- Posted February 14, 2013 by
SAN ANTONIO, Texas
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Have you had an abortion?
My Choice was not "Informed"
I adored my two sons and loved being “mom”. But I did not even consider that if I aborted, I was taking the life of perhaps another son, or maybe a daughter. I had been busy with my career, and busy raising two boys, and had never taken time to learn about child development in the womb, so I was quite gullible when the abortion clinic worker assured me I was not carrying a baby, but a glob of tissue. If I “took care of it” early enough, it would be no different that removing a cyst. I learned from the test she performed that I was 8 weeks along. The abortion was scheduled.
The day my abortion was scheduled was a busy work day for me. I worked up until time for my appointment and read through work materials while I waited with a room full of other women. I barely listened to the “counselor” who rapidly went through consent forms we were to sign, and I did so without question. I just wanted to get the procedure over with and leave. But I did listen when another woman who was 6 months along asked, with tears streaming down her face, “are you sure my baby won’t feel any pain?” I was appalled that this woman had waited so long- had waited until the ‘mass’ became a baby. How could she kill her child? The “counselor” assured her “the ‘fetus’ feels no pain, and it’s not a baby”. I was not relieved, but still in shock that a woman could let her child die. I remembered being 6 months pregnant with my sons and knew they were breathing, and kicking, and hiccupping! I was haunted by what was about to happen in the same room where I would eliminate my “cyst”, yet felt no remorse for my own child. I did not remember meeting the doctor prior to my procedure, but I remember the pain. I left following my abortion hurting physically, but feeling relieved, empowered, and ready to put that bad experience behind me. In the year that followed I found myself defending my choice, becoming angry with those who opposed abortion and denying any connection between my abortion and the nightmares, the depression, the sense of worthlessness I was experiencing almost daily. I kept reminding myself of my career and the “better life” I could offer my two sons because of it. But I also found myself working more and more, and leaving my boys with daycare more than necessary. I still loved them dearly, but felt unworthy to be their mom.
When I learned I was pregnant yet again, I confided with a dear friend who told me I had no choice but to abort. “It can’t be wrong if it is legal”, she told me. So, once again, I made an appointment, but at a different clinic. I didn’t want to face the same “counselor”. I felt ashamed. When I approached the clinic, there were men and women outside carrying signs that said “Abortion kills children.” I was angry that they would say such a thing, and defiantly walked passed them. I mentioned the sign to my new “counselor”. She laughed and said, “Yeah, that’s what they think but the fetus is not a child, just tissue”.
Once again, the clinic was full of women. This time I listened to what others were saying, and was surprised that I was not the only one coming in for a second abortion. In fact, some had had even more. I was asking if anyone else had nightmares, when the “counselor came into the room for her presentation. I did get nods from others, meaning they too had had nightmares, but the conversation was nixed. The presentation was the same as before – assuring us the doctor would be removing a blob of tissue, nothing more; telling us it was more dangerous to carry a fetus full term, than to abort. “But what about the nightmares, what about the depression”, I asked. “We don’t have any record of that, but if you want to talk to someone, we can set you up with a counselor”. This time I was introduced to the doctor when he entered the procedure room. I remember he seemed to be in a hurry, and had no patience with his assistant. The pain again was intense, even worse than I had remembered before.
In the recovery room, also filled with women, I began hemorrhaging heavily, and passed out. I woke to the doctor standing over me yelling at the assistant about something I could not comprehend. It was obvious he was angry, and he walked away saying “give her some juice and a cracker and don’t bother me again”! I asked the assistant if I was ok, because I didn’t feel ok. She said, “Just stay here until you feel normal”. I lay there for 2 more hours before I felt I could drive home. I left a different person emotionally. Though I was feeling somewhat better physically, I felt like I had died on the inside. I cried all the way home, and into the night.
I felt so sad, and hated who I had become. I began to research the development of babies in the womb, and was horrified that I had not known the truth about my babies. I was angry that I had been lied to. The nightmares of being dismembered continued, and even worsened. I now made the connection with my abortions. Why was I not told that I was carrying a developing child? In addition to the growing depression, I was also experiencing tremendous lower back pain. My family doctor referred me to an ob/gyn for examination. A hysterectomy was recommended because of damage done to my uterus. I was only 35 years old.
Since that time, I have had opportunity for counseling, and I have made peace with God. I am thankful for my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who has forgiven me, healed me, and restored my life. But I will live with the regret of my two abortions until I die. I committed to God that I would spend the rest of my life speaking truth about the issue of abortion, so that other women would not suffer as I did. And that I do to this day.
I can’t help but praise God that abortion was not legal in 1972. You see, that is when I learned of an out of wedlock pregnancy my freshman year of college. I dropped out of college, married my son’s father, and gave birth to a son, who turned 40 years old on February 14, 2013.