Pregnant, Homeless, and Still in High School: What A Day in the Life of One of Our Maternity Clients Might Look Like
School, homework, dinner, and rest. Sounds like a pretty typical day for a teen, right? For the moms in our Maternity Shelter, life might look a bit different.
We’d love to give you a glimpse into what a day might look like for a young mom who lives with her baby at our maternity shelter. Many of our young moms are still high school aged, though she might not necessarily be in school. Because of pregnancy, homelessness, or a host of other reasons, our moms have barriers to education that other youth might not experience.
This mom, we’ll call her M. M is seventeen and parenting a 6 month old baby, B. A typical day looks like M waking up early enough to get herself and baby B ready, eat breakfast, and get out the door for the day. M takes her baby to a daycare nearby early in the morning, where she drops him off in time to make her bus to school. She goes to school like a typical teen, though she may be delayed or a year behind because of her pregnancy and maternity leave.
When M finishes her school day in the afternoon, she takes the bus home, and walks to pick baby B up from his daycare. On her way to her room, M stops by her case manager’s office She comes home and does her homework while baby B plays near her. She gets help from our tutor, who talks to her about her plans after graduation next year and helps her talk through her options. When M is finished with her homework, it’s time for dinner.
M and baby B eat dinner with the rest of the young moms and babies in the dining room at Good Shepherd, which is prepared by our cook. After dinner, she has a group session with the other young moms living at Good Shepherd, which may include group therapy or a life skills class. On some nights, M and B have a Mommy & Me activity, which helps the two of them bond. Soon, it’s time for baby’s bath and bedtime. M finishes up her chores and heads to sleep.
M’s schedule looks a little different than a typical new mom’s. At Good Shepherd, we focus on education, structure, and sustainability. We know how important it is for our young moms to further their own education and to be set up for success in the future. Our structure of wake up times, curfews, therapy, life skills, and other requirements help our moms to have consistency in their schedule and to learn to be a better parent. We strive to help our clients learn the skills they will need in the future and to be a safe, healthy, and happy parent.