Survivor of Failed Abortion Attempt Speaks
There are so many stories of survivors of abortion, that it’s hard to choose one for the scope of this article. It would take volumes to write about all their stories.
One unforgettable story, however, is that of Melissa Ohden, whose mother had an abortion when she was five months pregnant. During the abortion procedure, saline was injected into her womb. This was meant to scald the baby to death. Melissa lay in that poisoned amniotic fluid in the womb for five days. The doctors then performed the “abortion,” but she was still alive.
She was left to die. According to an interview with CBN news, “a nurse heard the baby crying from the discarded medical waste.” She miraculously rescued baby Melissa who weighed just two pounds.
This took place at St. Luke’s Hospital in Sioux City, Iowa in 1977.
What the doctors didn’t know when they tried to abort Melissa that day, was that a group of Christians gathered outside to pray that all the babies would survive their abortions.
She had severe health problems soon after the failed abortion. When she testified before Congress about abortion, she described her condition when she was young. “I suffered from jaundice, severe respiratory problems and seizures for an extended period of time,” she said. “Despite the miracle of my survival, the doctors’ prognosis for my life was very poor initially.”
The doctors prepared her adoptive parents for the worst. “My adoptive parents were told that I would suffer from multiple disabilities throughout my life,” she said.
According to the CBN interview, when doctors placed tiny Melissa in her adoptive mother’s arms, however, she knew the baby would survive. She went on to “recover completely and lived a normal childhood.”
It took Melissa sixteen long years to discover who her birth parents were. When she finally uncovered their identity, her father had already passed away. She found her maternal grandparents and learned the difficult circumstances of her mother’s abortion.
Today, Melissa’s life has come full circle. In the CBN interview, the narrator said: “ironically, Melissa gave birth to her daughter Olivia in the same hospital where own life was supposed to end.”
She used to experience terror every time she drove by St. Luke’s hospital, the place of the failed abortion attempt. “I literally used to drive past that hospital gripping the wheel of my car because it was so hurtful for me to know that that is the building where I struggled for my life,” she said. “And now I can drive past that hospital with my head held high because it holds the most beautiful memories that I will ever hold in this life.” She was referring to the joy she experienced when she gave birth to her daughter, Olivia.
She believes adoption may be an answer for women who are considering abortion. “There is no greater gift I believe that a woman can give than life to a child,” she said. “And if she believes that if she can’t provide for that child forever, that the next best thing that she can do for that child then is to give them the joy of being with another family for adoption.”
Melissa has seen the hand of God upon her life. She writes: “I don’t believe God originally wrote abortion into my life, as God is the Creator of life, but when it was introduced by man, or in my case, a woman, He rewrote the story of my life around it, wrapping my life up in His infinite glory and goodness, to create the story of a life that is more intricate, more beautiful, more redemptive, more grace-filled, than anything anyone else could have planned or written.”
Melissa now has a Master’s degree in social work, has testified before Congress about abortion and appeared on numerous televisions shows including: Fox News, The 700 club and the Mike Huckabee show. She is also now a mother herself.
She has seen beauty in the pain. She summed up her life in one statement: “the little girl that was supposed to die in an abortion grows up to be a woman who brings life and restoration to others.”