This story was submitted to Project Voice.
I feel the need to share my abortion experience because I've been feeling really alone lately. I'm 19 years old, and had my second abortion about a week ago.
My first one was when I was 17, and I was stupid enough to think I wouldn't be able to get pregnant again, even with unsafe sex practice. It's been eating me up inside that I let it happen again, and I sort of feel responsible for a life that didn't need to have the possibility of maybe existing. Anyway...
I started realizing I was pregnant at 4 weeks. I started realizing my breasts growing and nausea more and more every day. I didn't want it to be true because I'd been pregnant once before and had chosen not to have that one as well.
But one day, I got up and told myself, "if my period doesn't come tomorrow, I'll go to the doctor and get a pregnancy test". The next day when it didn't come, I went in and got one.
At my doctors office, they wait 24 hours before telling you the results. I called in as soon as I could and when the woman on the other line said the word "positive", I couldn't help but start crying.
I went to lay down on my couch, and cried for a minute or two then realized that if I wanted to take action I had to do it as soon as I could. I called Planned Parenthood and set up an appointment for the following Wednesday.
The passing week was the slowest week I'd ever experienced. Waking up every day with nausea from a child I knew I wasn't going to keep was a constant reminder that I had messed up again.
When Wednesday finally came, I went into Planned Parenthood and there was a mix-up with the payment. I ended up having to pay out-of-pocket because when I called and made the appointment, the advisor said I would be covered with or without my insurance code and it turned out that was not the case. Besides that, the nurses and helpers at Planned Parenthood were so helpful and accepting.
They started off by checking my iron levels, which for some reason made me start gagging. After my little episode, my nurse took a vaginal ultrasound and it was really difficult because I have a uterus that doesn't face the way most people’s does. They determined I was about 5 weeks and 3 days pregnant, and eventually I took my first pill there in the office. I waited 2 days to take my second round of pills, because of work/priorities.
I had planned on being with my boyfriend at the time of my abortion, but it didn't go as planned. I was home alone, not expecting the symptoms to be nearly as severe as they were. But as soon as the pills had dissolved, I started feeling awful in every way.
I ran to the bathroom and had diarrhea and awful cramps and as soon as I decided to take a pain killer, I vomited. When nothing was in my stomach anymore, I went to the phone to call my mom and tell her I needed her.
She came home right away and got me a heating pad, some water, and some vegetable broth to sooth my pain. I moved around till I found the place that was most comfortable for me which happened to be laying on my right side. Once in that position, I tried watching TV shows to distract me from the pain but ultimately all I could do was wait for it to pass.
As strange as it sounds, I really did feel something exit my cervix, and the pain ended relatively quickly. It went from the most uncomfortable and painful experience I'd ever had- to mild cramps in about an hour and a half.
That was Friday, and now it’s the following Wednesday and I'm okay. I'm sad, and my breasts are still in a lot of pain. But I'm slowly getting past it all.
I think I made the best decision for myself, and I know there are people who will say if I did it once before I shouldn't have done it again-- but I can't have a child right now and that's okay.