Twenty-two weeks of carry time in a planned pregnancy, marked by first clues, wellness appointments, morning upset, information gathering, and self-monitoring. The tests began, including a routine ultrasound, but later amniocentesis – she hated amnio – and an increasing array of distressing tests. Each result added elevation to the mountain of discouraging results.
In her state, the possible alternatives shrunk with each passing day. By edict of legislative dumbness, the collected body declared none within its borders should abort beyond week twenty, no matter the medical justification. Just no matter, keep your reasons to yourself, too bad and so sad. Save your song for those who give a shit, because you cede your body to us.
She trooped on despite no means of escape from the heartbreak, because no means existed to escape sentient awareness. At twenty-two weeks she birthed, and watched the tiny infant struggle to process air in undeveloped lungs. Fifteen minutes watching one’s own creation, fifteen minutes of helplessness, fifteen minutes of watching nature run its course, fifteen minutes branded memory and spirit.
Humans run roughshod over nature. We do in ways some encourage, through interwoven ways feeding a throwaway consumerist society from which few profit and many make do. We plasticise and we pave, we excavate and we emulsify, the bottom line marked by consideration of dollars and not all around us.
There are other times when we can work for better and make humane decisions capable of easing trauma. Abstract, unrelenting idealism gets in the way. To our greater goal, we sacrifice you.
A legislator declared the law worked as intended. A member of an in-state pro-life group opined the outcome served as a better alternative to abortion. She believed it better the infant died in loving arms. Me, I wonder who else died that day.
Author’s note: this is a fictionalised account of a news story, one that hit me hard today. You can read it here: