It was a cold, rainy afternoon at Advice & Aid and I was the in-office nurse that afternoon. I was just thinking how glad I was to be inside where it was warm when in walked a beautiful young woman, looking for help. I was moved by her face, which was every bit as gloomy as the weather. I rose to meet her and touched her cold, damp hand. The look in her eyes was striking, like a cornered animal with nowhere to go and no one to turn to. As I softly introduced myself, I briefly reviewed the clients who had come before her . . . so many different looks on the various faces . . . frustrated, embarrassed, angry, even on occasion, happy. However, that was not the case with this beautiful girl. Mentally planning how I can best help her, I led her back to the counseling room.
The beginning of a story
Her name was Melissa*. “Tell me what brings you here today. I see you marked down you wanted a pregnancy test.” I paused, and then said, “Tell me about Melissa.” She slowly began to talk, at first haltingly, unsure of how she was being perceived. But then, guided by encouragement and acceptance, more and more of her story came pouring out of her mouth.
No help, no options
It is a familiar story that is told over and over, but is never old to the clients or counselors here. Each story represents all of the emotions of the individual telling it, the specific details unique to them. Melissa’s story had many elements – pregnant, working two jobs to support a 2 year old child from a previous relationship, unemployed boyfriend wanting her to abort, and no family to provide support. Her parents and brother were killed in a car accident a year ago. “I don’t believe in abortion but I can’t have this baby!” Melissa tearfully confesses. We determined her estimated delivery date. She was 6 weeks pregnant. I reassured her that it was early in the pregnancy and she could slow down, not panic, and did not have to make any snap decisions. She had time to think.
After a pause, I told her that whatever she decides we will be there for her.
Her eyes locked on mine not trusting what I had just said.
The relief of finding help
“The next step is a sonogram,” I said, returning to my clinical demeanor. I explained that it is important to know, before beginning the abortion process, if the pregnancy is viable. Viability, determined by a sonogram (ultrasound) means the heartbeat of the baby is detected and baby is located in the uterus (not in the Fallopian tube). It is estimated that between 20% – 25% of pregnancies will end in miscarriage. Her eyes darted around the room and I wondered what she was thinking.
She expressed that she had no money for a sonogram.
I explained that our services are free of charge.
Melissa showed obvious relief and her beautiful face broke into the most
wonderful smile for the first time since she walked in.
It was better even than the most sunny day!
Real solutions to real problems
All of the clients who come to the doors of Advice & Aid are unique with unique stories. We feel privileged when we can join our clients in presenting real solutions to their very real problems; offering advice and options; encouragement and a friend; resources and free services. We welcome them in, inviting them to tell us their story.
Quite often, they welcome us into their lives.
*Melissa is not our client’s real name. All client experiences with Advice & Aid Pregnancy Centers are kept with the highest confidence. The stories that are shared come from the real-life experiences that our clients, staff and volunteers had during their unplanned pregnancy.
To read other stories from women who have been where you are:
Advice & Aid Stories
If you are going through a similar experience to Melissa, you might have seen yourself a bit in her story. Melissa found a place to belong. A place that offered her real help, options, answers and support – she simply had to show up.
Here, she found the things she needed most.
Take your first step today towards taking back control of your situation. Make an appointment with us. No pressure, no agenda – simply information, an understanding friend, and hope!