I had a surgical abortion done today, I was under sedation, so I was awake, just a bit groggy. I'm telling my story because I remember when I found out I was pregnant on December 18, 2014 and being that 17 year old girl in my senior year of high school, reading these stories about abortion on the Internet, trying to make the right decision. I was about 7 weeks when I found out, and I was on the pill when I got pregnant, but I was sick with a sinus infection and taking medication, which caused my birth control to fail. When I found out, my step dad's father was really sick with cancer and literally only had a few days left to live, and I wasn't ready to tell my mom and take away from what was going on with their family. Also it was only about a week until Christmas. My best friend and her mother were the first people to know, because I took the pregnancy test at her house, and I'm pretty much like another daughter, so I told her mom because I didn't feel it was the right time to tell mine, and I needed the support. They were both amazing supports, and supported my decision from the beginning. I pretty much knew from the start I wanted to have an abortion, as its my senior year in high school, I want to be financially ready and able to care for a child, I wanted to have a stable home with the baby's father, and I honestly was not ready to have a baby. So it was Christmas holidays, I was off school, and on December 22 my step dad's father ended up passing away. That was a really hard time for me, as I already lost a grandfather earlier this year, so it was still really fresh. And it was hard to see my family so upset, and I was suffering inside in my own way, too. I literally waited until December 27 to tell my mom I was pregnant. By that time I'd already talked to my school counsellor and discussed abortion (she is amazing), I'd seen my family doctor the day after I found out I was pregnant and he got me in touch with a Women's Clinic to schedule my abortion. I wanted to have things kind of in order before I told my mom so that it wasn't so stressful for her, not that it would be easy. I just sat down with her in the garage and told her honestly. I explained everything to her, and she was amazing. She fully supported the decision I made, but she made sure to ask me if I was SURE of my decision and she let me know that if at any point I change my mind that we did not have to go through with the abortion. My mom was forced to have an abortion by her parents when she was 15 at 17 weeks, so that's probably why I felt comfortable & knew she'd be understanding. (btw it was a different time back then, my grand parents are amazing and there is a lot more to that story) I stuck with my decision. We drove a few hours on January 5 for my appointment at the Women's Clinic. The nurse I spoke with was very nice, she explained the procedure and told me that at any time if I change my mind to let them know. I had an appointment with a lady doctor a few hours later, where I signed consent papers along with my mother, and I had a piece of seaweed inserted in my cervix which helps soften and dilate the cervix over a 24 hour period, as I was having a surgical abortion. (getting the seaweed put in was not painful at all, it was basically the same procedure as a smear). My mom and I got to go to our hotel after that. I had a little bit of cramping, no worse than menstrual cramps, I just took Tylenol every 4 hours to help with the cramps. I had no bleeding or anything whatsoever. The next day my mom and I checked out of our hotel and headed back over to the Women's Clinic. I was admitted at 11am and got my wristband. My mom took me up to the day surgery floor and then she had to go wait on the main floor, which was a little bit scary knowing I'd be by myself. I went in and a nurse gave me my gown to get changed into. Then the same nurse went over some questions and my discharge instructions. Then another nurse (she was really sweet) came and got me from the waiting room and put my IV in. I thought it was going to be a lot worse than it was. Then she walked me to a separate waiting room with a TV, she hung up my IV bag and told me that the doctor would come and get me when it was time for my procedure. I was in the waiting room for about an hour and a half, in the time I was in there, 2 other girls came in, waiting for the same procedure. Finally, the nurse came and got me. She brought me to a room with another nurse and the lady doctor I'd seen the previous day. They laid me down on the bed with my legs in the stirrup type things, then the one nurse told me she was going to inject the medication into my IV (Vicodin and morphine). It was kind of foggy after that but the nurses talked to me the whole time, one nurse held my hand when she saw that I was scared she whispered to me, "It's okay, just remember that you can start a family when YOU'RE ready." and that was honestly really comforting for me. I'm so glad she was there. It wasn't some horrific violent scary scene, I honestly don't remember feeling any pain at all, just a bit of pressure and suction. It wasn't like you could see it all after it was over, they take you straight to the recovery room right after you're done. It was like a 10 minute procedure at the most. It wasn't a traumatizing or scary experience for me, nothing like I've read online from some people. In the time after the abortion there is some cramping and pain, but nothing unbearable. I'm still struggling with my feelings after the abortion, and there's nothing wrong with that. It's okay to feel relieved after an abortion, and in a way I do. I also feel sad, because it is a loss too, and there is a grieving process. Its okay to be sad after an abortion or mad or confused. I just know that I was 100% confident with my decision and my reasons going into the abortion and that's all that matters. I'm telling my story because I want to help other girls in my position. I want you to know that whatever decision you make, there is a support system out there and someone for you to talk to. This was honestly probably one of the hardest decisions I will ever have to make, but I know in my heart that it was the right one. One day I will be a mom and I will raise a great family, but right now wasn't my time. And guess what? That's okay! I'm not ashamed or embarrassed that I had an abortion, because I made the right choice for myself and for my unborn child.
Thanks for sharing your story of a surgical abortion under sedation. It is good to process your experience honestly and acknowledge the different thoughts and feelings, which often make this such a difficult decision to work through. I hope you are recovering well and as you say there is help and support available if you need it, for post abortion support.