My husband texted me earlier today and told me that I could have some alone time tonight (have I mentioned lately how much I love that man?) After agonizing for about twenty minutes over all the things I could possibly go do (and accepting that I would never have time to do them all), I settled on a quiet dinner and doing a little writing.
It’s been awhile since I’ve been able to sit and write in solitude. I usually have tiny people who find their way to my side, interrupting any train of thought that I might have had. Once the train completely derails, I’ll usually save the draft in hopes to catch a ride back on it at another time. I have 200 trains to catch in my draft folder.
But here I am sitting, BY MYSELF, in a Panera. After scanning the restaurant a couple times, I picked a cozy seat in the corner with my green tea, broccoli cheddar soup and Roasted Turkey Avocado BLT sandwich. Oh, and can’t forget the warm chocolate chip cookie for .99 (the cashier talked me into it).
I was surprisingly decisive about my food choices today.
But if I’m honest, most of the time I have no idea what I want.
I have been (pretty much) silent about politics on this blog for the past three years. Part of that is due to being a busy mom of three (lacking a coherent train of thought, like I said), but also because I believe wholeheartedly there are some issues that we, as a nation, will never see eye-to-eye on. And there are people I love too much and would rather not have political opinions getting in the way of that.
But, goodness… my heart is grieved.
And today, I’m taking this train to the station.
I am absolutely horrified by the NY law that passed this week allowing abortions up to the BIRTH of a child. The act of abortion at any point of a pregnancy has always been viewed as murder to me. I realize that this is partly due to my strong belief that life begins at conception and also because at the very beginning of each pregnancy - I wanted the child. But even when I, surprisingly, found out I was pregnant again when my first baby was only 9 months old - I knew that what was happening inside me was creating life. I knew, because it took us over a year of trying to get pregnant the first time and I learned that it doesn’t happen that easily. There’s a whole lot that has to take place before that positive pregnancy test - and a whole lot that has to happen to sustain the pregnancy. It’s a miracle every time.
If at any point, of any of my pregnancies, someone came and injected a poison in me that caused my baby’s heart to stop - I would have sued them for murder! And by law, I would have won.
Yet, by law, if a women decides that she doesn’t want a baby at any point of her pregnancy it automatically becomes okay for her to end its life? After all it went through to make it this far?
Many stories have come out about late term abortions, and how most of the time they are decided because the doctors had informed them that their pregnancy was not viable and/or the child would be born with some type of disability. And with our technology today, I don’t doubt that often the doctors may be right, but… sometimes they are wrong.
I was told at our 15 week ultrasound with my daughter, Hannah (my “surprise” pregnancy), that she had two soft-markers for Down Syndrome. After more ultrasounds and blood tests (that in retrospect probably added to unnecessary anxiety and stress) they confirmed that there was a 99% chance that she didn’t have DS. I knew we were going to keep her no matter what - but the day she was born the nurse looked at me and said that, after looking at her record, some would have chosen to abort her. Yet, here I was with a beautiful, healthy baby girl. THIS is my problem with the law.
Shouldn’t we always give life a chance? In a court case, a suspect is always innocent until proven guilty. Shouldn’t an unborn baby be alive until proven otherwise? Many miscarriages and spontaneous abortions happen because the pregnancy is no longer viable, the baby’s heart stops beating, or there is a genetic disability. And sometimes this happens when there is no reason at all. Whenever a couple receives this information about their unborn child, there is almost always grieving involved. Why? Because it is a loss. Disabilities and diagnoses can happen at any point of life, for any child, born or unborn. If we aren’t allowed to dispose of our three year old after a disability diagnosis, why must we be allowed to dispose of it at 38 weeks gestation? I believe that God has gifted women with the privilege to support, sustain and protect life at all costs. Abortion is the complete opposite of that.
Let’s be clear about one thing… this law does not protect a woman’s life. While pregnant, a mother’s life has always been the priority. The doctors will induce labor at any point of a pregnancy if the mother’s life is in danger, while equally trying to save the baby after it is born. This law allows a woman to decide at any point of her pregnancy that she does not WANT the child.
I don’t say this to be cruel to women.
I say this to focus on the cruel reality of abortion.
It all comes down to what women want.
If you want to call it a child, it’s a child.
If you don’t want to call it a baby, its not.
Can I be honest? I’m a mom, sitting in Panera, getting a couple hours of alone time who couldn’t decide if I wanted a chocolate chip cookie or not. What I want changed a few hours ago. It also changed the minute I got married, became a mom for the first time and again, after I had my third child. My wants change daily and, sometimes, by the second. I was taught long ago, that selflessness meant laying down my wants and desires for the betterment of those around me.
Women, we have been given the beautiful responsibility of carrying and sustaining a living being.
We must learn to not just accept our bodies and the role they play in the circle of life, but protect them. And if you don’t want children, there are lots of ways to protect your reproductive system from having them (or finding homes for them if you happen to find yourself in the low-chance of pregnancy). You absolutely have that choice to make. You can have a whole hysterectomy and guarantee 1000% that your body will never get pregnant.
But the minute it does… your wants must change.
To be honest, I’m much more concerned about the state of our hearts than the laws. And I know that the only way we will see abortion end, is if women collectively decide that it’s not an option. But that’s going to be difficult. Because, the only bigger mystery than trying to figure out what women want, is figuring out what women want while pregnant.
(If you’re offended by this post, then you must also be offended when women joke about their raging hormones, cravings and having “pregnancy brain” while pregnant. We don’t mind admitting that our physiological makeup affects our decision making, unless it comes to choosing to terminate a pregnancy. Then we are completely rational human begins. The contradictions must end. And so must abortion.)