Birth Story: Saint Louis, MO
Submitted to Abort73 by a 31-year-old woman on November 16, 2012.
I was raped by a stranger and was in a crisis pregnancy in 2006. I thought I would consider abortion even though I had always been pro-life and was raised Christian, with the idea that abortion was wrong. But I didn't know what to do. I was so lost and scared. There was always the exception of rape and incest in everyone's mind that I talked to.
When I went into the abortion clinic parking lot there were protesters. They were angry and showing pictures of late-term abortions. They were yelling. I had just found out I was pregnant and was still very early in the pregnancy. I tried not to look at them. When I went in the clinic and looked around, I saw a lot of very sad, scared looking teenagers and women, and their boyfriends, husbands, friends, and family members. One girl looked like she was being made to go there by her mother. One was with her boyfriend and crying. It was definitely not a happy place. When I went to the exam room so they could figure out if I was indeed pregnant, they weren't even going to show me the ultrasound. The screen was pointed the other way. I demanded to see it. Looking at the ultrasound made it very real for me. There was no denying that I was pregnant, that there was a baby in there. I wonder if that's why they turn the screens, so its not as real? After the ultrasound, they hurried me into another room where a man was talking about birth control to me for after the abortion. He then told me about the abortion pill and what to expect. That was it. That was what was supposed to be my pre-abortion counseling. By law, I think I was supposed to go home and think about it. I went home absolutely disgusted with myself that I had even considered abortion. I called them the next day and told them I was going to keep my baby, and I couldn't kill it.
I decided that I couldn't provide for this child and considered adoption and met with a very nice adoption counselor. I was so afraid that I wouldn't love the baby the way that he or she needed because I would see that man in the baby. After all, the baby came half from him. Things were starting to look positive for me about the adoption and then after my first ultrasound with a regular OB, I heard the heartbeat. I knew right then and there that I could not give up this baby. I would lean on God to provide a way for me to take care of him or her. I was so scared I wouldn't love the baby because it came from a horrible situation. But the minute I heard the heartbeat I felt connected to the baby in ways I cannot explain. That baby did nothing wrong, that baby only needed me to love him or her. I knew in that moment that I could love this baby with all my heart. It truly is something that is hard to explain. I believe it was God showing me that this baby was going to bring me so much joy and the pain from the abortion and how she was created could go away. He was turning something so bad into something beautiful. The adoption counselor was amazing. She was so supportive in my decision to keep my baby. I knew that had I chose adoption this would have been the place. But adoption wasn't for me.
Over the course of the next few months I went through some pretty intensive counseling helping me get through the rape and the realization that I would be a single mom. But I knew I could do this. I leaned on God, my church, and the free counseling that I found through the local seminary. It was an amazing miracle when my little baby girl was born. I loved her instantly. All my fears of not being able to love her went away. At that moment I wasn't thinking about the man who raped me. I was thinking about this beautiful baby girl. She came out of my belly. She depended on me to survive. She depended on me now and I was going to be there for her. There was no question in my heart that I did the right thing by keeping her.
My little girl is now 5. I am married and my husband has adopted my little girl. I couldn't be happier and don't regret for one minute my decision to keep her. We now have another little girl who is 18 months. I am so glad that she has a big sister. We have told my 5 year old about the adoption and she thinks its so special. We made a special scrapbook that she can read whenever she wants. I am so happy I chose life. She truly is an amazing little girl. I am so happy that I don't have to live with the regret that so many women have.
At the abortion clinic, you are just a number. It's not personalized at all. It's sickening. I think instead of scare tactics with the protesters, there needs to be big signs about how counseling and support can get you through the pregnancy. Had I not had a social work degree, I might not have known where to look for those free resources. I really don't think scary, gruesome pictures are what's going to save babies from being aborted. There needs to be an actual support system that is advertised in big, bold letters. And if there must be pictures, maybe show the early term ones and not the later ones. All the women in the clinic when I went were not showing yet, so I'm assuming they were very early abortions.
Location: Saint Louis, MO
Date: November 16, 2012