- Posted February 13, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Have you had an abortion?
He quickly scribbled a phone number onto his prescription pad, ripped off the page, and pushed it across his desk toward my hand while admonishing me to call as soon as possible because “time is of the essence”. Being single, I realized he meant abortion. Although I specifically asked about adoption, he abruptly informed me that it wasn’t an option as the laws were very complex.
Though controlled with medication, the emotional trauma induced a petite mal seizure on my way back to my office. I failed to stop at a traffic light and hit another vehicle. Fortunately, no one was injured.
The ability to think clearly abandoned me as despair seized control of my emotions and circumstances. I felt devastated and alone. Sharing only with those closest to me, everyone agreed that abortion was the only answer to my problem; then I could move on with my life. It was a lie that I chose to believe.
S- and I discussed marriage but as our relationship had deteriorated someone else had taken my place in his heart, and it was clear that a baby would not win him back. So three days later he drove me to an old house – an abortion “clinic” - in Homewood, Alabama.
I stood in a small, dark hallway as someone asked a few brief questions. Although I had epilepsy, they told me it wasn’t a problem and promptly took my $350.00. (I’ve since learned that hospitalization is recommended for women with serious seizure disorders.) I never met the physician.
Another Eternity later, someone led me to a room, instructed me to lie back on an examination table. I was then heavily sedated. Many years later, I vividly recall the haunting sound of the vacuum that ripped my child and my heart from my body. While still drugged and unable to walk or think clearly, I was led to the back door where S- guided me to the car. He later told me that I screamed for my baby all the way home.
But I didn’t stop screaming. I spent months writing notes to my little one, letters of apology that I collected in a beautiful wicker basket. Gripped by thoughts of suicide, I threw them all away hoping it would help me feel better. It didn’t.
After Tim and I married, when I became pregnant, I screamed louder. I realized that it wasn’t merely a “blob of tissue”. I could hear a heartbeat and feel a little one moving purposefully and independently within me. The guilt was overwhelming and emotional despair crippling.
When I held her in my arms, I screamed even louder. It was all so new to me – the emotional ties so unexpected. My life was inextricably bound to hers.
As she grew older, I lived in grave fear that if she – or anyone – discovered my secret, they would turn against me. I paced frantically within my dark and private cage, chained to its bars, frequently contemplating suicide, longing to break free. Then it happened, my precious daughter discovered the door to my private Hell and helped me find freedom in Christ. She became my champion as I began to share my experience with others if only it might prevent just one individual from making a decision that would bind their lives to such pain and regret.
As I’ve shared with others in churches, pro-life or political assemblies, I’ve learned to quickly recognize the wounds that mark a woman’s eyes as they sometimes flee the room in tears when my story touches their experience… or the terror in her features when it’s clear that her husband is unaware of the pain she carries… There are times when circumstances dictate that only my prayers pursue them – “O God, every time they run, let it be deeper into Your Love.”
So many who chose abortion were awakened to the truth while carrying or holding their first child…
Those promoting abortion frequently attempt to prevent counseling or the truth necessary for women to make an informed decision. How I wish someone had shown me a model of the gestational stage of my child… How I wish I could have seen an ultrasound or heard the heartbeat… How I wish I had been informed of the grave depression and suicidal tendencies that would haunt me for almost twenty years of my life… How I wish I had had access to a post-abortive woman who would have warned me of the torment… How I wish there had been a sidewalk counselor outside the clinic that day – someone to guide me through other options… In the end, it was the “choice” that I made, the “choice” I live with, and the “choice” that I’ll profoundly regret even as I take my dying breath. But…
“You turned my wailing into dancing;
You removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy.”