Disclaimer:: This is not a political post. This post is my commentary about the chaos I am seeing unfold on social media after late term abortion was discussed at last night’s debate. I am honestly shocked at the hate, judgement and condemnation that has spewed forth, mostly from believers, and I felt led to say something.
The option of a late term abortion was something that was available to me after we received Annie’s diagnosis of anencephaly. This is obviously the option most women in my position choose (around 95%), but after discussion with my husband we decided against it. I am fortunate enough to have an incredibly selfless and supportive husband, a large and local extended family, a faith that kept me going when I wanted to fall apart, and two healthy and vibrant daughters to hug when I couldn’t stop sobbing. I was also fortunate enough that even though my unborn daughter’s diagnosis was incompatible with life (terminal), doctors also told us she was unlikely to be in any pain.
I stand firmly by my choice to carry Annie to term, and the 14 hours and 58 minutes she was on this earth were some of the very best of my life. I will tell my story to anyone who will listen, I will support any and all women who are or have ever been in my position, and I will advocate for life all the live long day.
What I will not do is stand in judgement of the 95%. I will not assume their story looks just like mine and criticize their choices. I will not hate them for their heartbreak and pain. I will not lump all women seeking abortion into a hurtful and judgmental catagory.
I recognize my privilege, and Annie’s story is beautiful in large part due to that. My husband had a terrifying near death experience in the middle of the ocean in Guam 30 days before we got Annie’s diagnosis, and we often discuss how different this story would be if he would have died. I imagine our story would be different and our decision would have been far more difficult if our baby would have been in unbearable pain. If I didn’t have more sisters than I can shake a stick at to cry with, friends upon friends to pray with, so much help with our living children, who knows what would have happened. I guess I will never know. Carrying a child with a terminal illness to term was the most difficult thing I’ve ever done. Each day brought forth new and unexpected gut wrenching experiences, and without my support system it would have been impossible.
This post is really just a message to the church. Last night I had a discussion with friends about those believers who are shouting condemnation (before the debate, actually) and we were talking about what to do about it. It seems so simple. We stop the judgement. We stop shouting at each other. We recognize that every story is not the same. The only way to understand someone else’s story is to stop yelling and actually LISTEN, to CARE about them, and to LOVE them. We need to be the support system to those without one. And most of all, it’s time we all take a moment to remove the log out of our own eye before we worry about the speck in our neighbors.
May the Lord bless and keep you.