A life-chang­ing de­ci­sion

The Hamilton Spectator - - OUR PULSE - NIKKI TIRABASSI, GRADE 12 ST. MARTIN’S MANOR

My name is Nikki Tirabassi. I am nine­teen years old and I have a two year-old son. I found out I was preg­nant at the age of six­teen and I was ab­so­lutely ter­ri­fied. It was a dif­fi­cult con­cept for me to grasp. I was go­ing to have a baby, which meant that I needed to turn my life around com­pletely. High School was never an is­sue for me un­til this hap­pened. I felt very un­com­fort­able go­ing to school, and for the first time ever I con­sid­ered drop­ping out.

Luck­ily, my guid­ance coun­sel­lor ad­vised me oth­er­wise and gave me the in­for­ma­tion for St. Martin’s Manor. Af­ter hear­ing about the all-girls school for young preg­nant women and mothers, I knew in­stantly that this was the school for me. My first day at St. Martin’s Manor was nerve wrack­ing, as it is start­ing at any new school. How­ever, all of the stu­dents and staff wel­comed me with open arms. I met new friends who were also ex­pect­ing, and I sud­denly didn’t feel so alone. Be­sides meet­ing other girls who were go­ing through the same si­t­u­a­tion as me, there are many ad­van­tages to my de­ci­sion to switch to St. Martin’s Manor.

Firstly, I was able to con­tinue my ed­u­ca­tion and learn new things such as: craft­ing, cook­ing, and even sew­ing through a fash­ion course that I com­pleted at The Manor. Se­condly, this school gave me all of the in­for­ma­tion I would need to know about pre­na­tal care, pro­grams avail­able in the com­mu­nity for young mothers, and par­ent­ing. Lastly, the school pro­vided day care for my son when I was ready to con­tinue my ed­u­ca­tion af­ter he was born, and cre­ated many fun ac­tiv­i­ties for my son and I to en­joy to­gether. We had an op­por­tu­nity to go swim­ming once a week, and at­tend school trips to places like Ri­p­ley’s Aquar­ium.

Look­ing back, mak­ing the choice to at­tend St. Martin’s Manor was the best de­ci­sion that I have made. If I hadn’t gone to this school, I wouldn’t be grad­u­at­ing in June of 2017, and I wouldn’t be pur­su­ing my dream of be­com­ing a hair­dresser. Most im­por­tantly, I wouldn’t be the mother that I am to­day.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.