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While quietly rebellious, on the outside I had always been a good girl, with a very devout catholic mother and a father whose approval I craved. I maintained my own catholic church allegiance for years, and in my teens always felt very inhibited about really enjoying myself. After I had done a few years at university I finally responded to the feeling I had had in me since an early teen, and travelled from new zealand to london, a city where I imagined I could do what I wanted because no one would know me, where I could enjoy anonymity.

Here I was attracted to a man who seemed to embody values opposite to what I had been taught were good. I wanted to experience ‘the opposite,’ and his familiarity with the drug scene and a completely different way of living, a very basic kind of living, seemed to me to be the opportunity to finally let myself be me, whoever that was.

My intention was to only take a year off from my studies and after this time to return to my old, ‘safe’ life.

I didn’t count on him falling in love with me and following me back to new zealand. I didn’t count on failed contraception. I didn’t anticipate his crazy jealousy, where he was so convinced I was seeing other men that at times I even questioned myself, whether I was doing what he suggested but blocking it somehow from my mind. I only knew that I needed to get away and that he was the kind of person who might pursue me and, so I believed, even kill me in his jealous rage.

I don’t know why, since I was very young, I had become unemotional – like my dad rather than like my mum maybe. While I craved the deep emotional feelings I saw others have, I seemed always to ‘have the brakes’ on my own, feeling always that it was better not to ‘let go’ completely than to feel a lot of pain in the long run. When I discovered that I was pregnant, I knew that it was wrong to abort. I knew that she was a living human. I believed that my mother would be devastated, and pray even harder to save me from hell, and that my father’s approval would be forever unattainable. I was very afraid that if I had this baby I would never be able to extricate myself from the man I was with, and I was afraid that I would not ever be able to complete my studies and have the career I wanted. Selfishly, though I considered adoption, I believed that I wouldn’t be able to give up the baby once taking her to term. I doubt I thought very much about her feelings, but only my own.

Although it was the late 1970s, for me it was surprisingly easy to have the abortion. Awesome angel tattoos I saw the GP, then the specialist, was admitted to hospital overnight and it was over. Before the event, I was not offered any type of counselling about my decision and I do wonder that if I had spoken to someone about everything, had been given a realistic view of choices I could make, I may have chosen differently. As it happened, I didn’t let myself think about it. My longstanding habit of being numb to emotion seemed to mostly quell the niggling feelings of wrongness – and my life did unfold as I had hoped. I got out of the relationship, graduated, had my career, married a good man and had several children – but was always conscious of the abortion I had had. No one in the world knew except from the father, my husband, and myself for many years; deep down I felt too ashamed.

Now I see this act of mine as the worst thing I’ve ever done, killing the most defenceless of human beings. I can’t be sure, but I feel that my emotional numbness was much enhanced by the abortion. This does not seem on the outside to be such a bad thing, but what really happens when we don’t allow ourselves to feel pain is that we cannot feel much in the way of pleasure either. In depriving a little girl of life on earth, I may have deprived myself of a lifetime of real happiness. As an explanation of how I am, this feels about right to me, and I wonder if it is true of others like me.

I firmly believe that she is alive in the spirit world, that she spent years being very sad at being rejected by me, and is now probably angry at me. I tell myself that she is better off where she is, but it’s true that I have denied her a life, siblings, partners and other loving relationships here on earth by having her aborted. That’s something to be angry about I guess.

I myself was also pregnant, and when my son came to me and told me this my instinct was to share my prenatal vitamins etc. Just a few weeks later his girlfriend after telling her parents about the baby, began to behave differently. It quickly came to light that they had persuaded her that by having this child she would wreck her plans for her career and become just another teenage mum.

I got home from work one sunday evening to find my 18 year old son sobbing uncontrollably as he told me the abortion was scheduled for the next day. I held him in my arms and sobbed with him. He wrote the most beautiful poem to his unborn child ( he believed god had shown him it was a daughter) which I may share at some point, but it was written in love and a broken heart, and to this day, tears my heart out. I pleaded with god the whole night for the life of this child, my own baby kicking in my belly. Somehow, quietly and gently he told me he would not violate the girls will, it was her choice. Over the next 12 hours peace came and grew in my heart; I knew there was nothing I could do, as my son wrote in his poem, she was on her way to be with the lord.

Ruth was her grandmother’s name on her mother’s side. She remembered those cold nights spent in the upstairs of that home nestled in the corners of the mountains. Cool mens tattoos for the arm nights spent listening to the talk between adults with the constant noise of wheel of fortune followed by jeopardy on the old television. Moments spent hiding in the closet that was once used for the same purpose as her young mother. Afternoons daring to slowly approach the haunted rooms up the long staircase. She remembers the red glow of sun striking through the orange curtains and falling to the floor creating a rouge pathway to the room that must surely contain hidden ghouls amongst the remains of witchcraft. As she was an only child these moments were spent alone, but never lonely.

