I am one in three.

I did not think I would be one in three. I did not expect to be one in three and my husband and I did not think we would choose to be one in three.

There are no women or families who make this choice lightly or without lots of forethought. It is a choice of deep contemplation and some prognostication.

What will it be like if…

The women that politicians especially try to target are those forced to try and seek second trimester abortions. Unfortunately, most of us who find out in the second trimester that our wanted pregnancies are doomed feel pretty desperate to begin with and then are further burdened by restrictive regulations. Nobody gets to their second trimester and then needs an abortion without something desperate happening!

I was 16 weeks pregnant when I ended my pregnancy. My daughter had genetic disorders and malformations in many of her bodily systems. I had life threatening conditions which meant I could have miscarried and died at any time even if I had tried to carry my pregnancy to term.

As it was, the termination ended up with me in the hospital with a hysterotomy abortion. Hysterotomy abortion despite its diminutive title as a mini-C-section is surgery which resulted in a multi-unit blood transfusion and almost an emergency hysterectomy. There was nothing easy about this choice. But, I will say the first thing I felt afterwards was relief. We, my husband, living daughter and I, (as a family) could not support a special needs, medically supervised child. I know it is a possibility that my unborn child may have suffered for a few minutes. I grieve for that thought. But, she did not suffer pain for decades. She was not institutionalized when I died.

I am very disturbed on the crusade of the religious and moral right to show every inch of fetal tissue in microscopic technicolor detail. Human life is important. I am fully willing to accept and defend each living human life that is born into this world. But, the truth is that a lot of good has come from fetal tissue research. Many hundreds of thousands of vaccines, treatments and medical advances have come with the accessibility of fetal and stem cell tissues. No woman goes into an abortion saying ‘Yes! I am advancing medical research.’ What is being said is: ‘I am in a place of grief, upheaval and horror, please let something good come of this difficult decision.’

No matter what anyone believes, the legal matter of abortion is not actually a matter of religion. The matter of abortion is who has the right to dictate what a woman can do with her body and how a family can determine who interferes with their decisions regarding their family.

If there was no abortion in NJ– There was a significant chance I would have died leaving my husband a widow and my child motherless.

As it was in my liberal state, I was abandoned by OB/GYN, and tossed around the system trying to find one of three physicians who openly stated that they were abortion providers. I was refused care by a state financed hospital due to improper OR setup and told by a state licensed doctor I could always try to have a “retarded child to put up in an institution and try again” assuming I did not need an emergency hysterectomy due to my condition.

When I did find someone to help me it took almost a month to secure approvals through my insurance and I had to go to an ATM the day before my procedure to pay over $1500 in fees in cash to the doctor to secure the date for my termination in a hospital.

I was in danger for my life for over 24 hours after the termination when blood transfusions and hysterectomy were bantered about too easily for my comfort level. I spent weeks out of work and months recovering.

I faced the picket lines and was treated like a commodity at an abortion clinic. I have had all the experiences and will tell you now. NO ONE deserves to be treated that way.

The decision to end a pregnancy is not casual and is never treated that way by the women or families involved. Honesty, it costs too much…financially, physically, emotionally and spiritually. But, it should not be a decision in the hands of the politicians or the religious (and moral right).