I have had this post brewing in my head for months. I have actually written it twice, then deleted it before hitting that publish button. Part of me doesn't want to post it because this isn't a place where I normally get all serious and controversial. I have managed, quite nicely, without a single nasty comment on any post. But my conscience won't leave me alone. I've been getting that tap, tap, tap for a while, and it's beginning to turn into a full-on shove. It's time.
One year ago, we went through a terrible heart scare with Buttercup. It was a week filled with tears and worry and doctors. In the end, we were told her heart was fine. Yes, it beats very irregularly, but there is always one normal beat in between the odd ones. Nothing to worry about.
One little normal beat is what keeps her from having a heart attack in the middle of the soccer field.
When your child is in the middle of a heart scare, you realize how miraculous a heart is. For our entire lives, that little muscle never stops beating. The moment it does, we die. To me, it is a mind-boggling miracle that such a tiny organ, a simple muscle, can work that hard and never, one time need a break.
I'll never forget the first time I heard each of my baby's heartbeats. At six weeks pregnant, looking at that ultrasound screen, the womp-womp sound of the little heart filling the room, I was so terribly happy. With that sound came peace. A knowledge that all would be well.
Up until that point, I was filled with anxiety, because I have twice been in the situation where the ultrasound showed the lack of the baby's heartbeat. It showed a baby, but there wasn't the wonderful sound of a heartbeat filling the room. One little heartbeat. It's all we were looking for. And when it couldn't be found, we knew I had miscarried. I would not be holding that baby in my arms.
To me, a baby's heartbeat is the best sound in the entire world.
I am fully aware that this is not the case for all women. For some, that sound brings confusion, fear, and panic. For a whole host of reasons, a woman may not be happy about the new life growing inside her.
Regardless, it is a new life.
It is a life that should be respected as such.
I am 100% pro-life, because that new life is NOT the pregnant woman's body. It may be growing inside of her, but it is a new life, with a new body, with a new heart beating in its chest.
When a woman has an abortion, a heartbeat is stopped. A body is torn apart. That heart and that body are not the pregnant woman's heart and body.
The women in situations of "unwanted" pregnancies should be shown compassion and love.
I say unwanted with quotes, because while the pregnant woman may not want or be able to care for that baby, someone else desperately does and could. There are people lined up at adoption agencies, praying and waiting as patiently as possible to finally be chosen to become adoptive parents.
I know lots and lots of adoptive parents who are very grateful to the women who gave birth to their children.
I have an immediate family member who is a birth father, but with his girlfriend, decided to give that precious baby to another couple who could better care for him.
I know someone who was chosen to be an adoptive parent, and after a month of updates on the pregnancy, found out that the birth mother, because of intense pressure from the father and her parents, had an abortion.
I cry every time I think of it.
That young woman will very likely regret that decision for the rest of her life.
I say this, because two good friends of mine did the exact same thing many years ago. They don't go a day without fighting the guilt and regret of that one decision.
Regardless of the circumstances in which a woman becomes pregnant, there is a new life growing.
We cannot define it based on the desires of the mother. If the mother wants it, she is carrying a baby, but if not, it is called reproductive tissue? That makes absolutely no sense to me.
It is a baby. End of story.
I am also friends with a man who is very happy to be alive. When his mother found out about her pregnancy, she was pressured by her family to have an abortion. She went so far as to make and go to an appointment to have the abortion. In the waiting room, she got a burst of courage and walked out.
Did this woman and her son have an easy life? Not even close.
Do they regret her decision to walk out of that appointment? Absolutely not.
Pro-life does not mean easy. In some cases it means very, very difficult.
Difficult is a part of life. It brings heartache and sadness. It brings anger and frustration. But, if we give it a chance, difficult can also come with strength we didn't know we had. It can come with blessings we couldn't have imagined.
I know there are mean, evil people in this world. I know these mean, evil people, every once in a while, are the reason women become pregnant. I know, so you don't need to ask me in the comments about incest and rape. I know. Those women need even more support and help in very different ways.
And this is where you will find me to be very naïve, but it's a dream, so I'm allowed to be. My dream is for a world where every single pregnant woman is loved and supported by everyone. Where the people in her life encourage her throughout the pregnancy, whether she decides to raise the baby herself, or allow another family to do so. If unexpectedly pregnant women were given this support, regardless of how that baby got there, we wouldn't even have to talk about abortion. It wouldn't be an option people even considered.
I am pro-compassion.
I am pro-love.
I am pro-life.