I would like to share my abortion story with you. This will be the first time that I have shared my story online for everyone to see. I hope that it helps someone! I met my wonderful husband at age 14. I was a freshman in high school and met my future hubby in Army JROTC. We dated the entire time I was in high school. He was a couple of grades ahead of me and graduated while I was in high school. We loved each other very much. Right before my senior year was over, he joined the Army.

When I graduated I went away to college on an Army ROTC scholarship. Children were never part of my plan for life. After a year in college I decided the Army was not what I wanted to do with my life either. So, I married my now husband and moved to an Army military base with him. I wasn't in the Army myself but I was still surrounded by it! I always saw young couples having children and even began to think about it myself. At least while you're in the military, or the spouse of a service member, you get 100% free health care. This would be an opportune time to have children. But, we decided we didn't want children right then in our lives. We still swayed towards never wanting children actually.

At age 24... after five and a half years of marriage, I found myself pregnant for the first time. This pregnancy was totally unexpected and we thought that we weren't ready for children. I did not have health insurance and soon found that I could not purchase it from anywhere since all of the health insurance companies view pregnancy as a preexisting condition and deny you coverage. I applied for pregnancy Medicaid and was denied, being told that we made $39 more than we can in order to qualify for assistance. I went to Planned Parenthood to seek help. They handed me a pamphlet on abortion. There is one abortion clinic in this area since the local Planned Parenthood does not perform abortions.

I made an appointment with the abortionist and nervously walked into the building. Protesters stood outside telling me not to go through with this procedure that would cause me irreversible emotional and physical trauma. I ignored their messages. I went into an examining room to have a vaginal ultrasound performed. I was so early in my pregnancy that the placenta could not be found. They told me to come back in 1-2 weeks...when the placenta would be formed and they could see it in the uterus to ensure that I did not have an ectopic pregnancy. Every time I tried to discuss my concerns about abortion with the staff, they dismissed me. They never offered resources to me that I could investigate for assistance. They offered no emotional counseling.

I came back to the clinic two weeks later, again trying to avoid the protesters. At this time, the ultrasound showed that I was 5.3 weeks pregnant. Only at my persistent requests did the sonographer allow me to see my baby in my womb. She proceeded to tell me that the placenta was oblongated and that by being oblongated it was not a viable pregnancy. She told me that the prescription drugs that I was taking had most likely destroyed the baby and that abortion was the right choice. She told me about a time in our country when abortion was illegal and women still chose to end their pregnancies but at a higher risk due to lack of legal abortionists. She told me I was lucky that abortion is legal.

When the doctor came in to see me she stated "Well, I know this is what you want to do because you came back for a second time. So what do you want to do about birth control? I know you're only 24 and have no children, but I will tie your tubes if your insurance company will pay for it. Being that you ARE so young with no children, it's a controversial procedure, but I'm willing to do it for you." She performed a quick vaginal exam and assured me that at this stage in pregnancy I only had a clump of tissue the size of a sesame seed in me at best. She said "It has no organs. No heart, no brain or anything. It is literally just a tiny clump of pregnancy tissue. It can't feel pain because it has no brain. Trust me, it takes at most ten minutes to perform the procedure, and then you will feel great relief. "At my further questioning of pain, the sonographer who had completed my ultrasound brought a book into the room I was waiting in and pointed out a page that stated fetuses do not even have brain waves until 20 weeks, and then those brain waves aren't those of a "normal" human being.

I was taken to a pre-op area to take a dose of Ibuprofen and then taken to the operating room. An IV was started and my legs were put into the stirrups. The nurse put a mask over my nose and started administering laughing gas. The doctor came in. The nurse gave me a small amount of Fentanyl and Versed through my IV. I remember looking up at the ceiling at a poster with butterflies on it. My eyes began to cross and my eyelids became heavy. The doctor began the procedure. The pain was great while she was dilating my cervix, but when she started to vacuum out the contents of my uterus, I felt excruciating pain despite all of the drugs that I had been given by the nurse. After the doctor stopped she did one more ultrasound to make sure that all of the pregnancy tissue was gone. I started crying and the doctors and nurses immediately tried to make me quit crying. To make me "feel better" the abortionist showed me the pregnancy tissue that she had vacuumed out of me. It looked like little globs of clear jelly with some blood on it. She said, "See? It's not a baby yet. It's just globs of tissue. There are no arms or legs or anything like that. You are going to be just fine."

I was immediately ushered to the waiting room so that the next patient could be taken into the operating room. After one hour, I was told to go to the bathroom and change from my hospital gown back into my regular clothes. I left the clinic and went home feeling empty inside. Six days later I went to the ER with excruciating pain and a fever. The doctors and nurses at the hospital seemed disgusted that I had undergone an elective abortion. I was brushed away. I had my abortion on July 17, 2009. I have deep emotional guilt knowing that I murdered my unborn baby. I feel that God has called me to use my experience to help others and that is what I intend to do. I have asked for forgiveness and am now participating in spiritual adopting. If I could go back in time I would not have had my abortion.

I know that God and my baby are together in Heaven, and I know that they both forgive me. It is a struggle to forgive myself, and I promise that you are not alone in the decision you have made or may be contemplating. This experience has helped me to realize that every life no matter how small is precious and is a miracle that God created with His own hands in the mother's womb. I have grown stronger through this experience, and I know that you will too!