When Rickelle shared her story with me on Instagram in response to a Talk it out Tuesday question, I felt like her experiences should be shared with other young moms.
Pregnant at only 14 years old, this teen mom had to grow up more quickly than she expected. But she is doing a great job as a mommy and still holds her goals and dream within reach. Read on to hear more about how Jensen changed her life.
Tell us about yourself and your family:
I’m 15 years old. I was raised to be moved around a lot but right now I live in Joplin, MO. My son, Jensen was born all natural on September 8th, 2014 at 20 inches long and 7.8 pounds. I’m now a sophomore and still do online schooling. Jensen’s daddy isn’t really in the picture so I’m a 15 year old single mom. It’s very hard, but I enjoy every minute! <3
What were your biggest concerns when you first found out you were pregnant? How did you handle it?
I was a freshman in high school and I was with a guy for about 3 months. Well, when I ended up getting home-schooled (the bullying was bad) that January, we broke up because I wouldn’t get to see him. He was 17 and nobody supported our relationship because of our age difference. We had our “first time” in December (protection was used, but it failed) right before Christmas. I missed my period, but I thought it was from all of the stress. In February, I started craving pickles… a lot! My sister said she thought I was pregnant from my weight gain and cravings, so she bought me a pregnancy test when I was staying the night with her. It said positive almost instantly! I was scared to death to tell my mom and dad… they didn’t even know I lost my virginity! I called the guy I was with in December and said I needed to talk. He said he had a girlfriend and he wouldn’t even hold a conversation. I talked to his brother and we ended up all sitting down together but the guy denied the baby was his. After an hour of arguing, he went home and talked to his mom. He hardly had any contact with me the whole pregnancy. He even blocked me from Instagram, messaging, calling… all of it! The baby’s daddy came to the hospital when I had Jensen. He wasn’t in the delivery room because he said he was “sick to his stomach”.
When I got home, I actually waited till my birthday (March 16th) to tell my parents. I went to Walmart and bought a “Congratulations! You’re a Grandparent!” card and some baby bibs. I sat them down on my birthday and handed them the stuff and said, “I love you”. They didn’t say anything so I started walking away. My dad walked away from the table and went outside. My mom sat me down and said, “It’s just gonna take some time for him to cope” and she hugged me. Later in my pregnancy, my dad started getting involved picking out baby stuff. My mom and sister took me to all of my ultrasounds. I did have a job and live with my parents still. I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to support he/she. I was 14 years old, I thought I could barely take care of myself. I learned to basically buck up and handle it and I don’t regret one minute of it. My son is my entire world!
What kinds of things do you do to treat yourself, for fun and to stay relaxed?
While Jensen is asleep, that’s when I usually go and take my shower/paint my nails/dye my hair, etc. When Jensen was first born, my mom usually took him while I went and laid down. Now? He’s attached to my hip!
What are your favorite things about being a mom?
I would say… when you get to wake up every morning and see that beautiful, innocent smile on his face and know that I made that. When he starts school, yes I’m going to get looks because a 19 year old is taking her son to school… but he’s gonna cry and not going to want me to leave because we are so close! When he’s older on prom night, I will get to be the one to dress him up and say, “That’s my son”. Jensen is my pride, my joy, my everything! I wouldn’t trade being a mom for anything in this world.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years? If you didn’t have any obstacles, what dream would you pursue?
I will be 20 in 5 years. I want to be able to finish high school and then continue with my dream of going to college to get my Master’s Degree in law/criminal justice to become an attorney. Yes, I do realize I have a baby and yes, I realize it will be hard. But everything I do now isn’t for me. It’s for him and his future.
What advice would you give to other young girls who just found out they’re pregnant or recently became a mom?
Honestly? I love being a mom. It’s extremely difficult so I strongly advise if your going to have sex, use all the protection you can or avoid having sex. If you know you’re pregnant and you’re young, get ready for rumors to spread and hateful things to be said about you. Don’t take it to heart though! They judge us because we’re young, they don’t think we can’t handle it or we aren’t mature enough. All I did was prove them wrong. When it comes to me and my son, he comes first. You know that new iPhone that just came out? It’s gonna be hard to get that when your not-even-one-month-old son needs diapers. He always comes first. Your baby becomes your main priority. He/she will be that one thing you strive for. They become your everything. I don’t regret Jensen. I wish I was a little older before I had him… but I was going down a bad path and hanging around the wrong crowd. He’s my savior baby and I’m a very lucky mommy!