A year and a half ago, Selah* boarded a packed bus in the dead of winter, eager to get home from York University. At the next stop, a woman with a stroller waited to board. There was no room for her though, and she urged the bus to continue.
The driver just sat there, thinking, and finally he said, “Can we make some space for her and her child?” Everyone shuffled and moved, but Selah started to get really angry. Why should they wait, and for a lady with a stroller? she thought.
She was still angry when she got home. “Sometimes when I’d get angry, I’d have to see blood to get better. So I started cutting myself… and I realized this was an issue.” Why would a random stranger with a stroller make her so angry? She thought about it, and finally connected it with the abortion she’d had a year earlier.
She looked online and booked an appointment at the Pregnancy Care Centre’s North York office. She met with a staff member and casually mentioned she was also late in her monthly cycle. The test showed positive. “I was shocked,” Selah recalls. “I was confused, angry and scared. Just the thought of having another abortion – it was going to ruin my life.”
This time it was different though –she knew she couldn’t get another abortion and she was willing to carry this child. And this time around she had someone there to talk to at the PCC. “Not to say [my] family wouldn’t be there for [me],” Selah explained, “but sometimes you find comfort from a stranger better than from your family. Linda was non-judgmental, reassuring me that it was possible.”
Selah’s life switched gears for the next while. An ambitious and driven student, she put university on hold and took the summer and fall semesters off. She registered for the winter semester so that she’d be committed to going back to school no matter what.
Her baby was due in September. “I remember the day I left to go to the hospital. I stopped, thinking, ‘Your life will never be the same. Embrace the moment.’”
Baby Travis* was born by C-section. “I was afraid of tiny babies – I’d never held one before. When he arrived, he didn’t look so tiny to me – he just looked normal. But it was still scary. I thought, ‘Oh my gosh, I’m responsible for this little one!’”
Three months later she went back to York. The challenge was incredible – commuting back and forth from Toronto, struggling through heavy traffic, balancing a baby with books and lectures. “You kind of just do it. God helped me – we had a strike and that strike really helped me, giving me a week to catch up.” The hard work paid off and Selah graduated this spring!
Another gift was coming her way. Robert* has been a friend to Selah for six years, and he began showing interest in her during her pregnancy. “When he first approached me, I was like, “If you’re doing this just because you’re feeling sorry for me, I’m not interested.’ But he said he’d always had feelings for me.”
Robert was there the whole time – through pregnancy and delivery. He cared for Travis while Selah was in school, undaunted even by dirty diapers. “I was really worried about raising Travis without a father,” Selah shared, “but Robert has been more than enough.”
Selah and he are engaged to be married in the near future. “I thank God for him!” Selah shared. “This is all that I can ask for in a marriage.”
As for rolly-polly little Travis, he’s growing in size and cuteness every day. Selah, the woman who used to say, “I’m just not so big on having my own kids,” has been won over by him. “I’m actually starting to really, really like Travis. He’s a good baby, he’s smart and he’s a very fast learner. He makes me like him. And having him makes me want to stay closer to God.”
* names changed to protect privacy