Whew. It has not been a fun few weeks let me tell you. But, I’m still here. I still feel kind of wobbly and uncertain, but I’m still here. I do feel, thanks be to God, a lot better now than I did just a few weeks ago. I’m sleeping a bit better. No nightmares for the last week. I've started walking and I've walked 6 times in the last 2 weeks! I still think about suicide, but it's not as oppressive as it was. I've enjoyed some good days with my family. I'm trying not to spend as much time in my room, alone. And I spent one, glorious night with an entire bottle of wine and forgot about everything for a while. That was fun. The morning after, not so much, but fun while it lasted. Everything in moderation, as they say.
I knew Mother's Day could go in any of many directions and it went in a bad one for a while. I ended up hightailing out of my home and away from my family because I just couldn't fake it until bed time that day, not for another second. I drove to the nearby retreat center where I attended both of my Rachel's Vineyard's retreats. I sat for a while. Then some other people showed up so I got back in my car and headed to another retreat center that isn't too far and there is a beautiful, peaceful, sacred little chapel and I found myself alone there for a few hours. The wind was whipping up outside and the sound of it coming through the old building in the dimness of the chapel with its stone walls and high ceiling made it feel like Heaven, or somewhere closer to Him. I sat there for a good long while arguing with myself and God. I had to make a decision that day to live or die and if I was going to live, well then I had to figure out a way to do just that.
I'm not naive enough to say that this will be the last time I sink down into a pit of depression. Especially now that I've kind of sworn off any medication, it's inevitable that it will happen again and again. I hope I remember whatever it was that started to bring me out of it because something always brings me out of it. I've spoken about always just having the tiniest bit of something inside that keeps me alive. Hopefully, with each time I'll remember sooner and sooner to tap into that tiny part of me where, obviously, He dwells, and remember why I'm here.
It was kind of the perfect storm leading up to Mother's Day. I was following the Gosnell trial with voracity and then all of the other under cover videos that Live Action was putting out there. I prayed outside the abortion clinic the Saturday before Mother's Day. I was thinking that I was fighting the good fight, but all of the coverage that I was consuming all day long was eating away at me in ways I don't think I recognized clearly. I even posted about Gosnell and how everyone was so up in arms about his particular brand of abortion and how it was no different than the abortion that I had. Which, following the logic, makes me no different than Gosnell himself when it comes down to brass tacks.
Reading and watching and analyzing all of the condemnation of Gosnell by everyone on blogs, on social media, and on the news once the story took off - I think I began to believe all of the same about myself. Why? Because some of it was true! Gosnell performed however many abortions - I had an abortion. In my mind it was the same thing. It's still the same thing. It started to become that every time I read his name or heard it said I would crumple in on myself a bit more. The whispers would begin... see, you did that too. Your baby was ripped limb from limb and put in a jar. You're no better than he is. Stabbed in the back of the neck or sucked through a cannula - it's all the same thing.
A bit of a repreieve came when the verdict came in guilty as charged on so many counts. And just as quickly, the discussion turned to saving Gosnell from the death penalty. The argument began to surface about mercy for Gosnell. Whoa - wait just a damn minute... mercy? For him?
Yes. Mercy for Gosnell. Mercy for me. Mercy for us all.
When Abby Johnson first came onto the scene, I had similar feelings towards her. Wait just a damn minute.... we're going to give her a pass because she suddenly figured out what she was doing was wrong? How's that fair? I didn’t want to like her. I wanted to hate her, condemn her. I was
guilty of thinking that she didn’t deserve anything good. Abby was the counselor who spoke to me before I
had my abortion. Abby was the woman holding my hand as I lay on that table with
silent tears falling down my cheeks. Abby was the woman who gave me three
months worth of “the Pill” as I walked out the door of that clinic. Abby was all the girls and
women afterwards that I tried to befriend and align myself with in the hopes of
coping with what I had done. So, now Abby Johnson gets mercy?
Yes. Mercy for Abby Johnson. Mercy for me. Mercy for us all.
Thank God - for He has placed in the tiniest recesses of my tortured and scarred heart a tiny place where only He dwells. Where from he reminds me that He loved me into being and everything that I have is because of Him in spite of myself. And that is what I must cling to for
dear life, with slippery fingers and the Devil himself stomping up and down on
my knuckles trying to get me to just… let … go.
He loves me.
He loves Kermit Gosnell. He loves Abby Johnson. We are all the same sinners and we all can be awash in mercy and forgiveness and love whenever we ask for it. Sometimes, I forget to ask. Or, sometimes I ask, but I don't listen to the answer or wait for a response. Hopefully the next time I feel a backslide coming on, I'll run a little faster to Him. Maybe I'll meet him halfway. Maybe someday, I'll never leave His side.