Monday, 05 June 2023
Owen and Hollie Owen and Hollie Lisa Bourne

Single mom credits pregnancy help center for life-changing support

Hollie tells other moms, “You can do it” 

Hollie with son Owen/Lisa Bourne

The Greeneville, Tenn., pregnancy help center that served Hollie and her son Owen completely impacted their lives for the better. And she encourages moms facing unplanned pregnancy challenges to avail themselves of pregnancy help, because these centers walk with moms, offering life-changing support.

“It changed everything for us,” Hollie said of the Hope Center. “It made us know that it's okay and that we can do it.”

“And they're here for absolutely every single person,” she said. 

“No matter what path you're on, no matter where you are in your life, or your child - if it's a new baby or one growing inside of you - they are here for you absolutely every step of the way. Every question, everything that you need, they're here to help for anything and everything.”

Tweet This: No matter what path you're on or where you are in your life, they are here you for every step of the way - Mom served by the Hope Center

Lisa Bourne


Hollie found the Hope Center when she needed them most, she said, because she was going through a divorce that still in progress.

“And I didn't know what to do and I needed help,” she told Pregnancy Help News. “So, I came here (to the center), and they helped me with everything.”

This ranged from diapers and clothes, to her spiritual journey. The Hope Center helped Hollie learn how to parent, how to breastfeed, how to manage what she was dealing with in her personal life, including moving back home with her parents and raising her son in that scenario, and as he grew, even how to transition him from sleeping in his bassinet into his crib. 

“So, they had so many different tips, knowledge, and stories that they were willing to help me with,” she said. “When he was teething - How do I deal with teething? How do I keep my temper when he's crying nonstop? And they had so many tricks and tips to help you get through the things that you never thought you would have to deal with.”

Hollie had her own mentor at the center to provide personal support. After she got up and running with her classes at the center she began incorporating Bible study in when she could. 

“God was never a huge part of my life,” she said, “but I saw how He interacted and was working in the lives of the women here, and what they were trying to do for me.”

Hollie has prevailed through seeming insurmountable odds to choose life for her son and go on as a single mom to pursue her dream of studying to become a nurse. 

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Ashley Bratcher, Hollie, and Owen/Lisa Bourne

She recently became the fifth mom to be awarded the Unplanned Movie Scholarship, a collaboration between actress Ashley Bratcher and Heartbeat International, the largest network of pregnancy help in the world.

“I want to be a nurse to help people when the unplanned happens in life and use my compassion for others to help them in their time of need,” Hollie wrote in her application for the scholarship. 

Bratcher praised Hollie for making “really courageous decisions and choosing life.”

She knows about unplanned events changing one’s life forever, because she is among the survivors of the 2012 Aurora, Colo., movie theater shooting. She chose after that tragedy to live her life to honor the others who lost their lives that day. 

Owen’s January 2021 birth brought her the greatest happiness in life, she said. 

However, immediately after she and her husband would face great unforeseen challenges, including unexpected reduction in his military disability benefits, which prompted the loss of their home and relocation, a colicky newborn, and heightened post-traumatic stress syndrome, which was more than their marriage could withstand.

“I never dreamed I’d be raising my son on my own,” Hollie said. “Thankfully, I found the Hope Center.”

Bratcher, Hollie, Owen, and Hollie's mentor Linda/Lisa Bourne

The Hope Center has walked with her and remains by her side.

“Hollie is a survivor and one who rises above unpleasant circumstances that come into her life,” said Hope Center Executive Director Linda Crank. “She is an excellent mother, providing love and a stable environment for her son Owen, all as a single parent.”

Hollie acknowledges that single parenting is not easy, certainly not while pursuing an accelerated degree program. But she insists it’s all worth it, and she has received affirmation that she is on the right path. 

“Nothing's easy,” she said. “Nothing is ever easy. And the harder you work for it, the more you appreciate it in the end.”

Hollie had worked as Certified Nursing Assistant while working toward nursing previously. This has given her experience and confidence as a student, and she has hit the ground running in dealing with patients. And as a non-traditional student, she brings maturity to her schooling and has shown natural leadership in the clinical setting.

“When I walked into my first clinical, I was nervous, but I knew I could do it,” she told Pregnancy Help News.

Hollie recognizes that through her positive and compassionate interaction with patients and her leadership with younger students she is being Christ to others, and she can see the Lord at work in this way, that she has Him on her side.

“He knew where I needed to be,” said Hollie.

Owen, who turns two in January, remains her non-stop inspiration, evidenced in poignant ways.

“Owen can walk into a room, and you can be having the worst day ever and he can just put the biggest smile on your face,” Hollie said.

“Or, he'll run into that room and say, ‘Mom,’ and it just makes you melt no matter how hard your day is, no matter how tired you are,” she added.

Owen often helps Hollie study

She recounted being up three times with Owen the night before and feeling exhausted from being up late studying.

“But just to have that, ‘Mommy,’ and that smile with his dimples and the twinkle in his eyes because he is always happy to see you,” she said. 

Owen has a presence with her there even while Hollie attends Carson–Newman University in Jefferson City, Tenn., and he’s back home in childcare during her school day.

“Whenever I sit for a test, and I open up my test booklet, you can write anything you want to on your test booklet,” she said. “So, on the top of my test booklet, I write, ‘You can do this mommy. Love, Owen,’ or something similar to that.” 

Hollie encourages other moms to not lose hope, no matter the weight of their load.

“When you are tired and you think you can't do it anymore, and you finally get to put them down for the night and you know they're in a safe place,” Hollie said. “You look at them and you realize, ‘I did it. I did it today. I'm going to do it tomorrow and I'm going to be okay.”

“Just know that you can do it no matter how hard it is, no matter how tired you are or how stressed or how much you cry that day,” continued Hollie. 

Tweet This: Just know that you can do it no matter how hard it is - Mom served by pregnancy help

“I've been there, I’ve gotten in the shower and cried,” she said. “But I know that at the end of the day I did my best. And that little baby right there - no matter how hard they cry, no matter how hard they are throughout that day, know that you can do it and that you can take care of that child. Because they deserve the world, and you are the one who is going to give them that world.”

Editor’s note: Heartbeat International manages Pregnancy Help News.

Lisa Bourne

Lisa Bourne is Managing Editor of Pregnancy Help News and Content Writer for Heartbeat International. She has worked in journalism and communication for the pro-life community, the Catholic Church, other Christian denominations, and secular media for several years. 

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