Claire Culwell explained how she learned that she had survived a botched abortion — and lost her twin — during her address to the 47th annual March for Life in Washington, DC, on Friday.
I am the surviving twin of a botched D and E (dilation and evacuation) dismemberment abortion. I found this out ten years ago when I met my birth mother after thanking my birth mother for giving me my life. She broke down into tears at this moment. She described her abortion that successfully aborted my twin. The pain in her eyes is something I will never forget. Her abortion explained a lot of things for me: my physical complications because of my prematurity and being a twin — a surviving twin; my curiosity and longing for another sibling; my deep appreciation for being wanted by my adopted parents who stand here with me today.
I used to think that the person who was affected by abortion would never be me. It would never be someone in my home, in my church, in my community, and yet here I was looking my birth mother in the eye finding out that I not only was affected by abortion but I had survived one.
My life was a miracle. I realize that there was a face, a name, a story with the unborn child and with the woman contemplating an abortion like my birth mother. You see, when you look at my face you see my twin, and when you look at my life you see the almighty hand of God.
As you can see, my family, standing behind me, wouldn’t be standing with me here today if abortion hadn’t hurt us, and if life hadn’t empowered us. My children, standing here with me today wouldn’t have a mother if I hadn’t survived. In fact, we are here today marching for the lives of my children, people just like you and I.
When I met my birth mother I had a choice to make, and I chose to forgive her. Today, I choose not only to forgive but to boldly proclaim the truth with you and stand alongside you for all life, because I know that there will be a day — I dream of a day — when no other human being has to walk the face of this Earth as an abortion survivor or as a twinless twin the name of choice, and because of each of you and because of what I know about God I know that that day will come.
Thank you for marching for people like me [and for people like them. God bless you all.
Follow Robert Kraychik on Twitter @rkraychik.