by Sophie Ulin, Staff Writer

Illustrated by Summer Cushman

I was told from a young age 
The plan
You know the one
Get A’s
Ivy League
Good job
Means good life
“Good life”
Is it not enough to be in this moment
To be here
To be happy
My future was constantly brought up,
From what religion my husband would be,
To the thought of children,
But what if I–
Your hips are made for this,
You are made for this
Children don’t often want children
And the thought of my insides being torn apart
Ripped the idea from my thoughts
Never will I let something, someone, ruin my body
“You’ll change your mind”
Or maybe.
It truly is a magical thing
I was made for this
This greater purpose
For you to rip me apart and sow me back together
To smile for the first time
Only to have me forget what the world was like before 
A human,
A baby,
Growing inside a woman
Is perhaps
The most womanly thing I can imagine
Giving life
Women are incredible
Without me,
There is no one to populate
Without us,
We disappear
It is worth the pain,
The anguish
Because we are real life superheroes
We are the momentum that keeps them moving
Never hearing a thank you
Only to realize that their biggest mistake
Was not the insults
Was not the mistreatment
It was underestimating me.