Good day, ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to today’s post on The Graduate Monologues.
We are sorry that we had to take a break. You see, there’s this thing called adulthood and it’s one heck of a scam, but it places unique demands on its members. One of such demands is this thing known as a job, and another is called responsibilities. Together, they have a way of taking one’s time so much that one cannot run the blog one loves the way one wants to.
Forgive us. We are back with what is quite the sizzler.
In today’s post, we will be exploring the theme REGRETS AND LESSONS.
Have you ever looked back with regret at something you did? Do you ever feel embarrassed at your naivete and immaturity? Do you later connect the dots and realize how much said experience has affected you and made you grow?
Today’s post was written by the amazing Faith*. I have known her for 4 years, and she is one of my best friends. I’m honoured she chose to participate, although she constantly refutes all claims that she is a writer.
It is a true life story, and is presented as is. Other than formatting and other minor corrections, this post has been unedited. You will understand why as you go along.
Due to the sensitivity and extremely personal nature of the issue being discussed, I beg you to be moderate in your comments. Feel free to address the issues raised, but please, do not attack the author. Whether you agree with or you condemn her, please be moderate. The last thing she wants is a bitter attack on her person.
*Faith: may or may not be her real name.
When Tolu suggested the graduates monologues idea to me I was excited, even more so when he said I could participate and write something.
5years is a long time to be in a place, you learn so much and the experiences are vast. I have a million and one things I could write about but couldn’t pick one. But when I went back to school for the last time I decided it was time I made peace with some of my demons, and this platform afforded me the opportunity to do so.
I did so many things in my life at university, some good and others bad but the worst was…can’t even bring myself to say it, lol…well it was having an abortion. I’m not gonna justify my actions- all I know is that one single decision changed my life forever. I thank God I’m done with school and whereas my family and friends are mighty proud of me I ask myself “would they feel the same way if they knew the price I paid to be here?” I doubt that very much.
I had the choice, I could either keep the pregnancy and get kicked out of school (it was that kind of a school, religious and strict) or I could “get rid of it”. I chose what I thought was the “easy option”. I murdered my unborn baby, at just 6 weeks. I don’t even know if it was a girl or a boy, I’ll forever wonder.
I remember the day I had the operation done, far away from school and anyone who might recognize us (the baby daddy and I). He was supportive of my decision to terminate the pregnancy probably because it was convenient for him too. When I said I’d not keep the baby I literally saw a little skip of joy in his eyes, without any protests he arranged the whole operation with the “doctor”. On our meager student funds, we took the best deal we got.
The day before was the worst day of my life. I tossed and turned all night, couldn’t not able to get any sleep. I woke up early the following day and my accomplice and I took the 3 hour journey to the “doctor”.
In a tiny, poorly lit room, I lay down butt naked on a rickety old bench. I could hear the footsteps of my accomplice in the next room as he paced up and down, probably willing the whole nightmare to end. The “doctor” prepared his menacing looking instruments with alcohol and the stench of it filled the room. My heart was pounding fast and sweat literally poured out of me. The reality of what I was about to do hit me hard and I started sobbing, I didn’t know if I had the strength to go through with it.
The “doctor” called in my boyfriend, and admonished him to persuade me, and stop wasting his time. My boyfriend restocked my resolve and reiterated what at the time was the best reason why I had to for getting rid of “it”: I’d get kicked out of school, I’d bring shame upon my family, we were both not ready to be parents because we were “too young”, etc. He went on and on until finally, my resolve restored, we called in the “doctor”.
He came in and gave me an anaesthetic and told me I wouldn’t feel any pain. I had hoped he’d give me something that would knock me out but he said that would be dangerous.
And so the operation began. I watched as he spread my legs and inserted a cold metal object inside me, with another sharp object he started poking at my insides. I have never known any physical pain greater than that, it was painful and cold. He kept at it for what felt to me like hours, but apparently it was just under ten minutes. The pain was too much to bear and I simply passed out. A couple of hours later I came to, covered in a thin clean but old and stained little bed sheet.
It was hot outside but I felt cold, I was shivering and sweating all at once. The “doctor” came in and reassured me that it was a “success” and I had nothing to worry about. He showed me a thin long glass tube that contained the remains of what would have been my baby.
That was the worst thing I’d ever seen, and a part of me died that day. I could not even cry. I just got up got dressed and uncomfortably limped out of the room.
What had I done? I realized that while my action was most convenient, it was probably the worst decision I could have made. It was selfish and cowardly but mostly more shameful than if I’d chosen to keep the baby.
Things like that change you. I went back to campus with the problem solved but with me sad and ashamed. I went through the motions for the next few years of my life. I was the same happy go lucky, life-of of-the the-party kind of girl but it was all a lie. I had to fit in and act like all was well, but it wasn’t. I walked around with a huge load of guilt and shame that I could not explain to anyone, not even my accomplice. In fact he and I broke up shortly after because we could no longer be together, he was the only one who knew what I’d done and I could not deal with that. Every time I was around him I felt judged and the shame and guilt just made it hard. We broke up and when he completed school (he was a senior), boy was I glad! I thought that would make it better but it didn’t; I still had to live with myself knowing what I’d done.
I’ve had a million and one conversations with myself about my actions that day. Were they really worth it? I still can’t bring myself to believe that was the best decision ever, but it was the decision I’d made and it brought me this far. Should I be proud, happy, sad? I don’t know what to feel. All I know is that no day ever goes by without me thinking of that little person I terribly wronged. Would it have been a little girl with my eyes or a little boy with his charm? I’ll never know, that kills me every day and I embrace the pain it brings. I remember and still feel the pain I experienced in that tiny alcohol scented room. Sometimes I feel as though I’m holding on to that pain because it’s the only connection I have left to what could have been my baby. He/she would have been 4years now. I wonder about him/her daily and that part me will forever be in tears.
May be I’ll get the chance to see that little being one day in heaven, maybe I’ll get the chance to apologize for my actions. It would be nice, but if I never get that chance I probably deserve every inch of pain I feel for that cowardly decision I made. I could say I was young and foolish and deserve to be forgiven but I doubt that. I was selfish in the worst way possible and no reason could ever justify my actions.
If I knew then what I know now I’d probably never have made that decision but then again I probably would never have learnt to take responsibility for my actions. I probably would never have learnt to be strong and smile even when I’m crying inside. I’m not proud of what I did, but I’m grateful for the lessons.
And to my baby I’m sorry. I could have given you a chance. Losing you the way I did proved to me just how little faith I had in God who could have definitely taken care of us and it proved to me how much I cared for what people said and not what was right. I’m sorry my baby., iIf you can hear me somewhere in baby heaven please forgive me, and I hope to God to be able to apply the lessons I learned, I hope my giving up on you was not in vain.
I’d like to believe I’m older and wiser, and I’m thankful for my life in university. I did not learn these lessons in class but the varsity experience has taught me well. I know better now, and I hope to God to be a better citizen out in the world, out of varsity.
Of all the lessons I’ve learnt, the biggest I prolly learnt is that choice is a privilege that is usually free but often has costly consequences that we have to live with,I made my decision possibly the worst by far but I’ve learnt to live with it. Every time I’m faced with a choice to make I know that no matter the outcome, I’ll only have myself to thank. Or blame.
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