Robin has been a fantastic member of the RHRC family, a source of great humor and empathy, a strong voice for rights, and a wonderful team mate and friend. We all join in wishing her well today and in welcoming Sebastian into the world.
It was a moment of utter chance that I came to join the RH RealityCheck team, a bright, silver lining in what was one of the lowest periods of my life. I had recently learned that I was about to be laid off from my job of three years, and only shortly after that learned that our long-hoped-for second child never made it to 10 weeks gestation.
In the days following my D&C, recovery and mourning, the Stupak-Pitts amendment was brought into the public debate on health care reform, and an article idea was born. And it was soon after that I was offered a chance to join the RHRC family, and a new period of my life began.
Somehow, it seemed completely natural that at a time where I myself was questioning my own body, my reproductive care, and what sort of challenges come from fertility, infertility, pregnancy and loss, a platform was suddenly available where I could throw myself into research, writing, and even healing.
I began to realize that in many ways, emotionally and physically, miscarriage and abortion are two side of the same coin, that there are many overlaps between an unwanted pregnancy and pregnancy loss or infertility. It became more and more clear to me that just as a woman should have the ability to get pregnant as quickly as she can whenever she she chooses to have a child, it is also imperative that she have the access and care she needs to end an unintended pregnancy, a pregnancy that threatens her health, or a pregnancy where her child will not be able to survive or thrive outside the womb.
And then I became pregnant again. It was marred by fear. It was shadowed by loss. But I was able to continue on day by day, in many ways by being able to share it, step by step, here with all of you.
Somehow, both slowly and quickly, the days have passed and today I am giving birth. I will finally get to meet the stubborn, independent little creature inside me — the one who tried to frighten me with potential physical issues because he was too obstinate to give a good clear ultrasound image at 20 weeks. The bullheaded boy who chose two weeks ago to turn himself breech to justify my choice for an elective c-section. The one who started a firestorm before he was even born just by discussing his foreskin.
It seems appropriate to be saying goodbye to you all on the day I will be saying hello to this new being whom I finally get to meet face to face. Although I will likely be returning in January, as always I am unsure what the future holds. But this moment seems like a good one to close that chapter that started out so low, so dark, and so full of loss, and start in fresh with new life, new hope, and a newer understanding of why women need to make this choice individually, and for themselves.
Thank you for being with me through all of this. And thank you for helping me heal in time to meet Sebastian Elmer Marty.