‡ Authors Note: As I enter the last week of this blogs life , I feel a little sad but very hopeful as well. I have written about some very hard issues, and being a quasi-private person makes it even harder, but somethings just needed telling. Here is one such story (originally posted February 26, 2011) ‡
Last week I wrote about my friend Roger and how his suicide has impacted my life. I knew I was going to post something about Roger and how his death impacted me as well as all who knew him. As I rolled the memories around the palette of my mind and tasted the emotions that come with the loss the word “abort” came to my mind. I thought to myself “That is a jagged and jacked up way to put someones passing” but that was only part of it. As it turns out that was the easy part.
In a way Roger choose to abort this life, this plane of being. And if I really want to look real hard at my life, I have “aborted” parts of my life as well. The times where I could have done the right thing but choose not to. At times I was a coward and chose not to choose. I choose not to engage life and aborted many wonderful opportunities. Abort. With that one thought came a hard subject for me to address. Abortion is that subject and I did not want to write on this subject but as it is in this life we must do that which we don’t want to. So lets us begin.
It was my senior year of high school when I had my first personal experience with abortion. The apartments I lived in with my folks were not high dollar digs. My dad managed the apartments while holding down another full time job. There was section eight tenants living there along with a full rent tenants.Through the years I had many friends there, one was a young man we will call Rick. Rick and I hung out and listened to music and talked about what guys talk about: girls, girls, music, girls….you get the picture. And oh Rick was a stud. Chicks dug him and guys wanted to be him so there was always young ladies hanging around.
It was soon after Rick started dating a one young lady that she became pregnant. She was a senior in high school and Rick was just out so this was not what they wanted. Rick pushed her pretty hard to get an abortion going as far to say he would pay for it. I tried to talk her out of it but to no avail. She eventually relented and had the abortion.
We talked one on one a few times after that but when talking to her afterwards there was something missing in those once vibrantly alive eyes. More than one thing died in her that day it seems. I wonder if the pain ever went away or does it cling to her like an icy cold damp fog of regret. She came around and hung out for a short time after that but soon they broke up and Rick moved away. I never saw either of them again.
That year in school I had to debate before the “Supreme Court” in an American Civics class for my final grade. It was about defining when life begins and it’s ramifications on early/late term abortions. I was to argue on the side of what would now be called pro-life. There was much passion in my assertion that life starts at conception. What makes us human happens then and there. Not when the brain develops a certain “size”. Nor when the lungs and heart do as well but when sperm and egg conceive. Science cannot define it nor can it prove it doesn’t. Why? Because we cannot quantify what humanity is. It simply is.
Many think this isn’t so but as I have lived out this life and interacted with others over the years I have observed one thing that stands to me: No matter how or when a women loses a child there is always a great sense of lose.I have friends now that have lost a child during their pregnancy. We have talked about the feeling of not knowing what could have been. There was a lady I used to work with who every year marks what would have been the birthday of the child she lost. It was over twenty years ago when she had her miscarriage. Some things never go away.
I haven’t looked up the statistics but I bet long term depression risks runs high for those who have had an abortion or lost a child. I haven’t walked a mile in any of these womens and girls shoes. I do not know who or what pressures they had in their lives.There are things I will never know. But I do feel that with an abortion, as well as with suicide, the question “what if” never completely goes away.
Simply being human and having to wrestle with this issue is tough and messy. I know Grace covers all things in those who believe in Him. Sin is forgiven but humanly there are repercussions for us all on how we lived and do live. As a Christian I mustn’t judge but there is some much emotion involved with this issue we look past that point. We can get caught up on our need to be right and forget about doing what our God tells us is right.
As I started writing this post I had no idea where it would end. As I ponder this I think about the baby of a young lady in our faith community’s. I reflect back several weeks back as I was holding this child. As I remember her dancing dark brown eyes and the head full of jet black hair, I smile.
This child’s mother has been through some terrible times in her life but she choose to have this child. She lacks a lot of skill sets to deal with life’s basic issues. She knows this and I know this. She is getting help but the road will be long. No one is disillusioned about this. It’s messy. She made a choice to struggle and hope for a better tomorrow for her and her child.There is no “easy button” for this young mother but a least she doesn’t have to be burdened by “what if”.