“Some couples may try for months to become pregnant, for some it happens right away and other may have to wait a bit longer. Some people do not plan it and others leave it up to fate. Under whatever circumstances pregnancy occurs, it is without debate that it is the most fulfilling, beautiful and interesting experiences that a woman will go through in their lifetime. I was using the contraceptive pill, but was on antibiotics at the same time, which unknowingly to me, affected the effectiveness of the pill. I became pregnant just before my 19th birthday, throwing me into the teenage mother label and the stigma attached. I had a very smooth pregnancy, the hardest part of which was actually telling my friends and family that there was a baby on the way. I told my parents via letter, as I wasn’t very close to them at the point and didn’t feel able to tell them face to face. I told my close friends by text and word quickly spread. Once my mum had overcome the shock of becoming a granny, she took me and my partner to Mothercare and let us choose some small items to look at when things got overly emotional, to remind us how worth it the whole process would be to have something we created that would fit into the items we chose. We chose a white new-born hat with a bear face on it and matching white mittens. The baby scans were attended by my partner and at 20 weeks pregnant we got to find out the sex of the baby. We were having a girl! By Christmas 2011 the stress and amount of changes that the pregnancy brought ( from finding a house to live in to finding money to get us by ), was beginning to take its toll on our relationship and cracks began to show. My then partner was becoming less supportive and interested in the fatherly role, it became obvious that he more interested in being able to say he had a child, rather than raising one. He was also not looking for work which caused a few issues. It was the point that our ages became obvious and a problem. Our baby was due on the 9th February 2011. The following day I went up to Inverclyde Royal for a membrane sweep as the baby hadn’t turned into the most sought after position for birth. It was then that the Doctor looked over my medical charts and decided due to a few infections I had got weeks before, and raised blood pressure, I was advised for a c-section. We were still together come the birth on 14th February by caesarean section. Our beautiful daughter was born at 9.55am, weighing 7lbs 8 ounces. She was born with a mop of jet black hair and a tanned skin tone, only to lose her hair a few days later! We were admitted to Hospital on the Monday morning and were home by Wednesday afternoon. I thought we’d be a lot longer but was glad to get out into the fresh air and show off our beautiful daughter, named Sophie!
I had always been academic and didn’t see why having a child should change this, if anything it made me want to prove myself more! So during pregnancy I had applied to The Open University and have since been working towards a degree in business management, specialising in accounting. Sophie’s dad and I broke up approximately 3 weeks after she was born. He became a different person and it was very difficult to see a positive side to him being involved in Sophies live. He became dependant on alcohol and regularly send abusive texts to me and my friends. He gets to bond with Sophie for 3 hours and is on jobseekers allowance. Sophie is growing up so fast, it’s unbelievable at times! Her first smile came at two months, she first rolled over at 3 months, got her first tooth on Christmas Day and by one year was beginning to walk! She is now 14 months old and is very sociable, we regularly go to Funworld, a huge play area for young children, where she gets to see children her own age. She loves the park and being outside and wont sleep without “ bedted” her best friend. We got a flat a mere five minutes from my parents house which is great as they and all my friends are more supportive than I could ever have hoped. Of course there are difficult times to being a young, single mother such as tiredness and having minimal time to yourself, but at the end of the day when the housework is done, everything is tidied away and my coursework is up-to-date, I take a peak in Sophies room, look at her snuggling into her bedted and remember how lucky I am.”