I had my second abortion 2 days ago
My first abortion was when we were both 17, still in education, living apart from each other and had no income, I found out quite early on (4 weeks) that I was pregnant so I had the tablet form of termination, which was quite straight forward and dealt with quite quickly.
I still found myself in lots of pain physically and emotionally and I swore to myself that I would never have another abortion.Not too long after my abortion I decided to go on Microgynon, the contraceptive pill and this worked great for me, I had no side effects and my periods were regular, after about 6/7 months on this pill I moved in with my boyfriend and had to change my GP who wanted to put me on a different form of contraceptive pill which I saw no harm in doing as it would still do the same job. On my first strip of 21 pills I conceived, although I didn't find this out for some time after. I was still taking my pill as normal with my 7 day breaks. I was waking up every day feeling somewhat unwell and the only way I can describe how I felt is constantly hungover, like I'd had a really heavy night the night before when in reality alcohol hadn't passed my lips in weeks.
I was throwing up too but it was all on the side affects of my pill, which my new GP had already told me about. It wasn't until I started vomiting during my meals that I thought something was really wrong, I never normally do that and I was struggling to finish off small portions of my favourite meals. Looking back on the time I was pregnant now the signs were so clear and I can't get my head around how me, my boyfriend or my mom never picked up on the fact I could have been pregnant, but it's easy for me to say that now.
I became very lethargic, lost all motivation and it took me all of the energy in the world to shove my hair up in a messy bun and throw on the comfiest clothes I had when I went out whereas normally my appearance is something I take great pride in, but I guess that was just the motherly behaviour and instinct taking over from early on. When I did the test with my boyfriend, I sobbed and had 0 hours sleep that night, thinking about how I was going to provide for the little life I had inside me as well as providing for myself and my boyfriend who is currently doing an apprenticeship (not knowing yet if he has a job secured at the end of it). As time went by we agreed that an abortion would be the right thing to do by us and our baby, it wasn't what we really wanted, but I couldn't be so cruel as to bring a baby into the world with nothing. So I booked an appointment with Bpas for my scan & check up. I went to this on my own as my boyfriend couldn't get time off work if I wanted him there for the abortion. The counsellor called me in first and when she sat me down she told me she was the same lady I had seen 2 years ago at a different hospital for my previous abortion which made me feel so stupid, I automatically thought "god what must she think of me?" but she was lovely and actually made me forget the reason I was there for the short time she was chatting to me about my boyfriend and what it's like to be living together. Afterwards I saw a midwife who was quite rude, I actually found more information out off my booklet and on the Bpas website than I did off her. She never explained anything to me.
When she did my scan I could hear the heartbeat clearlyShe said that I was 15 +3 gestation which would mean going under general anesthetic for a dilatation and evacuation, I didn't fully understand what these words meant at the time but they sounded scary. The midwife just went to sit back down at her chair so I jumped off the bed presuming the scan was over. She carelessly left the scan photos on the table for me to see, luckily I had planned on asking if it was possible for me to keep 1, she gave me 3 and got on with booking me in for my termination, which I had to wait exactly 2 weeks for, all that was going through my head was the fact I'll be almost 18 weeks pregnant. I was numb. Time passed and before I knew it, it was November 11th and me and my boyfriend were sitting in the Bpas waiting room amongst other females, some alone, some with their partners and some with their mums. I kind of felt for the ones who were sitting there on their own and I hoped that they didn't feel lonely because since my first abortion, even though I had a lot of support I still felt like nobody really understood how I felt no matter how much they tried.
It's a blur to me how many times my name was actually called by what seemed like a thousand different nurses but the last time I was called was for the tablets which I had to take to open my cervix. I was told that I needed to be 100% sure of my decision before I took them because there was a chance I could miscarry if I changed my mind. I knew I had to take them and go through with the termination even though all I really wanted was for the little life inside me to carry on growing, making me be sick every single day, making me feel like I was on a rollercoaster of emotions.
The more my baby grew inside me the more my love grewI knew the right thing to do. I put the two tablets under my tongue and left them to dissolve, without about 10 minutes of them dissolving I had cramping pains, no matter how many times nurses say "period like pains" they aren't, they are a lot worse and I definitely wasn't prepared for them. I went in to the toilet just for some space, I needed to be on my own because by now the waiting room seemed over crowded, I found myself wondering how some couples could be laughing and joking to each other in a place like this? Anyway, I dragged myself out of the toilet and asked the nurse if I could go down to the ward to lie down, although this meant leaving my boyfriend.
