This afternoon, I had an abortion. I
guess I'm one of those women who did it for selfish reasons. When I read other
stories here afterward, I noticed mine was different.
I'm 32 years old,
with an 8 and 10 year old. When I had my first child, I got married, and decided
to stay home, trying to be the kind of mother my mother was. I gave up everything
to do this. I mean all the dreams I had about what I wanted to do with my life.
I was so in denial about that first pregnancy that I didn't see a doctor until
I began my second trimester. I think I was more afraid of abortion than birth
at age 21.
I have done my best raising my two kids; stayed home all the
while (the first 5 years with painfully little money and a lot of help from family),
joined the PTA, taxied them to activities, baked cookies, etc. I have enjoyed
it, but I won't deny the personal sacrifice has been great. I feel a loss for
the person I thought I'd become when I was younger and dreamt of what I wanted
my life to be about.
When I found out I was pregnant a few days ago, I
felt much like I did when I took that first pregnancy test 10 years ago -- scared
and filled with dread. This year I'd begun working part time when the kids were
in school and I love it. This is the first time since my first child was born
that I felt like even a piece of my life was about what I wanted to do, what I
I knew right away I didn't want another baby. I'd looked so forward
to being in my early 40's and being young enough to enjoy a life without kids
at home. My husband felt the same way. I did not want to go back to caring for
another infant all over again. Emotionally, I didn't feel I had it in me. I feel
like I've emptied myself on the two I have, giving it all I have.
my abortion today at a clinic. I was terrified, but the procedure was relatively
easy and I'm having just mild cramps and light bleeding now. The worst part was
when the woman in the room next to mine screamed during her abortion; I still
don't know what kept me from bolting from the door when I heard her. I found out
later that she'd asked one of the women working in the clinic to check on me and
let me know she hoped she didn't scare me (she did!).
I think the abortion
was a lot like labor, but over in a few minutes, not hours. When it was done,
I felt relieved. I feel odd, because my family and friends would not understand
this decision, I know, and so I only have my husband to talk to.
I had the
abortion for me. I have a supportive husband and the financial resources to have
more children, but not the emotional commitment that I know I'd need. My heart
isn't in it. I feel awful saying that, but it's the truth.
After it was
over, I felt relieved. I also felt so thankful to the women who fought so that
abortion would be safe and legal.Lisa
more stories -- share your story
a choice is both a wonderful thing and an inalienable right."
Sanger, President of Planned Parenthood of New York City (New York Post, 10/9/99)