Tuesday, August 4, 2015

It's Personal but No Longer Private

Something has come over me.  Something I didn't see coming. 

Congress is talking about defunding Planned Parenthood.  I've never been inside a Planned Parenthood office or clinic and yet I am a staunch supporter of PP in large measure because of something I have rarely discussed.  I've had an abortion, and for the first time in my life I feel compelled to say so out loud and in public.

I'm almost 70 years old so it is within my lifetime that abortion and the pill became legal realities, miracles for women everywhere.  I never dreamed that, once achieved, anyone would want those miracles to disappear as though those gains had never happened. 

I am tempted to explain the circumstances in which I found myself to justify my decision to terminate a confirmed pregnancy, but to do so would merely feed the notion that my reasons are better than her reasons.  The truth is that the circumstances are none of your business; they are my business. I have had an abortion, and I have never once regretted it.  It was very likely one of the most pro-life decisions I've ever made.

I am not speaking up because I believe by doing so I can change minds.  I do suspect, however,  that if more of us who have had abortions, if thousands of us, millions of us, simply said so it might change the conversation.  The gay rights movement gained acceptance more rapidly than anyone foresaw once normal, healthy intelligent people decided to come out of hiding in droves.  They are our neighbors, our relatives, our co-workers, our co-worshipers, as are women who have chosen abortion.  All of you know women who have had an abortion whether you are aware of it or not.

For those of us who made the decision to terminate a pregnancy this is not a hypothetical or theoretical discussion.  It is personal and real.  When I was confronted with the responsibility of deciding what I should do, the last thing I needed was for a senator, congressman, or presidential contender to advise me.  

I cannot express adequately how grateful I was and still am that I could discuss my options with my personal physician, choose a course of action, walk into a reputable hospital with no one picketing or yelling at me, end a pregnancy and resume my life.

In all the swirling debate folks are talking about me, and women like me. It's personal, not political.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Going Forward

When it dawns on me that you are other
That you do not see what I see nor hear what I hear
That in fact you see where I opt to be blind
And are comforted by sounds I find discordant
I pause and inwardly flinch
Hoping you do not discern my retreat.

If I could change our national discourse
The only ingredient I would add, perhaps, is respect.
I could then more easily recognize that 
In order to move forward
I must allow for some portion, but not all, of your reality 
Into my future so that you might relax.

The last thing I want is for you to live each day
Afraid of me, afraid of my worldview, 
Afraid that I will force you, drag you kicking and screaming
To live with what you cannot accept
So that you arm yourself the next time you see me coming.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Throw Back Thursday

Oh lordy lordy.  Cleaning out my closet, opened a box, opened a spiral notebook and read this.  I wrote this in January, 1994.  Glad I found it--saves me the time it would take to write it today. My comments today are in  red.

"It seems I am plagued by deep seated self-doubt.  Constantly asking what am I doing wrong.  I see this morning what a useless question that is once one has accepted and invited the reality of God into one's conscious awareness."  This makes it obvious that some revelations can be easily forgotten.

"It is not that I or any student of God can do no wrong, but that that is the 'wrong' place to look.  Following that train of thought leads to despair, anger, and frustration."  Yesterday in a crying frenzy I pleaded with John, 'what am I doing wrong?' You could say I was in despair.

"One need be willing to see and acknowledge one's mistakes, but not go looking for them.  With Spirit as our guide, our mistakes will be revealed to us clearly.  We are relieved of the constant questioning of 'is it this?' or 'is it that?'.  My experience is those questions go unanswered.  Wish I had thought of that.

"It comes back, always, to trust.  Even when our lives seem to be out of balance or disharmonious, looking for where and how we are screwing up is non-productive.  Being willing to be shown is another matter."  Huh.

"It is the difference between the agony of proclaiming I can't find the way--I'm lost--and the assurance of no matter the circumstance avowing that I can not be lost because once I have been found I am found forever."  How in God's name could I have been wiser 20 years ago than I am today?!