From death to life
By Life Resources Team
“… today I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Choose life so that you and your descendants may live, love the LORD your God, obey him, remain faithful to him. For he is your life…” Deuteronomy 30:19-20
The attached was written by one of the participants in our Forgiven and Set Free study for post-abortive women. With January as Sanctity of Life month, we offer this anonymous person’s perspective:
I feel like a gravedigger in a haunted cemetery on a stormy night in a deep, dark location that’s been lost and forgotten. I’ve chosen to pick up a shovel and dig dirty layer by dirty layer into a place I’m fearful and hesitant to go. I’ve been digging all summer long in eager anticipation of the start of this Forgiven and Set Free post-abortion recovery group. During this dig, I’ve revealed forgotten and disturbing events that I thought were erased from my history book, yet much is still lurking in a hazy fog just waiting to be uncovered.
The first few layers of dirt that I stripped away were all the lies … lies I told myself, lies I told my family, omissions of the whole truth, lies I used to cope with the choices I had made and lies that Satan has told me about myself to separate me from the love of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. During the next ten weeks, I’m committed to facing the ugly truth, seeking personal forgiveness and never letting this truth control my life again.
Thirty-seven years after my life-altering decision, I’m still randomly and unintentionally haunted by my past. Why does it still have power over me? Why do I still let it define me when, obviously, I’m no longer THAT GIRL? Why can’t I fully forgive myself even when I’m confident that my heavenly Father forgave me the very first time I asked? I am here to put my past to rest in a way I’ve not been able to do alone. That very thought fills me with great hope and joy for what’s to come.
I’m here by the mercy and grace of God. I know He’s doing something amazing in my life. I have heard His call and felt His nudge. It’s more like a gentle shove and a loving kick in the seat of my pants. What’s taken me so long? He intentionally led me where I need to be to start the task of digging and revealing, cleansing and scrubbing, acceptance and forgiveness with a special group of strong, nonjudgmental women who have had similar experiences and truly understand my pain and struggle like no one else.
My story reads like some desperate teenage reality show:
• Nineteen-year-old college girl returns to campus 600 miles away from home with her sights set on a taste of freedom, an education degree and a potential husband.
• Girl meets “Boy Wonderful,” so she thinks.
• Girl and boy innocently flirt and frolic.
• Boy shows up at unsuspecting girl’s apartment when she’s home alone.
• One thing leads to another. Anxious girl’s mind screams, “NOOOOO!” yet tempted girl’s body says, “YES!” In a flash, girl makes a spontaneous and life-altering decision.
• Boy was like WHAM! BAM! and BYE! He left — never to be seen again.
• Ten weeks later, girl finally realizes something is not right and takes five pregnancy tests.
• Girl is pregnant, alone, ashamed, confused and desperate.
• Girl has two weeks before the end of the semester to take “necessary action,” prep for final exams, take finals, heal a hurting and infected body, disguise a broken soul, pack up, act “normal” and head 600 miles back home, leaving the nightmare behind.
• Girl had no clue that the nightmare had packed its bag and traveled 600 miles beside her with the intention of haunting her for the rest of her life.
I can still hardly believe that girl was me. Oh, how that nightmare has wreaked havoc on my life. I was drowning in a raging sea of self-induced, self-destructive behaviors to pay the price for what I had done. I abused food in the unhealthiest ways. I used extreme exercise as a form of bodily punishment. Eventually, I married an emotionally, physically, sexually abusive man who validated the low-life human being I believed myself to be. I was convinced I deserved it all.
My drugs of addiction also included people pleasing, perfectionism, overachieving and workaholism. The beauty of these drugs is that they were the perfect mask to disguise the underlying torment that was ripping me to shreds. I “appeared” to have it all together. While genuinely trying to spread joy, goodness, kindness and positivity and create the image of the “great person” I truly desired to be, I secretly was entangled in a tornado of self-implosion. It was unnecessary, exhausting and detrimental to my health and well-being. Yet I did it anyway. I was unknowingly reacting to the internal demons that were eating me alive. I am pleased to say at the ripe age of 57, I’m wiser, freer and stronger, yet putting complete closure on this very long chapter of my life is still a work in progress.
