Living with Abortion

“Everyone wants liver,” she said as she took a sip of wine. 

Maybe you would rather have a calvarium. They are only seventy-five dollars each, or three for two-hundred. We offer same-day shipping and we leave the bottom jaw on so no calvarium leaves the shop without a smile on his little face. 

You cannot get a better deal for a baby’s head. 

If you do, we will match any offer.

I always thought that you could not put a price on life, but apparently, you can. Ask Planned Parenthood, they know exactly what a life is worth. 

My Abortions

I have no innocence in this discussion.  In my life, I paid for two abortions for girls in trouble and could not stop my girl (at the time) from having one.

I was always the “smart guy.” Everyone always came to me for answers and especially, when they were in trouble. The problem with being the “smart guy,” is you begin to believe your own BS, and lose the ability to think you are ever wrong. What people forget is that the smartest person in the room is usually the biggest moron as well.    

The world seemed to take abortion so lightly and I had so many deeper things to consider, that I never really considered it. I simply paid abortion no mind. 

I did not understand abortion. Sure I understood, I was raised a Catholic, enduring 16 years of Catholic School education, but I do not remember it ever having been mentioned in class during all those years. 

Number One

C was a pretty little Puerto Rican girl I had always craved, but never had.  It was the seventies and she was in trouble, pregnant at something like 17 or 18-years-old.  I gave her the $110 dollars for her first abortion (my understanding is that she had many thereafter), and drove her to Prospect Hospital in the Bronx for the procedure.  

I asked if she would consider having the baby and giving it up for adoption, but she was resolute in her decision to have an abortion.

Number Two

The next, was a girl who worked for me when I ran a school uniform company in the nineties. I offered mainly entry-level positions, and my employees were usually teenagers. For many it was their first job. 

I always did my best to mentor them, teach them work skills and life skills, and if any were in trouble, I helped them with whatever they needed, including lending them money. 

One of my workers came to me one day, distraught, begging for help. She needed $100 to pay for an abortion. She explained she was just getting by, and couldn’t afford another child. She already had a five-year-old daughter her mother watched during the day at their apartment in the projects. 

I lent her the money. 

I like to think that when I gave her the $100, I asked her to consider having the child and putting him up for adoption, but I do not remember doing so, and since being crushed against a wall by a tractor-trailer in 2008, I remember almost everything. 

I know I never asked her.

She disappeared shortly thereafter. I hope she ripped me off instead of actually having an abortion, but I will never know.

Number Three

The last was L, who I was desperately in love with, and that particular one was my child, or should have been. She was beautiful and I loved her with all my heart, but that girl was a little bit nuts, yet because she was beautiful, many people pretended she wasn’t, including me. 

We were already engaged and I told her numerous times that we should marry and have the baby. She would reply, “You can’t be serious, Bill, I know you love me, but you are not in love with me.”  

I have never been able to figure out what that means.

She always did exactly as she pleased and was adamant that she was going to have an abortion, telling me that nothing I said or did would make any difference. 

She was always going to do what she was going to do; I know that. 

In my heart, I also know I should have fought harder for my baby and I didn’t. I loved her and didn’t want to lose her. In addition, I suspected that if things didn’t work out for us, she would have used the child to drag me through the courts for the rest of my life.  

I was a coward.

The Videos

I can’t watch the Planned Parenthood videos, although I have read all I could about them. I can’t understand how anyone who knows what abortion is, or has only just now learned from the videos what it is, can look at themselves in the mirror every day and not understand they are complicit by allowing it to continue.

What is described in those videos is not a pretty picture, but if you want a pretty picture, look at a sonogram.

What you see there is life, and whether it is convenient or not, you know it.

I know my hands are not clean, but I also know right from wrong, and abortion is simply the murdering of a child. Why do we pretend it is not? 

Sympathy

An unscheduled pregnancy doesn’t fit into what many think their lives should be, and so the pregnancy is terminated.  

I am not blaming the mothers, after all, young and broke with a baby and no husband is a frightening thing. Yet, I have known women who have had multiple abortions, almost using it as a form of birth control. 

