XB78WQK09OClick bait. I’m shamelessly admitting that the title, I Do Not Regret My Abortion, is click bait. I’d have much rather entitled this piece, “The Story of Amber Danielle” but nobody would read that. And I want people to read this. I want people to know about Amber and what her short life meant, and what she sacrificed for a wretch like me.

Saying I do not regret my abortion doesn’t mean I’m glad I aborted my baby, although I am glad I had access to a safe and legal procedure. And it certainly doesn’t mean that I do not regret every single, solitary, terrible, selfish, shitty decision I made that brought me to the doors of an abortion clinic. Not regretting my abortion doesn’t mean I’m happy about it, or that I’ve let myself off the hook. Oh, trust me, I’m still dangling on that hook. Which is why I’m telling Amber’s story now. I owe her. I owe her everything. Because whether you or I like it or not, she’s made me who I am today.

The Story of Amber Danielle

I started this story on the post about whether I’m still a Christian. I said then that I could only tell this story in pieces. This post is a 974-word piece of my convoluted walk with Christ. It’ll take you less than ten minutes to read what’s taken me 28 years to write.

You’re Pregnant!

The day I found out I was pregnant was bright and sunny. That much I remember.

I’d been feeling awful for weeks, nauseous and tired, and I was sure my lifestyle was finally catching up with me. Only on the periphery of conscious thought did it occur to me that maybe I was pregnant. My darkening nipples and sudden aversion to cigarettes would niggle at my brain as though I was trying to remember something extremely important that I’d carelessly forgotten. But the thought that I might be pregnant would be crushed out as soon as it would try to get a foothold in my brain.

I did have a bladder infection. That much I knew. So off to the free (or extremely cheap, anyway) clinic I went, driven there by my lover. He waited in the car while I went in for the appointment.

What I’ll never, ever forget is that moment I found out I was pregnant.

Looking back now as an RN, I realize that the nurse who told me probably wasn’t happy for me. I’m dead certain that I looked like exactly what I was: a meth addict. My bad skin, covered in sores that I attempted to hide under thick foundation, and the telltale skeletal thinness, were a flashing neon sign for anyone with eyes to see.

But my face hadn’t yet taken on that hollowness in the cheeks that happens when you do speed for too long. I’d only been doing it for 18 months and some baby fat still remained in my face, if gone from everywhere else. I was in too much denial to see myself as I was, but I’m sure that nurse could see me very clearly.

I’d peed in the cup and sat waiting on the exam table wearing nothing but a paper drape. I can’t remember what I was thinking, but I certainly wasn’t thinking that I was pregnant when that nurse came in.

“You’re pregnant.”


“You’re pregnant.”

“Oh my God! Really?!”

“Yes. You are pregnant.”

“Oh my God!”

I wish I could bottle the joy I’ve felt every single one of the three times someone has told me that I’m pregnant and drink from the heady elixir when I doubt God’s love for me.

“Okay. Well, what do I do now?”

“Here’s some pamphlets. You need to start taking prenatal vitamins, and you need to find a doctor if you are planning on keeping the pregnancy.”

Hmmm? Why wouldn’t I keep my baby?

Again, knowing what I know now, I’m sure that nurse knew. She worked in a free (or cheap) clinic. She saw girls like me every single day. She knew what I was, and she knew that I was in no position to raise a baby. But that was information I didn’t have yet.

Those five or ten minutes when I first knew I was pregnant were some of the most beautiful, most spiritual, and certainly most deluded of my entire life.

I walked out of that clinic on Cloud 9.

I was going to have a baby!

I walked up to the car where my lover was standing waiting for me. I’ll never forget him leaning against that car and smoking his cigarette when I told him, “I’m pregnant.”

“Oh, fuck!”


“Oh, fuck! You’re not keeping it, you know.”


“You have to have an abortion.”

“What? No. I don’t want an abortion.”

