Over It

It was a good thing.

No, in fact, it was the best thing that could’ve happened.

I know that. 

I was in an abusive relationship—eighteen years old—and the stick said positive. 

How do you talk through an emotion-ridden journey? Especially one that goes into the past and gets all dark and twisty.

Of course it was better that the thing ended in cramps after only a couple months. I was young and had my whole life ahead of me. I felt better. I felt clean. I felt free.

Other than keeping it a secret. 

It was shameful—a bright eighteen year old,pregnant, the summer before her adult life starts? Yes, it ended. It was over. Who needed to know?

I made peace. It was over.

But…

When you’re twenty-nine, and failing to conceive after two years of trying….

That peace gets rocky. 

What would that little baby look like now? Well, not baby. They’d be ten.

Could I have done it? Could I have broken away, told my family and friends, and not let stress and depression and anxiety kill that pregnancy?

Should I have?

Is it affecting me now?

Was that my one chance?

Is it ok to grieve something you didn’t want then, but you want now? Even when you didn’t grieve then? 

Would it have been better to be honest back then? That’s what everyone says: 'honesty is the best policy.' Could that have moved me into acceptance? Working through the pain then, talking to the almost-father? No. He would’ve wanted to keep it. And that was the worst thing. At the time, it ended, and that was the best thing. Remember?

Is it normal to cry only when your husband isn’t home, thinking about calling that abusive ex? Just to tell them the story. Just to see what they think. Just to… maybe… hear that you did the wrong thing.

That would make this whole process worse, of course. But who else can relate, other than the person that was intimately involved? 

That’s a scary wormhole; let’s step away from that.

Try to let your feelings out in a healthier way.

Lean on your husband. He’s a wonderful human being. Supportive—leaves space when it’s needed—tries to understand. Understands that he doesn’t understand. Which helps. Sort of.

Talking is supposed to help. Well, ok. Except, I have no one who’s been through this. My friends never wanted kids. My family hasn’t had these issues, can’t truly relate. Other than “That Sucks.” Which sometimes helps. I guess.

How do you talk through an emotion-ridden journey? Especially one that goes into the past and gets all dark and twisty.

So you keep quiet. Talk about the things other people do—tracking temperature, how hard it is, of course men don’t really understand, how much did your ovulation sticks cost, medications, etc. People can handle those topics. That’s what they’re used to.

But mourning a pregnancy that may or may not have anything to do with what you’re dealing now? That happened over a decade past? That no one knows about?

You should be over that.

And I was. 

-Samantha O'Keefe

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Samantha O'Keefe lives in Sterling, Illinois with her husband and crazy cat. She's a church secretary by day and a bartender by night, and loves the dichotomy of her life. She reads too much, dabbles in writing, and enjoys the time she gets with her family and friends.

GriefJulia NusbaumComment