The word choice is defined as “an act or instance of choosing”. Or my favorite, “the right, power or opportunity to choose”.
During this crazy political season where we’ve all seen sides to friends and family members that we’d rather not have seen, something has been missed along the way. While I’m the first person who will admit that I loathe politics, politicians, and anyone who talks about said subject on a vomit-inducing basis, I’m also the first person to rush to clarify what is misconstrued time and time again. Let me clarify this point.....
Pro-Choice is NOT pro-abortion. Let me spell that out for you…say it slower…and use hand signals. IT IS NOT PRO-ABORTION.
Yeah, yeah…I know there are many of you out there unfriending me and unfollowing me for crossing into this taboo territory. Buh-bye. Sorry – not sorry - but this woman feels a very strong need to defend her fellow sisterhood. All you men out there…. take a seat. Last time I checked, you don’t have the plumbing to birth a child. So just shut up about it. In the words of the great Eddie Vedder, “if you don’t have a uterus, you’re not entitled to an opinion.”
A bit more clarification for those who need it. First off, I’m a mom. I love kids. My kids are my entire world. I’m a “kid person”, one of those crazy women who oohs and aahs over a newborn (even one on TV). I worked with special needs preschoolers for five years before taking on this writing task, so suffice it to say I’m the first one in support of children.
I’m also the first one who will stand up to anyone…ANYONE…trying to tell any woman what she can and cannot do with her body. This is about choice as it pertains to our own health; about deciding what is good for me and my body, and for us as women. This is not about your religious beliefs or your white male phobia. This is about me as a woman having the right to say that no man – no person – will make choices for me. Men don’t need to worry about having the right to make reproductive choices for themselves. They’ve always been able to walk away from an unwanted pregnancy.
When I was 16 and all my friends were sexually active, I was the one hold-out, the good girl of the group. My best friend got pregnant and suddenly I went from a dumb teenager to being thrust into the grown-up world of real world problems and choices. Her so-called boyfriend…well, you can guess what happened with him. He stuck around long enough to make sure she’d “taken care of it”, then he trotted off down the road to the next girl.
My experience with my friend taught me a few valuable life lessons: The process itself is brutal and leaves a lifelong scar on the woman. That experience I watched her go through - however difficult and life-altering - also taught me that I will always…always…fight for the same right she had....the right to CHOOSE.
For those of you ready to throw all your pro-life bull in my face let me ask you one thing: If you were being told what to do…be it with a body part or a life decision…what would you do? You men out there, who are SO damn quick to judge the women who find themselves in this “position”…how would you feel if some woman told you what you could and could not do with your ‘parts’? Guaranteed, you’d run. Guys are damn protective when it comes to their ‘parts’…size and all.
So before you judge too harshly, remember what I said at the beginning…this is about choice. This is not about some group of white, middle-aged men telling EVERY SINGLE WOMAN in the U.S. what she can and cannot do with her body. It is for us, as women, as the bearers of children, to decide fully our reproductive choices. How in the world is dictating health choices fair? How did our free society suddenly turn into a dictatorship?
I’m very grateful I’ve never found myself in the ‘position’ to choose. I’m so very grateful that right is mine though. It’s also my daughters, my nieces’, and all the young women out there who put their trust in our system. I can only hope that with the ever-changing political climate and hostile dictatorship that’s risen over the past few years, women from all walks of life will fight like hell for the right to make their own decisions over their bodies.