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Single mom goes into labor during final exam at Harvard, finishes anyway

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SAN ANTONIO – Briana Williams, J.D., is a single mom with an incredible story.

Williams, 24, went into labor during one of her final exam periods at Harvard Law School, but she didn’t let that stop her from finishing her exam anyway.

"I immediately requested an epidural so that my contractions wouldn’t interfere with my Family Law grade,” she wrote as part of an Instagram post.

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Williams gave birth to her daughter, Evelyn, after finishing her exam, as she says, “with tears in my eyes.”

So how did Williams finish her last year of law school as a single mom with a newborn?

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She took her daughter to class when she needed to after struggling with reliable childcare, according to her Instagram post.

Williams said she just bit the bullet and finished school because of her daughter.

Williams received her Juris Doctor from Harvard and proudly carried Evelyn across the stage with her.

See the full Instagram post below:

View this post on Instagram

I went into labor in April- during final exam period. I immediately requested an epidural so that my contractions wouldn’t interfere with my Family Law grade. And, with tears in my eyes, I finished it. This “biting the bullet” experience is quite quintessential of my time at Harvard. To say that my last year of law school, with a newborn, and as a single mom was a challenge would be an understatement. Some days I was so mentally and emotionally fatigued that I did not leave my bed. I struggled with reliable childcare. It was not atypical to see me rushing through Wasserstein to the Dean of Students’ office with Evelyn in her carriage, asking DOS can they keep her for a few until class was over. If not, she’d just have to come with me to class. Evie attended classes often. So I’m going to be honest with you guys.. I didnt think I could do it. I did not think that, at 24 years old, as a single mom, I would be able to get through one of the most intellectually rigorous and challenging positions of my life. It was hard. It hurt. Instagram can make peoples’ lives seem seamless, but this journey has been heartwrenching. However, I am happy to say that I DID do it. Today, Evelyn in my arms, with tears streaming down my face, I accepted my Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School. At first, I was the anomaly of my [marginalized] community. Then, as a single mother, I became a statistic. Next, I pray that- for the sake of my baby, I will be an example. Evelyn- they said that because of you I wouldn’t be able to do this. Just know that I did this BECAUSE OF YOU. Thank you for giving me the strength and courage to be invincible. Let’s keep beating all their odds, baby.

A post shared by Briana Williams, Esq.🦋 (@lovexbriana) on


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