Gaea’s Story

Two years ago, right before I turned 21, I found out I was pregnant. I had had a one night stand with a guy I had known as a child, but our relationship, if any (of which there was none), was not one I wanted to continue, especially in this circumstance. To this day he still does not know I carried his child; I chose not to tell him for several reasons: we practiced safe sex, we were not together, and my abortion was my decision only.

I remember when I first realized that I could have been pregnant; it was an unmistakable feeling. However, out of fear, I did not take a pregnancy test until the third month, when I could tell myself that there was no way I could miss that many periods. In retrospect, I am grateful that my ignorance forced me into a corner, because had I had an abortion without my parents’ knowledge I do not think I would be as cautious as I am today. Due to the lateness I was also forced to change my life immediately, including withdrawing from college for the first term in order to complete the abortion and recovery.

My parents were extremely disappointed in my actions, especially my mother. She too had gotten pregnant at a young age, with me, at 23. It was because of my conception that she married my father, her then-boyfriend. While they were (and still are) happily married, my situation could not be ‘salvaged’ like my parents’ situation, and as a junior in college, I wanted to continue in my plans for my future. I believed then, as I do now, that I had a right to be selfish because I had the right and opportunity to choose. And while my parents said they would support me, it was still a very trying process for my family.

Because I went through my insurance, the process took two weeks longer, which, combined with my late actions, pushed me into the second trimester abortion. This was an incredibly painful and emotional experience for me, as I had to go to the clinic twice: once to get the procedure to induce dilation, then again the next day for the removal. While I had experienced sickness before, the night before my abortion I was terrified and miserable. It was then that I felt completely alone, as I did not have the courage to cry to my mother, and, being separated from my friends, who were in school, I didn’t have the courage to ask for help from them either.

However, the minute I awoke from the procedure, I could instantly feel the emptiness in my uterus, which in turn lifted the burden I didn’t know existed until then. Relief washed over me, and I remember trying to stifle my laugh from the nurses and other women waking up next to me. I realized that I had spent the entire pregnancy stoic and quiet, because I had no one to turn to but those who judged me for my decisions. This had led to a horrible emotional toll, which wasn’t addressed until that moment I knew I was free from the pregnancy. It was then that I was sure that I had made the right decision-feeling that kind of relief told me that I was not meant to carry out that pregnancy.

I eventually told my college friends about it last year, who, as I found out, has suspected as much, due to the 180 in my actions I had pulled the year before. While it isn’t something I have told everyone, it is a part of my past that I will choose to share should it be relevant, and thanks to support of my friends who do know, I have remained confident in my decisions, past and present.

Today, I am a college graduate, seeking out new opportunities for my future. I am extremely excited for my life, and my parents have slowly moved on. In truth, I have almost forgotten that I have gone through this ordeal, but only because I have continued to take advantage of the opportunities that have come my way since. I am not sorry that I chose this abortion, but I do hope to never come back to this experience again.