I was sure I couldn’t get pregnant on day seven of my menstrual cycle. You’d think a nursing student would know better. I’d been careful to protect against STDs, including making sure we both had two negative tests six months apart before we occasionally had sex without a condom. Foolishly, I was not as careful with my contraceptive method, and became pregnant whilst smack in the middle of nursing school. I was in no position to be responsible for a child. I wouldn’t even have been able to legally remain in the U.S. if not enrolled in full-time studies. I needed to complete my studies in order to get a job, and without a job I couldn’t support myself, let alone a child as well. My boyfriend and I went to Planned Parenthood and made the informed choice to terminate the pregnancy. Fortunately it was early enough that chemical abortion was an option; for me the experience was not in the least traumatic and I have never regretted it (though I have regretted using the rhythm method of contraception, and have learned my lesson!). As I write this, years later, I am 30 weeks pregnant and looking forward to having a child whom I can offer what I’ve always aimed for – stable residency status in my country of choice, a steady job that will be very accommodating when I need maternity leave, and a loving, supportive and committed partner who was my inspiration to become a mother. Without the abortion I am sure my current circumstances would be impossible and I would not be happily starting a family. Thank goodness I had the choice.
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