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Nothing to stand on - nothing to hold on to…

I was seeing a man who told me that he was sterile, and thinking that he was wonderful and my friend, I believed him. I still hung on to what he told me when I had all the symptoms of pregnancy. My roommate made an appointment for me at her doctor's and I was shocked when he told me that I was pregnant. My "boyfriend" had dumped me by then and wouldn't speak to or see me. The doctor told me I had one week to decide and have the abortion. I was panic stricken. I had moments of joy for the life that was growing within me, but overwhelmed with the circumstances. I cried the whole week, took sick days from work and then did what was implied to be the only option by those I told - which was to have the abortion.

The abortion itself was in a comfortable setting. A woman "counseled" me first, which meant that she asked me if I was sure I wanted to do it and she explained the procedure. I was ignorant then and didn't know and was not told that at 3 months the baby was more than an unidentifiable blob of cells. The same "counselor" held my hand while the doctor did the procedure and she and another woman talked about a shopping trip. I do have to give them credit that the clinic was clean and comfortable and I was treated with dignity.

I don't think my abortion affected anyone but me and the baby that I aborted. My boyfriend had disappeared at the first suggestion that I could possible be pregnant. I had few close friends at the time and only told two members of my family years after. I was alone in my dark apartment after it was over. I had a sense of relief because this horrible panic that I had been feeling was gone and I had stopped crying. It was replace though with a great depression. I felt like everything I had come to believe in - the boyfriend and a lot of Eastern mysticism - had failed me and my life was a mess. I felt like I was on a road of destruction - I had destroyed a life. I had nothing - no where to turn - nothing to stand on - nothing to hold on to. At that point I decided to try reading the Bible because there was nothing else left. It sounds corny but when I decided that, it was as if a light went on in my spirit and I knew I had hope. I moved out of that apartment to a place of my own. I knew I needed to get away from my roommate's influence and the people we both knew and the mentality that implied that if you weren't sleeping with someone you must be gay.

Then I went through a time of confession - I told everyone at work what I had done. I told my new neighbors. I told friends from previous years that I met again briefly. I was depressed. I had to keep busy. I wouldn't go to church because I didn't think that had anything to offer, but I signed up for an evening class at the local university in the study of the Old Testament and another class in painting. I had to keep busy, otherwise I was depressed. I was depressed anyway, and I was scared of men.; It was hard to be in a room alone with one, or on an elevator with one. I didn't have any friends but I met the couple in the apartment next to me and through them got involved in a Christian home fellowship where I was amazed and excited that these people lived what they believed.

The place where I worked began to expand and new people were hired. The new people were either Christians or soon became Christians and I began to make friends, but it was still hard. Five years later and I was finally coming out of the depression. I believed the Lord was healing me and I was able to enjoy being around people and begin dating again. By then, though, I knew that the baby was more than a mass of cells. I tried justifying what I did. I tried finding scriptures to prove that it wasn't life until it was born. I had to deal with my guilt and I couldn't. When friends would talk about abortion I was tense. They all knew because I still told just about everyone I met. Somehow I did come to realize that I couldn't justify it. Then I had to face the reality of what I had done. I still escaped from it by fantasizing "if onlys" - If only there had been someone to talk to. If only I had met someone who could have helped me. If only I hadn't done it. From there I'd go to despair over what I had done. I'd wonder why God allowed me to still walk and breathe after what I'd done. I didn't deserve to live and yet killing myself was wrong and wouldn't bring the baby back. How could I have done such a thing?

The question plagued me at night, at work - anytime. By then I was married, it was 10 years later and my husband and I wanted a baby but I was convinced that since I didn't deserve to be a mother I would never be able to conceive again. I was considering all this one evening when it occurred to me that if Jesus died for my sins, that included the abortion. If He died for my sins and God saw me as righteous through Him, then God was not going to punish me for the abortion - Jesus had already taken it. If I couldn't conceive, then it wasn't because of the abortion. It might be natural consequences of it, but not because God was punishing me. I was so relieved when I realized that. I was so thankful. I went to bed that night rejoicing that whether I ever had another baby again or not - it was okay, I was forgiven.

God blessed me even further by giving me a dream - too long and complicated to relate here, but in the dream were further assurances of forgiveness and even my son (I've always been convinced that I had a boy) who had brown hair and his father's nose - I saw him and he hugged me and forgave me too. At the end of the dream I heard a voice that I had never heard before or since. The voice said, "And with the child that is within you, you have two." I had just finished my period and I knew I wasn't pregnant. I thought "But I'm not pregnant," and the voice repeated the same exact thing. Then I knew that God calls things that aren't [yet] as they will be. Ten months later our son was born. Twelve years after the abortion I miscarried. Another little boy, perfectly formed. I had been 3 months' pregnant - the same as when I had the abortion. God used it to allow me to grieve for both little boys and He comforted me in it. I believe I am forgiven and except for scars, healed.

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