This can be the hardest topic to ever think and even talk about, but here is my story.
At 17, I moved out of home to go up to the country to live and breed race horses. This is where I met my boyfriend (soon to be married). We were together no longer than two months during which time we had agreed that if I ever fell pregnant, it just wasn't the time or place to have kids because we hardly knew each other. Two months later, what do you know? I was pregnant. We were both scared but agreed to keep the baby if he/she was healthy even though we didn't have a cent to our name. We were living off $200 a fortnight. But due to my younger brother having a serious disease in which they don't survive over the age of two, I had told my partner if our baby were to have this disease that I was going to abort.
We went and visited a doctor who referred us to a specialist. About one month later, I had what is called a CVS. (Most older women get this done to check if the baby has any diseases). Basically it’s just a long needle that goes into your womb and takes out some amniotic fluid. I had this done to find out whether it was a boy or a girl and (the disease only runs through boys) my baby ended up being a boy.
From there, tests were sent overseas as the tests aren't done here in Australia any more. Later during the week, the test came back that our son had the disease. We decided to terminate the pregnancy. Boy, can I tell you I was so scared; I had a belly bump because I was three and a half months pregnant. We got into the hospital early that day - I couldn't stop crying. They inserted tablets and I pulled my mum over and told her, "I don't think I can go through this anymore. I just want to have my baby" but my mum said to me, "Darling, I think it’s too late. The process has started".
I was in and out of it all day. The tablets made me have contractions - they hurt so much but I had the support of my mum and my partner. Later during the afternoon they wheeled me out, my partner not leaving my side until I got to the elevator. He sat there crying in front of it until I got back. The whole process felt like it went on forever. I remember them putting me into this waiting room where there was a girl in the next bed and two police officers (she was in jail for what reason I will never know.) Finally it came my turn and they laid me out on that god-awful table and were talking to me. I was in hysterics and told them to stop but then I fell asleep. I woke up and an hour later they wheeled me back to my room. When I first opened my eyes I cried. My partner was just sitting there crying with me. Within the next two hours I told them I wanted to go home and be with my family. There was blood everywhere. My partner changed me and my pads because I just couldn't bear to look at what I had done.
After I went home I ended up with infections on top of infections. I didn't want to go and see any doctor or go to any hospital. I truly believed that I deserved the pain that I was in. It took about two weeks until I had no energy to fight on and my mum, dad and partner took me to the hospital. They gave me antibiotics and two months later I was back on track physically, but not mentally. We got our baby cremated and he lives next to our bed (may sound freaky but we just can't seem to let him go.) Once I was better I left home again. I never went to see my family nor did I want much to do with my partner. I just wanted to be alone. Depression hit hard.
About six months later, the specialist called us back as they had something to tell us. Although we didn't want anything to do with them, we thought the information may help my aunties when they decided to become pregnant, but the news they were to tell us was something no-one wants to hear. They told us they had did a mistake with the testing and that I was healthy. My mum jumped up and said, ‘well, what about their son?’ They couldn't even look at us; they just looked to the floor and said he was healthy too..... I couldn't get my head around it. My partner walked out and my mum was screaming but I had mixed emotions. (This may be because at the time, although I didn't know about it, I was 6 weeks pregnant again.) All I could say was I don't blame anyone. I know they were not God. But please could they have something in place so it wouldn't happen to anyone ever again? A few weeks later, after I could digest it all, and had found out I was pregnant; I asked them again, ‘will they put something in place like a safe working procedure so that it doesn’t happen again?’ It was when they jumped down my throat and said, ‘no’ that I told them I’ll see them in court.
Depression hit me harder than ever by this stage. I wanted to kill myself but wouldn't because I had a baby growing inside me. I made a plan that once I had the baby I was going to just leave her with her father and go kill myself to be with my son. I went and saw counsellors because no one would leave me home alone. The only time I was alone was when I was in the shower and there I would just sit in the corner and cry. I had so much support around me which got me through my depression stage. I now realize I'm needed here for my daughter and that God and my brother and the rest of my family are up there somewhere looking after my beautiful little boy, or so I like to believe. Others may believe differently but this is what gets me through the day, knowing my children are fine.
We're still fighting for my son to this very day. They had taken something from me that I’ll never get back (he would now be two and a half.) Going to court isn't how much money they will offer me; it’s the fact I never want it to happen again and that I didn’t even get an apology. I know we have a beautiful daughter who is now 15 months old but it’s still not the point. We never even had the chance to meet our son and our daughter never even got to meet her brother. But one thing this experience has taught me is that life is a journey; there are many reasons people do the things they do, and everyone aborts for so many different reasons so who are we to judge?
Editor’s note: Thanks for sharing your story with us…You have suffered a heart-breaking loss and the double pain of learning that it was all so unnecessary. Not only that, it sounds as if the whole procedure was very difficult for you too, knowing that a deep part of you didn’t want to go through with it. No wonder depression hit hard – it was so difficult for you to reconcile yourself to what had happened and all the emotions you felt as a result. The fact that you were feeling suicidal tells me that the pain was so intense for you, you felt you needed to escape it. Perhaps fighting for an apology is what’s keeping you going at the moment, energising you, but my concern for you is what happens afterwards. I feel you need some specialist support to prepare for that time ahead when you may feel the grief and loss more keenly. You could contact www.opendoors.com.au or www.pregnancycounselling.com.au for details of further help.