Twitter hashtag #shoutyourabortion has been created for women to tweet the positive aspects their lives have undergone because of their abortions. I suppose, many will avail themselves of that option.

I have also known many girls who for the rest of their lives in the dark of night, when no one is watching, will cry for their lost babies. 

I know I do.

Yet, the men who make no effort to be fathers are perhaps, even more guilty.    

It is easy for a man to walk away from a baby, and many do. They do not have to carry it, and mostly, they can escape the time, effort and much of the money it takes to be a father. 

Many men I know, good men, respectable men, have a child somewhere they do not acknowledge, support, or have anything to do with, but at least those children are alive. 

An argument can be made that if men had a better record of taking care of their children, there would be fewer abortions.

We have to understand that as men, we owe children some measure of protection, even when they are unborn and even when they are not our own. I believe that, and am ashamed that I have not always done so.

I should not have paid for those two abortions and should have fought harder for the child who should have been mine.

Addendum

The ever-beautiful Cabrina, who married one of my best friends, allowed me into her home as a member of her family. I was there at least two or three times a week for more than a decade.

One day, she smiled at me and commanded, “Willy, come here.”

I warily complied. I had never seen her smile like that. Her face was the picture of complete serenity. She took my left hand in both of her hands and rubbed it against her belly. I felt movement and almost jumped out of my skin. I asked her what it was and she said it was the baby kicking. I didn’t know that was even possible. 

I had never given babies much thought, and as the smart guy who was really a moron, I thought they were not alive until they were born.

Ironically, that hand was nearly cut off when I was crushed against that wall by that tractor-trailer -- it hurts every day and will continue to do so for the rest of my life.

Do you see how God works?

L, whom I was afraid was going to use any child we had together to torture me in court, has been suing me, over and over again for the last 8 years.

Do you see how God works?

When I meet my maker, a day that draws ever closer, I will answer for these things, and rightly so. No matter how sorry you feel, you simply cannot atone for some things. At some point, I will pay for what I did or did not do.

As will all of us.

“Everyone wants liver,” she said as she took a sip of wine. 

Maybe you would rather have a calvarium. They are only seventy-five dollars each, or three for two-hundred. We offer same-day shipping and we leave the bottom jaw on so no calvarium leaves the shop without a smile on his little face. 

You cannot get a better deal for a baby’s head. 

If you do, we will match any offer.

I always thought that you could not put a price on life, but apparently, you can. Ask Planned Parenthood, they know exactly what a life is worth. 

My Abortions

I have no innocence in this discussion.  In my life, I paid for two abortions for girls in trouble and could not stop my girl (at the time) from having one.

I was always the “smart guy.” Everyone always came to me for answers and especially, when they were in trouble. The problem with being the “smart guy,” is you begin to believe your own BS, and lose the ability to think you are ever wrong. What people forget is that the smartest person in the room is usually the biggest moron as well.    

The world seemed to take abortion so lightly and I had so many deeper things to consider, that I never really considered it. I simply paid abortion no mind. 

I did not understand abortion. Sure I understood, I was raised a Catholic, enduring 16 years of Catholic School education, but I do not remember it ever having been mentioned in class during all those years. 

Number One

C was a pretty little Puerto Rican girl I had always craved, but never had.  It was the seventies and she was in trouble, pregnant at something like 17 or 18-years-old.  I gave her the $110 dollars for her first abortion (my understanding is that she had many thereafter), and drove her to Prospect Hospital in the Bronx for the procedure.  

I asked if she would consider having the baby and giving it up for adoption, but she was resolute in her decision to have an abortion.

Number Two

The next, was a girl who worked for me when I ran a school uniform company in the nineties. I offered mainly entry-level positions, and my employees were usually teenagers. For many it was their first job. 

I always did my best to mentor them, teach them work skills and life skills, and if any were in trouble, I helped them with whatever they needed, including lending them money. 

One of my workers came to me one day, distraught, begging for help. She needed $100 to pay for an abortion. She explained she was just getting by, and couldn’t afford another child. She already had a five-year-old daughter her mother watched during the day at their apartment in the projects. 

