At 16, Jamie Lynn Spears learned she was expecting her first child, daughter Maddie

By Aurelie Corinthios and Jeff Nelson
January 11, 2019 11:37 AM
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Over a decade after saying goodbye to Zoey 101, Jamie Lynn Spears is looking back on the popular Nickelodeon show.

Marking the 14th anniversary of the premiere, Spears shared a video of the opening credits (sung by her) on Instagram.

“Are you ready? 14 years later…still a jam,” she captioned the post, adding the hashtags: #itdidNOTendbecauseofpregnancy and #contractwasfinished.

Not long after Zoey 101 wrapped its fourth season, Spears (then 16 years old) became pregnant with her first child, daughter Maddie Briann, with then-boyfriend Casey Aldridge.

Spears shut down speculation that her pregnancy caused the show to end in the comments section of the post.

“Oh wow you didn’t quit because you were pregnant, you waited this long tell us,” one fan wrote.

“Nope,” Spears replied. “I went home to finish high school and was going to pursue movies.”

Another fan asked Spears if the contract would have been extended if not for her pregnancy, to which the actress simply replied, “No.”

Credit: Everett

In 2016, Spears reflected on being a teenage mother in an interview with PEOPLE, admitting she “was extremely scared and shocked.”

“I couldn’t believe it,” she said. “Overall, I was a very good young girl who thought she knew everything about love, and clearly, I didn’t. And I think it’s important for young girls to know that honesty and that realness that I went through, ’cause it was scary. It wasn’t all rainbows and daisies.”

“I think that for me, my biggest concern was, ‘Oh my goodness, I need to tell my mother and my father and my family,’ ” she continued. “And that was extremely important to me. And also I was on a Nickelodeon show, so I felt responsible for what these young girls were going to think looking up to me. And, although Zoey was completely wrapped, they still hadn’t aired the final episodes. So for me, I felt very responsible.”

Spears said she realized her pregnancy wasn’t just about her, but also “about the people it was going to affect around me.”

“I had to make a decision, obviously, that I could go to sleep with every night, but I definitely felt the weight and responsibility of what my actions were,” she said. “And I had to hold myself accountable, didn’t matter how old I was. I put myself in an adult situation so I needed to handle it like an adult.”

Spears, who married Jamie Watson in 2014, is now a mother of two; the couple welcomed daughter Ivey Joan in April 2018.