The most bittersweet moment of my life

Note: The Exhale Pro-Voice After-Abortion Stories Hub includes people’s stories of their experiences and emotions, exactly as they have written them in. We do not edit these stories at all, and the content that follows this message is exactly as we received it. We know that people’s experiences are complex, and these stories reflect the many emotions they may be feeling after their abortions. From relief to grief, and everything in between, and all at the same time, we’re here for you.

Submitted by: Jodian

It was my first year of university. I ended up meeting my now-ex boyfriend at the beginning of the semester. We knew each other from high school and decided to rekindle the feelings we had for each other.

Fast forward to March 2019, we were celebrating the ending of our courses just before exams. My period was consistent as I was following the rhythm method and having sex on “safe days”. Unfortunately, the period app didn’t update, so it just said my period was coming soon. I thought I was safe. After two weeks, I started having a terrible flu and I felt nauseous. My breast got insanely tender, I couldn’t even touch them. I went to the doctor as he asked me when was my period due and I said it was due this week. We both left it there as he treated my symptoms. As time progressed, I started vomiting more frequently. It got almost unbearable but pregnancy was the last thing on my mind. My ex was concerned, but I told him it was the side effects from the medication. Going through my final exams were rough, and that’s when I started eating more than ever. My hunger became unbearable!

As the semester ended, I was getting ready to leave the apartment for home, and I spent the last couple of days with my boyfriend. When I got home that’s when reality kicked in – where is my period? I started working the following week and noticed the weight gain and heavy breast. On the Thursday afternoon I bought a pregnancy test. I didn’t sleep that night. By 3 am, I woke up and I took it. POSITIVE. My heart sank, my tears started to flow. No, not now. I’m not ready. I immediately rubbed my tummy and apologizes softly because I knew I wasn’t able to keep him/her and I made my decision.

I texted my boyfriend. He was speechless. His words were “I love you and I will support whatever decision you make”. We spoke for about an hour to weight the consequences as we were both going to school. I knew that having a child is a huge responsibility and even though he wanted to keep it, I said no. I rubbed my tummy all day at work. I fell in love.

I went to a gynacologist in my area and told her about my situation but she didn’t do abortions and recommended elsewhere (it’s illegal in my country). After finding the doctor, I remember sitting and evaluating my decision as my boyfriend called to check up (he was doing summer semesters). I went into his office and as he closed the door and sat down, my tears began to flow again. He knew what was up and comforted me. I told him the nature of my appointment and he said ok.

He told me I was 9 weeks pregnant. 9 weeks! I uttered in complete disbelief. He asked me why didn’t I come sooner but I was still baffled by how far I was. He examined me and said “yes that is a 9 week uterus…similar to an orange”. My tears flowed harder. He said to me “We will do a medical abortion. I am going to give you two medications now but you have to take them in front of me”. I caressed my belly once more and I hesitantly took the pills. I knew it was mifepristone. I was doing my research beforehand. He said I should return two days afters (Sunday) for the others. My pregnancy symptoms started to go away and I much felt better especially in breast (I noticed I was producing milk).

When I got home I felt a sink in my stomach. I knew I wasn’t carrying life anymore. I knew then and there that he was gone. I didn’t feel pregnant anymore or have cravings, only a weight in my stomach. My heart was broken as I rubbed my stomach in regret.

After the two days, I went for the second dose of the misoprostol that he inserted. I rushed home immediately and changed Into something comfortable as I had the heating pad and pain killers he gave me. I vomited my dinner as I felt tired.

After one hour, I had regular period cramps then I fell asleep. Four hours later, I woke up to the MOST EXCRUCIATING pain in my life. Then it stopped and came back again. That’s when I realize I was having contractions. I started to time them. They moved from 10 mins apart then gradually to 2 mins. The pain was getting much worse, I was grabbing the sheets in agony as tears flowed. If this is labour then I wasn’t ready at all.

I felt a rush of fluid from my vagina. My water broke! I rushed to the to bathroom as most of the fluid flowed into the sanitary pad I was wearing. When I got to the toilet it was just more clear fluid. After 2 mins, large clots started to come out with every contraction. I flushed immediately because I thought my baby was in there. After deep breaths, I patiently waited for the clots to pass, but one particular was still hanging inside me. I took the liberty to open my legs to assist it but I was wrong. It wasn’t a blood clot, It was my beautiful well-formed baby! I immediately wrapped some tissue and pulled him out.

My tears flooded my face as I stared in awe and regret. He had my nose and my lips. I could even see his tiny fingernails! When I looked between the legs, I knew it was a boy. I caught him in a sleeping position with his hands and legs arched. Liam, I will name you Liam. I never felt a love so pure. It’s like falling in love all over again. I started apologizing profusely to him, this was the hardest decision in my life! I won’t be able to see his first walk or hear his first words or cry. At 9 weeks a perfect human is formed. I placed him in a small box to bury him in.

My flow was like a very heavy period but It was bearable. My discharge progressed for three weeks with heavy clots in the first week. Everything was back to normal, but I was never the same. Not a day has passed when I don’t think of him or imagine him in my life but I knew I couldn’t take care of him how I wanted to. But now everything I do, I do it for him. I have prayed to God to send him back to me.

Even though his dad and I broke up, I find it as a relief that he doesn’t have to go through the stress of having separated parents. I was so focused on what people would say and how disappointed my mom would be but none of that mattered in the moment. I still cry for him as if it was yesterday but I know God is keeping him until I’m ready.

What was heart wrenching was that I found out my best friend and 6 other friends were pregnant around the same time, just couple months apart. Even though they were my friends, I couldn’t stomach to tell them my decision and just faked happy smiles in the pictures or when they called. I was missing my baby. One of them even took my baby’s name out of coincidence – Liam. Their situations are different, they are working, most aren’t going to school. I couldn’t jeopardize my scholarship. But I’m still happy for them.

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