KJ’s Story

I was a senior in college when I found out I was pregnant. I was living with my fiancé in a small one-bedroom apartment and working two part-time jobs to barely cover my tuition. I was careful. I was on birth control. I was also 23 weeks pregnant.

I had no clue I was pregnant until I went to see my gynecologist. My weight never changed, and my periods had always been irregular, so when I spotted I believed I was having my period. I had no reason to suspect that I was pregnant, had never “felt” anything, had never suffered through morning sickness or tender breasts.

My gynecologist confirmed that I was pregnant, very pregnant. A few weeks too pregnant for an abortion, at least in my state. I was led to a room to discuss my options, and asked that my fiancé meet me there. I saw his face crumple when he was told that I was pregnant. We weren’t ready for this. We were having enough trouble taking care of ourselves.

We decided, with the help of the counselor, to travel to Georgia for an abortion. We borrowed money from my parents (the procedure was $3,000) and drove the 18 hours to Georgia. I can still remember driving, fueled by fear and energy drinks, in order to get to Georgia the next day.

Late term abortion is a two-day procedure. The first day they confirmed my pregnancy, took blood and medical history, and made sure that I was not being forced into this decision by anyone. They perform D & E abortions in batches. There were six girls in my group. I suppose the groups are meant to make you feel less alone, less scared. In my group, five of the girls were in high school. They were there with cousins, mothers, and fathers. The men who had gotten them pregnant were nowhere to be seen. I have never felt so lucky to have my fiancé.

At the end of the first day, the osmotic dilators were placed in my cervix and I was given some pain medication. Afterward, my fiancé made sure I got to the hotel room and I passed out on the bed. In the morning, I was in so much pain I could not stand upright. We drove to the clinic, only to be accosted by a pro-life reverend and several of his followers. While holding posters of aborted fetuses, he told me that, among other things, I was going to Hell for getting an abortion and that my fiancé would leave me.

When I finally entered the building, I checked in and was led down the hall to the pre-op room. There I changed and was given an IV. I waited with the girls in my group, and was the last one called. We were all in pain, all trying not to move. We were called in, one by one. I went last. I was unconscious for the abortion, and woke up in the recovery room.

I do not regret my abortion. It was the right decision for me. It was the right decision for my (now) husband. Others may condemn me if they wish, but no one has a right to decide my reproductive choices. I am so grateful that I was able to have a safe, legal abortion. I am grateful for the people in Georgia who were so kind and understanding. And I am forever grateful that I have a loving, supportive husband who helped me through it.