You may be wondering …
• Did I tell the boy? Nope! I didn’t want a soul on earth to know. I didn’t need the complication or another dose of rejection.
• Why didn’t I seek help from my parents? That option never crossed my mind. My mom was the obstacle I wasn’t willing to face. I spent a lifetime attempting to meet the high expectations she set before me. Out of respect and adoration for the woman who had all the best intentions for my life, I’m most positive that having an unwed, pregnant, teenage daughter wasn’t her vision for me. Her expectations included a squeaky-clean image, high achievements, shining performances, sparkling appearance and a glowing reputation, just to name a few. The lifelong pressure for perfection was a heavy load to bear. I got myself into this mess and I would figure a way out without being responsible for breaking my mother’s heart.
• What about the “A” word? I have very vague memories of the actual day I had my abortion — that “A” word I still can’t say without throwing up in my mouth just a little. I blacked out most of it just to cope. I’m convinced a part of me died that day along with my unwanted, unloved, unknown fetus. Oh, how that truth hurts my heart! I’m sure people think I deserved all the pain and suffering I’ve experienced as a natural consequence for my choices. I 100 percent agree! I was the judge, jury, prosecutor and convicted felon in my secret trial. That very day, I sentenced myself to a lifetime of pain and suffering. I have tortured my mind, my body and my soul. I have been a prisoner inside myself ready to break free and turn my tragedy into a triumph by using my testimony to make a positive impact. Even though I’m no longer parked in my past, I still have some work to do to fully forgive myself. I need to be right with me so that I can serve others who may be heading down this long, lost path of destruction.
Now, as the end of my post-abortion Bible study, Forgiven and Set Free, draws to a close, I sit in awe of the ten-week journey I have been blessed to experience with a group of women I’m proud to call Sisters in Christ. We have talked, cried, hugged, learned, encouraged and prayed for each other every step of the way. Even under the dire circumstances of our meeting, I am deeply moved, extremely honored and incredibly blessed by these bold women. They stepped out in faith to reset their lives, heal their trauma and renew their souls. I am so proud of their courage, their progress and what’s in store for their future. I’m proud of me too! Those are words I never thought would come from a girl like me.
I am in awe of our fearless leaders who, just like us, have been there and done that, yet have chosen to talk about their trauma time and again to promote a “life after abortion” mindset through a biblical perspective. They never cease to let us forget that God forgives our sinful choices to terminate the lives of our unborn children. Despite what we have done, He loves us, wants us to enjoy His bountiful blessings to the full, and He remembers our sins no more. Amen!
This difficult yet worthwhile experience drastically changes the lives of post-abortive women. It raises them up from the depths of living hell to walk in the abounding hope and grace that our heavenly Father offers. Thanks to the generous, caring, loving, compassionate leaders nationwide, who demonstrate that forgiveness and freedom are attainable if we simply allow God to work in our lives and change our hearts in the way He desires.
Finally, the chains of bondage that have held me hostage in my own mind, body and soul are broken. What a blessing it is to begin living life to the fullest in the way God intended, not because I have done anything to earn it but just because He loves me! I humbly honor my Lord and Savior by accepting His death on the cross and the blood He shed to wipe away the sins of ALL who sinned against Him … even me, a sinner who now is fully and completely forgiven and set free!
Dedicated to my precious child in heaven, Hannah Grace, until we finally meet someday … I love you!
Your mother, LP
Sanctity of Human Life Sunday is January 16, 2022.
Statistics show that 1 in 5 women have had an abortion. This choice results in life changing consequences which include guilt, shame, regret, and depression. Life Resources (www.myliferesources.org) in partnership with the Lowcountry Pregnancy Center, offers a Bible Study called Forgiven and Set Free which brings the message of hope and healing to the post-abortive woman. The details of this study and its location are strictly confidential. The study is offered at no cost.
If you, or someone you know, would like more information on this study, please contact: Cindy: 404-218-6745, Courtney: 678-458-8492, or the Lowcountry Pregnancy Center: 843-553-3505.