Hello, my name is Malinda.
My first abortion at 19 was set up by my doctor and the second at 21 by a nurse at my workplace. I was unstable, uninformed, and easily influenced. I trusted newspapers, magazines, and television when they said abortion was freedom for a woman. The government and medical profession made abortion so accessible. So why should I not go ahead?
At the Ottawa Civic Hospital, both abortions were extremely quick and free. There was no interaction with hospital staff, and no information on how it was done, or who would do it. I was told to undress; I was put to sleep, wakened up, and told to go home. No aftercare information was given.
Immediately after the first abortion, I felt something was gone from my life. I felt I had done something wrong, and that confused me. I was a liberated woman, who made a decision that was supposed to liberate me.
After the second abortion, I woke up with a greater sense of loss and a sense of shame for doing it a second time. I went home, got high, and started on a downward spiral of alcohol and drugs to numb the feelings about what I had done. I felt like such a loser and that continued for years. My self-image deteriorated. I believed I would never be a mother, at least not a good one. I felt that I had done something terribly wrong and was determined to pay for it. I was always putting myself down, seeing myself failing at things before I started them.
For years I would catch myself wondering what my children would be like had I decided to let them live. Yes, that’s right—let them live. Had I done nothing, they would have been born as human beings. They were not lumps of flesh as I was led to believe. I was never able to get pregnant again.
In time I made new friends who told me about a man who did horrible things and how he sincerely sought God’s forgiveness. His life turned around. This encouraged me. I understood that God still loved me. My life changed in amazing ways. I knew God’s forgiveness, but I could not forgive myself for terminating two lives. Eventually I realized it was arrogant of me not to forgive myself when God forgave me 2000 years ago by allowing His Son, Jesus, to die on a cross for what I had done. I looked around to see what I had, instead of what I didn’t have - two adopted children and a husband who loves me. So began my journey of healing.
After 40 years, I still regret my abortions, but am now able to speak about them. I have forgiven myself and see myself through God’s eyes and grace. I now want to help others heal, and that is why I am Silent No More.