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The following is the testimony I will be giving at the Silent No More Awareness Campaign Rally preceding the Walk for Life:
My name is Patti Smith and I am the mother of Sarah and Matthew, two innocent angels I thoughtlessly swept from my life by yielding to pressure from family and friends and believing the rhetoric of the pro-choice community.
Both abortion experiences were the same, I recall them like they were yesterday and they were over thirty years ago. The clinics were cold and sterile, the staff did not provide any type of comfort or assurance. It was like I was there to have a splinter removed, nothing of any consequence.
The sound of the vacuum still echoes in my ears and I distinctly recall the tugging, that at the time seemed to last forever. It was as if something was trying to hold on. There was something trying to hold on, hold on for dear life.... Sarah and Matthew. When I left the clinic both times, instead of feeling relief, I felt empty … like I had left something behind, which I did...Sarah and Matthew.
I was never a Pollyanna, but after the first abortion my promiscuity escalated as did my drinking and I was hell-bent on self destruction. After the second, my life went completely out of control. I lost so very much during those days, including the love and respect of my family, friends and co-workers…. but most importantly, the love and respect of myself. I also purposely lost the ability to have a child as I convinced a doctor to give me a tubal ligation at the age of 30. I didn't know at that time, but realized later, I was punishing myself for the abortions. I felt unworthy and unsuitable to be a mother.
Sixteen years ago I finally reached the point where I could no longer stand to look in the mirror because of how far down the abyss of depravity I had gone. That brought me to believe suicide was the only alternative. God had other plans and I was admitted to a psychiatric hospital and then to rehab.
Although successful in maintaining my sobriety my soul was still heavy and I didn’t know why. A few years ago I attended a church seminar and heard a woman sharing her abortion experience and how it affected her. She spoke about post-abortion healing retreats and I immediately knew that’s where I needed to be. God spoke to me through her that day. The woman God so graciously used just happened to be Leslie Brunolli, San Diego Silent No More Coordinator. I attended a retreat shortly thereafter which started me on a wonderful journey of healing and forgiveness.
I learned the guilt, shame and self-hatred I carried for so many years were buried deep within within my soul, and my way of keeping it buried was drinking and promiscuity. I numbed feelings with booze and slept around for, what I thought at the time, was love and acceptance.
That retreat put together the pieces of my broken heart and provided me a way to ask for and receive forgiveness not only from God but from Sarah, Matthew and myself.
I stand here today not just to share the consequences of my abortions, but to have the silent voices of my children heard.
That’s why I’m Silent No More.
I'll be posting thoughts and photos upon my return...until then.....
HAVE A BLESSED DAY!