We drove the short ride home in silence. How could he not be happy? We’d made a baby. We were going to have a baby. Everything was going to change. We were going to get our shit together, and we were going to have a family. I told myself that everything was okay; he just needed time to adjust.

We got back to his mother’s house where we both lived. I probably went to pee, but I don’t remember. What I do remember is that he walked up to me without any warning and punched me full on in the stomach, and as I crumpled to the floor gasping for breath, he said, “You are not keeping this baby. You have to have an abortion.”

Welcome to Reality

I met reality that day while lying on the floor with the wind knocked out of me, and I didn’t like that bitch one bit. I still don’t.


Is Chloe a ChristianIn the past few months I’ve been asked if I’m still a believer, and even more importantly: Why?

When I’m asked if I’m still a Christian I must admit I feel a little stab of pain. Does my life in fact so poorly reflect my faith? And I guess I must be honest and admit that the answer is yes since I am 1) A liberal, 2) Pro-Choice, 3) Overly fond of the word fuck, 4) Don’t attend church anymore, and 5) Wrote about having sex on my driveway. By pretty much anyone’s standards, if I am a Christian, I am not a good one.

But Am I Still a Christian?

Outwardly, I don’t do a whole hell of a lot that would make anyone look at me and think, “Wow, there goes a really good Christian.”

In my defense, for many years I did my very bestest at being a good Christian, and it didn’t go so well. In my opinion, the reason I’ve failed so miserably at Christianity is because I’m saddled with a particular set of spiritual gifts that don’t go well with having a vagina. Why God would saddle me with both a vagina AND my unique set of spiritual gifts is beyond me. It’s like He made some big mistake, or something.

My biggest handicap as a Christian woman is that I don’t do that “stay home (except when we have some church work for you!) and be silent” thing very well. I suck at it like you wouldn’t believe!

The men in charge of the churches where I’ve belonged (and a fair amount of the women, too) would rather I be a lot more silent. And despite the fact that Jesus spent a lot of time hanging out with mouthy women–like that slutty woman at the well, and the lazy Mary who wouldn’t do her housework, and that whore with a penchant for pricey perfume–while letting them in on the great spiritual secrets of the ages, Paul and the Nicene Council agree with them and not with me. So now, to these men’s great relief, I demonstrate my obedience to their commandment of silence by my absence.

But you need to know that none of the very good reasons I’ve given you (that you already knew anyway) about why and how I’m a shitty Christian have anything whatsoever do with whether or not I am one.

Can You Be A Christian if You Don’t Believe in God?

I am a Christian despite the fact that I’m not entirely sure there is a God.

Well, how does that work, Chloe?

See, I’m open to the possible reality that God does not exist and our lives are utterly pointless. I’m open to the notion that right this very minute mankind might be sort of like an overgrowth of yeast in a big vat of bread dough that is rapidly running out of flour. It’s entirely conceivable to me that we’re proliferating out of control while our critical resources are exponentially diminishing. Sooner or later (but it’s feeling like sooner) we just might collapse in on ourselves, and the bacteria that are left will dominate the world once more.

Sometimes I think, “What if we—and everything we’ve created—are destined to become the future fossil fuel for the next big overgrowth of intelligent life?” That’s not something a good Christian thinks, or admits out loud to thinking anyway. But seeing as I’m currently a biological dead-end, I’m all over that shit. It could totally be the truth.


See, here’s the part where I get all sentimental. I’ve had this inconvenient personal experience with the Divine that brought me to my knees and, try as I might to rationalize it away, I just can’t completely walk away from a God who has demonstrated so much mercy, grace and love upon me, the least of anyone.

Memoir of a Meth Head

I shouldn’t be here. I shouldn’t be writing this blog post. By all rights, I should be a toothless hag, or dead, or worse. By any stretch of the imagination I shouldn’t be sitting here having a life like this unless there is a God who loves me.

Except you ought to know that even daring to write that last sentence makes me feel tremendously guilty because I’m nothing special for God to love. Why should I have happiness when so many suffer? How does that work? How is God love when so many far more worthy and worthwhile than me suffer?

