I was barely nineteen. Not much older than he is now.
I was faced with a decision that would not only affect me, but a decision that would directly affect the lives of two others and that would create a ripple, affecting countless others.
I knew almost right away. Several negative pregnancy tests did nothing to alleviate the nagging suspicion of what I already realized.
I was a sophomore in college. I had a future and nothing but possibilities in front of me. And now, I was faced with a decision that felt like it would limit my future and hinder those possibilities.
I came back to school after a long Christmas break with a secret. In one hand I physically held a list of phone numbers. People that would allow this "problem" to be silently swept under the rug. A moral dilemma was raging.
I had concrete beliefs about how I felt about abortion, but I would be lying if I didn't tell you that in this situation, cracks were forming in that belief system.
I was fortunate to know that the man who was in this situation with me was the man I had already planned on spending the rest of my life with. I received that first positive test and then confirmed it with another and tearfully called my boyfriend. "We will get through this," he said.
I think back on those five little words and find so much comfort in them. I know a lot of women in the same situation hear "it's your choice." In different circumstances those words are very empowering. In a situation like this, they are the three loneliest words you can hear.
It's been seventeen years since I had to make the hardest decision of my life.
We were gathered together, three families around a large table. The hostess gave us the task of saying one thing that we were thankful for. I don't know if he said it in a flippant way, but when the time came for my son to answer what he was thankful for he said "I'm thankful for my life." He had no idea the weight that those words carried for me.
I have never regretted my decision to carry my son to term. In fact, more often than not, I am reminded of how thankful I am that I made that decision. I became a mom far sooner than I ever expected, but sometimes, those unexpected bumps in the road provide us with the most blessings.
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