Guest blog post by Autumn Williams
My mind was set on abortion. Finding out I was pregnant a week before leaving for college was devastating. I was mad at my boyfriend, my parents, myself, this baby. Most of all, I was angry with God, for taking away my hard work, my freedom, college, and my reputation. I had a 5 year plan and I wasn’t going to let it get away from me that quickly.
At just 17, I found my world crashing down in front of my eyes. The life I once hoped for was non-existent. The fear of losing so much was the only thing driving me towards taking the easy way out. Telling myself over and over that I was in control of my life, not God, me.
I was sure I’d only be a couple of weeks along; it would be easy to go through with the procedure if that was the case. As I lay on the ultrasound table I was sure not to look as the technician was scanning, I just wanted it to be over, and the only thing in my mind was my 5-year plan. The nurse asked me if I wanted to know the gender. Before I could answer, or question what she was talking about she slowly turned the screen and she said, “It’s a boy”. My eyes fixated on the baby’s profile, a boy, my son. I was six and a half months pregnant, 17 years old, and thrown into the will of God and His 5-year plan.
To this day, I thank Him every day for finding out when I did, it saved my son’s life. I couldn’t imagine a life without him. I want to represent hope in a teen’s crashing world. After defying the odds and graduating college, I decided to start a pregnancy center that would service only teen parents. Two percent of teen mothers will graduate college before the age of thirty. I was still a statistic, but I was two percent.
We live in a society where teen pregnancy is recognized but not acted upon. Two Percent Project will be a nonprofit resource center, based out of the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, geared towards the success of teen parents. We will strive to empower young girls and boys to live lives of self-respect and self- sufficiency. Two Percent Project will be a unique center where we recognize all responsible participants of a teen pregnancy. A majority of teen pregnancy support programs solely assist mothers, with little or no support programs for teen fathers or any other individuals who are affected by teen pregnancy (e.g. Family members, grand-parents, and teachers). We at Two Percent Project recognize the importance of positive paternal involvement despite a cultural narrative writing fathers out of the picture.
God’s 5-year plan consisted of love; endless love that I am proud to say isn’t limited to five years. I was still able to finish college, get the job of my dreams, and meet new lifelong friends, all with my son, side by side, hand in hand, and heart by heart, and we have forever to go.
Some Of The Letters We Have Received:
Dear Birthright Staff,
I was just writing to let you know that everything is going well with me. I told my mother and other family members and after the initial shock, they are all excited about the baby. Thank you for helping me make the right decision and for all your support. I really appreciate what you do for me and other women like me.
To all the Ladies at Birthright,
I just wanted to say thank you for all you have done. Your support and graciousness helped create an enjoyable pregnancy for me. I appreciate the maternity clothes you gave me and the generous layette for the baby. I am doing well. Jacob looks adorable in the clothes you gave him. Thank you for everything!
I was writing Christmas cards when I saw your name. I have such fond memories of Birthright. I am so thankful you helped me decide to have my precious baby. Ellie is now 5 and the joy of my life. I will never forget the compassion and understanding you showed me. Thanks again and Merry Christmas.
Dear Birthright Representatives,
I am writing to express my gratitude to all of the ladies who helped me at Birthright and to all those who cared enough to donate to your cause.
I am 30 years old and have always worked hard for what I wanted and needed. It was not easy to reach out and ask for help. Birthright opened their arms and welcomed me and helped me without judging me. When I came to your office, I had a 4 year old, a 3 year old and was pregnant. I never thought I would be able to have my new baby. But your treated me with respect and kindness. When I left your office, I held my head high. I didn’t feel like a burden as some agencies tend to make people feel.
If you are thinking of donating your money or just baby bottles; Birthright will make good use of it. Birthright is not just any agency, it’s a special agency! I left with my belief in our community restored.
Words can never tell you how thankful I am that I decided to walk into your Birthright office. My sweet Melanie is now 1 and my most precious gift. Your story of your daughter’s baby when she was just 18 made all the difference in my world. All I could think of was erasing my problem. I would never have survived if I had. Thank you for showing me another way. And thank you for your kindness and your help during those difficult days.
Did You Know?
That Birthright is run by volunteers, including the executive director?
That Birthright offers friendship counseling? That means we help but never judge.
That women of all ages, from teen to women in their 40s, seek the support of Birthright?
That Birthright will help married women and speak with their husbands?
That any woman, regardless of her age or economic status, is welcome at Birthright?
That Birthright offers information on parenting skills, day care options and other life helps?
That Birthright offers information on how to access affordable prenatal care?
That Birthright is available to help by appointment or by walk in.
That Birthright never charges for any services.