Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Gingerbread houses and abortion (aka my random life)

I don't really want to bum you out with this post. That's why I'm starting off with how the day basically started.

Gingerbread houses!

Yup, yesterday we made gingerbread houses. It was messy, sticky, sweet, and fun. I'm still amused by the fact that working with kids is not in my job description at all but I still get to do all the fun kid stuff.

The other part of my job description can be a lot less fun, and definitely not as sweet.
One of the biggest parts of my job includes manning the front desk at the community center. Which means I'm on the front lines of dealing with the public. When you're located near the biggest homeless shelter in Albuquerque, this means dealing with a whole range of people and a whole range of issues.

Yesterday I had a woman asking to use our fitness room. No problem. Until it came to the health questionnaire.

Not a big deal for 9 out of 10 people. Some people don't get cleared because they smoke or because of their medication. No big deal. It just needs to be cleared by a doctor.

Well this woman seemed a little uneasy about filling out the questionnaire. I checked her answers and realized why. Not only had she checked off the usual - including smoking - it turns out she was also pregnant.

Now this is a big no-no on the questionnaire. It would have to be cleared by a doctor, I explained.

And just like the smokers and the medicated, she explained she could get it fixed. She would just go to the doctor, verify the pregnancy, and schedule an abortion.

Just like that.

A little stunned, I just watched her pick up her things and leave with the paperwork.

Just like that.

Now I've identified before as leaning pro-choice. But I feel like that is misleading to my friends and readers.

I am adamantly pro-life, too.

It is my preference and my hope that people will choose life in every situation. I take no pleasure in seeing this or any woman choose to have an abortion. I see pain in her face and in her demeanor. What I sense most is the fading of life. I can't say with any certainty but my guess is that it was not her first abortion. Her mundane attitude toward the operation suggested that she knew the process well. It is me belief that a part of her is dying as well.

I don't want to debate who's life is more valuable. I only want to recognize both. When it comes to the issue of abortion, comprehensiveness is crucial. Let's all take a look at every side of the issue, whether we like it or not. There are many players in this situation. There is the woman and the child. And there is also a father - somewhere. There is her family and his family. There is the doctor.

And then there's us.

And that's the part I always want to overlook but never should. I am in some small way responsible for the situation. In my attitudes, in my apathy, in my voting record, I share the burden.

I am part of the problem. I want to be part of the solution. Don't you?

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