I don’t have an answer for the question of suffering.

And so I struggle with the global notion of the existence of a God who loves us. But I do have a story. And my story is about a God who loves me for some inexplicable reason. And if this God I’m not sure I believe in loves me then maybe the world is a place of hope and love, not pointlessness and extinction. And lately I’ve been feeling this pounding need to tell this story to those who’ve never heard it.

I want to be very, very clear before we begin this story that I am no one God should love. First and foremost, I never want to forget, and neither should you, that I am a woman who has done despicable things. I killed my own unborn baby for drugs. And everything that came before that, and everything that came after that, and the mighty hand of this unbelievable God on my life in the midst of that choice, is what has made me who I am today.

Why I Am Still A Christian

I’ve publicly told this story, in toto, only one other time and that was on a homeschool forum I was eventually thrown out of because it turns out that I’m a really shitty Evangelical Christian homeschool mom too. When I told it then I told it in parts because that’s the only way I could emotionally tell it. I have no idea how I’m going to tell it now. I’ve already used too many words for a blog post and I haven’t even started it yet.

To begin I’m going to steal from Charles Dickens and begin my life with the beginning of my life and record that I was born.

I was born.


Say Good-Bye to All of Your Stuff: An Amateur’s Guide to Downsizing

That Fire Sale on my life I promised back in November of 2012 is nearly over. By this time next week, all of my earthly possessions will either have been sold off at garage sale, placed in a metal container at a self-storage unit, donated to the local humane society, or thrown into the trash. Downsizing is Not […]

8 comments Read the full article →

Living the Curated Life

Every month, I pay WP Engine® $50 to host this blog on a dedicated server. I also pay Bluehost money for some reason they’ve tried to explain to me over and over again but I still can’t figure out. Personally, I think it’s a racket. All I know is that last year when I stopped […]

37 comments Read the full article →

You Are Invited to a FLOR Design and Wine Event in San Francisco

This time next year we hope to break ground on our new house. A couple of days ago I stopped by our land before heading back to The City for this video to help remind me why I’m working so hard. Sometimes I watch this little minute of heaven while on my break at work […]

1 comment Read the full article →

Outlander Starz Season Finale: Spoilers and All

Warning: There be Spoilers here, and as a long-time reader of the Outlander book series I’m also going to engage in some cross-comparison between the book and this episode. Outlander Season Finale. Finally, Everything Wentworth Prison. I just finished watching the Starz Season Finale of Outlander, To Ransom a Man’s Soul, because my dearest husband in the […]

10 comments Read the full article →

How AARP Membership Can Save You Money?

I’m not sure of the exact moment when retirement became something I think about, but I do know it’s not anything I thought about at all when I was a young mom raising my kids. Frankly, if I’d been thinking about retirement I’m not sure I’d have chosen to be a full-time stay-at-home-mom (SAHM) for […]

2 comments Read the full article →

I’m off to Life@50+ National Event in Miami!

At the invitation of AARP, I’ll be attending the Life@50+ National Event in Miami, Florida next week as a social media champion. It wasn’t exactly easy squeezing in a 6000-mile roundtrip for a couple of days between shifts at the hospital, but since my personal mission and AARP’s corporate vision sync so well these days I took them up […]

5 comments Read the full article →

How Dare Kate Be Prettier Than Us!

We’ve all see it by now, the glorious pictures of the beautiful, dare I say radiant, Duchess of Cambridge standing on the steps of the hospital next to her beaming husband, the future King of England, a mere few hours after giving birth to the angelic Princess Charlotte Elizabeth Diana. Kate, markedly unlike most of […]

22 comments Read the full article →

How to Be Happy

I’ve stopped and started this post dozens of times. Like most of what I “write” today, I imagine the words coming together so beautifully in my head while I’m driving to work, but it all breaks down into nonsensical babbling the minute I find myself sitting in front of my computer. Here’s hoping today it’s […]

29 comments Read the full article →