I met with Project Rosie in the Eastern Michigan Student Center entirely by chance. I was hurrying to my dorm room to study for an exam and to try and figure out what I was going to do with my life, and with the life growing inside of me. I had found out that I was pregnant only three weeks earlier, and with no money, no job, and a relationship that could be described as rocky at best, it was seeming more and more like abortion was the only option. Then I ran into Project Rosie.
“Never in my life did I think that I would have an unplanned pregnancy. I hadn’t been dating this man for long and I knew that he wasn’t ready for a serious relationship, let alone a baby. My heart sank when he uttered the word “abortion”. I fought it for weeks, going back and forth. I knew in my heart that I couldn’t hurt my baby but the pressure from the baby’s father seemed like more than I could handle on my own. I was scared to tell my family, terrified to disappoint them, and felt so alone in all of it.”
“The minute I met supportive students on campus was the first time that I felt that it was going to be okay. I felt like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. Suddenly I had the courage to tell the father “no” to an abortion, and even the courage to tell my parents about my pregnancy.”
“These supportive new friends held my hand through my entire pregnancy. They were there to pick me up when I felt like life was crumbling around me. They connected me with everything I could possibly need to raise a baby. They calmed my fears, reassured me that it was going to be okay, and loved my baby even before meeting her. In the years since, they have come to visit, invited my daughter and I to hang out, and even helped with providing essentials like diapers and wipes.”
“I look at my daughter now and can’t imagine life without her. I thank God every single day for giving these incredible friends to me. They have changed my life forever.”
“As a student leader on my college campus, I had talked-the-talk about serving women facing unplanned pregnancy, but it wasn’t until I actually had to walk-the-walk through my own unplanned pregnancy during my senior year of college that I realized how incredibly difficult combining pregnancy and education could be. I had what you could consider the “best” possible scenario for a surprise pregnancy: I had a job, I was in a committed and stable relationship, I was on a full scholarship with only a year left before graduating with a nursing degree, and I had a supportive and loving family.
But even with an extensive support network and my background as an activist for women, I still struggled to find the basic, simple resources I needed to simply finish out my degree. I had no idea how to secure insurance or health care for myself and my baby, how to change my financial aid, or what the rules were about navigating school when I was missing classes for check-ups. It was sobering to see how little assistance there really was on our campus for women who were pregnant and I made it my mission to change that. No woman, especially a woman already dealing with the shock of an unplanned pregnancy, should feel like she has to fight to find basic resources for her pregnancy during college. It’s absurd that in today’s day and age, we aren’t talking about this issue more.
I was able to graduate from college exactly one week to the day before welcoming my daughter into this world and she changed my life in the very best way. And I don’t know, maybe it’s just me, but there’s something about having a baby when she wasn’t “planned” that makes her feel even more like a gift that I didn’t know I needed.”