Brandon and Louise were planning to marry, but his mother, Mrs. Gemma Nicholson, disapproved of their relationship and fired them. But then, she learned a big lesson after seeing their new lives.
“You can’t marry that woman! Are you crazy? That baby is not yours!” Mrs. Gemma Nicholson yelled at her son, Brandon, when he revealed his engagement with Louise. He worked as a manager in his mother’s grocery store in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
“Mother! That’s a horrible thing to say. I know for a fact that she’s carrying my child, and I need you to be happy about this,” Brandon replied
She has six other children already! I don’t believe that lie that her husband died. They probably all have different baby daddies! You can’t ruin your life like this!” Mrs. Nicholson screamed some more.
Louise was mortified because she was yelling at them in the middle of the store, and other employees were watching. Luckily, they had yet to open for the day. “Mrs. Nicholson, I never lied about my past, but this is your son’s baby. I swear,” Louise beseeched.
“Mother, we’re getting married, and that’s it!” Brandon declared adamantly.
“That’s it? THAT’S IT?! You know what, you’re both fired. Let’s see how you like to live in poverty, trying to feed six children and yourselves without my support! You’ll come running to me in no time!” Mrs. Nicholson finished and walked off. She was serious about firing them.
Brandon and Louise took off their uniforms and went back home. They lived in a three-bedroom house, but it was crowded with Louise’s six children from her previous marriage.
What are we going to do?” Louise asked Brandon worriedly.
“Don’t worry, darling. We’ll make it work,” he assured her. They both tried finding work, but no one wanted to hire a pregnant woman. Meanwhile, Brandon could only find work loading boxes at a local factory.
It didn’t pay enough to maintain a family of 8 with a baby on the way. But he took as many hours as his manager would allow. They tried their best to keep the children from discovering how bad things were.
Brandon even built them a treehouse in the yard from scraps he found around town. Due to their financial situation, they got married in City Hall and couldn’t hold the nice wedding they originally wanted.
“Brandon, we can’t go on like this. No one will hire me, and it’s not your responsibility to feed my children. You can go back to your mother’s store, and we’ll get a DNA test when the baby’s born. Maybe she’ll believe us then,” Louise suggested.
“No, Louise. I can’t go back there. She needs to accept this relationship, and I’m not going to leave you or the kids alone. I love them all too. I need to come up with a business idea,” Brandon retorted. But he didn’t know what to do yet.
The following day, a woman from CPS showed up at their door. “My name is Carol Fuller. There’s been a complaint about your family, Mr. Nicholson. Apparently, you have children here living under horrible conditions,” Ms. Fuller explained.
Brandon didn’t have to ask to know that his mother had made the complaint. But they let Ms. Fuller complete her inspection to prove their kids were fine.
“While I can see that the children are not neglected or underfed, this house is too small, especially with another baby coming,” she began.
“Ms. Fuller, our financial situation is not the best right now, but we’re working hard to fix it,” Brandon clarified.
“I’m sorry, Mr. Nicholson. Although it’s a three-bedroom house, all of them are too small. Also, you have only one bathroom for everyone. You need to move in three months, or CPS might take some of your kids away,” Ms. Fuller warned.
The CPS lady left, and they were left to think. Louise went out to pick up some food while Brandon stayed back with the kids. He and Louise’s eldest son, Mark, went outside. “I don’t know what to do, kid. This is hard,” he told Mark.
“I don’t know what that lady’s problem is. This house is fine, and we have our treehouse here. I don’t want to move,” Mark complained.
“The lady is right, my boy. But don’t worry about it. I’ll build you guys a new treehouse wherever we go,” Brandon comforted the 13-year-old.
“I wish you could build a huge treehouse right here, and we could stay there all the time,” Mark said absentmindedly.
Brandon looked at his kid and back to the treehouse. Mark’s idea wasn’t bad. The idea of a treehouse business had potential. So, he formed a company immediately for custom treehouses. He used the current one as an advertisement and posted his services online.
Soon, some rich folks in town called him and commissioned treehouses for their kids. His prices were low initially, but soon, the business became a success in his town, and Brandon started earning some serious money
The company expanded, and he had around 10 employees after a few months. Around that time, Louise gave birth to their son, Sebastian, and Brandon realized that his business might not be sustainable long term.
He wanted something more permanent to support his family. Therefore, he and Louise took out a mortgage on her house and bought a big lot with several old trees. They added a few more large oaks and constructed luxurious treehouses.
Meanwhile, Louise designed the gardens. As soon as they finished five treehouses, they listed them on AirBnB and started getting bookings. Soon, their business turned into a full-blown treehouse hotel, which they named Freedom Resort.
By then, Brandon had not seen his mother in months, but Mrs. Nicholson kept an eye on everything her son did. He was no longer living in poverty, and their family was thriving. She regretted kicking him out.
My son is smarter than I ever imagined, Mrs. Nicholson thought while driving through town. Suddenly, she had a flat tire and realized she was right in front of their hotel. She went to the lobby to ask for a phone because hers had run out of battery.
Mrs. Nicholson, what are you doing here?” Louise asked. She was holding 8-month-old Sebastian in her arms, and Mrs. Nicholson stopped dead. The baby looked exactly like Brandon did at that age. She couldn’t believe that Louise didn’t lie.
She unfroze after a few seconds. “Ugh…I have a flat tire. I wondered if you would let me make a call,” the older lady said.
“Of course, here you go,” Louise answered. Just then, Brandon walked into the lobby.
“Mother, we have not seen you in months,” he told her. Louise explained what happened, and he volunteered to help. When he was done, Mrs. Nicholson broke down in tears.
“I’m sorry, son. I…I don’t know what I was thinking. I shouldn’t have jumped to conclusions. I wanted to protect you from struggling, but I can see that you thrived without my help. I can only beg for forgiveness now,” she told her son.
Mom, I forgive you. You’re my mother. You have to apologize to Louise too, but also have to understand that we’re a family. Her other children are my kids too now,” Brandon replied.
“Of course! Of course! I hope she can forgive me too,” Mrs. Nicholson agreed. She apologized to Louise, and it took a while, but she forgave the old lady too. They invited her to their big new house and introduced her to the kids slowly.
It took a few months, but she eventually became their grandma, and Mrs. Nicholson couldn’t be happier.
What can we learn from this story?
Don’t let pride cut you off from your family. Some parents want to protect their kids at all costs, but some make mistakes based on their ego.
Forgiveness is important. While others might not have forgiven Mrs. Nicholson for her actions, Brandon and Louise understood that it was better for the kids to have a grandmother