A Personal Story

Submitted: August 17, 2000

Name: Jill

Weight: 135
Height: 5’ 4"
Age: 32
Pregnancy Test: Positive
Resolution: Clinical abortion

Did you experience any symptoms or signs of pregnancy? I knew before I took the test, long before that something was “different” but I couldn't say what, even now. I just knew. I really wanted to be in my heart of hearts.

Were you using birth control? Yes, spermicide and rhythm method with temp
Do you know how/why it failed? I wasn't really consistent and I am just very fertile, and on medication that has a side effect of increasing fertility.

What was the date of the first day of your last menstrual period? 6/14/00
Do you know the date of fertilizing intercourse? What was it? I believe it was close to the beginning of June, which is what the ultrasound indicated just before my abortion, almost 9 weeks. I did get a period which made me believe I wasn't as pregnant as I thought. Please tell your audience, and I believe you make this point many times, you have to know your cycle!
What was the date you were expecting menstruation? 7/12
How long do your cycles usually run? 28 or 29 days
Do you cycle regularly or irregularly? regularly

What was the date when the herbs were started? 7/15
For how many days were the herbs used (total)? 14 days

Please include a summary of dosage information. And any side effects noted.
I started the day after my test with Dong Quai (Nature’s Sunshine brand, a very powerful preparation) 1000 mg/every 4 hours day and night. No side effects with this.

After 3 days I started crystalline ascorbic acid 1000 mg every 2 hours, less at night 1000 mg every 4 hours. Some diarrhea with this, but not bad.

I got some Tansy and Pennyroyal herb from Frontier on the web and tried this after 5 days. First I tried both the herbs (not dong quai or Vit c at this point) using the following concoction: 3 tbsp Tansy/2 tbsp Pennyroyal per quart and I drank a cup every 4 hours. For some reason this made me feel anxious and just generally lousy. I tried just the Tansy next and it still made me feel very jumpy and sort of creepy-crawly under my skin. I stopped these after 24 hours because I just couldn't know you could get your period and still be pregnant. I really thought I was only about 2 ½ weeks when I took my test but it was more like a month, even 5 weeks. It really makes me realize how seriously I have to take my fertility and what a momentous and monumental responsibility we all are taking when we have sex, even if one is married. I am married and frankly ready to have a baby, but we are broke, do not own a house, and my husband really doesn't want a baby right now. I want it to be a joyous experience for both of us, not just something to “deal” with.

I also am on a drug for a benign tumor on my pituitary which ironically makes me very fertile, but they don’t know if it is safe for a pregnancy. They told me it was, but I definitely don’t want to risk the safety and health of my baby on an assumption. This is most of the reason I decided to terminate. It was a heartbreaking decision to make. I did have many conversations with the baby and I do believe that around the time I started to feel very nauseous and tired that the baby spirit had decided to go and understood why it is not the right time. I really didn't feel the presence of the baby after maybe week 6. I could definitely be wrong, but again, this is just my personal sense and my story.

I had made the appointment for the abortion for August 11 in case the herbs didn't work. I ended up unfortunately having to use it but the experience was only a fraction as bad as I thought it would be. I was more relieved than anything else and thank goodness the nausea went away pretty quickly, about 2 days afterwards. It is now almost exactly a week after and I am starting to get my energy back and definitely my appetite. I am bleeding lightly, like the 4th day of a period, although the bleeding didn't really start until yesterday (Aug 16). A little cramping on the 15th, but otherwise, it has really been okay. I am happy with my decision, and I know that when I do decide to have a baby it will be the right time and it will be healthy because I will be planning it. I know now that wishful thinking is very powerful. Be careful what you wish for.

Is there anything you would have done differently?
I would have given myself a few days to think about it. I started the herbs about 12 hours after I took the pregnancy test. I know now that it was the right decision for us and for the timing, but I probably wouldn't have terminated if I hadn't taken the herbs and if I had figured out how pregnant I really was. It was difficult to know that there was a little heart beating when I had the abortion and I only hope that my sense that the baby spirit was gone was true and that there was no fear and no pain for the baby.

However, I do urge all the readers in the USA to please vote for Gore, even if you don’t agree with a lot of the stuff he says. Our reproductive rights are in big danger if that idiot Bush gets elected.
And thank you thank you to Sister Zeus for this wonderful and empowering website. Whoever you are, you have provided a great service and respect to us out here who are afraid and feeling alone and like a bad person for making this decision. That has been the hardest part, is not judging myself.

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