45 years ago, I was 16, pregnant, and scared.  I was scared to tell my mom. I was scared to tell my boyfriend. I was scared that my future had been altered forever. I was scared that I would never attend college and become a teacher, my lifelong dream.

I’ll never forget how I asked my mom to my bedroom for privacy and handed her the positive pregnancy test.  She looked it and said, “Well, congratulations.  What do you want to do?”  I told her I wanted an abortion.  She made the arrangements, took me for the procedure, and never spoke of it again.  I don’t know to this day if my father ever knew about it.  My boyfriend offered to marry me, but I knew he wasn’t the “one,” and he supported my decision.

Because abortion was accessible to me, I was later able to become a teacher, marry, have children, and live a fruitful life.  Abortion is now banned in my state, so other 16-year-old girls who find themselves in my position no longer have a choice.  My daughters and my granddaughters no longer have the protections that I had.  The Supreme Court and my state have taken away their choice, their control over their own bodies, and their right to make a very personal decision that should be made between a woman, her family, and her doctor.

I do not regret the decision I made 45 years ago.  I do regret that other women no longer have the option.