What the New York Abortion Bill Means to Me

When I found out I was pregnant with Emma, my husband walked away from me, went upstairs and blared slipknot. I trembled downstairs in fear.

When I was pregnant with Emma, my husband and I fought every single day. These were not little, meaningless spats. They were screaming arguments, “How are we going to pay for that? How are we going to take care of her? What are we going to do?” We would scream at each other for hours and break down into the kind of sobs that take over your whole body, and your guts come out through your eyes.

It never stopped. Every single day we erupted in terror at the only person we could talk to about it.

We were Catholic. There were no options. We were stuck, and we were screwed. We had no insurance because we couldn’t afford it, but because we were paying rent we couldn’t get Medicaid. We didn’t have our own house. We were living in a tiny bedroom, sleeping together in a twin bed as I grew enormous in a matter of weeks. My mom has always said that using NFP meant that you didn’t really trust God, and I had had virtually no sex education so it didn’t occur to me how quickly you could get pregnant, if you were married(obviously you get pregnant if you even think about having sex if you aren’t married.)

Our marriage was ruined, we had no idea how we would survive, or how she would. I was terrified of hospitals, and we couldn’t afford one anyway.

I had fleeting thoughts of wishing I would miscarry, but I could feel her. She was present in me and I knew her, but I couldn’t stand the pain of knowing that she would always be afraid because we couldn’t provide for her.

It got so bad that I considered abortion. Not fully, not seriously, but for a second, I thought about it. It is almost impossible for me to admit that as a Catholic.

Later, I don’t even know how it happened, but one day I realized I was reading a how-to on committing a natural abortion. I think I may have been searching for vitamin safety during pregnancy, and then saw this article and was so shocked it even existed. I had been taking a ton of vitamins that weren’t safe to stay healthy while I was so run down, and again, for a split second, I thought, “What if I just kept doing it?”

It couldn’t be a sin right? It’s just taking a vitamin, for my health. It’d be an accident. I’d like to think I didn’t mean it, but I was so scared.

We lost her a week later.

In the most horrifying, tragic moment of my life, I miscarried our honeymoon baby.

I don’t know if it was the vitamins I was taking unknowingly, the lack of sleep, the exhausting work I was doing, the stress, or just my body’s inability to form the baby correctly, but whatever it was she was gone. She IS gone.

There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t feel some repercussion of losing her. She is my butterfly effect proof. She is everywhere. She was all over my periods every time I questioned whether they were miscarriages or not. She was there every step of my pregnancy with my rainbow, and my double rainbow. She is there when I check my babies breathing at night. She is there when I hear stories of women losing their children. She is in me still, even though she’s not for anyone else.

I cannot believe now that there were moments I did not want her. Now, I would give anything to take those moments back, to have her back. I was so scared, and I try not to blame myself, but losing a child, whether it is your fault or not, is the worst thing that can happen to a woman. It is the greatest pain that you can imagine, and it isn’t healed by time. The thought fades, thankfully, but the grief never does.

In the face of the New York bill, what I want to say to you, is that you do not know what these women are feeling. A woman who is losing her child, has lost her child, or could lose her child, is in a kind of pain that you cannot imagine if you have not been there. There are women who are pro-life who have held their own children lifeless in their arms, and they cannot stand the idea of another child being lost. There are women who are pro-choice who have faced the worst nightmares and had to ask “what do I do?” No matter who you are, you do not know what is in the hearts of who you are against. You do not know what drives them.

So? You ask. What do I do with that information? Find out. Learn from the pain of others how to address problems in a way that helps everyone. Ask the mom who is contemplating abortion what she needs, and help her find it. Start a fund for women who are struggling. Be compassionate. If you are pro-choice, ask the pro-life women what are they worried about, what is wrong with the bill? What do they want?

More than anything, tell your story, tell it as loud as you possibly can, until you are heard. Stop telling everyone else what’s wrong with them, and speak your truth.

Ecstasy

Have you ever felt so much pleasure that you thought your entire body might explode?

Have you ever stopped being intimate because you were afraid you might not be able to handle what was coming?

