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When I was 20 years old, I found out that I was 4 weeks pregnant. I was shocked and surprised, as for some reason I never believed I could get pregnant. The father wanted me to have the baby and he asked me to marry him. He even bought an engagement ring and wedding bands for both of us. I turned him down and told him about how fearful I was of having a baby at that time in my life. He was trying too see the positive aspects of me having the child and since he was 8 years older than I, he was in a much better position to become a parent, except for the fact that we weren't married. There were times when he would lay his head on my stomach and talk to the baby as he cried. One time as he did this he said, "I'm fighting for your life, I'm trying my best to save you."
At 5 1/2 weeks along, I had an ultrasound and saw my child's heart beating. I was touched by it but at the same time I was frightened by the reminder that the whole situation was really real. I was so afraid of having a baby this young and all I could think about was how fat I would get and how it would ruin my life. It was all about ME ME ME and how I felt.
Soon I was 10 weeks along and was having a hard time on the decision as to whether or not to have the abortion. I was on an emotional roller coaster, to say the least. One relative bought me maternity clothes...other relatives told me that having an abortion was best and all their negative comments about me having the child reinforced my fears. I made an appointment with another OB/GYN to discuss the possibility of abortion. On the day of the appointment, I heard my baby's heart beat and the doctor told me that I was a little over 10 weeks along. She said that if I was going to abort, I should do it within a couple of days because the baby was pretty much formed, (including the major organs) and that it just needed to get bigger.
On the rainy, gloomy day of January 16, 1996, a relative drove me to a clinic for an abortion. In the car on the way there, part of me was hoping that we would get in a wreck because of the weather and that I would miss the appointment as a result. We arrived at the clinic and I cried hysterically as my relative went to the counter to check me in. During this time I noticed a big bellied pregnant woman announcing to someone that she was having twins and talking about how excited she was. This made me cry even harder. My relative came over to me and said, "What's wrong? I know it isn't easy but this is the most caring and responsible decision you can make." She previously had 2 abortions and told me it was "best" for her and the child. To me, for someone to think that killing a child is a "best" and "caring" action is sick.
Soon I was lead into a pre-surgery room and was asked to remove my clothing and put on a gown. As the nurses wheeled me down the hall towards the surgery room, I remember thinking, "My baby's heart is beating at this very moment and in a few minutes it will stop." Part of me wanted to jump up onto my feet and scream, stating that I wasn't going to let them kill my child. Yet another part of me thought illogically, "Everything is already paid for, so I can't back out now. My relative probably won't be able to get a refund and she will be angry at me after all this trouble." As I was wheeled into the surgery room, I remember soft cheerful music playing...by the sound of it, one would never guess that an innocent child was about to be murdered in that very room. The nurses quickly put my legs up in stirrups and they asked me if I wanted to be awake or asleep during the procedure. As I looked around the room, I noticed a table with many unfamiliar items on it, but one thing I did recognize was a long coiled see through tube, which I knew my dismembered child would be sucked through. I panicked as I said, "I don't want to see anything. Put me out." The next thing I knew I was in the recovery room. My first feeling was a sense of relief but then a feeling of darkness replaced it when I was hit by the reality that my child was gone forever.
I'm 26 years old now and my child would have been 5 1/2 years old. Every time I see a child of this age, it kills me inside. I can't help but wonder what my child would have been like or looked like. Nobody will ever know how my child could have touched their lives, nor will we ever get to see how my child would have contributed to this world. I will never be able to look into my child's eyes; my child will never be able to call me "mom." My child will never be able to play like living kids can. My child wasn't given the chance. The only proof of my child that I have is the ultrasound picture and the memory of being pregnant, rather than his/her existence here on this earth. I still have the maternity clothes and every time I see them, sadness fills me because I never needed to wear them. All I can do is pray that I'll meet my child one day in heaven. I will beg and plead for others not to abort their children.
I hope that this letter will help save your unborn child. Thanks for taking the time to read this and please...don't let your unborn child be just a memory. To my child: I love you very much and you will be a part of my life forever.
-- Lisa (Lisaalmonds @ aol.com) author's name used with her permission