Life begins with an incredible miracle. The act of giving birth is beautiful, to be sure, but it’s also incredibly painful. The waves of contractions a woman experiences in the early stages of childbirth are a harbinger of what will be a grueling undertaking. Even with the payoff being a bundle of joy, labor is, well, laborious.
That’s why what this Macon, Georgia, woman did in November 2015 was so incredible. Not only did she manage to bring a new life into the world, she did it while taking a college exam. Tommitrise Collins finished her 2-hour psychology exam in about 90 minutes while in the middle of labor.
Tommitrise Collins was having contractions 3 minutes apart, wasn’t on any medication, and still finished her exam.
The 21-year old new mother said she didn’t want to have to worry about the test after her baby was born. As she saw it, if she was well enough to be looking around and talking to people, she was well enough to take her test.
“If I’m sitting up, and I’m talking to people, even if I’m in pain, I’m talking to people between my contractions, why can’t I just take my test?” Collins said in an interview with FOX5 News.
Collins could only take the online test on that day for Middle Georgia State University and didn’t want to fail the class.
After Collins finished her exam, the real test was just underway. She would be in labor for another 6.5 hours, 20 hours in total.
Incredibly, Collins got a 76 on her test. But after seeing the images that her sister posted online, her psychology professor decided to grade her on the curve. In the eyes of her professor, Tommitrise Collins’ superhuman dedication was worth a little “extra credit.”
“I would like to let you know I used some of your extra credit to bump up your grade,” Collins said as she recalled the conversation she had with her professor. “And I said ‘thank you. That’s all I wanted was a B.'”
Collins gave birth to a happy, healthy baby girl that she named Tyler Elise. The newborn weighed 7 pounds and 10 ounces.
Collins says that she wouldn’t do anything differently if she were in this position again. She wants to be an example to her daughter, and what better time to set one than at birth? She has high hopes for herself and even higher hopes for her daughter.
“I don’t want to just barely make it by, I want my child to live comfortably, and I want to show people that just because I am considered a young mother doesn’t mean I have to be considered a bad mother,” she said.
Collins has since graduated with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. She managed to maintain her impressive 3.6 GPA throughout her entire pregnancy, and refused to put it in jeopardy despite going through childbirth.
She appears primed for life as a wonderful mother and has the determination to find professional success as well.
“She is my life now, and the way I look at it is, she will always have me to depend on so my goals will not be put on hold,” Collins said.