Claudia's Story

I'm 16 years old and just finished the 10th grade.  I'm a 4.0 student, and yesterday, I had an abortion.  Of course I thought it would never happen to me.  I've been with my boyfriend, who is 18, for a year now off and on, and we've been through some shaky stuff.  One of the more impacting times was when he got a girl pregnant when we were on a "break".  We found out on Valentine's Day, and we had since gotten back together and things were fine, until we heard that news.  It devastated me to say the least.  She ended up having a miscarriage, to our "luck" if you could even say that.

Anyways, I lost my virginity to this boy, we used condoms when we had them but if not we just relied on the good ol "withdrawal" method.  Which had been working fine.  I thought I couldn't get pregnant, after all there were many times when by rights I should have but I never did.  But just in case, one day we decided to go to Planned Parenthood so I could get on the pill.  The doctor told me to start it with my next period.  So I waited, and waited....and waited.  My next period wasn't coming.  But I am always a week or so off schedule so I just waited.

One day I was up in front of my first period class reading something.  I started to feel a little nauseous, but I thought it would just go away in a couple minutes.  Then I felt even more sick, and rushed to the bathroom, where I started dry-heaving.  I got really hot, and broke out in a sweat.  I sat on the bathroom floor for a while, then got up and got a
drink of water and went to class.  Weird, I thought, but I was only a week late so no worries.

Until it was about two weeks later and the exact same thing happened to me again.  Only this time, I did throw up.  At that point, I started feeling sick everyday, and I "felt" pregnant, but I wouldn't admit it to myself, it was impossible.  I brought up the idea to my boyfriend and he told me to wait a couple days and if my period still didn't come we'd get checked.

A few days passed, my period didn't come, so we drove up to Planned Parenthood to get the results confirming what I already knew.  I was pregnant.  It marveled me, I'm a pretty tiny girl, and to think of what was inside of me seemed unreal.

I knew that I would have an abortion.  My boyfriend and I had already discussed it when we went through everything with that other girl and agreed that at our age there was no way we could support a new life.  I don't even have my license yet, I don't have a job.  My boyfriend has a minimum wage paying job.  We both knew that if I had this child our parents would end up raising it for the first 5 or 10 years of our life, and we wanted more for it than that.

I knew that to have an abortion was the most logical choice for me.  I'm a good student, I need to finish school and go to college.  Having a baby would make that even more difficult.  Yet knowing what I had to do I still struggled with it a bit spiritually.  Was it wrong what I was going to do?  I eventually came to peace about it after thinking for some long hours.  I decided that I believe that even if I didn't have the baby now, it's soul would be saved until I was strong enough and ready to have it and give it a good life.

So my boyfriend and I struggled with getting the coupons in time so it would be free, and finally after a lot of stress and heartache, we were at the abortion clinic.... waiting.  We got there at 11:15 in the morning.  First I had a pelvic exam and an ultrasound.  The most disturbing thing to me was when the doctor printed off the ultrasound sheets and I don't think I was supposed to look but I did and I saw a tiny white dot, which I'm assuming was my baby.  My abortion was performed at about 3:35.  It wasn't as painful as I expected, I didn't even get the shot to make me drowsy through it.  I was awake, but I felt no pain.  It was a short and simple procedure, my boyfriend sat next to me with his hands on his head.  I felt a tiny bit of cramping, and one of the nurses applied pressure to my abdomen that helped it a little.  I stared at the ceiling, and my eyes teared up a few times, but I didn't cry.  After that I sat in the recovery room for about 20 minutes, and when everything was fine, I got my medications and came home.

I had a little bit of cramping yesterday and felt a bit sore this morning but overall I feel fine.  I haven't had too much bleeding either.  Overall, I know I made the right decision for where I am in my life, but I still think about what could have been.  But I know in the future, most likely when I'm married, I'll meet the little him or her that I wonder about.  My boyfriend has also been so supportive through all this and I couldn't have made it without him.  Whether it was driving me to all my appointments, or running to get me ice cream, or sitting with me helping me eat tiny bites of food when I felt like anything I consumed I would throw up, he did anything and everything for me, and I am so thankful for that.  This has brought us a lot closer, it's not something I'd hope to happen to anyone, but it has made us both stronger people.  So far I feel no regrets, I don't think I will either, and I am definitely glad I had the right to choose.

July 2004

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