I knew I was pregnant before I took the test.
I knew I was pregnant before I took the test. The two pink lines that showed up confirmed what I was inherently aware of. I sat on the edge of the bathroom tub, thinking about abortion. I already knew I would get one, but I wanted to think about it, obsess over it because it was a huge decision, and I wanted to make sure it made sense and felt right. I'm 21, almost finished my undergrad degree, and ready to start my masters degree. The program for my masters degree made my eyes light up and my heart feel warm when I saw it. I won't throw that away. When I told my boyfriend I was pregnant, he didn't even flinch. He asked me what I wanted. He supported me, and agreed to come with me on the day and be there through the procedure. I had to wait about three weeks from the time I booked the appointment until the day finally came. Over the next weeks I had little energy, was gaining weight, my breasts had swollen and a series of bumps almost like a rash had formed between them. I didn't feel like myself at all, I felt like my body was betraying me. My eyesight started to get blurry a couple of days before the abortion and I could barely study for my final exams. I started crying in the library. I've never been so frustrated and hormonal. I was nervous about the procedure but also anxious to get my body back. When the day came, I felt confident. Everyone who worked at the clinic was wonderful. First I was taken to have an ultrasound. It was kind of difficult to have an ultrasound taken and not ask to see my baby, but I thought it would be best. Next, the counsellor at the clinic called me in, went over the forms I had filled out, and asked me questions in a very thoughtful way. She asked how I felt when I got pregnant, why I decided to get an abortion, if my boyfriend was supportive, and we talked about birth control and concerns about the procedure. She told me to keep my comfy sweater and warm socks on, take pants and underwear off and then wrap a blanket around my waist and take a seat. They gave me a pill that was intended to have a calming effect. It was not long before the nurse called my name. She introduced herself and asked how I was feeling. It was at this point in time when I started feeling scared. I told her that I was fine up until right now and she put her arm around me and said that she would make sure that I was okay. Thinking of her now makes me want to cry because of the way she looked at me, touched me, spoke to me,and was more comforting that any words could describe. My boyfriend joined us in the operation room. We held hands and the nurse inserted an IV and told me I may start to feel sleepy, although I would not be put to sleep. The doctor came in, said hello and asked how I was. As the doctor was washing up, the nurse offered me some laughing gas. I accepted, knowing that I am prone to fainting and thinking that this may ease any pain I felt. The only other thing I remember was the nurse inserting her fingers with a lot of goop to feel where the baby was. It did not hurt. I'm not sure if I passed out or if the medication just put me completely to sleep, as I am fairly tiny and medicine usually hits me hard. I was glad to have been asleep, although I wish I could share more about the procedure. The next thing I remember was people's arms around me, asking me to try to stand up. I felt dizzy, but was able to stand up and was assisted into the recovery room. It was a room full of private lazyboy recliners, juice and cookies. I felt pain in my lower abdomen. The pain was more intense than period cramping, but not unbearable because it wasn't shooting pains, just a constant muscle ache. I mostly slept in the recovery room, my body wanted to sleep off the drugs. I would wake up every couple of minutes and my boyfriend would be looking at me like he was afraid I was going to die. I tried to make my face portray less pain, I loosened my mouth and relaxed my eyes and slept again. The clinic recommended getting 15minutes of exercise every hour, to keep the cramping at a minimum. So for the next five to six hours, all I did was sleep for an hour, walk for fifteen minutes and then repeat. It hurt to sit down that day. It hurt to laugh for two or three days. It was strange to think about for a couple of weeks- "A week ago I was two and a half months pregnant. Now I'm not. Weird." But along with that feeling of strangeness is relief and happiness.
Thank you for sharing your experience. You sounded very sure about your decision from the outset, and thought it through knowing it was an enormous decision to make. I am glad that everyone was so helpful and supportive, and that they had your pain well controlled. Everyone's experience is different, and surgical abortion under local anaesthetic can be painful and traumatic for some people.
It sounds as though you are looking forward to carrying on with your masters and I hope it all goes well for you.