Strong Enough

My abortion happened the morning before yesterday.

I'm struggling to assert in my mind that I made the right choice. I've always tried to approach life with logic and reasoning, but my greatest enemy is depression. It trumps logic, defies reason.

By all accounts, I'm a survivor already. I was horrifically raped (resulting in loss of virginity) at sixteen, and somehow managed to pick up my shattered life and created something better. It wasn't easy and I wasn't strong enough in the beginning. I married the wrong man at 17, became pregnant with his child at 18, and found myself alone and humiliated at 19 when my 20 year old husband chose drugs and alcohol over me, over work, and over our child.

I think it was during this year I found my voice. I applied and was accepted (with an entrance scholarship to boot) to one of the best universities in Canada. By the time I turned 20 I was in school caring for my beautiful son, trying to adjust to being a full time mom and student at the same time.

Almost two years later I met a man while travelling. I fell for him and we had a sweet summer romance that should have died with the season. He visited me (from his home country) for two weeks in October and I found myself pregnant after he left.

I don't believe in God. I rely on facts, not faith. However I grew up immersed in religion so strict it borders on being a cult. I could not tell my family about my pregnancy. Abortion was nothing short of murder in their eyes and I knew I couldn't rely on them for support. 

The truth was... I couldn't have another baby. School was hard enough with one child. I wasn't sure I would have the strength to continue my studies if I had another. I want to be a doctor one day. After all I've gone through, how could I allow my own stupidity to cause my own failure?

So I set the appointment. The clinic in my city is busy so I had to wait three weeks to get in. Three weeks of hellish nausea. Three weeks of reflection on my first pregnancy. Three weeks of secretly grieving for a baby I couldn't keep.

I was nearly nine weeks along when I went to the clinic two days ago. I brought along the only friend I could bear to tell... a man who'd experienced an abortion years earlier when he'd gotten his girlfriend pregnant. He made me laugh as I knotted the sheets of my hospital bed nervously. I swallowed the pills they gave me, accepted the IV in my arm, braced myself for the procedure. They told me that the anaesthetic would ensure that I wouldn't feel any pain, and would likely be unable to remember the procedure.

It didn't quite happen that way.

When I entered the abortion room and laid on the bed with my legs in the stirrups and my naked lower half splayed open, I felt resolved that I was making the right decision for me. I requested to see the preliminary ultrasound and made a mental note of the size. 22mm. The anaesthetic was injected into my IV and I waited to fade into oblivion.

Oblivion never came in that room. As the doctor began to open my cervix I began to cry out. It was excruciating. The nurse tried to console me and at one point dabbed at the tears flowing from my eyes, but all I could do was squeeze my eyes shut and scream pitifully as my uterus was suctioned and scraped clean of my pregnancy. I numbly remember them pulling my padded underwear up after the procedure and throwing up repeatedly in the bathroom. I was completely lucid when I first spoke with my best friend (who was there to drive me home afterwards) and he watched me deteriorate as the drugs finally began to work on me. Oblivion finally arrived, half an hour too late. I don't remember going home.

I feel empty now. I spent most of yesterday seeing friends, pretending things were normal. No one suspected a thing. I maintained a carefree front all day, masking everything with smiles and jokes.

My mask disintegrated last night as I showered before bed. I lost control and couldn't stop my emotions from reducing me to a sobbing, shivering, bleeding mess on the floor of my bathroom. When I finally emerged I wrote something for my baby and googled "Abortion support chat". I found this web site an hour after midnight, and this is my story.

I only hope that I can be strong enough this time.
Lilly1990 Lilly1990
22-25, F
4 Responses Nov 29, 2012

I'm glad you're doing better. Takes a long time to heal from any traumatic experience. Keep the faith. Everything will be okay.

I hope that you are still strong after these past few months. I am sorry for your loss. Keep talking to people...anyone..People do listen on this website. They can help you back on your way to peace and serenity. Dont give up, as you seem to know what you want in life and Im sure you will be a very empathetic and caring doctor. Many hugs to you

I'm doing much better, but will continue to seek healing. :)

Mine was this morning. I know how you feel. Be happy you already have a little one who loves you and will take all the attention you're willing to give i'm sure!! I've never felt so alone in my life. Mine was everyone elses choice but my own. I decided making everyone else happy was easier than dealing with dissapointment from my parents. I was wrong. I'd do anything just to have my baby back. So as far as relations I know exactly what you're going through. I remember my procedure 100% I wish you the best of luck, and hope you're able to pull through. You've got a lot going for you by the sounds of it. Don't lose sight of that.

I was also a young single mother faced with a choice. It's been almost 9 months since my abortion and the pain and strange emotional numbness is as strong as ever. You're a beautiful writer and I'm sure you will make an amazing and compassionate doctor someday. Good luck, sweetie.

Please tell me it gets easier :'(.