I wished to return to college in the upcomming fall. My boyfriend is a UK citizen; we had just finished traveling Central & South America. I had money, the social support, a loving partner and was fully capable of having a child. I made the decision to have an abortion because I did want to be a mother yet.
My experience at Planned Parenthood was better than expected. I chose to have a surgical abortion because I wanted the procedure to be completed that day, as I had to return to work the following day.
My experience went better than I thought it would.
The procedure went as follows:
There were about a dozen protesters, with signs outside Planned Parenthood in Fort Collins, Colorado.
1. A lot of paper work and a seat in the waiting room
2. An evaluation involving my sexually activity, all around safety, social support, blood type, (I received a RhoGAM shot because I have a negative blood type). I was also asked about my certainty for the procedure.
3. More waiting
4. A sonogram in which I was asked if I wanted to know the possible sex of the child or if twins were present. I preferred to not know
5. Payment ($450 USD) & more waiting time
6. Entrance into a room in which I was administered 1 Valium, 1 Xanax, 2 Percocets, and a strong antibiotic. I waited approx. 45 mins for the effects to kick in.
7. The procedure was performed by 2 women. It was uncomfortable but not painful. It lasted less than 3 minutes. I thanked the women for changing my life.
8. I then returned to the previous room. My pain was evaluated. Some women experienced intense cramps. I rated my own pain at 0.
9. I was given a prescription for pain medication to be taken as needed. I left with my boyfriend and he drove us home. (You cannot drive after the hefty cocktail of medication administered.)
The entire process took approx. 4.5 hours.
The feelings of nausea and anxiety I felt pre-abortion IMMEDIATELY dissipated. I actually even played frisbee with my boyfriend & our dog afterward. I was 9 weeks pregnant.
I did not bleed at ALL until 48 hours after the procedure. I then bled A LOT and had intense cramps for 3 days. I did not get my period again until 3 months later.
I have 2 concerns looking back on this experience.
1. I wish proper nutrition for post abortion was emphasized.
2. I wish I would have spoken to my boyfriend more about my decision. I told him what I was going to do, and made an appointment. I did not consider his feelings, opinions, or ask him any questions at all. I neglected how the entire experience also made him feel. He was emotionally distant after the abortion and it took me a while to figure out why. We are still together and hope to grow a family one day.
I believe that my experience went better than expected. I think this is because of my own thoughts around abortion. I was calm, sure of my decision and given love and support.
I had a revelation in the waiting room:
I am safe. I have access to this procedure in close vicinity to my home. I am educated about this experience. I was not raped. I am not here alone. I have the money for this procedure. I am a strong woman, surrounded by strong women.