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The Sun Magazine

Family and Relationships

Pregnancy and Childbirth

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Labor Day

The point is, I am not like the rest of you, who don’t spend every moment fearing the worst. I think you are ostriches with your heads in the sand, and I envy you for it. You wake in the morning and don’t imagine all the ways in which the people you love might die. Or perhaps you do. If so, call me, but not before 8 AM, or else I will think someone I love has died.

Quotations

Sunbeams

We are not here to advocate abortion. We do not ask this Court to rule that abortion is good or desirable in any particular situation. We are here to advocate that the decision as to whether or not a particular woman will continue to carry or will terminate a pregnancy is a decision that should be made by that individual.

Sarah Weddington, lead prosecuting attorney in Roe v. Wade, 1972

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Apartment 5

It was snowing that morning as we left for church, the white sky spitting flakes, enough to dust the car but not enough to cover the dirty snow at the side of the road, the bare patches of dead lawn. It was January in Ames, Iowa, when snow no longer has its fluffy Christmas novelty and simply becomes another cold, hard fact of life.

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

The Winter Garden

The winter garden is a good place to incubate the idea of a child. It is all potential, like an empty house waiting to be furnished. Just as I imagined the chickens laying, the now-dormant bulbs blossoming, and the grapes ripening in the sun, so too I dreamed of buying maternity clothes and onesies, feeling euphoric after giving birth, and feeding an infant from my own body. Even the prospect of sleepless nights with a crying baby seemed enticing.

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Three

My friend says that a life properly lived is like a river. I take this to mean that headlong shots through roaring box canyons are inevitable, along with meandering, wandering main channels and high, roiling waters. There will be drought-drained shallows in which trout languish; winter, when the dark water is a spill of ink down the page of snow; and eddies, too, the hypnotic, elliptical movement of water running back on itself, around and around.

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