Exposing oneself? A weird concept. Exposing something you did that society looks down upon? Terrifying. Twelve months ago my journal entry told me I couldn’t do this. But through the grace of god, I made it. August 24,  2020 I took a pill that would change the trajectory of my life forever.  I had an abortion. Typing this now, and knowing my blog will be read, and my YouTube video will be watched, seems surreal. I never thought I would be this girl. The girl who got an abortion. I never thought I would speak so publicly about something so personal and so raw. A time in my life where shame was the only emotion I knew. If you know me personally, or have been keeping up with my testimonies on YouTube, this has been the missing puzzle piece. This is my WHY and HOW I became a true follower of Jesus Christ.

Laying on my bathroom floor, in an apartment I hated, I told myself never again. Never again will I be so selfish. Never again will I feel this low. Never again will I let my life choices lead me here. Outside of that Lakewood apartment, the world went on. I could hear birds chirping, cars driving by, and people mowing their lawns. But inside, I was falling into a black hole. It was summer, but I was freezing. It was 4:45, but I wished time would just stop. It was all going to be okay I told myself, but I was everything but okay. The pain I experienced was excruciating. Physically and mentally. It went on for hours. Hours of despair. Hours of asking myself “What did you just do?” Hours of telling myself “You can’t undo this.” I was sad because I will always wonder. I was mad because I was careless. But I did feel relief knowing my baby wouldn’t grow up in a broken family. I know personally what broken homes and broken people do to children and that was the only thing holding me together.

Ever since I was a young girl, I have isolated myself. I grew up enjoying the time I spent alone; I would prefer it actually. I would occupy myself for hours in my bedroom.  Whether it was journaling, crafting, or listening to music. I felt safe. I felt at peace. No one could hurt me with their words or actions when I was alone. Heading into my late 20s, with a little bit of therapy and research of my own, I have learned that I dissociate. Dissociation is a coping mechanism that I use to survive during overwhelming experiences. This was my psychological survival tool that stemmed from repeated episodes of emotional trauma. To simplify, my brain would shut off and I would feel nothing. I am not looking to use this as an excuse for my abortion. Empathy? Sure. But also the seriousness of what growing up in a broken home can do to a child’s well being.  

For weeks, the only thing I could eat was Subway. I know my body, and I knew something wasn’t right. I genuinely didn’t think pregnancy was a possibility at that time. I had been on the depo shot for four years, and have heard horror stories about women trying to get pregnant after being on that form of birth control. One dark line and one faint line later, it was confirmed. I was pregnant. Reality check set. Shallow breathing and dizziness came over me. I was in shock and that was the last thing I expected waking up that morning. I was high on different emotions. To my surprise, I was happy at the thought of being a mother. I never was sure if I wanted to be a mother or start a family. Ironically, given the circumstances, God revealed to me that it is actually one of the deepest desires of my heart. To my dismay, he didn’t want to be a dad.

It’s something I never put forth much thought about. That one intimate moment can change your life forever. That one poor decision in life can set you all the way back. That one person can make you question everything you’ve ever known. I had never thought in depth about the type of qualities I needed in a man versus the type of qualities I thought I wanted. I wanted that relationship to work but I needed someone whose actions matched their words. I needed someone who I knew my family could count on. That if they promised our bebe they would be there for every baseball game, or dance recital, then they would be there in the front row. Parts of me loved parts of him, but in the end, he was not the guy I wanted to start a family with. In the end, I knew it was the way I had been living my life that got me here and I needed to make some serious changes.

For me, forgiveness began when heartache turned into prayer. People say that sometimes you need to hit rock bottom to find Jesus, and that’s exactly what happened. I disassociated for about three months after my abortion. Every morning was another day dreaded. I was physically, spiritually, and emotionally depleted. Mary Jane was my only friend. The thing that scared me the most was the lack of motivation to hang on. I remember the night in December so distinctly. LED lights on, YouTube screensaver for an aesthetic, and the presence of the holy spirit. I dropped down to my knees and cried out to the lord. Streams of tears flowing down my face. I was sobbing. I was repenting. I was sobbing for my baby. I was repenting for the way I have been living my life all these years. At the time, I thought I had officially reached my breaking point. Looking back, I realize it actually was my starting point. 

