Favorite "Meditation of My Heart"

Call unto me,

and I will answer thee,

and shew thee great and mighty things,

which thou knowest not. --Jeremiah 33:3 KJV

Saturday, January 22, 2011

52 Million Kids Who Can't Change the World

Of course, I don't remember the night that I was born, but many of my family remember it well.  Overall, they seem to mostly remember the crying, praying and worrying. In fact my own grandma was so worried that she couldn't remember my name, only part of the list of physical problems, and only after a couple days, would she realize that I was named after her.  The shock of having a child for whom the doctor could not say, "She has all her fingers and toes.  She is perfect." was felt not only by my parents, but by my grandparents and aunts and uncles.  By the time I have memories, I had already shown my family that I was an active and happy child. The family had decided to let me do whatever my non-disabled cousins did and just let me show them what I could and couldn't do for myself. The grieving was over and my parents had located specialists, met other parents with children with more severe challenges and we knew that the road ahead was do-able.

Me at 11 months

Exactly two weeks after I was born in 1973, the Supreme Court handed down rulings on Rowe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton on January 22nd.  Since that time, few children have been born with my disabilities which had been occurring every 3 to 5 years.  Among those who have been born is the cutest little boy named Landon who lives in Louisiana and a 10 year old girl born in Korean.  I have always felt a burden for the unborn children and the families making decisions of life and death while grieving and usually without accurate knowledge of the potential of their child.  My burden was only intensified when I realized that the news of the unborn child's disability is often paired with the assumption by medical professionals that an abortion will be scheduled.  This crisis point seems like a poor time to be making life and death decisions especially since trusted medical professionals frequently try to steer this decision towards abortion.

I have often been confused by how a medical school can turn out 2 highly skilled class mates, one a high risk OB physician and one a pediatric cardiac surgeon, YET the high risk OB is more likely to send an expectant mom to an abortion provider than to their cardiac colleague.  Reproductive medicine seems to now view its rolls as prevention of unplanned pregnancy, infertility treatments and gatekeeper to make sure all babies born meet society's stringent standard of perfection.

When I found out I was pregnant with Grace, I was 23 years old and was in the ER with the worst flu of my life.  I had a better job than most 23 year olds and I was buying my home.  However, I was also single and my pregnancy was unplanned.  The ER nurse gave me a list of abortion providers as the doctor gave me the news.  The next day I called my ob/gyn, who let me know that due to my disability, I would need a high risk doctor.  I already knew the risks of my hip not being able to hold together, but was surprised to learn that the referral was out of fear that my child would be disabled, not due to my hip problems.  (My disability has no known risk of being inherited.)  I then went to an amazing high risk doctor named Dr. Dix.  Later she would find out that I had a dermoid cyst growing and would soon be competing for space with my baby.  Dr. Dix was the doctor whom I needed.  She inspired confidence and built a vision of a successful pregnancy.  Unfortunately, her partner doctor at the time was just the opposite.  During visits with him, he would advise dangerous extensive testing, exaggerate the risks of my health situation, advocate abortion with handfuls of pamphlets and he would tell me that I had been brain washed by people into believing that disabled people had a quality of life like mine.  He assure me that I was a rarity.  However, due to many lengthy stays in a children's hospital and though working for a disability rights organization, I knew that I had more knowledge about the "quality of life" of disabled people than this dangerously misinformed doctor.

Needless to say, I couldn't help wondering about others in the waiting room on days that this doctor was seeing patients.  Most were young and had limited education and limited life experiences.  All of us were trusting our doctor to know what was best for our babies, but at least one doctor in that office seemed to have his own agenda, which he obviously thought guaranteed "perfect" babies.  Dr. Dix removed my cyst at 24 weeks.  It was a surgery that had some difficulties, but it was successful.  Unfortunately, her partnering doctor delivered Grace while Dr. Dix was out of town.  I was in labor for 46 hours, which I believe could have been shortened, but I think the doctor was seeing this as a way for me to pay the price of not following his advice.  He had warned me that Grace would probably be small and have a host of problems so after she arrived weighing in at 9lbs 4oz and 21 inches long, the doctor never really said anything else to me.

I was offered abortion resources at every turn and occasionally someone would suggest adoption.  However, rarely was I just simply congratulated that I was about to be a mom.  When I think of 38 years of legal abortions in the United States, I am overwhelmed by the over 52 million moms-to-be who didn't feel congratulated, who were not celebrated and who didn't feel that their kid could change the world.   As a Christian, I do not believe that sex makes a baby, but God allows babies to be made through sex at just the perfect time and in just the perfect way for each one to complete His will.  Each child has potential beyond the conditions of their birth because God has a plan for each mom and each child. 

I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made:
marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well. --Psalms 139:14

Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD:
the fruit of the womb is his reward. --Psalms 127:3

BTW-If you are a mom or a mom-to-be reading this, "Mega Congratulations!" 


  1. What a fabulous testimony. God works in the most awesome-est of ways, doesn't He :)

    God's Blessings

  2. Love this testimony to God's power and love! Your family is a joy to read about.