It’s only been four hours.

by Anonymous

July 6, 2020

Four hours since I laid on that table, unsure of what was to come. Entered the planned parenthood doors by myself, wondering if I was going to get stopped by protesters. Luckily, it was early in the morning, and they haven’t assumed their positions just yet.

A kind, older man opened the door, almost as if he was expecting my arrival. Maybe they tell him about incoming appointments – it’s a Friday, and they’re only open on fridays for appointments. I walked in to the front desk, a piece of glass separating the receptionist and I. Seemed a little metaphorical in a sense. I gave over the $500 I should have been saving for something else, but yet the money felt like it was going to the right place.

Checked in with the counselor.. are you being forced? No. Is this your decision? Yes.

Does your partner know you’re here? No.

My partner, of four years.. which we already have a child together, does not know I’m here. He thinks I had a miscarriage. Himself and his family are extremely pro-life, Catholic, and honestly, I’m surprised they’re not the ones standing outside those doors screaming obscenities at the women walking inside. Is this something I should have thought about before deciding to have unprotected sex? Yes. But who’s thinking about their partners/families political and moral views while you’re having sex? Not me.

I told him I went for an ultrasound and they found an empty sac. It only measured 5.5 weeks. He feels better knowing there was never really a “baby.” Little does he know.

I meet with a nurse who gives me an 800 mg ibuprofen and an antibiotic. The only thing I will be receiving as far as pain relief goes. This office doesn’t offer sedation. I wait for a minute, and another medical assistant walks in. It’s time to go.

I walk back to the room, which is a little darker than the others. It feels more closed in, not so welcoming. My mind is trying to send me signals of fear, but I’m pushing them aside. You’re here, you know this is what you need to do. Here we go.

The doctor walks in with a really nice demeanor, even cracks a joke and makes me laugh. She starts with a pelvic exam.. nothing new. I’ve had two kids and multiple Pap smears. Then comes the speculum. Ouch. Still nothing new, but still – ouch. Then comes the spray.. weird. Then come the pinches. Really ouch. I let out a few uggggghhhhhs, starting to get more uncomfortable. The lidocaine she just injected reaches my head immediately. I taste it. They said that would happen. My head feels hot and tingly, and I’m feeling like there’s no time to catch my breath.. she starts dilating my cervix. I’m yelling. I’m fanning myself. I’m trying to moan and breathe like I did in labor both times (naturally, may I add) the medical assistant holds my hand. “Just another minute, you’re almost done.” I hear the suctioning, almost like when you have a baby and they suck out all the gunk of their nose and mouth – a familiar sound. Except this time it was quite the opposite. Cramping, lots of cramping. Done. The doctor tells the assistant to get me some ice packs for my head. I feel relief when she pulls the speculum out. Thank god. It’s over.

I’m back in recovery, and I just don’t know what to feel. In fact, I don’t really feel anything. Just dizzy and crampy. 20 minutes later and I feel fine to leave. The nurse walks me out, tells me to feel better and take care, and the nice man at the front opens the door and says the same. The protesters are out there now… great. Luckily they were too busy yelling at someone else to pay attention to me.

I’m now home and resting. My other two kids are just being their normal, hyper, and crazy selves. I know I did the right thing for myself, for my children, and for my future. I’m sure I’ll go through my periods of feeling differently as my hormones fluctuate and go back to normal.

I know it was for the best. And I accept that.

Remember that our stories are ours to tell. We’d love to hear your story too!