“The grass is always greener on the other side Tilly,” my mother called from the back porch.
I rolled my eyes and kept walking. “Grass is green ma,” I called without looking back, “it doesn’t really matter what side of the fence you’re standing on.” My mom was always like that, full of annoying little adages, as if they really had anything to do with real life. What would be her adage if she knew what I had gotten myself into now? What would mom’s goody goody church friends say if they knew that perfect Sara Green’s daughter had went and got herself…I grimaced as the mere thought of my situation entered my crowded mind. Well, it would all be over soon.
I clutched my stomach as I stood and waited for the bus. Of course, it was raining. God’s punishing me, I thought angrily. Everyone else ran for cover under the telephone booth sized canopy that the city provided, but not me. I stood staring defiantly up at God, wondering where He was now. I had been taught my whole life that Jesus loves me and that all I had to do was pray, but I didn’t buy it.
The only abortion clinic in the city was a two hour bus ride, but it wasn’t like I had much choice. It’s wasn’t like I could go and ask my mom to drive me there, and according to my parents, I was to young to get my driver’s license. I exhaled loudly and watched as the puddle by my feet gathered water. It was Saturday morning and I should have been sleeping in, but instead I had to stand out in the rain waiting for a bus that would change my life forever. My friend Alexis told me that lots of girls used the clinic, she said it was clean and best of all confidential.
As I stood there and thought about the events of the past few weeks, a silver car pulled up to the curb. It had a green bumper sticker on the back that read, “My god was a Jewish carpenter.” Mom. I turned my head and pretended not to see her, maybe she would go away. I heard the car door close with a bang. “Tilly,” she called. I pursed my lips but kept my head turned. “Tilly,” she said again. She was really close to me now, no point trying to ignore her.
“Mom, what are you doing here?” I asked her.
“Tilly, get in the car. We need to talk.” I was going to tell her to leave me alone but something in her face told me it would be a waste of words. She followed me back to her car and we both got inside. The bus pulled up just as I shut my door.
I bit the inside of my lip, aggravated at her for making me miss my chance to get to the clinic today. Now I would have to wait until next week, or maybe I could skip school one day. I was still planning when she said the words I dreaded. “Tilly, I found the test.”
“What test?” It was better to play dumb.
“What are you planning on doing?”
I looked at her directly in the eyes and gave up on all pretenses, moms always knew. “I am going to the clinic and getting it taken care of.”
“Just like that?”
“Just like that.”
“You’ll regret it forever.”
“And what do you suggest I do mom?”
“Pray first,” she said.
“Pray? Come on Mom, get real. This is serious.”
“Which is why you need to pray first. And then,” she said forcefully, “we decide what needs to be done next. Something that does not include abortion.”
“And what about your friends?”
“What about them?”
“Won’t you be embarrassed?”
“Tilly, the only one who’s opinion matters to me is God’s, and He is the reason I found you, standing in the rain.” She looked at me then in a way that was so not like my mom, but a friend. She started the car and held my hand all the way back home. I couldn’t help but cry, I mean, it was as if God really heard me.
“I think you’re right mom,” I told her, “the grass does look a little greener now.”
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