At the tender age of 19, one does not fully understand the sentiment of support. It is one of the furthest thoughts from a person’s mind. However, for a young woman dealing with an unplanned pregnancy, the feeling of support can be the most essential if not inspiring thought there is.
As I am a young mother myself, I know exactly how the role of support can affect one’s life as well as others. When I learned I was pregnant, I was 19 and did not have the slightest clue about what to do. Alarmed, mortified, and concerned by the news, I informed my parents of the situation and they scrambled frantically to help their daughter. Feeling alone and worried about how others would treat me, I began to see myself as another statistic for teenage mothers. I had moved back into my mom’s house, hadn’t finished college, and had no income. However, my mother came across some information about a support center for mothers-to-be and insisted that I go. While skeptical for fear of being judged, I anxiously ventured along with my mother to go check the center out. Tight-lipped and downcast, I watched as my mother set up all the necessary information for me to attend classes there. While thankful for help, there was still some part of me that felt deprived.
After attending a couple of weeks’ worth of classes, I had my beautiful baby boy. Now that he was born, the reality was now sinking in as to how I was going to raise this child on my own. My dream was to return to school so that I could provide a better living for my son and me, but it seemed like a long shot. However, I was only one semester shy of receiving my A. A. degree, so I thought I would try to finish school in order to provide better for my son. Nevertheless, I would still need a job in the mean time to make ends meet.
Upon returning to the Pregnancy Support Center, the ladies asked me the usual questions about how the pregnancy went, how much he weighed, etc. And then they asked about what I planned to do now that I had my baby. I proceeded to tell them, thinking that they would not understand. On the contrary, the ladies were very excited about the idea of me returning to school and prompted me to further my education. With further thought and planning of school schedules around my classes at the center and my job, I went on to receive my A. A. degree. I came to a realization that I wasn’t just doing this on my own, but that I had an extensive support system. My parents, boss, baby-sitter, friends, family, and the Pregnancy Support Center were all there for me as I overcame trials in my life and for that reason, have made me the person I am today.
As a result of my amazing support system, I have a healthy and rambunctious two year old boy, a steady job which I have held for two years, a Bachelor of Science degree from Florida State University, and still have the ambition to pursue law school. While other factors such as determination and drive also come into play, I nevertheless believe that the most critical factor is support, and I would like to thank the Pregnancy Support Center for all that they have done for me and what they continue to do for others.