Speaker's Age: 29
Story Told In: 2012
Hands

I knew something was wrong, even though the condom never broke. I was NEVER late, but that warm June in New York City, I was. Weeks went by and, after two over-the-counter pregnancy tests showed "not pregnant" on the little window, I went to the gynecologist. They drew my blood and three days later the doctor called to tell me the results were negative. I was not pregnant. I was SO relieved, but still had this nagging feeling that something was wrong. I had now missed two periods.

Wondering if i was sick, I went to my primary care doc who sent me for an ultrasound to look for ovarian cysts. I was alone at the hospital, lying on the table, when the ultrasound tech said "You're pregnant." I said "No I'm not. The tests were negative." She turned the monitor toward me and I saw the little gray ball. She said "There's the fetus." My hands and feet turned to ice instantly and, as I stumbled out the front doors of the hospital, my tears began to fall.

I knew right away I wasn't ready to be a mother. My boyfriend patiently waited for me to verbalize what I wanted before telling me he didn't want to have it either. It broke my heart and, I think, part of my spirit that nobody wanted this potential baby, but I knew I couldn't have it. I just wasn't anywhere near ready to be the kind of mother I wanted to be.

The procedure itself was the best I could hope for. They gave me Twilight so I don't remember any of it, and the nurses and doctors were very nice. I was so relieved when I woke up in the recovery room and felt the familiar sensation of warm fluid running out of me. It felt so right to be bleeding again.

In the months that came, I had a lot of depression and anxiety and so, so much guilt about what I'd done. Sometimes it still haunts me. It was an awful decision to have to make. I truly felt like there wasn't a good or even OK option. But, I knew it was the one I had to make and, in the same situation, at that time, I would make it again.

I think it changed me forever. I grew up really, really fast after that, losing what was left of my innocent worldview. But, I knew it was the right choice.