With new laws on the books, many pregnant people are encountering the harsh reality of a post-Dobbs U.S.

by Bryce Covert, In These Times

Lationna Halbert doesn’t like pickles. But one day, in July 2022, she was hit with an intense craving as she watched her boss eat one. The only other time she had craved pickles was four years prior, when she was pregnant with her son. When she indulged and ate one, she threw up. Lationna decided to take a pregnancy test just in case.

It was positive.

I cried, I cried, I cried,” Lationna says. ​It was a surprise. Lord, it was a surprise.” She later figured out she was three months along.

A hand holding a sign supporting abortion as healthcare during a rally for abortion justice.

Lationna’s face, framed by hair that hangs in long, soft curls, is round and pretty. Her cocoa skin glows and her large eyes, hidden behind thick glasses, are the same golden shade. She doesn’t smile often, but when she does, it spreads across her whole face, revealing a tiny piercing above her front teeth. At 26, she already had a 4-year-old son, Royalty, tall and skinny with his mom’s coloring and wide eyes. Lationna wanted to give Royalty a sibling someday, so he would be less lonely. But not like this.

Before having another child, Lationna wanted to be married to her partner, Kendall; to have a steady job that paid well; to get a new car; to live in a house instead of an apartment; and for Royalty to be in a better school.

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