For such a time as this…..
Twenty-one years ago I made the terrible and life changing decision to abort my first child. It is my hope that by sharing my pain and regret that it will help someone else avoid a similar terrible choice.
It was the fall of 1984 and I had recently turned 17. I was in my senior year of high school and had my first steady boyfriend. It was late November when I first suspected I was pregnant. I didn’t tell anyone, but I wrote it down in a journal I was keeping for English class. My mother accidentally came across my journal entry while browsing through my notebook. As expected, my parents were shocked and disappointed in me. They took me to the doctor who confirmed that I was indeed pregnant. The doctor suggested an abortion. I remember feeling very detached, like he was talking about someone else. This couldn’t be happening. I didn’t know what to do. I do know that I desperately wanted life to be back to normal, and I wanted the look of disappointment to be gone from my parents’ eyes. So I made an appointment for an abortion on December 28th.
There are a couple of people that stand out in my mind from that day. One of those people was the clinic counselor. She didn’t “counsel” me at all. She did fuel the already raging fire of fear and doubt. She agreed with me that I was far too young to think about becoming a parent. She reminded me that I had no way to support a child, and that I needed to finish high school. She assured me that my life would return to normal. That it would be like this had never happened. SHE LIED!!! You cannot take the life of your child and go on like it never happened.
The other person that stands out in my mind is the doctor who performed the abortion. He totally ignored me and carried on a conversation with the nurse and the counselor who were also in the procedure room with me. While he ended my child’s life he talked about how cute his dog was.
Afterward, I tried to pretend that everything was fine, but it wasn’t. I couldn’t concentrate at school and eventually dropped out, which is ironic considering that finishing school was one of my reasons for the abortion. I broke up with my boyfriend, the father of the child, and started living a very destructive, promiscuous lifestyle. I couldn’t stand to be around pregnant women or babies. I felt like I was contaminated and I would somehow taint them. I couldn’t go to church because I was certain that God was disgusted with me. How could He love me when I couldn’t even stand myself?
Three years later I met and married my husband and in 1990 became pregnant with our first child. I had already started to realize and accept that my decision to abort my first child had been a mistake and was trying to accept the fact that God still loved me and could forgive me. The final event that convinced me once and for all that my choice had been the wrong one was the day I felt my daughter move for the first time. That was the single most wonderful and horrifying moment in my life. I was filled with joy and awe and at the same time with dread and regret, because it was at that moment that I fully realized what I had done.
I fell to my knees and begged God to forgive me and I know that through Jesus Christ I have been forgiven. Not only has He forgiven me, but He’s also given me the words and the courage necessary to be here today and to be a voice of truth in this battle for our children. God didn’t make this happen to me, but He did allow it and I believe it was so I could be here for such a time as this. So I could speak out and proclaim the truth that abortion isn’t the answer and it doesn’t solve any problems. It kills a child, and wounds a woman so profoundly that only God Himself can heal her. He’s healed me and in humble gratitude I will be Silent No More.