- Posted February 9, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Have you had an abortion?
Many years of pain and regret.
You see, she got pregnant with me before she and my dad were married. She was 18 and a freshman in college. She lived at home, took a bus downtown to a clerical job of some sort, then went to classes at the University at night. Took a bus back home. So, when she got pregnant and "had to get married" (back in the day) it totally changed and ruined her life, at least that was what she told my sister and me. My sister came 14 months after me, sickly and premature. My mom hated her life, hated being trapped at home with 2 babies while my dad worked long hours building his own business to support his family.
So, long story short, my mom was not going to let me suffer the same fate she had. She decided an abortion was the answer to my problem, and she found a clinic to do it and dragged me there. I was scared and horribly sick with nausea ( to the point where I was hospitalized). My dad had died two years before and I was stuck with my mom managing my life and making the decisions. I was not happy with her choice, but the father of my child ran the other way and wanted no part of his responsibility, even though he claimed to be a Christian.
So, I had an abortion. I finished high school, went off to college, and flunked out at the end of the first year. I was miserable. I didn't understand why I was so unhappy but I missed my dad and felt all kinds of things about my baby, and didn't know where to turn or what to do. Friends hooked me up with a blind date . He had lost his wife to an aggressive brain tumor the year before, and,like me, was sad and lonely and lost. So, we got married, which meant that I didn't have to go back home to my mom's house.
That was a disaster, too. Two sad grieving people.... enough said. We made it for four years while he went to law school and I finished my undergrad degree. Then we went our separate ways. Now, 30 years later, although we live a few hours apart, he is one of my best friends, and someone I talk to daily.
But, I divorced, moved to San Diego, drank, partied, got tattoos, went to the nude beach, and was sad and lonely and empty inside. . Eventually I met another someone, and we lived together a few years, and then got married at the end of 1975.
In 1976 we decided to start a family. I got pregnant, but we also had decided by then to come back to Michigan, because housing was so expensive in San Diego and we both had moms here who would be grandmothers to our baby. We moved in my 3rd month of pregnancy and without any health insurance, it took 2 months to get enrolled in the clinics at the local hospital. My doctor in San Diego had expressed a little concern,saying that he felt "my dates were off" and that I was actually not as far along as I thought. He thought the fetus felt too small for the dates I had given. By the time I moved back to Detroit and got enrolled in the clinic and saw an OB/GYN doctor here, they were concerned enough to do an ultrasound. Ultrasound was not at all common at that time (1977) and I remember the ultrasound technician rubbing the "sensor" across my stomach many times and then going to get some one else (a doctor?) to help her. No one said anything to me, and I had no clue that there was any problem.
I saw the doctor two weeks later and was told that my baby was severely deformed and would not live. The doctor told me not to have a baby shower, not to fix up a nursery, that there would be no baby to take home . By then, it was the start of my last trimester and they told me that I would just have to wait to go into labor and deliver the baby. They doctors were not willing to do any surgery at that point, major surgery was a much larger health risk than labor and delivery. So, I went around for 9 or 10 weeks, and had people asking me all the time when my baby was due. I was a waitress and had people talk to me every day about my tummy. It was the most awful time of my life
. My grandfather had a major heart attack and died, and I know it was from the pain of the situation. My dad had been an only child and when he died, my grandparents were devastated. We all were, but they became even closer to my sister and I, we were the only family they had left. My grandfather walked me down the aisle at my wedding, and so, we were very close. Losing him and the baby in the same week was beyond anything I could even imagine. I spent 3 day s at the funeral home and cemetery, and came home and went into labor that night. The baby was still born sometime that night, and although they told me that I saw him, I have no memory of any of it. He as ana-cephalic, meaning his brain did not develop and he had a flat, sort of frog like shaped head. This is a neural-tube birth defect and is easily detected now, but in that time, not as much was known about it.
All I knew was that my baby was dead, and I was sure God was punishing me for killing my first child though that abortion 8 years before. I was suicidal and miserable.
I eventually had a healthy child a year later, and then lost a daughter at 6 months of age 3 years after that. After losing my daughter, I again felt God was continuing to punish me for the abortion. Finally, I had a last son, with my two living sons about 4 and a half years apart.
I went on to spend about 13 or 14 years of misery and guilt about killing my first baby, and I would imagine him at that time. I would think about how old he might be, and then what he might have been doing,all the things moms think about. It tormented me. All of the loss and pain and grief of losing the two babies caused my husband and I to divorce, and I was a single mom. We all know what a difficult life that can be.
In 1997, overwhelmed with the grief and life and it's pain, I gave my life to Jesus. I learned about His forgiveness for what I had done, and I was finally able to find some peace and joy in my life.
Life today is good. I am single, my two sons are grown. Yes, I would love to have a life partner to walk this journey with me. But, I have my Jesus and so many wonderful sisters in Christ to be with me in the struggles. I have a great church family and I am at peace and so grateful for everything that I am blessed with.
My mom and I are still not close, she attends Unitarian church with a female lesbian pastor and has a totally different view of life and what matters from mine. I love her and I forgive her for forcing me to abort my baby, but she doesn't understand that there is anything to forgive, and is a vocal supporter of Planned Parenthood (and a financial supporter of them too).
I hope this helps someone in some small way, to consider what they are doing, and the decisions they are making. An abortion might seem like a "solution" but in reality, it just brings lots more problems than anyone could ever imagine.
I am not very tech savvy and have no desire to make a video of my story. i am not sure i could get through it anyway.