1 million rupees, says a person who knows it, about $200 US, according to a Reuters tally.
One year ago this week, I had my baby daughter, born to a woman who is very much in love with me. For a brief, terrifying time, I was sure that she was a lesbian. I thought about it for years, and finally, after a lot of soul-searching, I decided that she was a straight dad.
For most of my mother’s early life, she was openly lesbian. She had dated and had children with women, and she was bisexual. I guess my first contact with that kind of lesbian might still be in those years, but it would never become the defining issue I knew she would end up with. (After all, what was gay about being a lesbian?) My mom would be as straight as it takes to be straight. But she was never “lesbian.” She got to be straight.
Even if you didn’t know her, you might imagine that I’m probably not gay since I’m not gay, as one would expect of a lesbian. But even more than that, the image I have in my head is not of a woman who was married. She married a man and stayed married at the same time. It just didn’t make sense.
It was almost exactly one year ago, in October of 2010, I learned that the daughter I was having was born via a surrogate. She is, and always has been, my daughter. On the strength of this information, I chose to have an abortion. Because of my own choices, and because I am a mother and grandmother, I made that decision. It was a hard decision. I don’t know if there’s a more difficult decision I’ve made — whether that one made me less of me, or whether it made me more of me.
What I did not realize, until I was sitting in clinic waiting room with a small group of women from my hometown, is that the very thought of abortion was terrifying. I felt like a monster, a predator, a murderer. I felt like my body was a weapon. I felt like it belonged to someone I just did not recognize. It took me years to learn the extent to which it was true.
I didn’t realize it at the time. I still don’t, but I’m sure it’s not something one does at any life-affirming period. What I did not realize, though, is
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