Jessica: young mom grows career + family

Name:

Jessica Kolenda

I got pregnant at:

23 years old

I am now:

28 years old

young mom story

My initial reaction was:

shock, tears, fear of not being ready and still living five states from our families!

People in my life reacted:

with excitement and encouragement! (My husband was the most calm, best support system I could've asked for.)

My biggest challenge has been:

I had just applied to go back to college. I started 6 months pregnant and graduated with an 18 month old. I'm starting to build my career and my family is still growing! I now have two wonderful beautiful boys — 4 years and 8 months! I think overcoming the loss of sleep was a BIG challenge, but now it's finding time for family, friends, myself, and all the mundane at home too.

My biggest accomplishment has been:

My family by far...other than graduating with my second Bachelor's degree and kick-starting my career.

I love being a young mom because:

I have energy now and I'll have it later. In all honesty, I'm learning as I go but I feel as though I have more patience as well.

I struggle with:

The lack of sleep! Oh my! Especially with two now, but they make coffee for a reason — right?!

I wish all young moms knew:

It can be tough, lonely, heartbreaking, exhausting, mentally and physically draining — did I mention lonely? But we all feel that. Find a friend, confide in someone, join a mom's group — whatever you do, just know you're not alone; you're not the only one. You can do what you set your mind to, and you're stronger than you think!