Longreads

Ashley Abramson | Longreads | May 2018 | 11 minutes (2,633 words)

An unplanned pregnancy — the abrupt realization that you’re not alone in your body — feels like being haunted. But even more terrifying than a cluster of multiplying cells turning up uninvited is the idea of going about life not having known that as I got drunk on boxed wine, as I got out of the shower and grimaced at my then-small body in the mirror, as I swallowed three aspirin and walked to work, I had been inhabited. But now that I think of it, unprotected sex by virtue of generous pours of liquor thanks to an after-work panic attack is a pretty surefire way to find yourself both with child and without your go-to methods of self-medicating.

The summer of 2013 and the three years before it, I had no serious responsibilities but to grieve my…

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