Today on the “Ashley Judd: Wolf crying wolf” post a commenter named Krystal has been filling us in on the reality of living in AK. Very interesting reading, for instance:

I actully don’t even live in a village, I live more off the land than most do. My husband works for the state of AK. We pretty much do research out here on the Yukon River. Bevy, we’re usually in Fort Yukon, Circle and Central almost every other day using the phone and ordering from the bush pilots for supplies and food.

Krystal just emailed the story of her first pregnancy, and it is very touching. She wrote it in honor of her son’s 6th birthday. Krystal said I could share it, so here ’tis:

So my oldest son Jadon is now a 6-year-old. It’s so amazing how 6 years can fly past you at the speed of light. I can still remember the day I gave birth to him. Here’s the story of how Jadon entered this world.
I met his dad when I was 14-years-old as a freshman in high school, Chris was a junior. It was November 2001. We hit it off from the start… couldn’t and wouldn’t live a second of our lives without each other. I knew I loved him from the moment we met, not just puppy love, real love. Someone who saw past my faults and errors. Someone who would love me no matter what happened in our life….

Fast forward to March 2002. We had been dating for only a few months at that point. Early on in our relationship I had learned his family were gold miners in Central Alaska since the 1980’s. So we had spent a wonderful amount of time together on that spring break week before he left. I really didn’t want him to leave but I had responsibilities to tend to at home and Chris had to work at the mine in AK. I was certain this distance would be the end of us.
Now fast forward to that summer when he left. I had a sense I was pregnant but really didn’t want to admit it. I was the rebel type of girl who didn’t have a care in the world but myself. I was naive, ignorant, stupid, selfish and never ever thought I’d ever be the mothering type. I had come from a harder background than most. Battling depression, drug use and not having the best example of how a family is to treat each other. I knew I wasn’t ready for a kid. I was 15-years-old. I was still a kid myself and knew if I were to for sure have a baby it would take all my fun away.
So as I was sitting there for months in denial I started to feel the signs of life in the womb. Those first flutterings where you think it is gas, but your heart knows it’s your child letting you know it is here and it is real. You can feel it, and it can feel you.
But still I wanted to forget about this thing inside of me. Besides, don’t a lot of women miscarry anyway? By the time Chris got back, this was now September 2002, I was kind of showing. I think I hid my pregnancy well. Gained a little weight but just told people I was eating a lot that last summer and was being lazy along with it. I just wanted this nightmare to go away.
Fast forward to September 3, 2002, the day I had my annual doctor appointment. Chris had dropped me me off at the doctors office. I really wanted him to be there with me because I knew what was about to happen. I wanted to have the news broken to me with someone by my side. I knew this was the moment that my fantasy world would be crushed and reality would set in. So as I lay there on the cold table while the doctor checks me out I begin to hear, “Hmm… okay… I see.” She is now done with her inspection of me.
She sits me up at the table and begins to tell me that my cervix is hard and long, a sign of being farther along in a pregnancy, and my uterus is almost to my navel. I wasn’t crying at this point. She asked me to pee in a cup for a pregnancy test, so I do as she asked. Five minutes later she comes back into the room and gives me the look. Then the words of reality start to spill out of her mouth: “Krystal, I’m sorry to inform you that you are indeed pregnant. And by the looks of it you’re well into your second trimester.”
This is when I begin to breakdown. She left me alone in the room by myself to cry. As I was alone with only my thoughts of this thing inside of me I began to feel that thing fluttering at me again. The doctor had only left me an abortion flier and told me there was a doctor in Seattle who was willing to do an abortion after 20 weeks, as I was past 20 weeks and the local abortion clinics wouldn’t see me.
I was always the girl who said if I EVER became pregnant I would be the first in line to abort it. But as I was thinking about immediately calling this abortion doctor in Seattle and getting an appointment for the next day the thing began to flutter harder and harder until I saw its first poke of my belly. My belly had moved, not by itself though, by another being inside of me. At that moment the doctor walked in again and asked me what I was thinking about doing, and how she knows the doctor personally and he does a great job, how my insurance would pay for it and how that thing in my belly is more like a blob of tissue.
I just looked at her and told her I was keeping the ‘thing’ or putting it up for adoption. Then I gathered my things and left. As I walked and cried to Chris’s house to tell him the news. I thought to myself, “How am I going to get through this? How will this thing effect my family? What are my friends going to think when I tell them? But most of all is Chris going to leave me all alone to go though this by myself?”
I eventually got ahold of Chris and broke the news to him. I’m sure it hurt his mom. She had a baby a 17-year-old and now here is her son at 17-years-old was in the same situation. I broke the news to my mom. We discussed the options, but I still needed time to think about this whole new reality I was living in. I just became one of “those girls,” a statistic.
I decided to keep the thing. The thing as we found out was a perfectly healthy boy. I named him Jadon Tobin Rylee. I remember when I had him, so tiny. December 20, 2002, would be the defining day of both of our lives. That day Jadon came into this world as an angel sent to teach me, and I became a Mother on that day. Yes, December 20, 2002, was the day that all my other issues just didn’t seem to matter anymore. I was someone’s mom. It was my duty to protect/love/provide/care/teach/nurture this new person I had just brought into the world. Jadon didn’t judge me for denying him while he was in the womb. He didn’t care what my past was or who I was before he came to this earth. He knew that I was his mom and all that mattered was how the future went.
I have to admit it wasn’t easy, there were times of sickness, times of poverty, times of joy, times of learning, but life kept going. As a result we grew stronger, grew together and learned from each other. A child will love you no matter what. It’s what you do with that love that matters.
Chris and I are still together. We were together for 7 years on January 11, 2009. We now have two more boys, 3 1/2 years and 18 months, but we couldn’t be any happier. We have worked so hard to provide a wholesome, well-rounded life for all of our children. We won’t be proud until we see them grow up and become adults themselves. A parent can only hope that their children will become more successful then themselves. But I know in my heart our story will help others and bring others closer together.
Happy Birthday, Jadon! You are my shining star.

Beautiful story, Krystal. Thanks.

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