“But…listen…there are things you can do,” the words which are deep in my memory.
We were moving out-of-state within a week. I could not walk into the drug store and purchase the test that I needed, it was one year too early for that to hit the market.
I did not have time for a doctor’s appointment, but I wanted to know.
He drove me to the clinic.
I walked through the street level door to a clean and friendly environment, but packed to the brim, nearly stifling, with teenage girls and women.
I passed the cup to the nurse and a short time later she called me into the examination room. She broke the news, I was pregnant.
She asked me if I was okay.
“Oh, yes, I am fine,” as my face reddened, lost in a scramble for words to describe what I was thinking, just wanting to run away…just out of the door to daylight. I wanted to take a big gulp of air, and I needed time to think.
She ushered me into another room and told me to sit tight until someone, the title I forcibly made myself forget, came in for consultation.
The woman arrived. She pulled her chair up to the table in the dimly lit cubicle sized room. We were within touching distance. She carefully placed her elbows on the table between us and rested her chin on her folded hand, “You know, you have choices.”
Did she just say that? I am still in my seat, with my feet flat on the floor. I am.
I now knew that I had choices, please just let me go!
“Why not? You have choices.”
I am married. I am pregnant. Why…why would I want a choice?
“Well, these choices are not a bad thing. They are so common. Are you sure?,” she asked quietly.
Yes, I am sure. I could not tell her that my stomach was then in knots, as I realized the pressure was on, as if a used car salesman was trying to slide the car under the table that I so desperately needed, and I was going to be ashamed for refusing. I felt like I had just stepped into the pits of hell. Who was this woman, the one that I felt tugging at my very being?
A few years short of 40 have passed since that day, the day they took me from room to room, person to person, pleading, each one urging me to take advantage of my choices…and each one failing. To this day, as if something is pulling every last stitch of tissue from my body, memory brings on pain of despair.
The moment sunshine filled my eyes, as I escaped their prying direction, I broke down and weeped…collapsing from fear that was replaced with relief.
The twist to this event is there was no baby. There was no pregnancy. I sometimes wonder if I was there that day just to experience the darkness.
We are in a heated battle in our country, on this earth, for the unborn. Do the mothers have the right to abort, or do we need to hand the rights to the unborn – the ones that cannot speak for themselves? I know how I feel about it. It has nothing, nothing at all, to do with religion. I also know that what I experienced in the clinic that day should never have happened. What would have been the gain of ending a life of a child that would have had two adoring parents? How many women, those before and behind me in line, said yes because they could not say no, and where are their babies now?