Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Fitness Classes for Pregnant Teens in NYC

Pregnant teens and teen moms in NYC be sure to check out these free, affordable, and exciting fitness classes you can take while pregnant. 

Being active and healthy before, during, and after pregnancy is extremely important however, often times fitness classes for pregnant woman are so expensive that many teen moms can not afford them but this is NO LONGER THE CASE! 

Click photo for better quality
From the program information email I received: 
Prenatal classes return to the New Settlement Community Center in the Bronx this week!  We are continuing the very popular weekly FREE and BILINGUAL prenatal yoga class on Tuesdays at 10:30 AM and are also restarting the exciting prenatal water exercise class on Fridays at 7:15 PM - $25 for 6 weeks.
A second water exercise class starts October 7th at Riverbank State Park in Manhattan.  $58 for 8 weeks ($48 if women already have a Riverbank ID card).  Participants MUST REGISTER IN ADVANCE FOR THIS CLASS.
Finally, we continue the wonderful and affordable prenatal yoga (Friday mornings) and belly dance (Saturday afternoons) classes at Harlem Yoga Studio.  These classes are by donation for pregnant women. 
Bread and Yoga will be reopening in October at a new location in Inwood.  Stay tuned!  Have a great day,
Please help us raise the small amount of funds needed to continue the amazing Bronx class by encouraging someone you know to make a small tax-deductible donation here:!

Did you take fitness classes while pregnant? Did you enjoy them?

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Accepting My Depression

I haven't been in a good place lately. 

I have days when I'm sad and the next day it's gone. However, there are times when it seems a huge dark cloud moves in and no matter how bright it is outside nothing seems positive.

Perhaps it's years of repressing emotions and denying myself that I am a human and therefore an emotional creature but it hit me like a ton of bricks that I have and have had depression. I still debate rather I can actually have depression or not because depression seems like something so abstract and something that "only happens to sad people." 

But after Dr. Googling myself, thinking back to when I was younger, and being honest with myself I realize that I have depression and its okay- so long as I finally learn how to deal with it in a healthy way. 

I spoke to one of my friends yesterday and she told me that it sounds like I have depression, that I should talk to a doctor, and most importantly that it's okay. 

I'm sorry for not being as consistent as usual with blogging, Facebook, and Twitter. Thank you for being patient with me. 

Please be patient with me while I work on learning how to deal with depression in a healthy way and getting back to "normal." 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Depressing Ramblings

Leilani can't go to her new school until her old school releases her. This means I can't go to class and neither can she. 

I'm extremely scared that I might get dropped from my classes which will cause me to lose my scholarships and lose a semester of school. This ultimately means I will not be able to graduate May of next year like I should. 

Leilani's upset because the old school is playing chicken and she can't go to her new school. 

I feel like I'm going through a quarter life crisis because I have one year left to "get my life together" before graduation and I don't feel confident in what I want to do or be in the years to come.

My schedule and lack of consistent help with Leilani makes it almost impossible to get a "real job" and really even if I got one I'm not sure it would pay me enough so I can afford a quality sitter. 

My lack of not knowing what or where I want to be coupled with my fear of failing is paralyzing me and depressing me. 

All I feel like doing is crying.
I don't like feeling sad and then Im upset for feeling sad because in the grand scale of things my life is great. 

But can't I feel sad too? Can't I feel lost? 

I know these feelings are temporary but I feel terrible. 

Friday, September 6, 2013

Teenage Births Are Low Not High

According to the Center's for Disease Control as reported by USA Today teenage births have hit a historic LOW!
The article states that drop is caused by more teens are waiting to have sex and those who are having sex are using birth control and higher rates than before.

"Teen births have continued to drop, reaching a historic low in 2012 and hitting half of what they were in 1991, says a government report out Friday.
The birthrate for teens, ages 15 to 19, dropped 6% from 31.3 births per 1,000 teen girls in 2011 to 29.4 in 2012. Teen birthrates were down for all racial and ethnic groups.
This is the lowest teen birthrate since 1940 when data on teen births started being collected, says lead author Brady Hamilton, a statistician with the National Center for Health Statistics, part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention." -USA TODAY

The article states that drop is caused by more teens are waiting to have sex and those who are having sex are using birth control and higher rates than before. And while this is exciting news The United States still has the HIGHEST rate of teenage pregnancy and birth in the industrialized world. 

What do you think has caused the drop?
What do you think needs to happen for the rate of teenage pregnancy to continue to decrease?

Claudette Colvin and Teen Mom Activist

My latest on Mommy Noire

At the age of 15, Claudette Colvin found out she was pregnant. The following months of her pregnancy would be spent in the United States Supreme Court fighting for the desegregation of the public bus system in Montgomery, Alabama. Claudette Colvin was 15 years old when she refused to give up her seat for a white woman on a Montgomery, Alabama public bus. 

Witnesses state that Claudette was thrown off the bus, handcuffed, and jailed for her refusal to vacate her seat. It is important to note that Ms. Colvin’s refusal predates Rosa Park’s refusal to move to the back of the bus by nine months. 

As a former teenage mother–I also had my daughter at 15 years old–and activist Ms. Colvin’s life inspires and saddens me beyond belief. Society seems to believe that the most effective way to deal with teenage pregnancy, and more specifically teenage mothers, is to look down on us, ridicule us, belittle us, and often times force us out of school. In communities of color it seems all of these hurtful tactics are sometimes amplified. Read the rest here 

Monday, September 2, 2013

#BackToSchool Times TWO. Being a Student Parent

For many parents back to school season is stressful, but for student parents like myself the stress is doubled. 

Since the age of 16, back to school for me has meant having all of my back to school details squared away while simultaneously looking for a quality and affordable daycare for my daughter, having enough diapers in the diaper bag, clean bottles, and everything else that parents need to pack and ensure their children have as the enter daycare. 

Although the planning season for most parents begins about a month before school starts for their children, for student parents the process starts when we enroll ourselves into our next semester classes while still dealing with the current semester. Finding courses that line up with the times our child is in school to minimize the cost of daycare, after school programs, or a babysitter is essential but also limits the amount of credit hours a parent can take during a semester. Then there is the minor detail that certain days of my school schedule don’t line up with the early pick up times for her school or public school holidays that simply don’t exists for college students. 

Read the rest of my piece on MommyNoir