Interview a Parent

On September 28, 2011 Kristin sat down in her aunt's home for an hour from six o'clock at night to seven o'clock at night to answer a series of questions about her pregnancy, child birth, and parenting. Kristin and her son Michael live with her aunt and uncle and they're two daughters, ages 17 and 19. This is because Kristin had nowhere else to go when she moved out of her boyfriend's house. Michael is currently three years old, which would make him in the initiative vs. guilt stage according to Erikson's Stages of Psychosocial Development. According to Piaget's Stages of Cognitive Development, Michael is in the Preoperational stage. Michael is in the functional play stage according to Parten's Stages of Play. Finally, according to Vygotsky's sociocultural theory, Michael is at the stage of contextual.

Four years ago in April 2007, twenty-years-old Kristin found out she was pregnant. When she realized that she was pregnant, she didn't know what to do or what to think about it. She had no idea what she was going to do and she was also worried about her mother. Kristin assumed that her mother was going to kill her on account of her being pregnant at the age of twenty with a man no one seemed to like. People were more upset finding out that she was pregnant and her mother was very angry with her.

Regardless of everyone's thoughts on the subject, Kristin took very good care of herself and the baby during her pregnancy. She took responsibility and made sure that nothing went wrong. To make sure that nothing went wrong, Kristin took prenatal vitamins every day. She also took every test she could to make sure that her baby wasn't born with anything such as Down syndrome. Because she had done all of this, Kristin, as well as the baby, were both very healthy throughout the whole pregnancy.

Kristin did not know what to think when it came to imagining what parenthood might be like. She knew for sure that it was not going to be easy. She couldn't even imagine raising a child all on her own, but that ended up happening when Michael's biological father left before he was born. Kristin asked around for parenting and child birth advice, mostly from co-workers and friends' parents. She didn't ask her mom much because she was still pretty angry about the pregnancy; however, she did come around in a few months and was active in Kristin's pregnancy and her grandson's birth. Kristin had also bought herself parenting books. She didn't feel as though they helped her all much. She thought hearing advice and stories from her friends and family who had the experience helped her the most.

Finally on January 25, 2008, Kristin's water broke and went into labor. Her labor and delivery was scary and exciting all at the same time. She explained it was an overwhelming experience with a lot of mixed feelings. She wanted to get the birth over with as fast as possible. Her mother, brother, boyfriend (not Michael's biological father), and her boyfriend's mother were stuck in the room while she gave birth. A couple of nurses and mid wives was also in the room with her. The nurses told her to begin pushing, so the people in the room were not allowed to leave because she had started her delivery. There were no complications during the delivery. Kristin wouldn't speak a word until she had her baby in her arms.

Three Years ago on January 25, 2008, an adorable, sweet little boy named Michael was born. He was five pounds and nine ounces. He was born with a cleft lip, just like his mother was when she was born. Kristin and her newborn son were in the hospital for only three days. Michael went into surgery to get the cleft lip fixed a couple of months after he was born.

To celebrate the birth of Michael, all of Kristin's friends and family came to visit her and her son in the hospital. They visited to check in how she was feeling and to meet the newest bundle of joy that came into the world. When Michael and Kristin got home from the hospital, she didn't want too many visitors. She wanted to be home alone with her son so they could bond and get to know each other.

Kristin had returned to work after the baby was born. On account of her being a single parent, there was no was that she was going to be able to raise a baby and not work. Babies are not cheap and she needed money for diapers, baby food, clothes, and all the baby things that Michael needed. This meant that her work schedule had to change as well as her family members because they all needed to figure out who would be able to watch over Michael while she was at work. It got hard for Kristin at times because she had a waitressing job. She sometimes had to work late nights. She didn't like working late nights because she had a newborn, so she wasn't getting enough sleep as it was. Her main concern was that she wanted to be home with her son all the time and by the time she got home from work on those late nights, Michael was already in bed sleeping.

Kristin's biggest surprise in becoming a parent was how fast the time flies. She feels as though everything is happening in a blink of an eye. It's as though it was yesterday that she was in the hospital giving birth to Michael. However, he's three years old now and soon to be four in four months. One day she was home from the hospital with a newborn, then he was suddenly crawling, walking, and then he had turned one. Kristin cannot believe all the achievements her and her son have made together over the years. All the hard work of raising him, all the times she's cried, all the times she's comforted his tears…she feels as though for being a single parent, she has been doing an extremely good job.

Kristin is 24 years old now and she did not expect to have a soon to be four year old at her age. There are many things she wishes she were able to do. There are many places that she wishes she could go. However, she cannot picture her life being any differently now that she has her son. She cannot imagine life without him. It has been a difficult challenge raising her child this far and she still has many more years to go in raising him. Kristin feels as though the challenges are rewarding, though. She feels as though she is rewarded whenever she sees Michael's smile or she hears him speak the words, "I love you, Mommy."