Sep 062010

I spent a weekend in London with some old friends. They were actually identical twins. The one whom I knew the best was all out of sorts, as if I barely knew him at all. It didn’t take too much time though until he admitted what bothering him. A woman he had slept with had gotten pregnant and had an abortion. After it had happened, and then after he found out, he was beside himself. He spent hours on the internet, poring over the anti-choice propaganda. He was convinced that he was going to hell, and you know, I think he was right, only because I saw him putting himself through hell. I spent the week I had with them cleaning, putting out flowers in his kitchen and trying to do the same kind of makeover to his heart and mind. I had my brother, also the unborn father of an ex-girlfriend’s baby, call him from New York and try to comfort him.

I left my friend’s house early, if not for the awkward situation with him but also because his housemate was a little bit too friendly. I missed my college boyfriend (of almost two years) and wanted to get home to see him. And see him I did. Less than one week after I went through the trauma with my friend in London, I myself got pregnant and found myself in the same situation.

It was a few weeks later when I realized what was happening to me. I was not surprised when the home pregnancy test was positive. I just knew. I also just knew that it was not time for me to give birth to a child. After my experience in London, the right choice seemed pretty clear to me, and I wasn’t going to punish myself for making it. My best friend, after awkwardly trying to calm me by saying “Oh, well its been awhile since anything bad happened to you,” took me to Planned Parenthood and we learned how to set up the appointment. I think it was just four days later, a full week after I figured it out, that I showed up at Planned Parenthood with my mother.

The waiting room was a testimony to society’s ills. Lack of education, experience, honesty, openness. It was also a testimony to relationship, support, conscientiousness, and love. No one was alone, and despite the various levels of tension, everyone was in full consciousness of their place in relationship to life and the rest of the world. And we all took our turns.

And it was quick and it was only slightly uncomfortable. The most uncomfortable moment was when my boyfriend questioned whether it was his or not. That part really killed me. And for a couple years afterward I imagined how old the baby would be at any given time. I had a few dreams with her in it. I always imagined it was a girl. I am sorry that I’m not ready for children yet. But I know it will be better once I am ready.

In the last couple years though, I haven’t thought about it from the point of questioning my action. I think about it only as far as what people would think of me if they knew, or why women can’t talk about such an unfortunate situation. Its not that it is a good thing or a bad thing, its an unfortunate situation, and no one should have to be polarized on this issue. We should be able to make decisions for ourselves, and celebrate and grieve those decisions, and be cherished as existing pieces of the world community.

Someday I’ll enter the political realm, I’m thinking, and someone will look up my credit card record, and they’ll see I gave a specific sum to Planned Parenthood. Then I will have to stand up publicly, outside of the rally crowd and say yes, this is what I did. Until then I fight for the right for women to determine what is best for themselves in the general universal sense.

I had an abortion. It was the best decision for me, and while I have grieved for this, I have never regretted it and I’m not sorry. You don’t have to be sorry either.

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