With the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby ruling hanging in the air the easiest thing for those of us who’ve already had children is to turn a blind eye. Change the channel, ignore the newspapers, pretend Mother Jones doesn’t exist. I’ve just been sitting in a corner humming Fancy when it comes to the whole thing. But, like I’ve explained to my 3-year-old, just sitting here with my eyes closed doesn’t mean you can’t see me. You can see me, and I look like a freak with my eyes closed in a crowded room.
The biggest problem I’ve been having is that while I might not agree with the ruling, I am a law-abiding citizen and I support the American Justice System and the Supreme Court. I will support what they have decided. And although it doesn’t effect me personally anymore it effects women everywhere.
So the big picture is… what are we going to do about it? How are we (a collective group of women) going to make sure that no one ever has to deal with an unwanted pregnancy because of cost?
Yeah I said it. The two words that people dread grouping together. Unwanted Pregnancy. There are so many factors that establish whether you are ready for motherhood and they go well beyond just financial reasons. I couldn’t imagine having to carry a child that was a product of rape. I couldn’t imagine having to endure 9 months of anything I didn’t want. And lets not forget that after 9 months you have a real, live, baby.Yeah, that. They show you a video at the hospital and you’re off. Welcome to motherhood, you better pick this up quick.
Having kids was the greatest joy and the biggest hardship I’ve ever faced wrapped into one adorable package of blue velvet. But there was a time when I couldn’t even imagine becoming a mother again. And that’s when Plan B saved my A.
My second son was 6 weeks old. I was happy and lucky and walking around in that new baby haze that can only be described as foggy. Trying to set a schedule, trying to get some sleep, trying to stay sane. My boys were 5 years apart and Hubby’s work wasn’t going so well. Shit had gotten really, real… and I was surprised and ecstatic that we were able to hold it together while lots of the creature comforts were falling apart.
I had just gotten the go ahead from my Doctor to resume all physical activity. I was ready for some closeness with my man again. I was ready for intimacy. Yup, super ready. That’s when something happened that I’d never before experienced… one broken condom was all it took and I was sure this mistake, this accident, would result in a pregnancy.
To say I freaked out would be putting it mildly.
I lost my shit.
The idea of another baby rocked me to my very core. I wasn’t ready. I didn’t know if I’d ever be ready for a third child but I sure-as-shit I wasn’t ready for Irish twins. How would I manage? What effect would another baby have on my current children, one of whom was still a newborn himself. What if it wasn’t just one baby? Actual twins? Or (dare I even think it… more)? That night I stayed up on the internet, pouring over my options. There was only one option, Plan B.
This wasn’t an abortion. I have no clue if I was actually ovulating at the time. I didn’t do an ovulation test. This was a precaution. A precaution like using a condom. And that precaution had already failed me.
In the past I’d always known when conception had occurred. I’d had 2 children and a miscarriage in between. My body had never failed me in the “knowing” department. It’s been my personal experience that the love and bond I felt with my unborn child was what made me a mommy long before they were born. It was my intent to have them, to love them to raise them that made the whole experience real. That intent was what made them a baby. My baby. This was not yet a baby. It was not yet a member of my family or a voice that laughs or cries or sings. But the idea alone, Irish twins, children 9 months apart was real. The chance was there.
The next day I packed up my newborn and my 5-year-old and headed off to a national drug store chain. As I walked up to the pharmacist and requested Plan B I tried to use telepathy and speak to him. “I can’t do this. Not now. Do you hear me? It’s too soon. I’m fucked if I’m pregnant. I’m barely holding it together right now. Please don’t judge me. Please don’t shame me.” He gave me a knowing smile as he stared at my matted hair, my eyes framed by sleep deprivation, my shirt stained with a mixture of peanut butter and formula, and rang me up.
That was the most important $50 I ever spent.
Three years later I gave birth to my last child and I couldn’t be happier with my decision. I was just lucky I had the $50.
My only advice to women in childbearing age is to vote.
And not work for Hobby Lobby.