Lilly was the name of one of her great grandmother’s sisters. This side of the family was from germany. The family had been in berlin for some time, at least until war struck sending her grandmother overseas with an american soldier as a husband. When visiting germany at the age of nine she was taken away with the fairy tale land around her. Time spent chasing sheep in fields of small red flowers with mountains too big for man and yet close enough to touch. A morning at the market wandering amongst venders that shout for your attention to their wares. Seemingly endless taste tests of meat, bread, cheese and bountiful amounts of chocolate. The feelings of that world were hers alone to remember, but never gave a feeling of loneliness.

She stretches and thoughtfully runs her hand across her small tummy that shows no sign of baby. She glances at the time and realizes that her appointment is not that far off. She undresses and steps into a warm shower. The smell of lavender engulfs her and her thoughts drift to the colors she should choose for her baby’s room. Lavender would be a delightful color. Her baby girl would find peace and relaxation in tones of soft purples with white accents. She could give her the white angel that was once her own mother’s to be placed up high to look over her. The shower stops and the mother silently wraps a towel around her wet body.

She chooses a loose pink shirt today. Best lower back tattoo designs pink for a girl. Her daughter would always wear pink. Cool first tattoos for guys the mother has curly hair and hopes that her daughter has curls like her as well. She imagines detangling a mess of hair on her daughter when she is five and her hair is long. Then her little girl will begin to want to straighten it because all her friends will have straight hair. Nights will be spent with a blowdryer and a hot iron as they gossip in a small bathroom. The boys will chase her surely. Arguments will ensue about when and with who she can go out with while she is busy doing her hair in front of an old mirror.

Once dressed she walks to her car and begins her drive to the office. Her daughter will be what the mother never could be, an artist. She will grow up with a paintbrush in her hand. She will always be painting the walls and floors, beautiful messes that will go down in history as her first masterpieces. Her clothes, her hands, her face and hair will catch the colors as she sits back to admire her work. The mother arrives at the building on time.

As she waits for the nurse to call her name she imagines her daughter’s wedding. She will wear a soft tone on her wedding dress because she is not your average bride and has never fit inside a box. She will be nervous to walk down the aisle not because she isn’t sure of her husband to be or because she is scared. She will be nervous because of the happiness that has been built up within her since she was a child. She will seem to be delicate on that day but really she will be the strongest one there. She does not need a man but she has chosen her love to be a part of her. The mother’s name is called.

She enters a white room and is told to undress and lie down a table under a white sheet. The mother obeys wordlessly. She closes her eyes but she finds dreaming to be too difficult now. This silent day is now filled with noise. The sharp sounds of medical professionals. The course sound of her breathing getting faster and increasingly shallow. The jumbled sounds of someone telling her it’s over and now she can leave.

The mother makes it to her car and drives home. Not imagining or dreaming of anything. No sobs wrack her body, no tears stain her face. A lifetime of memories that once had purpose now feel meaningless. Her life as an only child always seemed so full but this is the first time she feels truly alone. She had been filled with her ideas and sentiments for her future. Awesome cross tattoos for guys but what is the point now? She sees her eyes in the car mirror. How many people died today? Her eyes fill her with an unquenchable thirst for love. Who really died today?

At the time I was 18, my boyfriend 19. I’ve been in a relationship with my boyfriend for 3 years and we had sex for the very first time on our 2 year anniversary… after months and months of sex I realized I missed my period from a period tracker app I have on my phone. So we talked and talked. He really wanted the baby so he took extra hours at work and he saved a TON of money. Me being pregnant I was upset that he couldn’t talk to me as much or he couldn’t be around as much because he was literally always working for the baby and I.

Eventually she started to notice (of course) and she took me to a clinic and I heard his/her heart beat they took measurements etc and I even have pictures so as soon as we left and my mum found out I was 20 weeks she said find a nearby abortion clinic that do late term abortions. My heart sank. Weeks later she cursed me out and she threatened to kick me out as I cried hysterically till my eyes were swollen shut. She walked by and called me horrible names and saying that my boyfriend would leave me and that he won’t take care of the kid and I told her I would just do it…

I did it because I wanted to make someone else happy and I had to convince myself that I disliked my boyfriend even though in my heart I knew he would be there. My mum had an abortion around my age and she told me when I was 15 that she regretted it and she got pregnant soon after that and had a boy and he’s a mislead and rebellious and that scares me I don’t want that to happen to me but me and my boyfriend are still together.