A couple days later, something amazing happened. I woke up, and for the first time in a long time, I felt a little bit lighter. The guilt and shame I had been feeling for so long no longer was holding me captive. He took all my pain away. For 27 years, I was blind. The life I had been living was so ugly. Smoking weed, getting drunk, and having careless sex is what got me here. Changes needed to happen if I wanted saving. I fell in love with Jesus because he loved me when I couldn’t even love myself. That week I decided to leave my old life behind, pick up my cross and carry it. Picking up your cross means dying to your old self. Dying to people who have been holding you in chains. Dying to drunkenness and sexual immorality. Dying to negative attitudes and bad habits. If you want peace, it’s important you check who you have around you and what you take in. Certain things and certain people can turn a person cold forever, but I decided to choose light. The person I want to be and know that I can be started when I fell at the foot of the cross. 

I had to fight to take back my life. I didn’t realize it at the time but God had been giving me strength all along. In the mornings when I couldn’t get out of bed, he was there. On nights I cried myself to sleep, he was there. When I couldn’t talk to anyone else about what I was going through, he was there. I have learned that when there is a lot against you, it is because God put a lot in you. Who I was isn’t who I have to be. One night, God spoke to me through Philippians 1. He told me healing doesn’t come from staying comfortable. Stop keeping this a secret. God wants to use my testimony so that his power and glory can be seen to the world.

Philippians 1:12-14 “Now I want you to know brothers and sisters, that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel. As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. And because of my chains, most of my brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.”

Philippians 1:19-20 “For I know that through your prayers and God provision of the spirit of Jesus Christ what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance. I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death.”

Courage can be contagious. Paul’s message in Philippians is challenging others to be just as bold. Even though spilling my heart to whoever is reading this right now may have negative consequences attached to it, I believe that God wants to save lives through my story. It starts with being honest and transparent about where you are at. I know what it feels like to give your heart to someone, and the effort isn't reciprocated. To be friends with someone for years, and they’re not there for you during your darkest hour. Smoking to be able to laugh again. Drinking to forget. Having sex and secretly crying after. Growing up my entire life having to answer the question “Why is your last name different from your families?” I had to be comfortable knowing that some of my most painful moments are my most purposeful. 

My abortion had to break me to change me. God knew I could take it and he would see me through it. I believe that this had to happen so I would stay anchored in him. This happened so that I could share my testimony that God can take something broken and turn it into something beautiful. But this also happened so I can encourage other woman who were like me to change their life around. Stop going back to the ex that doesn't respect you. Stop having sex for validation. Stop getting blacked out on the weekends for fun because I promise you there is more to life than the local bars. Raise your standards. learn how to respect yourself. Most importantly let's stop putting ourselves in bad situations that can easily be prevented with good life choices. I went from living in the darkness to the light. From hopelessness to finding small joys again. From going to bed right when I got home from work, to riding my bike down Edgewater hill just to feel the wind on my face. Playing aliens vs. humans with my nieces and nephews. Sunrises and sunsets. Finding a coffee creamer that finally broke my Starbucks addiction. God has been growing and maturing me. Talk about real love. 

Through the blood of Jesus Christ, I am ultimately forgiven. My pain will have a purpose. My mistakes have made me wiser. The disappointments of life have made me stronger. I want to inspire other females to sit down and be still. Evaluate yourself. Evaluate your life. We have to be mindful of the decisions we are making every single day because there could be consequences attached. Christians are called to reflect the life of Jesus, not the world. I want to live a life of integrity and purity. I hope to inspire others by my words and actions. When all is said and done, I am a daughter of the highest king. So I’ll walk like it. Talk like it. Dress like it. And I’ll be waiting for the godly man who treats me like it. Until then, may I never forget, on my best days, that I need God as desperately as I did on my worst day. 

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