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The Linden Review
The Final Score

“You can be fully in charge of your life only if you can acknowledge the reality of your body, in all its visceral dimension.”

Bessel van der Kolk, The Body Keeps the Score

The house was stone quiet except for our pendulum clock’s slow thunk thunk and my whimpering. Excruciating pain. The smell, copper-like. Two superabsorbent pads and a tampon weren’t enough to last the night. I wanted to cry out loud but kept rocking and moaning. My periods had become a real problem with heavy flow and “stay at home” pain, but I had put off seeing a doctor, trying to wish it away. Deep breaths, slow and deep. I wondered if I had appendicitis. READ MORE...


When Women Had No Choice, I Had To Give My Baby To Strangers

The shame and ache from losing my firstborn to adoption in 1969 nearly destroyed me. At the time, I was an eighteen-year-old nursing student in Pittsburgh PA. Raised in a strict Catholic environment, I had learned the importance of virginity as a precious gift meant for your husband, but I had given that away and everyone would know. To make matters worse, my boyfriend wouldn’t get married because he did have a choice.

Pregnant unwed girls were labeled tramps and their babies were called bastards. Shotgun weddings were common but raising a child as a single woman was not. I kept the pregnancy a secret and left town, spending the last trimester in a Catholic Charities home for unwed mothers. My mother had little to do with me during that time. My siblings thought I was living and working out of state while I spent Christmas alone, twenty minutes from home.

Click here to read more of Cathryn's January 27, 2023 article published on GirlTalkHQ...

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