Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Predicament (03/01/12)
- TITLE: The Oldest Dilemma
By Sharon Eastman
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Steve and I were high school sweethearts. Everyone thought we’d marry someday. Our relationship consisted of lots of affection, but we still remained virgins at graduation time in 1970.
After high school Steve enlisted in the Marines. I worked part-time at a dentist’s office and went to community college to obtain my dental assistants license. They say, “Absence makes the heart grow fonder,” but in my case the opposite occurred. My letters to Steve became infrequent, and I started dating other guys. Steve was still enamored with me, but deep in my heart I understood that to be loneliness, G.I. loneliness.
One late night phone rang, and it shocked me to hear Steve’s voice. “What are you doing this Fourth of July weekend, Sandy?”
“I haven’t made plans yet.”
“How would you like to meet me in New York City, the Big Apple, that time?”
“Well, I’m not sure. I might need to study,” my lips quivered.
“Ah, come on! It’ll be groovy! We’ll dance upon old memories and make some new ones.”
He wore my senses down, and I was curious to see him anyway. “Yes, I’ll go. It should be fun,” I said as I tried to muster up enthusiasm.
When we met at the airport, my heart took a leap. There was Steve all decked out in his Marine uniform. He looked suave and debonair. He looked trim and tan, too. Surprisingly, my stomach fluttered, and my eyes saw stars. “He wasn’t such a bad catch after all,” I thought.
Steve was overcome by me, too. He liked my long blonde hair, my lacy peasant blouse, and my flowing bell bottoms. He couldn’t stop staring. Finally, he grabbed me in his arms and gasped, “Wow!”
I said “It’s really neat to see you, too. But I want to see the sites, the Empire State Building, for one.” Little did I know Steve had different plans for me.
“I’d like to check out the rooms, change clothes, and rest a little before we have our New York City rendezvous.”
“Okay,” I said as naïve as a first-day kindergartener.
One of the few proud and the brave, the Marine slogan, didn’t apply to Steve. His good looks didn’t match his selfish and arrogant personality. Instead of the Bulldog logo, his should have been a fox. Yes, what was supposed to be two rooms was one, and what was supposed to be was two beds were one. The result: Steve seduced me. It must have been the rock music, the scenery, and the spirit that swept me off my feet. Despite my trepidation, I relented and succumbed to his advances. Afterward I showered thoroughly.
We did see some of the sites and a Broadway show, but our feelings died a slow death. He flew back to the Marine base, and I flew back to my parent’s home.
Three months later tears streamed down my face as I left the obstetrician’s office. My heart was pounding, and my head was ready to burst. I was three months pregnant with Steve’s child. How was I going to tell my parents, and what was I going to do? I didn’t want to marry Steve, and I couldn’t care for a baby all alone. Hidden in my coat pocket was the phone number of a priest who helped women in trouble. He gave them the choice of having an abortion, which was illegal at that time. I really didn’t understand abortion, but it sounded like an option.
Mom and Dad ranted and raved, cried and sobbed, yelled and hollered. When everyone finally composed themselves, Dad took the abortion note from my hand. “There’ll be no abortions in this family!”
“But, Dad, what will I do? I can’t marry Steve!”
Mom broke out in another gush of tears. “Sandy, my mother was pregnant with me out-of-wedlock. If abortions were common and safe then, I wouldn’t be here.”
“None of us would be here,” Dad concluded as he comforted Mom.
I took the crumbled abortionist’s note and ripped it to pieces. “God created this child so I will trust him with my life,” I vowed.
I had a baby girl, Heather, and Mom and Dad graciously helped me raise her. Heather is now a missionary in Peru.
This is a work of fiction.
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