Have you ever submitted completely only to be racked by a painful pleasure that just won’t stop?

If you haven’t, you haven’t experienced all that the orgasm has to offer.

If you haven’t, you can’t understand Teresa’s expression in the statue called Ecstasy.

If you haven’t, then you haven’t yet had the best sex of your life.

I know, because I told an older married woman that I didn’t like sex, and I didn’t believe her when she told me:

“It gets better.”

Searching for a Home

Today, I got up all bright and peppy excited for a day of submitting my work.

I labored for hours over my lists of places to submit and realized I don’t know where I fit.

I’ve published some amazing stuff in mediocre ways, and I have work I’m proud of that no one has seen.

There’s nothing I’m more afraid of than oblivion.

I’m a writer who writes for others, not for the attention per se, but I’m not prose-masturbating, I want the relationship with my reader.

Where are you, reader?

I have a scream inside me so intense it could shatter the world, but if someone would just hear me, it would wait.

If I could just speak where someone would listen, maybe I could breathe instead of scream.

A Blog About Sex

So the other day,

A friend asked on a Facebook group,

Some questions about sex.

I was SO excited.

I love sex.

I am good at sex.

It’s cool.

I had answers for questions,

I had all kinds of things to say,

And then I said,

Haha maybe I should start a blog about sex for Catholics.

And then I meant it.

But like really?

Little miss goody two shoes?

Talking on the web about sex?

Teaching women how to commit to their orgasm?

Me?

That does not make any sense.

But you know what?

It makes me crazy excited.

Like bouncing up and down,

Laugh,

Feel joy,

Excited.

About writing about sex.

Yep.

Yep, that’s a thing.

Old Person Birthdays

It’s not my birthday anymore.

Thank God.

I never thought I would become

This old person.

One who had special days that hate

That you’re supposed to love.

But I am.

I hate this day.

I don’t know if it’s the unfulfilled expectations

Or the memory of things that are gone forever,

But man it sucks.

Sabotage

It’s crazy to me how promptly my psyche starts to sabotage any amount of success I experience. I self-published a book last night, and almost immediately the chorus began. “You just self-published, that doesn’t mean anything, no one will ever read it anyway.” I even started feeling like I was ripping people off who decided to buy it. And that’s ridiculous! I know because the reason I self-published it is because I believe that the traditional style of poetry is no longer widely appreciated which is why I think I have struggled so much in selling the poems. I truly believe these poems are the highest quality, and need to be out there for the world to see. And yet, my subconscious has decided they are worthless. Probably because it decided long ago that I am worthless.

But what is making it do this? Is it some inferiority complex I have developed as a result of my upbringing? Is it laziness? Or is this just something every artist faces? I tend to think it is the latter, because so many other artists have told me they experience the same thing. So apparently it isn’t just me. It may be something in our make up as humans that creates this self-sabotage.

The thing that gets me though, is what purpose does that serve? In what way does it help an artist to immediately feel that they are and always will be a failure as soon as they accomplish something? Are the gods working against us? Trying to shut us down? Or is the devil realer than we ever thought, and he is frantically angry that we have defied his challenges to create something? I hope it’s that, though I often fear it is the first.

I guess it is up to us as artists then to keep going and pray that it isn’t the gods who are stopping us, but something else. Not necessarily out of confidence or certainty of which side we are on, but because we have to. Creators must create, it is in our blood, art begs to leave us like the river from our sliced open skin. I stopped breathing for a while and released I needed to open my mouth. So write, play, dream, so that you can breathe, I suppose, and live.

News for my Followers!!!

Hey guys!!

So first of all I am so sorry for being absent so much lately! I have had the craziest couple of years! I had two HG pregnancies in a row and now I have two wonderful daughters under two years old. Needless to say that keeps me pretty busy!

I want you to know that every single one of you mean so much to me and I appreciate your views! There is nothing like knowing someone on the world read what you wrote and liked it!

In that vein, I have something to share with you! Yesterday I got kind of a kick in the pants to get back to writing and I did something really big!!! I self published a book of my poetry and short stories on amazon!!!

