Happy New Year! I hope that each of you has started this year on a good note and that it just keeps getting better! It’s been a while, but we have a new “Mom Like Us” who wants to share her story. Unlike most of the previous moms, our new mom is a traditional college student and mom, a different perspective for other moms in college! So enjoy and be inspired!
Name: Kelly J
Number of Children: 1 (14 months)
Marital Status: Engaged to be married to the father
Dream Job/ Career Goals (Or current career if you are finished with college): Currently going to school for Early Childhood Education and Minoring in Special Education– my fiancé is also a full time student studying Health Promotion
Why did you decide to go (back) to school? I never decided to stop. I knew that if I stopped I wouldn’t go back.
What is your biggest fear in terms of college? That the school will not work with me in certain situations.
Do you associate with students who aren’t mothers? If so, how do you feel around them? Yes, most of my friends are not mothers. It’s definitely hard to connect with them. They all are mostly 21 and go out all the time, and I don’t do that. It’s hard to connect.
What inspires/motivates you? My son. I would do everything and anything for him. I know that I have to do this for him to have a better life in the end.
Share a little bit of your story:
I was a freshman in college (second semester) when I found out I was pregnant. My boyfriend (at the time) and I didn’t know what to do. We knew we had to stay in school. We both already had jobs, but had no idea what going to school, working, and taking care of a baby would consist of. When we told our parents, of course, neither set was excited. I didn’t get to enjoy my pregnancy because I was too busy hiding it from everyone. I felt ashamed and embarrassed that I was just a freshman in college and I ended up having a baby. Our son was born that October, my third semester. Labor was not at all what I expected it to be. I didn’t read any articles beforehand or watch any birthing videos because I didn’t want to freak myself out, and I’m glad I didn’t. I lucked out. We returned home after three days. My boyfriend didn’t take any time off from school (he was traveling back and forth from school to the hospital), and I only took two weeks. That was hard to do. The school wasn’t working well with me and the professors tried to dock me points for missing class. It was honestly the worst experience of my life. I took it up with the President of my school and we figured things out, but they were not equipped to work with a young mom in college. It was really disappointing. I made it through that semester, and the next without having to put our son in daycare. We were living in a college apartment complex and it was not safe at all. There were parties all the time. I tried to get out of my lease, but there was nothing I could do about it. We lived there for that one year and we found a house to rent. The house is lovely. I wish we could call this home but we can’t. That following semester we had to put him in daycare. I never wanted my children to be kids that were in daycare all day long; however, I do see some benefits now. He doesn’t get spoiled because he is around other children. He learns how to interact with children all the time. Let me tell you, daycare is not cheap at all! Thank goodness for programs like CCIS (Child-Care Information Services). I wouldn’t be able to stay in school without them helping us. There are a lot of programs moms and dads in college should look into. Now I’m currently going into my sixth semester of college. It does get easier. I am now faced with the fact that I am in school and work more than I see my son. It isn’t ideal but I know soon enough things will be okay.
Favorite inspirational quote? Just do it- NIKE. Everyone asks me how I do it all, and that’s my response every time. I just do it. I don’t have a choice. I have to just do it.
Any advice for other mothers thinking about going or returning to college? Don’t give up. You can and will get through it. It’s not going to be easy, and don’t let anyone lie to you about that. But it is worth it. There is no lie about that.
Thank you Kelly for sharing your story — do not feel ashamed for being a mom in college, you are doing a great job and your story is YOURS! Embrace it! If you are a mom in college (or a pregnant college student) and would like to share your story, please contact me via the “Ask Dianna” tab at the top!