What I Wish More Women Understood (Abortion Support)

Mourning does not necessarily mean regret.

When it comes to women who have chosen abortion, I feel like many are stuck with absolutely no support at all. They’re caught in this limbo of expectations and pressure placed on them by both pro choicers and pro lifers.

The pro life camp seems to think that every woman who has had an abortion MUST feel a sense of loss. A woman who has had an abortion is not likely to confide in someone who is pro life because to the pro lifer, she has committed a heinous crime.

To counter this, the pro choice camp pressures that same woman to be bold about the choice she’s made, and to take no shame in it! This also emits the notion that she is not allowed mourn her loss because there is no loss. Another message put out there is that to mourn means to regret, and you should never regret the choice you’ve made!

If you really do regret your abortion, and you feel terrible for what you’ve done, then know that I’m here for you, to love on you, and to support you. But this post is not exactly for you.

If you really don’t believe you’ve lost a life, and you truly have no tugs on your heartstrings over it, then know that our won’t change our friendship. If you want, I have several close friends that can verify that for you. But in that case, this post is not for you either.

Then there are those in that third, stuck camp. They don’t necessarily regret what they’ve done, or wish they had made a different choice. But they also haven’t been allowed to feel a sense of loss or mourning. There is a remarkable number of women in that camp; women who have carried this wound untreated for years, and so it festers. If you’re in that camp, then this post is for YOU. Know that you can talk to me, cry with me, mourn with me, and I’ll make no assumptions about it.

What I wish more women understood is that it is absolutely OK to mourn. I encourage you to mourn. It’s OK to mourn. And mourning doesn’t mean regretting.

So Life Begins At…?

I learned some things the other day. I strongly encourage everyone to learn new things (or new depths of old things) – especially things that challenge your own perception – as often as they can stand it!

I learned that there is no clear definition for clinical death. Life – and therefore its cessation – is something that is held sacred to nearly all of us (I’m leaving room here for you nihilists and for the psychologically ill), yet is not well defined. We know when something is “alive” or “dead,” but only sort of. I learned that the method used to declare death is up to the discretion of the physician doing the declaring. Someone can be declared dead when their heart stops, but sometimes the heart – and the person in question with it – is revived and this person now has a history of having once been “dead.” Or someone can be declared dead when they’ve stopped emitting brainwaves, but we all know about those “vegetables” who are brain dead, yet still…alive? And there have been quite a few folks who have recovered from brain death:  http://kgov.com/brain-dead   So there you have it: doctors can decide for themselves when to declare death, but it’s still as vague and questionable as ever.

I learned more about pregnancy and fetal development. The heart begins to beat at day 21, which is the third week of pregnancy. By day 30, the mother’s blood is separate from the child’s. In the 8th week, brainwaves can detected and measured, but the prefrontal cortex (which is associated with thought) does not develop until the 24th week.

So here we can see why it is that “life” is so very difficult to define. This gets especially interesting when considering the entity called a “chimera.”

A chimera is two beings – two distinct sets of DNA – existing in a single body. This happens with the merging of fraternal twins. Normally, fraternal twins come into existence when two separate eggs are both fertilized and implant within the womb and two babies are born. But occasionally, two separate eggs are fertilized, but instead of both implanting, they merge together into a single zygote before implantation and only one baby is born. This baby is quite literally its own twin. The clearest visible example of this is the famous cat chimera, Venus.

So let’s play with the notion of souls and chimera; what happens (or what are the implications) in such a state? Is it two souls living in one body? Are the souls blended, just like the body? Was there only one soul to begin with, and that’s why it had to snap back together?

These are complicated questions, indeed. We may never know the answers this side of eternity.

Tastes Like… Teen Spirit

Smells have been long known to be strongly linked to memory. I imagine flavors are similar. For many, the heavy flavor of fried food tastes like the county fair, while a friend of mine insists that soup tastes like poverty. For x, y, and z reason, these are some of my memorable flavors.

Coffee tastes like God and introspection, as do vanilla waffles. Put together, they’re ultimately divine!

That is, unless you pair coffee with bacon – then it makes me think of my great grandmother and her daughters.

Salami and bread tastes like a hot date and Borderlands, as does the smell of sawdust.

Fire grilled toast with butter tastes like camping, while a bagel with butter tastes like the warmth of friendship.

Sloppy Joes will always remind me of meeting my brother’s foster family.

Beef tips taste like something special. Not something special in particular, I just mean that they taste like specialty.

That’s all I can think of right now. What are some of yours?