The “A” Word

In my last post, I announced that I am pregnant.

It’s been 2 weeks later, and I’m here to say that I’ve resolved to keep it.

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My baby at 7 weeks and 5 days.

I’ve done a lot of soul-searching and crying over these past 2 weeks. The word I’ve been hearing over and over is “abortion”. When I first told my parents, they strongly urged me to get an abortion, saying I’m not ready for this and I can’t give up my future and my education for this. A lot of my friends also recommended I abort mission, though they weren’t as insistent, saying that it’d be “easier” that way.

Yes, on the outside, to everyone else, it would probably be “easier” if I aborted. I could stay in my university, I could sleep through the night in peace, I wouldn’t have to worry about relocating or having the pressures of being a young mother or lose time and energy and miss out on college student things like the junior dance or beach week or all those things. But on the inside, I’d be a wreck. Everyone else may be able to forget, but I never would. As I mentioned in my last post, I have horrible depression and anxiety. Though I am very pro-choice and I know that making the choice would not in any way be murder, I just can’t bring myself to get an abortion. I believe that if I did, I would feel horrible guilt, and I would never be able to fully enjoy any future children I may conceive.

At this point, I believe I would much rather go through the stresses of being a young mother taking her time getting through school than the stress of having an abortion. In my opinion, this child could even save my life. How can I kill myself when I know I have this little person depending on me?  How could I kill myself thinking that my child would have to grow up finding out what happened to me, and maybe even blaming itself for it?

So this week on my college campus there have been pro-life protests. But not like any I’ve ever heard of before. People came and put up giant pictures of dead and mangled baby bodies all over the main parts of campus, claiming that it was a “genocide awareness project”. They had posters all over campus saying, “Your mother chose life, and so should you.”

Now hold the fucking phone.

My mom was 29 when she got pregnant. I am 18.
My mom had already graduated from college. I am a freshman.
My mom had a job and a fiancee and they were both financially stable. I’ve never worked a day in my life.
My mom was at the right age and was emotionally ready to have a child. I am not.

These pro-life people don’t care what happens to me or my future child. They don’t care if I end up homeless with a malnourished child living on a cardboard box in the middle of downtown DC. They wouldn’t care, in fact they would even blame me.

(Of course these things¬†aren’t going to happen to me, but it does happen to people. I’m extremely fortunate to have supportive and financially well-off parents.)

And another things. Those “pro-life” protesters’ pictures were all HORRIBLY mislabeled. They showed pictures of whole, developed babies that were bloody and disfigured and mangled, yet they were labeled as first trimester babies or coat-hanger abortions. There is no way in hell those were anything before the late second trimester. I’m positive that the images that were being shown were either miscarriages or third trimester abortions. Which is another issue in itself. Because you see, if they knew anything that they were talking about, it is illegal to have a third trimester abortion anywhere in America. Even a second trimester one is a no-go. The only way they would abort that late is if there was a medical complication, and either the life of the mother or the baby was in danger. That means that those pictures were of babies whose mothers actually wanted them but weren’t physically able to. It means that those “protesters” were abusing those families’ traumas to make a falsified point. I don’t care what you stand for, but I cannot stand for lies.

PLUS, the medical definition of “life” isn’t a heartbeat, it’s an EEG (brain signals) which fetuses don’t have. Dumbasses.

(Dramatically moving onto a happier note)

When I went in for my ultrasound, thing suddenly got even more real for me than they already were. I saw the life that is growing inside me. I saw it’s cute little poppy-seed sized heart. I heard the sound of it’s cute little heartbeat (160 BPM going strong woot woot!)

I know that I want this child. I can only hope that the future will be kind to me and my child. All I can do now is my best.

18 and Pregnant

I’ve known for weeks now. I knew before I took the test that it would come out positive.

My boyfriend came to spend Valentine’s Day weekend with me. As a surprise, I got a Plan B pill so we could forsake the condoms for the night. 95% effective. 5% ineffective.

No matter the circumstances, here we are. Here I am. Here it is.

I knew the moment my period was late that this was why. The nausea, the extreme fatigue, the cramping, the food aversions and cravings, the breast tenderness, the dizziness, everything.

Of course my immediate thought was, “What am I going to do?” I’m 18. I have no job, and I don’t know if anyone will hire a pregnant teenager. Abortion is the obvious choice.

This is my conflict.

I have always been pro-choice. What a woman does with her body is her choice. If you want an abortion, I think you should be able to get one. My dilemma doesn’t stem from whether I can get one, but whether I want one. I always thought that if I got pregnant before I was out of college, I wouldn’t hesitate to get an abortion. But now that it’s here, and now that it’s actually happening, I find it hard to make a concrete decision.

To abort

To abort is the obvious answer, or at least that’s what everyone is telling me. But my question is, obvious to who? Obvious for what? People always say that having a baby at this age will ruin your life. That my education would suffer and I wouldn’t be able to live a good life. But why does it have to be that way? Yes, if I abort then I will be able to continue my college education and my young adult social life the way they are, “as if this never happened,” as someone said today. But it wouldn’t be like that. Because I’ll always know, and I’ll always feel regret. I’m currently seeing a therapist for severe clinical depression, and I feel an abortion would push me beyond my limits. Yes I’d be able to stay at school, but at what cost?

To keep

The unpopular social opinion. I think in no way will having this child “ruin my life”. I definitely think it will put some plans on halt, but who says that’s the most terrible thing? When people think of teenage pregnancy, they think of the horror stories. The girls getting kicked out of their homes forced to work jobs they hate to raise children they couldn’t afford to begin with. But it doesn’t have to be that way. My family is arguably well-off, and I’m Filipino. Filipinos have a very, very, very strong sense of family. A handful of my cousins have actually had babies at young ages out of wed-lock, and they’re very happy with their lives and their families right now. People have told me that it’s possible to take a semester or a year off school and come back. I see no way that this child will “ruin” my life, merely begin a new one in a new way.

One of the biggest factors that’s influencing my decision is a conversation I had with my mom before, when I first started therapy. I told her about the extent of my depression, and my suicidal tendencies. She confessed to me that I took them from her. She said that she used to be the same way, but things changed when she had children. It was like suddenly she wasn’t living for herself anymore, she was living for me and my brother. I believe this could happen for me. I believe things may go the other way if I have an abortion.

I still have time to make a decision. This child was conceived on Valentine’s Day, which means at this rate it’s probably only a month or so. Nothing is written in stone.

I never thought I’d ever be in this situation. I never thought I’d be “that girl”. But here we are. Here I am. Here it is.

Here it comes.