Friday, March 27, 2009

Of choices

I started to  write this in response to this post, and realized that it was one hell of a comment and perhaps I should just post it on my own blog. Hey, if you're gonna have dirty secrets......

I had an abortion 11 years ago. I was married, too young, and my husband said to me "If you have this baby, it will ruin my life." I ruined his life anyway, because I couldn't stand to look at him after the fact and left him a year later. I tried, oh, I tried to "do the right thing" and stay with him, and stay married. But I'm not sure I ever loved him, and I certainly didn't even like him after we killed our child. The thing that hurt me the most? I never saw him cry. I don't believe he did. It was nothing but an expensive inconvenience to him.

I hadn't told my family or friends I was pregnant, I didn't tell them about the baby until after I left the husband. When no one could understand why I left, why I was scared, and why I had gotten so cold. I only told one person, someone who was 500 miles away, but I trusted him with my secret. He supported me, supported my decision, and checked on me for months to make sure I was ok. I will be forever grateful to him for that. For being the one person I could trust with my hell while I was standing in the middle of it.

I cried every day for almost two years, the pregnancy had been an accident, but tentatively wanted by me. Not so by him. I was too young to fight him, and didn't have the support I needed. My family was in shambles, my father drunk and the husband's mother crazy. Knowing what I know now, I did the best I could, and am glad I did. I will always grieve that loss, but it shaped so much of who I am that I think I am grateful for that, too. That *choice* was made, if you can believe, out of love for that child. There is no way that man was a suitable or safe father. I was in no way, shape or form ready or capable of caring for another human. I truly feel that I saved that baby from a miserable, dangerous life. No, adoption was not an option for me. The family would not have understood, there was so much ugly going on then. I just couldn't have done it. I wasn't strong enough.

Now, 11 years later, I still wonder who he might have been (that baby will always be a "he" in my heart.) Years of counseling, and giving myself room to truly grieve for what I lost, what he lost, helped. Being in a solid and secure marriage also helped. As I now hold my 6 month old baby girl, I am grateful that I made the choice I did. I couldn't have done it then. I just simply couldn't have done it. I gave that baby the best I could by choosing not to bring him into the world. Because of him, I give her more of me now. I treasure her every breath, even the ones she takes while screaming her lungs out at 3 am. Because she is there to scream. Because she is wanted and so very loved, by both her parents, and so many other people. She has the best we can give, and that, for me, is the only way.

It isn't an easy choice, how could it be? I surely never thought I'd be "that girl." But I was, am, and will always be someone who "chose." I don't regret that decision, but I'll always mourn that loss. It makes me hang on tighter to her now, and be ever so much more grateful for the gift of her. I will always support the right to make that choice, because every story is different, unique, and intensely personal.

Since the first time I saw those pink lines, all those years ago, I have always been somebody's Mom. As a Mother, you do the best you can with what you have, sometimes it's good, sometimes not so much.

I made that choice, and whether or not you believe it was the right thing, it was the best thing, the only thing for me at the time. Rest easy, little man, Mommy still loves you.

1 comment:

  1. 'That baby' for me will always be a girl. I don't know why I think that. I just do.

    It's hard.

    Thanks so much for sharing this. xo