I am SO excited about this and I wanted to share it with you!

This book is classical style prose and poetry, so a little different from most of this blog, but it is stil me, just a different time of my life. I hope that you check it out! It has some pretty cool stuff in it including my already published poem The War, which is arguably the best thing I have ever written.

 

Ethereal Aspirations: A Literature Student’s Dreams https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07H1S5BJN/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_Gw9IBbPZ6J28Q

Mistakes

I accessed this blog today, for the first time in almost a year. It was almost an afterthought of sending a poem into an online journal that I have an immense amount of respect for. They write truth, but more importantly, they write what is in my heart. There is nothing more powerful than that in reading, when another person somehow unlocks the deepest caverns of your soul and says what you cannot say for whatever reason.

Anyone who has read this blog for longer than two minutes knows that I struggle with anxiety and depression. These are aggravated by the detrimental self-talk that I learned from a young age. I know they are aggravated by it, and I know I need to learn to stop. Knowing something, though, and practicing it, can be two very different things. The most powerful voice in my head is not even a voice. It is a lock. It is a powerful cage made of the most powerful material imaginable. Me. (My inside voice says I need to clarify, Not that I’m that powerful, it’s the most powerful material inside me because it is me. ;-). )

 

The beauty of a work that speaks into your heart is that, if you have a lock that powerful, whispers from inside are often impossible to hear and even harder to engage. But, if something outside strikes the right note, and the one inside meets it, something strange happens. The bars of the cage ring with the sound, and threaten their own annihilation. That one moment of acceptance, resulting in a near self approval, is the beginning of change. I hope that I will continue ringing this sound until the bars shatter into a million pieces and I become a version of me that is not dead, but truly alive.

Fat Yoga

i read this article this morning and I was so touched. I have struggled with body image my entire life, probably somewhat influenced by my mothers constant body shaming towards herself. Reading this article really touched me because to me it is what yoga is all about.

People now struggle with body image like crazy, maybe women always did. I mean there were parasols so that women wouldn’t get freckles, corsets that are incredibly unhealthy that sucked their waists in and left their hips out, and who knows what else. I am no exception to that rule. It doesn’t help that now I have gained a lot of weight and I can’t lose it, and I’m not gaining for specific reasons. Someday I need to get hormone testing done to see if that’s why, or maybe it’s allergies to some different food group. I won’t deny I struggle with over eating but part of the problem is that even if I do the work I don’t lose the weight, so when I’m really depressed and want a coke, that five pounds it adds means nothing because I’m just going to keep gaining anyway!

It doesn’t help that my mom spent my entire life talking about how ugly she was. “Mom, you look so nice.” “No, I don’t, don’t lie!” “Don’t take pictures of me!” “I will take your phone if you don’t delete that right now.” And it showed itself in other ways too. I can’t shake the feeling that maybe the reason why she would never let me wear clothes that really fit me, or clothes that were stylish was because she couldn’t because she weighed too much to shop in regular people stores.

Now I weigh too much to shop at regular stores too and I can sympathize with all of that. It makes me so angry to see all the skinny people at the mall when I go to try and see if they have had any big stuff returned from online. And I work retail so that doesn’t help either, so much bitterness when a size 2 complains about never being able to find stuff that fits. At least there is a size that fits her and she doesn’t have to order online, and she can shop without being too ashamed of herself to talk to sales people.

But in yoga class is the one place I get to forget all of that(at least most of the time) I get to remind myself constantly that yoga is about accepting myself and others for where we are. So I am just in the moment and the people at my yoga studio are so welcoming and kind that I don’t even feel that they are judging me. Yoga truly is my sanctuary.

The other thing that touched me is what he said about “one day” being able to do things he can’t do now. My hot yoga teacher is always saying, “and one day” such and such will happen, “and if that is not today there is nothing wrong with that!” And she is one of my favorite yoga teachers because in her class I am safe from all of the daily insults and all of my self grading thoughts. And when she talks about “one day” I believe her. And that’s what really matters and what I need the most. Hope. Yoga is my hope.

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