Thursday, April 13, 2006

Escape from South Dakota:

And so there it went, the small, bloody thing. The thing that, if it had survived in my body (20 percent of pregnancies miscarry), would today be 21 years old, an adult. An adult born of a sad girl who did not know what she was doing, and didn't love (often almost hated) the man (men) she was doing it with. I know for certain if I'd mothered the kid, it would've been a walking disaster. And adoption—that brave and selfless choice that is part of "pro-choice"—probably wouldn't have presented itself as an option for me. I couldn't even get myself together to go to the cash machine—how would I have handled something as momentous as giving a kid up for adoption?

Seventeen months ago my daughter was born, and this time the baby was wanted, planned for, greeted like a kind of savior. It had taken my husband and me a long time to get pregnant, and there was no question that the baby would come into the world, if she made it. I knew I was pregnant this time when my appetite rebelled and I had to spit a hard-boiled egg into the sink. My throat started to close against certain foods, just as it had in the college cafeteria, and for nine unreal months I was possessed by her.

6:16 PM