“I was in my 30s, engaged to an alcoholic, and had finally made the decision to leave him as I watched his behavior get more outrageous. Three weeks after I left, I missed my period. I assumed it was from the stress but I knew that wasn't like my body to ever miss. I was exhausted as well but I was severely bloated which I wrongly assumed meant my period was about to start.
I took a pregnancy test a week after my missed period and it was positive which wasn't scary, it just felt like a slap in the face in light of everything. I knew immediately what I'd do which was anything to protect myself and any child from ever being in the situation I had been in, so I immediately called a local private clinic.
They did not have an option for anesthesia and it turned out I would have had to go to another state to get it. I was fine with going without. I did the pre-abortion visit on a Monday which was 6 days after I learned I was pregnant. That was the earliest they could get me in. It felt like an eternity.
When I arrived, I had my ultrasound and learned that it looked like there was a gestational sac but no fetal pole - a blighted ovum. The sac measured at 6 weeks. I still scheduled the abortion for that Thursday. I was very nervous but well informed. I had watched videos of the actual procedure I would have (mostly from pro-life sites frankly) and I was comfortable with the medical side of the procedure.
The experience however, wasn't pleasant. The doctor and nurse in the room were great! Pleasant and very kind. I was older than some of the other patients I saw and I appeared cool as a cucumber respectively so they kept things lighthearted with me but appropriate. I have a very sensitive cervix. I knew this. I warned them at both appointments that my blood pressure tends to drop during any procedure where my cervix is manipulated. I'd never previously had my cervix actually entered though so I was anxious about that part.
The numbing shot was very uncomfortable. Yes, it felt like a ‘pinch’ but I was in more pain than the average pinch. Then the actual entering of my cervix occurred. The pain was tolerable in the sense that I was able to stay still and kept telling myself to stay still even though I was very uncomfortable and I was definitely in pain. I began breathing in through my nose but as I exhaled through my mouth, my teeth began to chatter uncontrollably and the doctor peered up at me and looked pretty concerned that I was in that much pain.
The suction wasn't really like suction at all, very light. There was a definite tug and a sound that seemed to occur with that tug and then it was over... Kind of. I was thrilled with the speed of it all. As he was finishing up, I suddenly felt like it was a great time to take a nap. And I shut my eyes and rolled my head over and barely could hear the nurse say ‘she's dropping’ as she grabbed the blood pressure cuff on my arm.
Next thing I know, I smelled the most godawful smell ever when they put smelling salts under my nose. I actually sat straight up and kind of gagged. I was very dizzy, weak, and not able to get up. I guess the saddest part for me was when they needed to get me assisted and out of the room sooner than they wanted to because I was backing things up.
As one woman was being prepped in OR1, doctor was in OR2 conducting an abortion. Back and forth - everyone's appointment was 10 minutes apart and there were a lot of women. It was sad to realize how many women were having to share in this silent event. They got me up and to recovery where I stayed a bit longer than normal. Maybe 25 minutes though in total.
I had a drink, an antibiotic, checked my pad and then I drove myself home and I was completely fine. I took it very easy that whole weekend but I was really fine. I will say I had no moment of reconsideration - I knew what I was going to do from the beginning. I have no regrets now either and over a year has passed.
My first period after the abortion was terrible though. I have never experienced emotional pain like that in my life. I was inconsolable and cried for over a week to the point that I had to set aside a couple hours a day to cry because otherwise I couldn't function at work. I felt a real, tangible loss at that time even though I still knew I'd done what was right for me at that time. Since then, things have been fine. I am gentle with myself and offer my experience to those who may need to hear it. If my experience was a ‘bad experience’, then a good or neutral experience is definitely going to be OK.” —Anonymous