I grew up in a verbally abusive and dysfunctional environment. I had been born to an alcoholic, drug addicted mother. I have never met my birth father and don’t even know if he is aware that I exist. I was always told that I was Jewish but had no idea what that really meant because I was never taught anything about my religion. I spent much of my childhood in foster care eventually being adopted by my foster parents when I was 15. I was very shy and had zero self-esteem. The only person who had ever offered me kindness and love was my grandmother who died when I was 10 years old. I felt like I was worthless even contemplating suicide when I was 11.
When I was 15 I met a nice Jewish boy, a 20 year old young man who would one day become my husband. He was broken like me and we fell quickly and deeply in love. He showed me kindness like I had not experienced since my grandmother was alive. He was and still is one of the nicest people I know. We waited 6 months into our relationship before we became sexually active. We were certainly never taught about sexual integrity and we had nobody that we felt comfortable talking to about sex. In those years sex education was just beginning to be discussed at schools and Google hadn’t been created yet. We were always careful and made sure to use condoms…except once. We thought we wouldn’t and couldn’t get pregnant. We were wrong, so wrong.
I ended up getting pregnant when I was 17. In previous discussions my boyfriend had told me he was pro-life but that all changed when we were the ones faced with an unwanted pregnancy. My adopted parents also gave me no other option but abortion, they just wanted this problem gone. I so wanted to keep the baby more than anything but my self-esteem was so low and I didn’t feel like I could fight and be an advocate for myself so I just agreed to have an abortion. It was the hardest thing that I had ever done. I vaguely remember exactly what happened but I must have been fighting so hard to keep that baby during the procedure that they ended up having to put me under general anesthesia to complete the abortion. I remember waking up and seeing bruises up and down my arms, I was around 7 weeks pregnant. I remember being in a recovery area feeling horrible and so sad. My sadness became mixed with anger and I went into a deep depression and stopped going to school. “Where was God in all this?”, I wondered. I became an Atheist and became angry at the world. My adopted parents told me that I wasn’t allowed to tell anybody about it. They were all about outward appearance. My boyfriend didn’t want to talk about it either. I became bitter towards him and was so angry at him, I’m not sure how but our relationship survived that terrible time.
Nobody tells you how negatively abortion can emotionally affect us. We are made to think that abortion is an easy answer. No harm done. We can never change the past, our only option is to keep moving forward. I am thankfully no longer an Atheist. I have since become a Completed or Messianic Jew which simply means that I am Jewish but have made the choice to accept Jesus as my Lord and Savior. I accept the gift of Grace that I have been so graciously offered and know through the Bible that I am not only forgiven but will one day see my baby when I get to Heaven. That brings me great joy.
This year Annie and her husband (the same man in this story) will be celebrating 32 years together and 27 years of marriage. Annie and her husband have their one baby in Heaven and 4 children here on Earth. Annie is taking calls on the International Helpline for Abortion Recovery and is glad to share her story of forgiveness and restoration.