Today is one of the most somber anniversaries in U.S. history. On January 22, 1973, abortion became legal, resulting in the deaths of over fifty-six million babies. Two of those babies were mine, and to commemorate them, I want to share the testimony I give as a member of Silent No More Awareness and a co-leader of Rachel's Hope Healing Retreats:
My name is Patti Smith from Vista, California. 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 30-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. 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; Matthew and Sarah. When I left the clinic both times instead of feeling relief, I felt empty like I had left something behind, which I did; Matthew and Sarah.
I was never a Pollyanna, but after the first abortion my promiscuity escalated as did my drinking. I was hell-bent on self destruction. After the second abortion, 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 at the age of thirty to have tubal ligation. I didn’t know at the time, but I realized later I was punishing myself for the abortions. I felt unworthy and unsuitable to be a mother.
Seventeen 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 option. 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 about 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’s Silent No More co-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 my soul. 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 will continue to work with my sisters and brothers in healing to expose the lies perpetuated by the pro-abort/pro-choice community and help those suffering from the disastrous effects of abortion. Abortion takes the life of an innocent child and darkens the soul of the mother and all involved. It brings nothing but pain, shame and regret, and distances them from a loving and merciful God.