One thing has been bugging me, and I hesitate to even say it. From tweeting with Angie on her abortion, I freaking adore her. Seriously, would love to buy her a big bag of cookies and go hang out together all day.
But some of the people defending her, while still on my side too, sticks out. And i don’t mean this as any kind of attack or insult, though I’m afraid that is what some people might see. So if I explain this badly and offend you, I’m sorry.
Angie has a health concern, carrying a child to full term would kill her. She was using birth control, but it failed. I’ve seen a lot of comments about how she was “doing everything right” and has the perfect reason to abort.
And yeah, she does. But does that mean I don’t? I’m not sick. Well, sick and tired of being pregnant since my youngest is still under a year. No health concerns, no pressing issues. I just don’t want to be pregnant. And I think that’s a good enough reason.
But not everyone agrees. Or at least they toss out the personal disclaimers about abortion only if this and only if that, and not using it for birth control, and all these exemptions that make it ok to have an abortion. And I’m not any of them.
I just don’t want to be pregnant again.
Thank goodness Angie has taken a huge step to demystifying the process. There’s no reason for women to hide in the shadows and whisper abortion like it’s a freaking scarlet letter of shame. But I want to take it a step further. We shouldn’t have to justify abortion based on your, his, her, or their idea of “doing everything right.”
I’ll share my experience with you. But I don’t need your approval, I don’t need to justify it, I don’t need to list the reasons it is acceptable. I just want an abortion. That should be good enough.
Ask me anything http://formspring.me/nextthursday
At the abortion clinic I was given more information on the risks of childbirth, including what those risks are and what the chances for each risk, than I was given by professionals during any of my pregnancies.
Everyone told me that an abortion would be like an intense period, lots of blood and cramps. So far only the blood part has been right.
Wow. Who knew there could be so much blood for only an estimated 6 weeks? I think I bled less after childbirth!
The cramps have been nonexistent. I had a few light cramps last night, about an hour after inserting the Cytotec (Mistoprostol). They gave me a bottle of Naproxen for the pain, but other than the one I took yesterday I haven’t really needed them. Maybe it’s because I’ve had 3 kids, maybe it’s because my periods are naturally intense, or maybe the big stuff just hasn’t hit yet. I don’t know.
I do know that one pad is not enough. I should have bought some of those giant ones they give you at the hospital after birth.
I got to the clinic about 30 minutes early because I was not quite sure what I would be greeted with. Thankfully there were no protesters, however an empty lot across the street had several signs stuck in the ground, a giant cross, and a couple empty lawn chairs.
The escort was the cutest little old lady. She stamped everyone that came in with a hot pink star on our hands. I wanted to hug her and bake her cookies.
Inside the place was empty, but it filled quickly. The place closest to me is sort of a multi-purpose clinic. Some were picking up birth control, others getting tests done. There was a group of about 10 of us getting abortions. Most were younger than me, though a couple were older. Most had at least 1 kid already. They were there with boyfriends, husbands, mothers, sisters, aunts, and friends.
One young girl came in with her mother, but when she had to leave the girl’s father came in to take the hand holding place. I thought it was sweet.
The waiting was the worst. I’m not sure if there is a state law on how long the procedure must take, but it seemed so slow compared to visiting a regular doctor. We were called back, one at a time, and had one thing done, then sent back to wait for another 30 minutes. It seems they could get medical history while drawing blood and checking my blood pressure.
Because I was originally thought to be borderline I was prepped for a surgical abortion. Luckily, the ultrasound showed that I was much early than I guessed I was. Which changes the night I thought I got pregnant. Huh.
Five of us were finally called back in a group. A flustered, yet friendly nurse gave each of us bags with pain pills and anti-biotics, as well as info sheets and a pair of rubber gloves. Because I’m prone to nausea, and have been having a lot so far, I got a painful shot in the arm that made my arm hurt all day.
The doctor came in, read us the standard rules, and handed each of us a cup with a small pill and a cup of water. One by one we took the pills, thanked him, and were sent out to the lobby.
I’ve been asleep since then, a side effect of the nausea shot. Even when I fight to stay awake I’m barely here and functioning.
Now I’ve taken one anti-biotic, and am about to go take my pain pill. Then in 30 minutes I have to insert 4 pills vaginally and lay flat on my back for 20 minutes to let them absorb in.
Then it’s go time. Yee-haw!
I was stupid and got into an argument with a troll on twitter over abortion. My mother did not want to have a child, yet abortion was not an option for her at the time. It was a punishment that she and I both lived with.
I made the statement that while I am happy to be alive today, I do wish she had been given the choice. Yes, even if it meant I would not be alive today. That idea flipped out one particular troll who deemed that this must mean that A) I am suicidal, and B) I should not have children of my own.
This seems bizarre to me. Why must if I accept the past should be different, can I not be happy in the present as it stands?
If my mother had been violently raped to become pregnant, which thankfully she wasn’t, should I be pro-rape? Should I not wish she had not been raped? Is it somehow a manifest of wanting to die to see her, not as my mother, but as another woman deserving of freedom and life?
What if my birth had been a manifest of some great, bloody genocide? Would people think I am strange for wishing the horrors had never happened, even though that would mean my life would not have happened?
So why then, am I odd for wishing every woman, including my mother, has access to choice and reproductive freedom? Yes, if she had been given a chance she probably would have not had me. And I am OK with that. Just as I would be OK with going back in time and stopping a rapist, or going back in time and preventing a genocide. Going back and giving the many women forced into pregnancy a choice about their bodies is fine with me.
Not because I want to die, or I am somehow unhappy, or I hate children. But because I see her as a fellow woman, a fellow human being, a fellow person.
Yes, the past affects the present. That does not mean we should ignore the atrocities of the past because today looks good. That only leads to ignoring the pain of today because things may be better in 10 years. Things are better today because between then and now many women fought tooth and nail to make things better. Sadly, my mother did not get to benefit from those gains.
Thankfully I will.