I bought the test and it ended up being positive. I wasn’t the most “regular” but somehow, that month I had known. When my boyfriend came home I showed him the test, while sitting on our bed. It was funny actually; his reactions mirrored the ones I’d had a couple hours before. He smiled, laughed, and hugged me. Then his face lost colour, and he started to look sad. We agreed we weren’t ready for what was coming and we made a doctor’s appointment. On the day of the procedure my friend, Katie, drove me to the clinic. My boyfriend had a final that day, and I was determined to pretend it was just a regular day. In our separate room in the clinic we had a TV. I remember laughing because whatever station they had put on kept playing episodes of House Hunters, Pregnant in Heels, and The Nanny. It was dark, depressing and probably inappropriate (although unintentionally) but somehow it created a community; a group where we could all start telling our stories.
I was the second last to go in, the girl before me gave a “thumbs up” as she was walked to the recovery room (we had decided earlier this would be our ‘sign’ about if it was bearable). Katie was in room with me. She held my hand, we talked about who knows what, and she made me laugh, while the doctors did their thing. To this day she is my only friend who knows about any of it. After giving my thumbs up to the last remaining girl I headed to the recovery room, only to be told that they needed to do it again…. “The doctor was looking, and couldn’t find everything”. I didn’t have Katie in the room that time, or during the recovery after.
It’s been a year now, almost. My best friend is having twins in January, and another friend is due in 3 weeks. Sometimes I think “if things had been different…(insert thing)… would be happening”. Last July 8th I told my boyfriend that “if our choice had been different I probably would be in labour now”. Other than that though, I don’t feel much. Should I feel more? Some people that have abortions regret it for years, some feel relief. I felt sore for a few weeks, then shame for not being more affected. Am I messed up? Heartless? Or is this just how some people feel? Initially I didn’t tell my friend (the one having twins) because she and her husband were struggling to get pregnant. How could I tell her I was able to have a child but wasn’t going to keep it when that was all she wanted in the world? Now though, I don’t tell her for other reasons. How could she (or anyone) understand my numbness; my complete indifference towards it all?
In the end though what matters I guess is choice. I made the choice and I live with the choice. My boyfriend’s opinion mattered a lot to me. This child was his, as much as it was mine. * In the end we move on, we keep living, and maybe it moves to the back of our minds but it’s never gone completely….
*A complete side note, but I think resources for men who are affected by abortion need to be increased. Although it’s fair to say that women are the ones who carry and birth the child (maybe implying they are more attached) this is definitely an issue that affects men and needs closer inspection. Because men are told they should be “strong”, “unemotional” or to just “accept” abortion we don’t often think of them needing support, when in reality they probably need supports just as much as women, yet they are harder to find.