A few weeks ago I had the inspiration that there needed to be a "Healing After Miscarriage and Other Loss" chapter in this book. That a woman goes through psychological and spiritual upheavals (and hopefully, eventually, growth) after a miscarriage seems like a no-brainer. Why didn't I think of it before? I am so grateful to those who have sent me their stories on this deeply personal topic. For the last week, however, my thoughts keep returning to the other stories--specifically, healing after abortion and sexual abuse.
Abortion is a sensitive topic everywhere, and so I hope to treat it sensitively in this book, but also not ignore it. Since the beginning, our faith has strongly affirmed the sanctity of life, and I also affirm it. The fact is, however, women who may read this have had abortions--either before they joined the church, during periods of inactivity, or for other reasons. My own mother had to have one when she found out she had an advanced stage of cancer. Heartbreaking--and even more so because of the taboo around talking about it.
I'm sure that being pregnant again after an abortion, even if it was years ago, can trigger all kinds of difficult emotions that you may have thought were behind you. I feel very strongly that there are more than a handful of women who need to read about what another woman went through and how she ultimately healed, emotionally and spiritually. If you have a story you are willing to share, I can make it anonymous, and I will be totally confidential. Someone else out there needs to know that they are not alone.
Sexual abuse is another heavy topic, but it affects birth in so many ways, because the sex organs that are the primary focus. Women who have had sexual trauma in their past may also find birth traumatic, or on the contrary, they may find it empowering and healing. What I'd like to focus on in this book is healing. I am looking for women willing to share their stories of how pregnancy and birth healed them from the scars of sexual abuse. I can also make your stories anonymous. I know it is difficult to write about these things, but writing (and then publishing) is also away of letting go.
Please let me know if you have a story and are willing to share it. If you need support writing it, or would prefer to tell it on the phone and have me write it, we can do that, too.