A man crosses paths with his heavily pregnant ex-fiancée in the subway and brings her home, feeling bad for her condition. “Me or her?” his wife screams, forcing the man to make a difficult choice.
Would you turn a blind eye to someone you once loved in trouble? Or would you help them even though you know it could damage your marriage?
32-year-old Joe was stuck in the same dilemma when he saw his ex-fiancée, Maria, in the subway. She was dozing off on a dirty blanket on the ground, one hand on her baby bump, and the dark bags under her eyes suggested she didn’t usually get enough sleep.
Joe couldn’t take his eyes off her, and her baby bump. “Her due date must be approaching,” he thought. “What is she doing here in that condition?” She had left him in search of a better life.
Several years ago, Maria cheated on Joe with his best friend and left him, saying she wanted a better life. Joe was devastated, and it took him years to return to normalcy and another several years to open his heart to love.
After Joe married Kathy, he thought he had moved on. He didn’t miss Maria, not really. But when he saw her in the subway, something in his heart shifted. It was as if he looked into her soul and sensed something was wrong.
As a large crowd walked past her, Maria was startled awake by the sound of footsteps. “Oh no, what was that?” she mumbled, then realized it was just people walking past her.
“Hey, are you all right?” Joe gently asked as he approached her, and startled by the familiar voice, Maria turned to him and clutched her baby bump tightly.
“Joe…” she cried out. “It really is you. I can’t believe it.”
“Be honest, Maria,” he said. “What’s the matter? What exactly are you doing here?”
She averted his eyes and said, “I have nowhere to go…he kicked me out. He didn’t want to raise the child. He said he wasn’t ready.”
“When did it happen? I didn’t know Ron—”
“It’s been two months,” she said sadly. “I was staying in a motel until I ran out of money. I need to find work soon.”
“Come with me,” he said. “You are welcome to stay at my house.”
“You can’t make that decision on your own, Joe,” she remarked, glancing at his wedding band. “What’s her name? You got kids?”
“Kathy…she’s beautiful. She’s kind, empathetic, and, well, she’s just like you. I’m sure she’ll understand.”
“Not yet,” he answered. “The train will be here in 2 mins. Shall we?”
Before Maria and Joe realized it, the train ride was over, and they were standing on the front porch of Joe’s house. Maria had denied his help, although she was struggling because she was embarrassed about their past. But Joe had persuaded her by telling her it was for the baby.
When a delighted Kathy opened the door, expecting to greet her husband, she was surprised to see him with his heavily pregnant ex.
“What is she doing here, Joe?” she asked, surprised. “Tell me she’s got the wrong address!”
“Maria’s staying with us for a few days, honey,” said Joe. “Please. Ron kicked her out of the house. She doesn’t have anywhere to go.”
“NO!” Kathy declared. “She needs to leave, Joe! There’s no room for her here.”
“Me or her, Joe?” Kathy asked him bluntly. “Choose. If she comes inside, I’m leaving right away!”
Seeing her husband hesitate made Kathy feel like her world came crashing down around her. Despite years of fertility treatments, she and Joe had been unable to conceive. Had Joe’s heart melted for Maria because she was pregnant? Did this mean her marriage was in danger?
“I’ll drop her off at a hotel and be back. I might be late,” Joe replied eventually and left. He didn’t say anything else.
Kathy returned to their bedroom and cried all night. She felt bad for Maria. She could see Maria was in trouble, but her broken heart didn’t allow her to help her. It could harm her marriage. Would it?
The next day, Kathy went to the church to meet Pastor Richard. Whenever she was in trouble, she would turn to him for advice.
“What should I do, Father?” she asked anxiously, telling him how she felt after rejecting Maria.
“Does your heart tell you to forgive her, child?” he asked. “Do you want to help her?”
She nodded. “I do. But having her near me makes me worried my husband will start distancing himself from me. We’re experiencing difficulties having children.”
“Believe in the Lord, child,” Pastor Richard suggested. “He teaches compassion and forgiveness. You should have faith in your husband and assist that woman. If your husband is not loyal, he will drift away from you regardless of whether that lady is around.”
Kathy thought it over, and when Joe came home from work that evening, she apologized to him. She told him she wanted to apologize to Maria too and help her.
“You don’t have to do it if you don’t want to, honey,” Joe said. “I don’t want to burden you with this.”
“It’s not like that, Joe,” said Kathy. “I just feel bad about a lot of things. But we should help her. She needs us right now. Imagine if I were in that condition. I wouldn’t be happy.”
Joe hugged her. “Thank you, darling. Thank you so much.”
So Joe and Kathy helped Maria through the remaining few weeks of her pregnancy, and soon, a beautiful baby boy’s cries filled their home.
When she rocked him, Kathy would forget the baby wasn’t hers. She felt like she was already a mother just holding him in her arms. And she offered to watch the baby so Maria could continue her studies.
“You need to do it for your son,” she told Maria. “He is deserving of love and a good home. Joe and I will assist you until then.”
A year later, Maria completed her medical degree, which she’d left for a life with Ron. Not long after she was hired by a good hospital, she managed to afford a tiny place for herself and her child and she got busy with her life.
One day, she received a call from Joe, bearing happy news.
“Twins,” Joe told her on the phone. “Kathy and I are expecting twins. We just came home from the doctor.”
“Congratulations!” cried Maria. “I’m so happy for you both. It’s my turn to help Kathy. This is wonderful!”
So after years of failed fertility treatments, Joe and Kathy conceived not one but two children, a miracle that sprouted from their willingness to help others in need.
What can we learn from this story?
Kindness comes back in surprising ways. Kathy helped a heavily pregnant Maria, and that kindness came back to her in the form of love — she was blessed with the love of two babies growing inside her.
Doing the right thing may be challenging, but it pays off in the end. Kathy didn’t want to help Maria, fearing it would hurt her marriage, but she realized assisting a pregnant woman in need was the right thing to do so she did, not knowing her kindness would later reward her with a family of her own.
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If you enjoyed this story, you might like this one about a woman who visited a clinic with a huge baby bump and claimed she wasn’t pregnant.
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