Growing Up and Out

By Kendyl, age 16, Tennessee

Editor's Note: The following story is true. The name has been changed.

"Hey girl," I said as I threw the door open to my friend Haley's bedroom, a safe haven of sorts. I slipped a quick coat of Cherry Kiss onto my lips by her mirror and tucked my hair into place. God, it had just been one of those days. "How are you?"


There it was. I was turned away from her, but I could see her face in the mirror. And I am positive that I will never forget the look of raw fear that flickered behind her eyes for just a second. I might have thrown a pillow at her, asked her to stop scaring me, but it was that look that made me believe the word instantly.

"What?" I whipped my head around and made my way to her green bed where she was seated Indian style.

"You can't tell anyone," she said, slightly panicked. "No one can find out about this."

I made a sound of disbelief and asked, "How did this even happen?"

Throughout the years, our virginities had stubbornly clung to us, half because we wanted them and half due to lack of opportunity. I couldn't wrap my head around the idea that she had been first, and I hadn't even known about it.

"He doesn't go here. It doesn't matter. He doesn't matter."

I breathed deeply. What did she want me to say? What could anyone say in this kind of situation? So I didn't say anything. I just wrapped my arms around her while she cried.

This wasn't Juno or The Secret Life of the American Teenager. This was 'My friend is going to have a baby.' This was real, and I desperately wished it wasn't.

She was going to have to stop living her life because there was another one growing inside that relied solely on a seventeen year old without a clue.

She was going to be forever serenaded by colic screams, wails for mama, and, later, fights for independence that we should be experiencing instead of fretting over.

She was going to be responsible for every stuffed teddy, every PB&J without crusts, every soccer game, and another person.

Haley can't even keep her car unscathed, much less a baby.

I was scared for her. And I knew she was scared for herself. But she had to be the brave one, the one brave enough to chase away monsters and go through labor.

As I hugged both of them, I watched Haley grow up much sooner than she would have liked to.

And guiltily thought that I was glad it wasn't me.

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February & March Magazine Issues

March 15, 2012

The February and March issues of Sweet Designs Magazine are now online, featuring a combined 53 new articles and features!!

- Cover: Stephanie Lynn reflects on 5 years
- Cover: India (of Darn-licious knitwear)
- Life in the dumps (moving in with my bf)
- The difference between men and women
- Angels among us (parts 1 and 2)
- Arts graduates & the dark night of the soul
- Triple threat (how I survived my teen yrs)
- Dating isn't easy (my true story)
- How to turn not-so-great gifts ... (fashion)
- Ten reasons to love being single
- Taking the big leap (college)
- Valentine's Day (not what you'd expect!)
- The last of the cold (hopefully) (fashion)
- A month full of love
- Ten tips for successful airline travel
- Reasons I love writing for SDM
- Who needs love?
- They're not all the same
- The life I'm glad I don't have (fiction)
- Professional dress/ finding Fendi (fashion)
- An airport anniversary: a true story
- Inappropriate Facebook photos
- The perks of a big city (college)
- A night(mare) to forget (part 2)
- The Anita Blake series (book review)
- Saving June by Hannah Harrington (book)
- Under the Mesquite by GG McCall (book)
- The Lullaby by Sarah Dessen (book)
- If I Stay by Gayle Foreman (book review)
- My sweetheart (original poetry)
- Isn't it funny (original poetry)
- The stranger (original poetry)
- A winter wonderland (original poetry)
- One night valentine
- The thick envelopes (college acceptance)
- Southern love
- Healthy hair and vitamins
- It's a date (dating idea alternatives)
- The 30 hour famine
- School's out forever!
- Marching right back into spring? (fashion)
- Dear John
- When TV shows depict your life
- 3 Fun ways to rock spring's hottest trends
- Neglected teeth
- Starting something new
- Guy movies
- To hesitate or dive in?
- Deadly, by Julie Chibbaro (book review)
- Beastly, by Alex Flinn (book review)
- I don't care (poetry)
- Together, alone (poetry)

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