Celebrating (My) Choice

“The United States is Amazing. Women can choose to have an abortion – safely.”
That’s what I have thought and said countless times, because I had an abortion 3 years ago and am so grateful it was an option. I don’t regret making this choice either. Today, I am running my two-month old business Pincause with my partner Nate. Pincause brings people together in love to support the organizations that shape people’s futures like Planned Parenthood. To date we have raised over $90k for Planned Parenthood and ACLU, in honor of women’s rights. We recently launched our new pin to support refugees. This is all possible because I, we, had an abortion, and had Planned Parenthood to support us. And it continues to be possible because Planned Parenthood helped us choose a birth control method to ensure an unplanned pregnancy doesn’t happen again.

Once every few months, I do consider what my life would be like if I had a child running around. Personally, I might still be struggling with my depression, which when I became pregnant was really holding me back (severe depression continues to be with me but I am more secure in myself, and manage it much better). I wouldn’t have the strong relationship I have with my partner Nate – because we would not have had the time we needed to build our relationship’s foundation. Financially, Nate and I would really be struggling; likely feeding ourselves and our small human, but also fighting often because money was so tight (as in non-existent). Professionally, I would likely be working for someone else in a job I wasn’t happy in, and thinking on repeat “I can’t lose this job” instead of “what else can I achieve.” And there would be a child not getting the safe and stable home it deserves.

Then, I look around, and let the relief wash over me. Thankfully, safe abortion was an option for me and I choose that option with my partner. Years ago my partner and I made some bad decisions relating to birth control – honestly, we didn’t follow the directions. Getting pregnant was our mistake, and we are responsible for that mistake. But in the United States it doesn’t have to be a mistake you can’t undo. It doesn’t have to be a mistake that unravels your life. And I didn’t want to carry the fetus to full term and put it up for adoption (no part of that sounded doable). Having a child and giving it away would have not happened; I would have wanted to keep the baby – despite not being able to create a home worthy of a child. At that time, Nate and I could not create a home we believe a child deserves.

It’s pretty amazing women in America have safe abortion as an option, among so many choices we freely make. Then, a few months ago talk of limiting these choices got louder. Now, there will always be people who don’t believe in abortion and call people like me “murderers”, and that is ok with me – freedom of speech, and religion, is an amazing thing. But then things shifted and men, and some women, came to power and started drafting actions that would result in choice being taken away from women. This is when things shifted in me. I came home one day and shared my aspirations of creating something to protect women’s rights and Planned Parenthood. Together, Nate and I choose to give birth to Pincause. We started acting on bringing people together in love (not hate). We created a symbol women and people everywhere could wear to show they too support women’s rights. We gave people a way to take action that felt right to them – spreading love and positivity, instead of anger and hate.

I share this story to celebrate the rights I have and the choices I have been able to make. I also celebrate the organizations like Planned Parenthood who support people in making these choices. And I encourage others to make choices too, whether they are to start a business, change jobs, or have a baby, because in the United States we still have a lot of choice.