I lost my voice today. Only fitting since woman in this country lost theirs. I hope it’s okay that I share what started me on my road to social justice. I was 19 and dating a loser. I started dating losers early in life. My sophomore year in college I found out I was pregnant. My former friends in my dorm called me trash for getting pregnant. In retrospect I was one of 2 people in our dorm that graduated. All of them dropped out.
I got an abortion. The guy never picked me up from the clinic. It was the day before thanksgiving and my dad was coming to pick me up to bring me home for the holiday. I made it just in time to pack. The guy later tried to apologize. No joke. Like 20 years later. I told him to go fuck himself.
I started writing poetry. I placed 1st in my undergraduate school’s poetry contest. My first job after undergrad was working at an abortion clinic in Philadelphia. It was my favorite job. It was next to a strip club. I sometimes had to go there to get the guys who came with their girlfriends. They were sometimes drunk, so we paid for a cab ride home for our patients. I worked there for 4 1/2 years. I still have cards from women thanking me for normalizing getting an abortion.
Today almost 30 years after starting my job at the clinic abortion is no longer legal. And it’s fucking heartbreaking.