When Suzanna is pregnant for the first time, her husband tells her that he’s emigrating to California.
‘I feel terrible,’ he says. ‘But I’ve fallen in love.’
Shoving his things into a rucksack, Suzanna’s husband says he’ll pay for a termination.
‘It’s your decision, though,’ he adds.
Suzanna decides to leave the city, her flat and her job. She moves back in with her parents. They enfold her in an envelope of compassion.
Seven hundred pounds appears in her bank from an account she didn’t know her husband had. The reference is SORRY.
Suzanna messages the friends who are not her husband’s. Their interest is like a police officer’s searchlight through a car window. They text ‘We’re here for you’ and ‘This must be the hardest choice you’ve had to make’.
‘She’s not as pretty as you,’ her mother-in-law tells her.
A doctor says what a difficult choice she’s had to make, and signs the form. Another doctor says the same thing, and signs the form.
Suzanna goes alone to a private clinic. She waits in a stuffy, green-walled room. A panel show blares from the corner.
The counsellor’s eyebrows arch. ‘What a hard choice you’ve had to make,’ she says.
A smiley doctor puts cold gel on Suzanna’s stomach. As he performs the scan, she stares at blinds that slice up the sky. The baby is two and a half weeks older than she had imagined.
Suzanna is told to return to the waiting room. She’s not sure if she still has a choice.