Helping Hands Hawaii: Single teen mom seeking holiday support

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - It wasn't long ago Summer Zoller was a young kid excited for Christmas. Now she has a child of her own and is struggling with the challenges of being a teen parent.

Playing with the mic on our camera is 17 month old Stormie. She is the daughter of 17 year old Summer Zoller.

"I thought it would be cute for me to put my name and her name against each other so it would be Summer and Stormie," said Summer Zoller.

In their Makakilo apartment there is the chart following Summer's growth. But before the 12th grade photo is filled in all eyes are on Stormie.

"I don't think I realized all of this in the beginning that it was going to be this hard," said Zoller.

Summer was 15 and a sophomore at Kapolei High School when she got pregnant. The father, who was two years older, has moved to Texas.

They live with Summer's mom who works two jobs. They have a plastic Christmas tree but aren't sure if they'll put it up considering there may not be anything underneath.

"I brought a new person to take care of and I just feel like I should be the one taking care of my daughter but I don't have the tools or ability to do it by myself right now," said Zoller.

She gets advice from Healthy Start Oahu. And she's also gone to Helping Hands Hawaii for support this holiday season asking for things like diapers, clothes and shoes.

"Summer is now having to realize that being a parent isn't all it's cracked up to be. It has its definite perks and it's a blessing. The crying, the constant having to take care of her and you're still responsible for yourself and school," said Ginger Meyers, Healthy Start Oahu, who counsels Zoller. "This time of the year it's difficult, it's emotional."

Summer used to hate school. Now she misses it so much. She still wants to graduate High School with her class instead of opting for the GED. She has learned being a kid with a kid is difficult.

"I tell my friends everyday appreciate school because when you're home alone and you're doing homework on the computer you're going to miss it," said Zoller. "It's life. Life hits you."

She and Stormie keep charting their growth and weathering life one step at a time.

To adopt a family or make a donation call Helping Hands Hawaii at 440-3812 or click here for more information. 

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