It was a whirlwind last summer: I met her dad when I came home from training in the military, and we hit it off immediately.
One day he just asked me if I would have his baby and I agreed. I didn't take it as seriously as he did because I had made the same promise to other boyfriends in the past. After a few months of trying and not getting pregnant, we decided that if I was going to get pregnant it would just happen, so we didn't try to use any methods of prevention and just waited. Needless to say when I found out I was actually pregnant I was still very surprised and upset because reality had set in that maybe I made a bad decision. But it was too late by then.Digital Short by Hunter Stuart
I was pregnant by August and I met him in April. We celebrated our one year anniversary and I was nine months pregnant.
Everything came so fast. we're still learning each other and it's hard because we have a baby. So it's not as easy as saying, I don't wanna be with him, I don't wanna talk to him anymore, because we have somebody else that we have to worry about.
I have a strong support system. I have my mother, my stepmother, my father, and her father, who helps out when he can. But I'm the only one to get up with her at night, I'm the only one to make her bottles, the only one changing her, twenty-four hours a day. I definitely know that she is my child.
I can't just get up and go out anymore. I have to make sure somebody's with her, who's looking after her, make sure she has everything she needs, figure how long am I gonna be gone for, and when I'm coming back.
Before I got pregnant, I was planning on staying in the military a couple more years, and then going back to college. I wanted to major in business administration. I actually wanted to own a business. I wanted to be an entrepreneur. I wanted to start a nice hair salon, or maybe even a chain. Since I was in the army, I thought I could get a loan from the bank.
But I have changed that plan. I'll keep it in mind for the future, but as of right now I need something more immediate: I'm trying to get anything that I can do, part time, full time, Carr Drugs, Walmart. Anywhere that will hire me right now, just to make the money so that I will be able to take care of my daughter. What kind of job it is doesn't matter - I'll work at McDonald's.
I see a lot of teenage girls having kids, and it's not until you have your child and you're taking care of your child that you understand that it's really not about you anymore, that you're living for somebody else.
And I just feel like wait, if you can, just wait. Until it's the right time for you.
That's the biggest piece of advice I could give any young woman: Don't rush it, take your time, take your time.
I want to live my dreams through my daughter, everything I wasn't able to do, everything I wasn't able to attain in life. I want her to be able to go to college, and be whatever she wants.
By Tasheka Brewley, 19