Supportive parents through the good and bad times
My school counsellor called the Babes helpline when she found out I was pregnant. She was worried for me and felt that it would be helpful if there was someone to offer advice and support. The Babes workers then contacted me by SMS and I met up with her together with my parents.
I found out that I was pregnant 3 months ago and told my parents straight away. My parents had a hard time believing that I would be able to take responsibility for my child and complete my education at the same time, but they remained supportive despite their fears and concerns. We shared our feelings and concerns with the Babes worker and we talked about the plan needed when the baby is born: who was going to be there for the child and who was going to provide financial support. We went through all the practical things we had to prepare for. My parents assured me that finances were not a problem as they were both working. However, we had many questions and concerns regarding the future care of the baby and we were glad the Babes was there to walk us through the whole process. We were encouraged to talk as a family about how we could care for the baby.
We then agreed that my mother would work part time so we could take turns to take care of the baby. We also asked our aunty who lives in the same block to help care for the baby in the event that my mother and I both had to work or go to school.
Babes continued to follow up with me during my pregnancy. I did not have much knowledge about pregnancy and how to care for a baby, so I was feeling apprehensive as I did not know what to expect and how to feel. The Babes worker brought me to the library and introduced all kinds of books about pregnancy, parenthood and delivery. We went to the shopping mall and looked into all the baby shops for the prices of all the things I would need in the first month. We also talked a lot about the responsibilities of raising a child. Slowly, I began to feel more confident and felt a greater connection with my baby.
Looking back, I am thankful for the support from my family, school and Babes. Because of their support for my decision to raise the child, it made it a lot easier for me to cope with my pregnancy. I have to admit that there were challenges along the way. I felt like I had to grow up quickly and there were times when I felt scared but I knew that if I had any questions or fears, I had someone to turn to. My son is almost one year old now and I have since finished my secondary school education. Moving forward, I am now thinking of pursuing a hairdresser course. In spite of everything, I have never regretted my decision to keep the baby. If I had to choose again, it would not be any different.