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I arrived to San Diego today! My PCT journey was beginning!!! I wanted to experience a powerful journey in Goda’s movie.
I took a taxi to the Adventure Hostel and got settled in. It was a really lovely place. Everyone around there was riding scooters.
So, it appeared that I got pregnant. I found out a couple of weeks prior to flying out here. I had let my father know that I was two weeks late on my period and that I was feeling really nauseous. It was as though I kept finding ways to justify why I missed my cycle. I didn’t want to admit pregnancy could be a possibility.
Around that time, my friend Brad joined me at Walgreens while I bought a test and some medicine for nausea. We joked about the cashiers thinking that Brad was the cause of it. Then, we bought some munchkins from Dunkin’ Donuts and headed to the forest preserve where I used to practice yoga.
He told me to just take the test and get it over with so I ran by the river and began to pee on the stick. A couple of hikers walked by during that moment. I experienced a deep sense of embarrassment, simultaneously laughter for that apparently occurring.
So, we waited in the car until Brendan’s song ended and I looked at the test. It showed two lines, one faint and I tried justifying that it couldn’t be true since one line was faint… and then it hit me.
All of our sweet, light jokes seemed to dissipate and then my fears became revealed. I began to bawl my eyes out and Brendan held me in his arms. He kept telling me it was okay and that there were always options. It was really helpful having someone besides me. He drove me back and then sent a message telling me to face it headstrong and that I got this.
I felt anxious, however. I asked my boyfriend Fox to come over and we went to my room. I told him and he was very calm for whatever was going to “happen”. He was really supportive when I told him how scared I felt. I let him I didn’t want to keep it. I knew it was clear as day. I took another test in the morning and this time, it was a HARD line.
I drove to my family doctor with Fox to get tested there and I began to dry heave in the bathroom. When he confirmed, I asked about getting an abortion and he said they didn’t do that there since they were a Catholic Hospital. He suggested I go to Planned Parenthood, instead.
It was beautiful to watch him set his boundaries, but with gentleness and no judgement of what I felt called to do. It was also interesting to see how my symptoms appeared to intensify five times as much after the pregnancy was confirmed.
Once I found that out, I wanted to be anywhere but home. I barely came home for about a week and a half. I couldn’t call Planned Parenthood because they were closed on the weekend. When we arrived to a center in Orland, they told us they didn’t do abortions there, so I called a different place and they told me the next immediate and closest appointment would be in five days. I began bawling over the phone. I was scared and livid at the idea of having to experience the symptoms for another five days.
I couldn’t find it in me to get up and do stuff. I noticed my sense of smell heightened dramatically. Everything I smelled was making me nauseous. I could smell the slightest of things. So many things smelled like perfume and laundry detergent!
I felt called to reach out to Hope because I knew she would help remind me to view the situation totally differently. Here are some things she said that we’re beyond helpful.
-It helps to keep in mind that there is only one problem and one solution. There is no pregnancy. The only decision you can make is whether to be aware of yourself as separate in the world or to be aware of you as you truly are. The gift in the occurrence of pregnancy is that it helps you get the feeling effect of believing that you have a worldly choice. Nausea is the effect of feeling guilty. Don’t attribute it to the pregnancy or anything physical to learn what thoughts you are holding against yourself. Use the sense of nausea as a catalyst for seeing more clearly. All pain is guilt projected no matter the apparent cause. If you find pain, remind yourself of what it is demonstrating and that you can have peace instead.
It was really cool, too, because Fox and I quickly saw how this was so CLEARLY a movie. Everything seemed to be going so smoothly/perfectly and then, PLOT TWIST, Goda gets pregnant right before she has to leave for the PCT! What ever will she do??
It would be this pattern where I would cough and dry heave and I would just begin to silently cry. It felt much different than following victimizing thoughts. I simply let myself get comfortable with the uncomfortable. I didn’t feel like complaining or projecting, I simply wanted to feel.
It was really helpful because Fox wanted to support me through this by feeling what I was feeling as much as possible. He would be by the toilet with me. He would only eat when I ate and would eat the same amount as me. It was actually pretty sweet.
My dad also handled the situation very calmly and with ease. He was communicating to me as a friend. I let him know what my plan was so he could feel even more at ease, knowing that I was taking steps towards the abortion.
Something I witnessed was that all of the people I told this pregnancy story to, I was fully aware that it was only a story. And I could tell everyone’s opinions about the abortion were very half and half. People appeared against it and people appeared supportive. I only wanted to gravitate towards the people that were supportive and loving. The people that weren’t, I knew they were experiencing their own belief systems and that was okay, too. I knew they felt uncomfortable and that it was my responsibility to be gentle. I was very much able to embody the way these people were feeling because I remember so clearly feeling that way when I gripped onto my own beliefs.
