I remember sitting in my bedroom, the small room smooshed between the small living room in front and the small kitchen in back. I remember sobbing uncontrollably, holding my round belly with both hands, caressing my little one while she dozed in her peaceful bed. I cursed him.
I screamed aloud and let out everything inside of me. My ex: abuser, rapist, thief, liar. I hated him. I still do and I always will. I knew what I had to do in order to keep the life inside of me safe, happy, and cared for. I knew what my end decision would be, had to be. And I hated him for it. I felt my heart split in two every time I thought about the sweet little girl growing in my belly – the girl whom I already knew I could never know.
No pain has ever been that real, that intense, fiery, gut wrenching, or tormenting. I wept over my child, my tears soaking the shirt hanging loosely where she slept. I begged for her forgiveness for everything. I apologized to her so many times, she’ll probably remember it when she’s grown. We sat together on my bed, a mattress laid over a wooden frame to hold it off the floor, and I rocked my child. I rocked myself, too, holding us both in my arms weeping, sobbing, reeling over the thought of never knowing her, and more still over the thought of her never knowing me.
I remember the days spent in that horrible apartment. Those days were wet with tears, filled with pain, and void of happiness. I remember the loneliness and fear I felt nearly every moment while living there.
There were crack addicts that lived upstairs, and they would knock on my door at all hours of the day and night to ask for money or a ride or to use my phone. There was a nice lady next door that had a daughter who was adopted at birth by a couple in California – she didn’t like to talk about it, and she urged me to keep my daughter. She helped me run a cable line through the wall from her apartment to mine so I could watch TV and not feel quite so lonely all of the time. Loneliness was inevitable though.
Simply picking a shirt out of the closet was painful and tear-jerking, because the closet held the clothes, blankets, and diapers that I had already begun collecting for her arrival. Walking through the living room was difficult because I had to pass by the swing I got for her to doze in. I suffered daily at the hands of a man I would never see again. The last few months of my pregnancy were torment – it was an easy, wonderful pregnancy that turned my body into that of a beautiful glowing goddess, but turned my soul inside out and froze it with the icy winds of hate, mistrust, and fear.
Finally, I opened up to my new boyfriend, a wonderful man who was willing to help me and hold me through the hardest decision I will ever make, and through him I found the couple that I wholeheartedly believed was meant to raise my daughter.
My daughter. Two beautiful words that I use together to describe a person with whom I have no connection except DNA. Two beautiful words that have no tangible meaning. Two beautiful words that I long to hear truth within. I have thought of my daughter every single day since even before I knew she was there. I love her with every tiny bit of my being – the ferocious, whole hearted, unconditional love that comes with being a mother.
I live daily in my pit of anguish and self loathing. I explain to myself regularly that I did all that I could to ensure that Summer would be safe, cared for, and loved. I remind myself constantly that I did the right thing. I tell myself that I didn’t know any better –I didn’t know about the resources available to me, I didn’t know that I had options. But none of this comforts me. I am still plagued with awful thoughts every single day. I am still acutely aware of the fact that my arms are empty, that I’ve given up a lifetime of memories, and that I have no daughter.
Have you experienced unbearable heartache or loss? Have you ever felt so alone you didn’t know what to do? Share your experience with me in the comments. I would love to discuss this post or your experiences!
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