There’s really no set time that things happen in life. You can’t prepare yourself for anything completely. No matter how much planning you do something can come along and change everything in the blink of an eye.The boy next door was excited about my pregnancy to a degree. He loved me. He was excited at the prospect of being a father for the first time. He was beautifully naive and I was jaded.

Once again he said all the right things. He would be there for me regardless, he loved me no matter what, he knew that this was difficult. I asked him not to go with me. I knew there wasn’t a chance in the world I could terminate a pregnancy while looking at his beautiful green eyes. In the hours before I went, I found myself sobbing into the arms of my 16 year old sister. She rocked me back and forth in a hug and let me cry until my eyes were nearly swollen shut.

Driving to the clinic was surreal. Nearly a movie experience. You know the type, you feel that knot in your stomach knowing that right now your life is in that moment in the movie where the main characters whole world falls apart.  I was there.

As I parked my car I watched a line of picketers sneer their Christian sneers at me and as I wondered how their faith could be so far from what I was taught. Walking through the doors flipped my stomach and I immediately felt the vomit rising in my throat. I should have brought someone with me. I can’t believe I am doing this on my own. A fat nurse with an I don’t give a shit about you expression took down my information, handed me a cup of pills and told me to go sit with the others.

The others? I thought? It dawned on me that I was not the only having this procedure done today. I sat down at the end of the row of chairs. There were 13 girls in the room. 13 babies. My stomach flipped again. I was going to be sick. I thought of Hailey and Faith. What was wrong with me, I was pro-choice… wasn’t I?

I felt like cattle. They moved us through an assembly line, no one spoke, no one looked anyone else in the eye. The doctors even seemed to hate themselves. The carpet was green. It smelled of formaldehyde, I was reminded of the day in Anatomy senior year when we dissected cats. I had to focus on something else. The vomit was coming. I waited. It passed.

I opened my eyes to a bright light, it must be my turn. Where am I? Lost in this place. A doctor’s voice. He’s telling me he’s almost done. The baby is almost gone. The tears sting my eyes. I cannot hold them back any longer. The light becomes brighter, I see the face of God… He’s holding my hand. He’s here with me, in this place, as I destroy something of His. I cry harder but the anxiety subsides. He knows my heart.

In just moments I had gone from a mother-to-be to broken. Mixed thoughts. Relief seemed to strangle me in a weird hold that I couldn’t justify experiencing. I had to wait for two hours in the lobby to make sure I didn’t hemorrhage and pass out. I wished I would.