Fast forward to Friday, it was the day of the abortion and we had arrived to Planned Parenthood in Aurora. As we were getting close, Fox told me not to make any expectations. I asked him what he meant and he said that sometimes there were protesters there and I laughed and said that kind of stuff didn’t get to me. As we pulled up, there they were. It seemed like 100 of them. I parked my car and a woman who was a volunteer, approached us and said she would walk us into the building. I felt like a little kid. I felt as though she was Jesus. The protesters were yelling, one with a speakerphone telling me that Jesus was looking down on me and judging my actions. I told the lady walking me inside, over and over again how nice it was that they did this for us. I let her know several times how much I appreciated it. Just to have that moral support.
I walked inside and went to the window to give the lady my information when I broke down into tears. Fox held me. We sat down inside and it was a whole different atmosphere. As I cried, I told him how the protesters got to me and that I didn’t expect it. I felt like I was seeing my mom in the crowd, condemning what I appeared to be doing. I also very clearly saw how that was me. I felt them because that’s how I was when I believed in veganism. It felt so real and I just wanted to protest to my friends and family to see things the way I was seeing them and to make a change. It felt like I was experiencing true empathy and how the vegan journey was for me. I experienced projections of anger and guilt, all for that moment. I truly felt what energy a person was sharing. It also showed me that that was something I never wanted to embody again.
Sitting in planned parenthood, I saw so many things come up. It was an emotional journey. I felt gratitude for the kindness of strangers. Everyone’s support and gentleness, the positive reminders that everything was okay no matter what choice I appeared to make on the surface.
There were moments when I had breakdowns, where I would just start crying and feel into it. The entire pregnancy, I felt absolutely disgusted by everyone. I wanted nothing to do with Fox. I couldn’t kiss him, hug him… I didn’t want him touching me. I felt myself just super sensitive to every scent, and it made me want to throw up. He told me he cried at one point because of that. I reassured him it had nothing to do with him. I was at Planned Parenthood for eight hours. One of the nurses gave me a peptalk, letting me know everything was okay, that there was nothing to be afraid of and that I would be knocked out.
Then, I went into another waiting room and joined a room full of girls sitting there—anxious—left with nothing but our thoughts.
Then, the moment of the abortion came. They called me into the doctors office and told me to undress myself, including my underwear. I laid on the bed they had set up and she asked me to prop my legs up and I don’t know what got into me, but I lost my shit. I began to really get into my head. I broke down into tears and my entire body felt like it was having a seizure. I was terrified. Shaking, I couldn’t hold myself together.
The nurse tried to call me down, but couldn’t. I felt “in” it. I felt, truly, like a scared little girl. I was following thoughts telling me it was going to hurt and I psyched myself out. I think she called for more people to come in because I was freaking out so strongly. One of the nurses appeared to treat me like a child. She complimented my hair and she began to tell me how awesome the nurse and doctor were. That really eased me. The main nurse came in and was like, “I heard we’re gonna be giving you a LOT of anesthesia!” She was a really sweet woman as well.
Then, the doctor came in and I lost it again. He was gentle and told me the scariest part was waiting and sitting with my thoughts. One of the girls asked if I wanted to hold her hand and I said yes.
And so the moment came, I closed my eyes and I could feel the anesthesia slowly affecting me. I didn’t even know it entered into my body, it was so gentle. I could feel myself becoming lighter and lighter until I found myself letting go of the worldly sensations altogether; the noises fading, my sense of vision blurring. I felt calm and at peace, feeling nothing but stillness as I drifted into a gentle, deep sleep. And that was THE most symbolic thing that I felt death would feel like. That gentle letting go of reality and drifting off into the unknown. I woke up blinking gently, witnessing I was in a room with a heating pad on my abdomen, thinking to myself No, I don’t want to be back here! I was at peace! What an experience. I immediately knew I made the most loving choice for myself.
They gave me a brochure with a 24/7 call number if I ever needed support and they encouraged me to continue following what my heart called me to do. One of the examples listed was “climbing a mountain.” I began to cry in gratitude when I read that because my PCT journey was right around the corner. It made my heart soar and I collapsed into the moment. Everything was perfect and nothing was out of place.… And you know, I had a very powerful realization in the doctors office when I found myself shaking. I experienced the intense manifestation of fearful thoughts. I stepped out of my body and saw myself as somebody else. I saw this girl, shaking, scared out of her mind… Sure of her choice but still finding it difficult to be courageous. And it was in that moment I witnessed how we really never knew the experiences a person was going through, because we haven’t experienced the same path. It was so important to be gentle with one another for that very reason and to release any judgements we held about them.