Like most young women of my generation, I couldn’t wait to grow up, meet a man, have sex and get an abortion. It always felt like my destiny, something that was meant to happen. I never thought my dreams would be thwarted.
The first time I got pregnant, everything seemed to be going to plan. I wasn’t married, the father didn’t have a job – termination looked like a dead cert. Then I miscarried. It was hard. Having been brought up to value “a woman’s choice” above all else, I couldn’t believe that choice had been taken away from me. Still, I hoped there’d be other chances.
And so there were. I conceived once more, messed about indecisively for the requisite couple of months before feeling remotely inclined to do anything about it, then went and had a scan, just for the hell of it. I saw the heartbeat on the monitor and, there and then, I decided to keep the baby. Only kidding. I saw the heartbeat on the monitor, then decided to mess about indecisively for a bit longer. Then it got too late for me to have an abortion after all. Of course, I was furious. But gradually, I came to realise that I’d been saved from a terrible, terrible fate, a life of loneliness, depression, breast cancer, post-traumatic stress disorder, total bloody lunacy …. probably. Or probably not.
Labour lasted a few hours. It hurt – a lot – but then having an abortion would have hurt me for the rest of my life. It was a minor incident compared to the impact murdering a fetus could have had on me. The next time I got pregnant, I knew it: I wouldn’t have an abortion this time, either. It just wasn’t worth it. People trivialise it so much, yet abortion is hard and giving birth is a piece of piss.
The weird thing is, though, on both occasions I had this strange, life-threatening, body-changing syndrome – pregnancy, I think it’s called – for months and months before I did the labour thing. Then ever since, I’ve had these little people with me, totally dependent on me for every single thing. They’re cute and all, but they’re no longer exactly what you’d call babies. To be honest, I’ve no idea where the babies I decided not to kill have gone to. Nadine Dorries’ imagination?
Anyhow, the pregnancy thing and the little people – it did all seem to occur around the same time I failed to have abortions. What I want to know is this – could the two be connected?
It’s probably just coincidence.