January, the 2nd of 2016. That's when she was conceived...

“January, the 2nd of 2016. That's when she was conceived, for some reason I am convinced that the possibility of a child was a girl. I had just started my second semester of my first year at University. Friday the 12th of February I had realized I was 5 weeks pregnant. That day is still extremely clear in my mind and the shock and confusion that pounded my body was unreal. I had confided in my good friend at the time that I hadn't bled for 5 weeks, which was very unusual. I did the typical ~take my friend to the pharmacy and get her to buy me two pregnancy tests to make sure, even though it is probably nothing sort of thing~

We got back to our halls and the first thing I did was go to the shared toilets (which did not make this any easier) and peed on the stick. Now, even though I am only 20 years old, I have taken quite a few pregnancy tests in my time just because I over-panic a lot about things. Therefore, I was expecting this to be me stressing out over nothing and that I wouldn't see the two lines on the test.

The two lines appearred, and for about 10 minutes I sat in that toilet too scared to leave the bathroom. Once I had the courage to leave, I went straight to my friend's room and showed her the test. She was in utter shock and couldn't even find the words to express how she was feeling for me. I guess in this part of the story, I am trying to express that finding out you are pregnant isn't always glamouros or lovely, whether people end up keeping the baby or not.

In my case, I immediately started feeling maternal and hopeful and excited and enthusiastic, and I immediately had all these beautiful thoughts of having a child and being the mother I had always wanted to be. I immediately pictured dropping everything; my degree, the possibility of a career and my young ambitious lifestyle for this child which didn't have a full grown body yet. My friend, of course, was concerned in return.

My partner at the time made it clear that he wanted nothing other than an abortion and made it clear it would not be possible to keep this child. At that time, although I could not see it, I was in a rather controlling and distorted relationship. He was making me very unhappy, yet I wanted this relationship to work as it was my first adult relationship and I wanted to make sure that this relationship would be a success because it was the first time I truly trusted someone. So, when he had turned to me and said I was being over dramatic and over emotional about the whole thing and that abortions are very easy (because he had experienced the same thing with an ex), I was heart broken.

I'm not sure if is the same as many of you out there, but my main goal in life is to be a mother. Ever since I was little, the one thing I wanted most was to be a mother and love and care for something that was my own. Anyway, over the next couple of weeks my life was a complete yo-yo and I kept changing my mind to keeping it from having an abortion and vice versa.

In the end, on February 27th, I had my abortion. On the day of the abortion, my boyfriend at the time refused to come with me, even though I offered to pay for the travel etc. The whole lead up to the surgery was fine. At this time, I was about 8 weeks pregnant, so I was lucky to have it done quite early on as it minimises difficulties etc.

The clinic and the staff were all lovely and very reassuring and supportive. However, I will never get over how I felt once the termination was finished and I was lifted off that bed and transported into the recovery room. I had agreed to sedative because I was unsure as to how it would all feel, but the sedative and had knocked me out completely and therefore I woke up and it was all finished, all done with. This made me distraught, I truly wanted to be present throughout the whole process so I could emotionally acknowledge and accept the situation I had willingly put myself through.

Now, I know everyone has their own way of dealing with these things - I can completely understand that many women may prefer to be unconscious during the treatment and not be aware or see anything. However, me wanting to be present was my way of wanting to say goodbye and accept it all. Once I was placed in the recovery room, I was made very comfortable and given tea, but I was unable to stop crying for a good 20 minutes.

I truly apologize to the other women in that room, I completely broke down and could not contain myself (partly due to the sedative and my tiredness) but I must have made the other women feel extremely uncomfortable and for that I am truly sorry. I am one of those that is very good at ignoring my emotions and situations to carry on with my daily life and that is exactly what I had done until it had all happened. I had truly accepted the choice I had just made and I was devastated even though I knew it was best for me.

It is now August, 2016, almost six months later after my abortion and I do not regret it to this day. It was definitely the hardest thing I have been through in my life so far. I have had my story to tell and I have been through much, but this by far was the incident in my life that broke my heart the most.

I don't regret my abortion because all the factors surrounding this child made it seem not fair, not fair for that child to enter my world. I didn't have the financial or emotional stability to care for it - no job, no savings, no family financial support, debt from my current university course and I suffer from mild depression and anxiety which can occasionally become severe. It seemed very obvious and I it think was made clear to me that the father wouldn't have stuck around and although I would have raised it alone, the idea of not having that family I had always dreamed of was horrible to even think of, let alone accept for me.

Now I know many women would be able to have a child with similar obstacles, but I simply am not one of those women. The hardest part for me was going against that instinct deep within me - that instinct that has existed since I was young to be the best mother I be and have something of my own. It took me a long time to accept that if I had that child, I wouldn't be able to be the best mother I could be due to all these obstacles. I was desperate to have that child as soon as I realized I was pregnant, but for me, it couldn't be. It wasn't practical and I chose practicality over my emotions.

Of course it wasn't fair - I still think to this day 'what if' and I often feel truly guilty and sad for the opportunity of life I stopped. I feel great sadness for the beautiful child I missed out on. However, if I had gone through with it, I wouldn't be in the same situation or be the same person as I am today. I know one day in the future I will be able to be the mother I wish to be. However, now is not the time for that.

At the moment, I am a 20 year old woman whom has a degree and a career ahead of her and I still need to look after myself and sort myself out completely before I take care of anyone else. I am proud of my achievement to overcome this and I am proud of all women who have been through an abortion because it is one of the most challenging aspects of life to go through. So a round of applause to you all for your strength. No one can estimate how we feel/how someone will feel regarding this. Every experience is different and that is what makes us human - please never let anyone look down on you for the choices you make.” —Frances

#collegestudent #scared #gratitude #notready

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