One day, not too long ago, everything was different, because I saw the color red.
I was at a red light. In front of me was a red car with a bumper sticker saying, “Choose Life…Your Mother Did” in big red letters. Perhaps that doesn’t sound too extraordinary to most, but given what was on my mind at the time, it may as well been a burning bush. I had just left my doctor’s office, and she had given me a different explanation to the odd fatigue and muscle weakness I’ve been experiencing for the past few weeks. She delivered the news with a hug and a “Congratulations, Mommy!”.
Not one, but two tests had confirmed that I was pregnant.
This wasn’t terribly surprising news. I had known for a few days that there was a little bundle of energy starting to bud and grow inside my body. I even knew it was a boy. Don’t ask how I knew, it’s a female thing, and we’re just magical like that. It was still a shock to the system to hear her confirm it.
The moment I sensed his presence, I had become enamoured with him. By logical standards, I shouldn’t have been. My rational self was demanding that I should feel a sense of horror and devastation; I’m already a single mother of two children. I don’t make a lot of money, and baby would further delay nursing school plans that has already been pushed back over and over again. And though I deeply adore and care for the man who helped form this special little group of cells, we weren’t a together. Not the way a mother and father should be, anyways.
Not to mention, this news would likely give my dad a heart attack.
None of that mattered, though. No amount of logic that was going to change my decision to keep him. The bond had already formed, and there wasn’t a chance in hell I was going to sever that. I am not a huge fan of abortion, and I’m way too selfish to give a child up for adoption. This was going to happen. I was going to have a baby.
Telling the father wasn’t as hard as I thought is was going to be. He wasn’t exactly happy to hear the news, but he still took it well. I had a sense of faith that no matter what he wouldn’t have left me to face this alone. Not to say he would have suddenly wanted to “be together”. In fact, if he had suggested it because of this, I would have refused. I would never want to put him in a position where he felt forced to make such a decision. Regardless of whatever out come that would have took, I felt he would have been supportive, in whatever way he knew how.
Fast forward, just a short time.
It was a new day, and everything was different, because I was seeing red again.
It wasn’t a good red. It was a bad red.
My face had a frightful pallor and my eyes looked almost deflated when I woke up that morning. I was weak and in more pain than I wanted to admit at the time. The voice of denial kept crying inside my head, “If I just lie down and be really still, the red will stop and I’ll feel better. He’ll be okay.”
It never stopped, and I never felt better. He was not okay.
It’s hard to really describe the feeling of what was taking place in my body during that time. Aside from the pain, there was this feeling in my womb that could be equated to a dying flame. Those that are sensitive to those sorts of things may know what I’m talking about, or maybe if you’ve ever held a dying person or animal in your arms and felt their “spark” go out…. yeah, that’s what it felt like. The little spark of life inside me had died, and the bond was severed. After a few sets of blood work, it was determined that, for whatever reason, my progesterone levels dropped dramatically over a short period of time. My guess is that there was something very wrong with him, and my body simply knew what was best. In a way, I suppose that makes me feel a little better, though my heart still breaks over the thought of his face, and what he would have been like, and all of the “what coulda beens” in between.
It feels strange to mourn a child I never saw, but only felt. Maybe it was hormones causing me to feel sadness and grief, or maybe I had caught a glimpse of something I wanted, but didn’t know it at the time. Maybe this is the “Gods'” way of saying that it’s time I start figuring out where I want the rest of my life to go. I may not be what most would consider “old”, but I’m definitely not getting any younger.”Choose Life” isn’t a phrase coined only by anti-abortionists. That could mean a number of things. I guess it’s time I start figuring out what it means for me.