By Guillermo Treviño Jr.
(Editor’s note: Guillermo Treviño Jr., a seminarian of the Davenport Diocese who attends Conception Seminary College in Conception, Mo., wrote the following prose on abortion and read it at a student variety talent show. “I’m big on pro-life,” he said. “I thought this would be a different approach to the subject.”)
I can hear a faint voice crying, but I don’t listen. I can see something inside me, but I don’t pay attention. I can almost touch that thing inside me, since it touches me. I can smell my burden a mile away. I can feel there’s something missing. Why am I afraid to share it? Did it really pain me that much? I don’t want to be seen as weak, so all I do is smile when I’m being torn up on the inside.
My friends see through this and say, “What’s wrong?” I don’t want to say that you, my friends, pressured me into this decision, because I didn’t want to give up my lifestyle. I kind of get paranoid. My parents will kill me if they find out. My church won’t forgive me, if they find out. The person I loved so much got me into this and wants the easy way out. I don’t want to do this for the one I loved, since I don’t love anymore. Now, I feel like I have nothing. Strangers look at me weird. I can’t give up the chance at a good job. Where are these saints people talk about? Nobody is going through what I’m going through. Who can help me? I can’t admit I need help, so I do this on my own.
I make the phone call; I schedule the appointment for Sunday, 7:45 a.m., just before Mass at 9. Mom has no idea what’s going on. Mom and I don’t talk about this; I ask Mom to drop me off a block before the clinic with my love to see the doctor. I’m told I’m doing the right thing by my love. I can sense, though, something’s wrong. I start hearing, seeing, touching, smelling and feeling this thing inside of me. This thing is giving out a last cry, fighting for its survival. I see people praying outside this building, but for what?
The building looks like a prison with cameras all around it. There’s a security officer and a police car patrolling the area. I check the address; the clinic’s inside the building. Someone tells me and the one I love to stop, so we do and are given some flyers. Before I go in, I get a phone call. Do I pick up? All I hear is yelling from the inside of the building. The security officer opens the door and says hurry up, there’s lots more appointments today.
The people praying make me wonder, “Why aren’t they praying in church?” This lady on a megaphone says there are other options, but I don’t see them. I’m distracted because Mom says I’ve got to go and be a lector at Mass. So, I’m alone with this person who says he loves me and even this love tells me to hurry up because some football pregame show is on in an hour. I start having doubts, but how can I afford this thing inside me. I could get fired if I take time off for this thing. With my problems, I’ll have to take lots of time off from my job at the restaurant. I get another phone call; it’s from my sister. She tells me to have breakfast with her; we need to talk now. My love is mad at me for not going in and calls his mom for a ride. What a loser!
I have to think now about whether I go inside and then walk to Corpus Christi for Mass or walk to the restaurant for a free breakfast and skip Mass. I hate going to Mass, so I go to the restaurant. My sister is there telling me she loves me and tells me her story. She says that she’s gone through the same thing and it’s hard, but she’s a living example that I can do this. I get a phone call from the clinic asking, “Where are you?” It’s only 8 a.m. and I’m 15 minutes late. I say that I want to cancel the appointment. The clinic receptionist says, “When do you want to reschedule?” I say, “No, thank you, I have to see something with a bunch of letters — an O B G Y N.”
The O B G Y N shows me an image of what’s inside of me. It has, among other things, a head, eyes, fingers, a nose, toes. I can feel its heartbeat. There’s something inside of me and it’s beautiful. What was I thinking? This is the best thing that has ever happened to me. So what if I can’t pay the cell phone bill?
Today, my phone’s disconnected and I’m looking for work. I live with my sister, but I have what I’ve always been looking for, real love. She just turned 3 months old and her name is Ashley.