By Karah R.*
I am nineteen years old and have a beautiful little boy named Tyrone.*
I got connected to Healthy Babies Project when I was about 7 months’ pregnant. It is true that the staff provided a wide variety of information during my prenatal experience. The program helped to educate me particularly about the importance of taking care of myself spiritually, mentally, and physically.
Yet I have been most impacted by my postpartum experience. After giving birth to my son, I was extremely depressed. Stress, sadness, and disappointment consumed my mind and soul. I felt lost and didn’t know what to do in order to get my life back on track. But the support that I received from the Healthy Babies Project empowered me. I am a participant in the Teen Parent Empowerment Program. Being able to connect with other girls my age that are in similar situations as me reassured me that I am not alone.
Home Visits Made Another Big Difference
In addition, I have received home visits from Healthy Babies Project staff. Home visits made me realize that the staff is concerned about my well-being. They are truly invested in me and my child and will go to great lengths to help me. These one-on-one interactions with the staff members have been extremely beneficial. I have been able to set goals and strategize ways to achieve them. Throughout the week, I receive numerous texts and calls from staff members who work diligently to keep me informed, give me resources, and to encourage me. Most importantly, staff contact me daily just to see how I am doing.
Ultimately, home visits with HBP staff gave me the courage and strength to know that my circumstances are not permanent. It feels great to know that I have been connected with people who are truly devoted to seeing me succeed.
Thanks to Healthy Babies Project, I am beginning to look a life from a more positive perspective and finding myself. Prior to becoming pregnant, I attended college in Florida, majoring in Physical Education. Now I have a new goal: after college, I want to obtain a master’s degree in Physical Therapy. I plan to return back to school this fall.
My family and my boyfriend have been quite supportive. They recently moved to Washington, DC so that our family could be together.
Healthy Babies Project has provided me with some amazing opportunities. It allowed me to see that the only journey is the one within. My journey of a thousand miles begins with one step and I am taking steps one after another. I can’t wait to see what’s in store.
*Names changed for confidentiality
Healthy Babies Project has become a HFA affiliate (Home Families America) as a means of providing home visitation services to more at-risk, overburdened D.C. families thereby improving birth outcomes, child and maternal health, and access to medical care. Learn more.