares me.

I was one of those girls who grew up in stable, loving environment with amazing parents who talked to me, educated me on life lessons and were constantly supporting me and yet I became a victim.

I’m dealing with these emotions and trusting that I will be a good parent and no matter if it’s a boy or girl, I will do my best to teach them about respect, kindness and most of all, I will let them know about my past and will not hide anything that could help them to better understand all the effects of abuse.

Being a parent is a new challenge for me, this is my first pregnancy, my first child and my first time to have someone completely in my trust and care and I pray I have the strength to accept this challenge I’ve been blessed with.