When Arianna walked into a church basement in Austin to take a free pregnancy test, she thought of it as a lark, a way to kill time during the long, dull days of life as a street kid. About a month before, she had run away from the Austin Oaks mental health facility and was now living with her boyfriend in an alley near the Texas Capitol. The idea of being pregnant was laughable.
“It was just laughs and giggles while we were waiting in line,” she said.
Afterward, she remembers one of the volunteers, an older woman, pulling her aside and telling her she was pregnant. Arianna, who asked that her last name not be used, said her first reaction was to “freak out.” Caught between denial and panic, she was saddened by the realization that she was no longer a kid. At the same time, she was exhilarated.
[For more on this story by Rebecca Grant, go to https://www.texasobserver.org/expecting-care/]