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Mom, Thank You for Choosing Life

As the anniversary of Roe v. Wade comes around again, I can't help but think of my mom and our story.

In My Beginning

My mom and dad had the name for their second child all picked out. Their baby boy was going to be named Benjamin Isaac. To my parents' surprise, I was born on that March evening. But, before that day could arrive, my parents faced a decision. If they had taken his advice, you would not be reading this article. I would not have been born.

When Mom first told me our story, it's safe to say it shocked me. Here's what she shared with me:

It was in my first trimester when my doctor decided to do a maternal blood screening test to check for possible birth defects. The test came back positive, confirming a higher than normal possibility of serious birth defects. He stated all of the possible defects, such as neural tube defects, Down Syndrome, and other chromosomal defects. The doctor told me there was still time for a Therapeutic D & C (Dilation and Curettage), an abortion.

Even as my mother spoke, I couldn’t emotionally wrap my mind around what she was saying. If this man had convinced my parents that the risk was simply too great, I would not have celebrated my 32nd birthday this year.

Mom explained her reaction to the doctor's abortion suggestion...

I don't know if I was shocked or stunned at first. I didn’t know what to think, so I left the doctor’s office to figure out what to do. I called your Dad. We quickly decided this was not up to us, but that our baby-to-be and our lives were in God's hands. We both felt that God alone has the understanding and wisdom to know when a life begins and when it ends. Right then, I made God a promise. It was a promise He soon tested. Keeping me faithful to my word, God took your little brother Nathan James to Heaven.

I became pregnant when you were five months old. Another doctor ran the same tests on Nathan and the results came back positive – again. Dad and I were calm though because we knew God would make a way for us. That December, I started bleeding and the doctor ordered me to rest. On the way home from the appointment, my condition just got worse. My nurse friend Nancy took me to the emergency room and they admitted me at once. That night, I passed a large mass, which they said was our baby. Tests showed that it was a boy with numerous birth defects. The doctor encouraged us to mourn him and name him as if he drew breath. Doing that helped us heal.

God Alone Knows

Although it was painful to lose Nathan, Mom shared that she clung to the fact that God knows what He’s doing. Nathan could have lived an unbearable life, but in God's mercy, he was spared that pain.

Despite the doctor's troubling preliminary report, I was born healthy. My parents' trust in the Lord spared my life. In fact, each of my siblings (we're five in all) were diagnosed with health problems before birth. One of my younger brothers was even preliminarily diagnosed with Spina bifida, which by God’s grace and through the faithful prayers of my parents and others that did not become his reality. Today, we are all healthy, thriving adults.

I share all of this not to condemn, but to encourage. God alone knows our past, present, and future. All I can say is that God will give you peace and guide you if you call on Him.

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