At the time I didn't know going down to the ward would mean I wouldn't see my boyfriend until after the surgery was over, I didn't give him a kiss, say see you later or anything, I just needed to lie down and for these pains to die down as quickly as possible. Once I was on the ward I found myself clock watching, it had been 40 minutes since the tablets had dissolved in my mouth and I felt like I needed to be sick, I knew I was going to be sick actually. The nurse told me that I needed to try my best to keep my tablets down for at least an hour, but I couldn't, and after I was sick the pains eased a little and by now it was 10:50am, at 11:05am an anesthetist bought me one of those ugly looking theatre gowns and told me to get changed because I'd be going down to theatre after the girl who was currently in there.
I'd got myself prepared and then yet another nurse came to me and said the surgeon wanted me to wait ANOTHER HOUR until I could go down, I put on a brave face and said it was fine. I sat reading out of date magazines, not that I took any of it in. I just kept thinking about how bored my boyfriend must be sitting upstairs in the waiting room on his own, I felt awful and guilty for dragging him out of work to be with me, when he actually couldn't be with me. As an hour passed I just watched female after female walk past almost like zombies, assisted by a HCA. I envied them that their pain was over, I just wished time would hurry up so I could be back with my boyfriend.
It was now 12:20 and I was taken through to surgery. 2 surgeons, an anesthetist and a nurse were all in the room with me. I was told to lay down, the surgeon was putting an oxygen mask on me while the anesthetist was putting the cannula in my hand, they were both talking to me at the same time, telling me to do different things with my breathing and my hand, I had a panic attack there and then, I couldn't breathe, my chest went tight and my legs were trembling, and the last thing I felt after the awful pain of the injection in my hand was a tear trickle down my face.
I had woken up in the recovery area of the ward where the lady next to me was snoring really loud, the first thing I thought was how much my boyfriend and I would be laughing about it if he was there with me, but shortly after that lady woke up I could hear her sobbing.
As soon as a nurse came over to me I immediately asked for my boyfriend and she told me someone would go and fetch him while I got myself changed. 2 nurses helped me to stand and walked me over to the bed where I lay before my surgery. I couldn't get myself ready properly because the cannula was still in my hand from the general anesthetic. I then had to go for a wee with the nurse to double check everything had passed I guess. After this I was taken to another room where my boyfriend came in to me, all I wanted to do was for him to give me the biggest cuddle just so I could cry and cry and cry, but there was hardly any room in the room we were in and my boyfriend said he felt poorly, he suffers from panic attacks too, so after making sure I was OK and briefly asking what I'd gone through he went to get some fresh air. I was discharged finally and we were free to go. As soon as we got home we went to bed and woke up at 7pm that night, although I knew what I was doing and everything that was going on I felt numb.
The situation felt a bit like a bad dream, like it hadn't sunk in.Once we had woken up, me and my boyfriend had a bit of a heart to heart conversation where he opened up to me in a way he never has done before, he told me that he hopes my mom & dad know that he'll always take care of me and that he's proud of me for being brave and doing the right thing. I think this whole situation had bought out the emotional side of my boyfriend because I hadn't seem him cry for around 2 years. Over night I felt like we had grown up and matured as a couple. Yesterday and this morning have been a struggle for me, I'm still in lots of pain and I am still finding it hard to walk, stand for longer than 5 minutes, bend down, wash and dress myself etc but that's also down to the pain and bruising of where my cannula was.
My mom and my boyfriend have been absolute angels and if I could take anything at all positive from this it is that my relationship with them both has grown stronger. I'm going to start a savings account and save for when we do have a baby (it'll give me something to focus on along with doing work for my moms new business) because although I know we made the right decision for now, in the near future we do want a baby and like my mom said, we'll be better parents for it. For people that read this and have gone through or are thinking about going through what I have then I hope it's helped, I know the struggle and I know how horrible it is to feel all on your own, I've found it really hard letting go of the 2 lives I've had grow inside me and I especially know what it's like to feel pressured/influenced by people around you, I feel that now my termination is over and there is no way of my baby affecting their lives things have gone back to normal to soon for some people which for me and my boyfriend isn't the case, as any other woman or couple who has gone through an abortion, just because it was your choice does not mean you don't need time to grieve and gather your thoughts in order for you to carry on living life as 'normal' as you could before. I'm not sure if this is really how certain people around us feel or whether its just the way it looks to me. In another life I know our baby would have been born in to a family where he/she would have been loved and adored by our family. It feels ironic that I feel love towards a little life that I chose to have ended, my regret is that he/she came just a bit to soon, a year or so later and a termination wouldn't of even of crossed our minds and it never ever will again. I will always what our baby would have looked like, what it would have been like to hold him/her. Every time I look up to the sky and see stars now our baby will always be the brightest, most twinkliest star. I want you to know that despite our decision me & your daddy did and will always love you, and we'll never forget you, our little angel up in the sky. x
Editor's CommentIt sounds like this was a difficult experience for you and post abortion support maybe helpful. You can call the national helpline, log on to Online advisor, or follow the link to find a centre for post abortion support in your area.
This story was sent in on 13/11/2013