My darling little baby turns one on the 23rd of January. He was due on the 22nd but missed it by 38 minutes. I so wanted him to be born on his due date. January 22nd is the anniversary of Roe v Wade, when the court decided 38 years ago to exclude the unborn in the constitutional right to life through the horrific act of abortion. I have a passion for the pro-life cause. I wish everyone could put themselves in the tiny feet of an unborn baby and watch and feel what they have to go through in an abortion procedure. How different our world would be! Instead we leave it to our imagination. I suspect that these images must be blocked from those that call themselves pro-choice.
When I was a teenager, I was almost radical about the pro-life cause. If I caught even a hint that someone wasn't 100% pro-life, I was on him or her like white on rice. You could not stop me from talking and I'm ashamed to admit it but I lacked compassion in these "talks" too. I have since matured, thank God! Years ago, I volunteered at the pro-life booth at the Santa Calagon in Independence. I had done that every labor day for several years. Each year was the same. People would politely see what our booth was about, thank us, buy a shirt or a bumper sticker, maybe drop a dollar in our donation jar. Then as the day began to grow darker, the number of guests stayed the same but fewer people came to our booth for a visit. As it got darker, our supporters were gone and the pro-choicers were running rampant. People would yell and criticize us. How ironic that this always happened in the dark. It reminded me about all the Bible stories I read when evil took over the story. It was almost always in the night. Out of the blue, in the darkness, a girl walked up to our booth and looked around slowly. Her eyes locked on our plastic babies that represented what a baby looked like at that stage of development. I didn't know what to say. It was dark, the supporters have seemed to be home and tucked away in bed, so, who was she? Is she about to throw one of these babies at me? Is she going to start yelling? Crying? So I said the only thing that I could think of....get ready...."Hi". She looked at me and said, "I'm scheduled to have an abortion on Wednesday." I didn't know what to say. I was shocked. Here I am working this pro-life booth and it never occurred to me that I could be faced with this. I'm glad that I was struck speechless because it gave me the chance to look into her eyes. She wasn't there to debate me. She had such deep sadness in her eyes. It was the kind of sadness you would see in someone who just ran over a child in their car. The.."What have I done??" look, even though she had done nothing yet. It was scheduled and her baby was as good as dead. With my mother standing right next to me as cool and calm as she was, she listened to me tell the girl my story. Yes, this goody-goody, unmarried girl with her chastity bumper sticker got pregnant at 20. I told her where I went for help (Birthright) and how they compassionately helped me through this ordeal, even ready to help me find a home with a loving 2 parent family for my baby. I had a stack of resources stapled together with "Do Not Remove From Booth" written on the front cover. Trying to hide the shaking of my hand and arm, I handed her the whole packet. I wanted to cry for this girl. I was so numb. I saw a glimmer of hope in her eyes as I told her my story. I do not know her story though. I do not know if she ever kept her appointment. I will probably never know. The look on her face is forever sketched in my mind. I am not praying outside of abortion clinics just for the life of the unborn babies that go in there but for the mom's that walk in suffering the way this girl was.
Now, my little man turns one today. I have taken advantage of every day with him. I love feeling seasoned with mommyhood. I can love on my baby without the weight of worry or stress that new mom's have. I nurse him like he could be my last, rubbing his hair and caressing his cheek and picking the wax out of his ear:) I love every single diaper change so much that I can't wait for the next one....unless its a disposable diaper. Then I just grumble that it cost 13 cents and leave it on him until I get all 13 cents worth of it. Nothing in my life is more efficient then how I wash and care for the diapers. My life would be totally complete with just me and my baby....BUT...it gets even better! I have 7 other children that I get to love and reminisce of their baby days. I have 8 times as many baby stories! I want to talk people into valuing life but I believe my best hope for this is through my example. I have not met one pro-choice person since my teenage years. Sounds weird right? There are so many but I can't point to anyone I know and say that they are pro-choice. Why is that? They must be out there. I hope it is because when people see me, it sits right there on my hip and they can see it in my eyes and in my life that this person values life of all sizes.
My baby Matthew with big sister Josie
My baby Matthew with big sister Josie