You grab my hands and make me promise. You say “Promise me you’ll never get one. I don’t care if other people have them but promise me you never will.” There’s a slight grin in your eyes. Not because you are joking but because you don’t think it’s possible that I would ever do it. A warning that is unwarranted. Telling me not to play with matches. I’m sensible. I won’t do it. I say, “I promise.” You’ll never know that it’s already too late.
You’ll never know that I figured it out immediately. That the stories in the show “I didn’t know I was pregnant” can’t ever happen to people with anxiety. I felt a lump in my throat when my roommate got her period and I hadn’t yet. Mine was always a week before hers. You’ll never know that I know my body that well.
You’ll never know that I sat on the toilet seat crying while holding a handful of positive pregnancy tests. I felt like a girl in the beginning of a romantic comedy. I felt like a cliche. Yet acting the way it had always been portrayed in the movies made me feel less alone.
You’ll never know that I didn’t even hesitate. There was only one option. I didn’t think once about keeping it. The next morning I made an appointment. You’ll never know how much it agonizes me that I chose so quickly because I’ll always wonder if there’s something wrong with me for not even considering the alternative.
You’ll never know that it was so small that it didn’t even show up on the ultrasound. I was so “barely pregnant” that they couldn’t even see it yet. You’ll never know how relieved that made me feel.
You’ll never know that in the days before I got it, I drank alcohol. And with each sip I ignored the fact that I was poisoning my baby. I made every effort not to care. It didn’t matter. It would die soon anyway.
You’ll never know that it didn’t hurt at all. That I took two pills and a Vicodin and went to sleep. That I woke up in the morning and felt nothing. That there were only a few droplets of blood. I didn’t cramp. I wasn’t nauseous. It was barely there so I barely felt it leaving. You’ll never know how much better I felt after it was over.
You’ll never know how selfish I am. I couldn’t keep it because it would ruin everything. I was angry at the inconvenience. I was angry that I had to take a weekend off from my going out with my friends. I was angry at myself for messing up this badly.
You’ll never know that I can’t tell anyone at all. Because if you ever found out, you would hate me. And I can’t live without you. It’s my secret from you and it will always have to be this way. You’ll never know that I will always be afraid that you will find out.
I think about it almost every day. But you’ll never know that I don’t regret it, not even for a second.