I lent her the money. 

I like to think that when I gave her the $100, I asked her to consider having the child and putting him up for adoption, but I do not remember doing so, and since being crushed against a wall by a tractor-trailer in 2008, I remember almost everything. 

I know I never asked her.

She disappeared shortly thereafter. I hope she ripped me off instead of actually having an abortion, but I will never know.

Number Three

The last was L, who I was desperately in love with, and that particular one was my child, or should have been. She was beautiful and I loved her with all my heart, but that girl was a little bit nuts, yet because she was beautiful, many people pretended she wasn’t, including me. 

We were already engaged and I told her numerous times that we should marry and have the baby. She would reply, “You can’t be serious, Bill, I know you love me, but you are not in love with me.”  

I have never been able to figure out what that means.

She always did exactly as she pleased and was adamant that she was going to have an abortion, telling me that nothing I said or did would make any difference. 

She was always going to do what she was going to do; I know that. 

In my heart, I also know I should have fought harder for my baby and I didn’t. I loved her and didn’t want to lose her. In addition, I suspected that if things didn’t work out for us, she would have used the child to drag me through the courts for the rest of my life.  

I was a coward.

The Videos

I can’t watch the Planned Parenthood videos, although I have read all I could about them. I can’t understand how anyone who knows what abortion is, or has only just now learned from the videos what it is, can look at themselves in the mirror every day and not understand they are complicit by allowing it to continue.

What is described in those videos is not a pretty picture, but if you want a pretty picture, look at a sonogram.

What you see there is life, and whether it is convenient or not, you know it.

I know my hands are not clean, but I also know right from wrong, and abortion is simply the murdering of a child. Why do we pretend it is not? 

Sympathy

An unscheduled pregnancy doesn’t fit into what many think their lives should be, and so the pregnancy is terminated.  

I am not blaming the mothers, after all, young and broke with a baby and no husband is a frightening thing. Yet, I have known women who have had multiple abortions, almost using it as a form of birth control. 

Twitter hashtag #shoutyourabortion has been created for women to tweet the positive aspects their lives have undergone because of their abortions. I suppose, many will avail themselves of that option.

I have also known many girls who for the rest of their lives in the dark of night, when no one is watching, will cry for their lost babies. 

I know I do.

Yet, the men who make no effort to be fathers are perhaps, even more guilty.    

It is easy for a man to walk away from a baby, and many do. They do not have to carry it, and mostly, they can escape the time, effort and much of the money it takes to be a father. 

Many men I know, good men, respectable men, have a child somewhere they do not acknowledge, support, or have anything to do with, but at least those children are alive. 

An argument can be made that if men had a better record of taking care of their children, there would be fewer abortions.

We have to understand that as men, we owe children some measure of protection, even when they are unborn and even when they are not our own. I believe that, and am ashamed that I have not always done so.

I should not have paid for those two abortions and should have fought harder for the child who should have been mine.

Addendum

The ever-beautiful Cabrina, who married one of my best friends, allowed me into her home as a member of her family. I was there at least two or three times a week for more than a decade.

One day, she smiled at me and commanded, “Willy, come here.”

I warily complied. I had never seen her smile like that. Her face was the picture of complete serenity. She took my left hand in both of her hands and rubbed it against her belly. I felt movement and almost jumped out of my skin. I asked her what it was and she said it was the baby kicking. I didn’t know that was even possible. 

I had never given babies much thought, and as the smart guy who was really a moron, I thought they were not alive until they were born.

Ironically, that hand was nearly cut off when I was crushed against that wall by that tractor-trailer -- it hurts every day and will continue to do so for the rest of my life.

Do you see how God works?

L, whom I was afraid was going to use any child we had together to torture me in court, has been suing me, over and over again for the last 8 years.

Do you see how God works?

When I meet my maker, a day that draws ever closer, I will answer for these things, and rightly so. No matter how sorry you feel, you simply cannot atone for some things. At some point, I will pay for what I did or did not do.

As will all of us.