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Caught by Surprise
My name is Cindy, and unfortunately, my story isn’t unique.  I’m a post-abortion survivor.  I use this term to help others understand abortion not only kills the unborn child; it leaves an aftermath of victims, and isn’t a “procedure” that mothers and fathers walk away from without painful, permanent scars.

I was pro-choice from the first time I heard about abortion.  When I became pregnant in 1985, my boyfriend said it wasn’t the right time to start a family.  I agreed without any thought, because it wasn’t yet a baby - at least that’s what I believed.  About eight months later I dreamed I was holding a baby, and then realized it was my son.  This was just the beginning of the pain and regret.

I didn’t understand the reason for my depression, but assumed I was mourning the loss of “potential” motherhood.  My life from that point was filled with promiscuity and heavy drinking, an attempt at dulling the pain.  I prayed God would let me die.  I did what I could to prevent myself from becoming pregnant, because I felt unworthy of having a child.   My shame kept me from seeking the help that I needed.

After 23 years of despair, I told God I’d follow Him.  He led me to the Catholic Church and to confession.  Learning the lives of saints helped me realize God had forgiven me, I was worthy of His love, and I didn’t have to be ashamed anymore.  I wanted to help others affected by similar pain, so I spoke with our priest.  Two days later, I was sharing my testimony at the Catholic High School.  

What happened caught me by complete surprise.  No one looked at me with disgust as Satan had convinced me.  Instead, I received admiration, sympathy, and love.  Satan no longer held me in the bondage of shame.

My son, Francis McKinley, knows that I love him and was blind to the truth that life begins at conception.  I will mourn my son the rest of my, and will be silent no more.


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