Funny how we can surprise ourselves. Have you ever done that? Yes, you might surprise others in something you’ve done or said, but have you ever done something that’s just not you, or so you thought, and surprised yourself?
About seven or so years ago I began writing a book about my unplanned pregnancy, which occurred when I was nineteen. No, starting my book isn’t the surprise I’m talking about, even though I was a bit surprised at myself when that first thought to write popped up. What surprises me was something I did shortly after I finished my book. Here, let me explain.
My unforgettable experience taking a pregnancy test, and my discovery of Planned Parenthood, are both shared in the same chapter. Yes, Planned Parenthood is in my story. Having gone through one long, windy detour in life after that pregnancy test, I now find myself more daring, gutsy, and determined. Ready to find out what I did that surprised myself? Here’s a few pictures to give you a clue.
A beautiful day the first day. (I’m holding that tallest sign)
Pouring down rain the second.
Yep, I took part in not just one, but two protests, encouraging people to agree that the government needs to defund Planned Parenthood. I heard about this protest when those videos about Planned Parenthood were, one by one, being revealed, causing the uproar to begin.
One day I read the date of that first protest in October of 2015. Only a few days away.
Do I dare check my calendar? I can’t believe I’m actually thinking of doing this.
I’m free as a bird Saturday morning! I then began pondering. Hmm. I wonder if I need to bring my own sign. Am I seriously thinking of doing this?
I gathered more information about it.
I don’t know if anyone would or could go with me. I doubt it. Would I really do this alone? Chris will probably have to go into work this Saturday. Hmm. Where’s that poster board I saw in the basement the other day?
Don’t worry. I’m not one who hollers in people’s faces or sits down in front of buildings, telling people they have to pick me up and move me if they want me to leave. I knew these types of protests were simple, calm, and right up my alley, since my conviction of closing Planned Parenthood is undoubtedly strong.
Saturday arrived. When I was almost there, I was filled with curiosity.
What’s it going to be like joining tons of total strangers and just stand while holding signs on this busy sidewalk for two hours in front of all those stores? I finally found a place to park. As soon as I got out, seeing others with their signs, my eagerness multiplied. Having the same convictions as I, assuming most, if not all, were followers of Christ, I felt right at home. Instant comfort in that group. We all began getting set in where we would stand. Conversations started with those standing close by, sharing the stories and/or reasons that got us there to participate. But it wasn’t just the people I met that helped me decide to go to the next scheduled protest. It was the waving of all those who drove by with their thumbs up, some honking, showing us they agreed. Heck, I was even proud waving at those who didn’t agree. (I won’t say what hand sign they showed, letting us know they didn’t agree. You can probably guess.)
As I left that protest, I decided I’d want to be part of the next one a few months later. It also encouraged me with my book, as its primary purpose is to encourage those who are going through an unplanned pregnancy.
God has heard my thanks for His timing of opening the door to this event, because it helped show a side of me I didn’t know was there. I’d encourage you to be a little daring and surprise yourself. It’s kinda fun. And pass me a note if you have participated. We can compare our surprising-ourselves experiences.