Biting my nails is a bad habit of mine which I fall into when I’m anxious, feeling uncomfortable or thinking really hard, like now! Pressure of the first Sassy post.
(Finger’s firmly back on keyboard, not in-between teeth)
This is not my only bad habit, another that I recognise in myself, aswell as others around me, is the habit of stifling a conversation. To live through experiences, good and bad, and not share with others these stories.
Let me cut to the chase so I can introduce you to Sassy. Because to know Sassy I’d like you to know my story.
Eight months ago I peed on a stick four times to realise I was pregnant, and I decided in the first two minutes that I wanted to terminate the pregnancy. This period of time was not as simple as one, two, three and I am still winding my way through an obstacle course of emotions and questions (whilst biting my finger nails!), having reached no solid conclusions through the tears, anger and joy apart from this; by talking to more women about my decision I have found empathy, support and a regular response of ‘I’ve had an abortion too’.
The sharing of stories made it obvious to me that never is one woman’s experience and reasoning the same as another. What tied them together was the secrecy of the story and how rarely these conversations had been discussed between friends and family. The stigma, shame and fear of judgement that is felt by women who have decided to have an abortion shuts a door on the conversation. There is no comfortable room for discussion, therefore the natural support and understanding that can be shared between sisters is unhealthily malnourished.
Sassy is where women’s experiences inform creativity and creativity is the tool to share those experiences. I make art about the stories women share with me in the same way I make art telling my own. Drawing is the tool I have chosen to encourage a new habit, of encouraging conversations, openly and positively. Because sitting on an experience and nibbling those fingers will only result in having to cover up those nails with a fake set.