It was six years before I told my mother about my abortion. It’s not that I thought she would be upset with me for having an abortion — I knew she supported abortion access — but I worried that she might be disappointed that I had become pregnant with an ex-boyfriend she disliked immensely. As a Black mother whose own mother couldn’t drive a car and never went to college, her greatest desire was to ensure I, her daughter, would live a life not defined by poverty, racism and misogyny. She wanted me to be able to explore the world and start a family on my own terms, when I was ready.
Sitting in my parked car, outside my apartment with no cell phone service, I mustered up all the courage I could and dialed her number.
“Mom. Can I tell you something?”
“Sure, honey. What’s wrong?”