Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Mothers (05/02/05)
TITLE: Perspectives on Motherhood
By Catherine Pollock
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While Fee didn’t know why she and Alabaster had been led to each other, she knew that they had been. People always left comments on her journal entries, but something about the young woman’s remarks caught Fee’s attention. Their shared knowledge of tsalagi hooked Alabaster, and from then on they were fast friends.
Like Fee, Alabaster had been raped. Like Fee had, Alabaster was about to give birth to a child created by the crime. And, like Fee, Alabaster had lost the man she loved because of what had been done to her. Unlike Fee, however, Alabaster was choosing to give her child up for adoption.
“How can you do it?” Alabaster asked, placing a hand protectively over her swollen belly. “How can you be a mother to something that… horrible?”
“Chris isn’t horrible.” Fee smiled as she looked at her son, who was now asleep on the couch. “How he was created – that was the worst experience of my life, but he’s not the one who hurt me.”
“I still don’t understand,” Alabaster frowned. “You had so many choices. Why keep him?”
Fee’s smile turned wistful as she looked away from her son to answer the question. “Because he’s a part of me. How could I turn my back on my own flesh and blood?”
Alabaster paled visibly at the answer. Knowing she had caused it, Fee went straight to Alabaster’s side.
“I’m not judging you for what you’ve decided to do,” Fee said, putting a comforting hand on Alabaster’s shaking shoulder – a hand that Alabaster drew back from.
Knowing how Alabaster felt, Fee didn’t give up. She crouched beside Alabaster and continued to talk. “It takes a strong person to realize their limitations. I did what God told me was right for me – but that doesn’t mean the same is right for you.”
“You say that like you mean it.” Alabaster went stiff, but she didn’t try to run away.
“I do.” Fee took Alabaster’s hand in hers, pressing it against her heart. “God knows what is right for each and every one of us. He knows my heart - that I could never just walk away from something that is so much a part of me - and He knows your heart, too.”
“Then where does… it fit in?” Alabaster looked down at her stomach. “If I’m not supposed to be a mother…”
“I don’t know.” Fee let Alabaster’s hand down and just stared at her. “But what I do know is that He’s got something planned - otherwise you wouldn’t be having a baby in the first place. You just gotta have faith that His plans are what’s best for everyone.”
“How can you be sure of that?” Alabaster shook her head. “You don’t know His plans any more than I do.”
“No, I don’t.” Fee sighed. “But I said it before, and I’ll say it again. God’s got something planned for you and your child, Alabaster. I don’t know what it is, but there’s something. Just hold onto that.”
She sighed again when Alabaster looked away.
“I’m not like you,” Alabaster said, refusing to look at Fee. “I don’t think I can do it.”
“No one said you have to be like me.” Fee turned herself so that she was in Alabaster’s line of sight. “Just do with this child what God tells you to do. It’s the best you could ever do.”
“You’re sure about that?” Alabaster looked puzzled, like she wasn’t quite sure what to believe.
“Absolutely,” Fee nodded as she saw her son sit up and start rubbing his eyes. “Now, if you’ll excuse me a minute, I have to tend to part of God’s plan for me.”
“Understood.” For the first time since Fee had met Alabaster face to face a faint smile rested on the young woman’s lips. “And if you don’t mind, I need to tend to something, too.”
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