Sunday, April 14, 2013

Private Pain, Public Policy

The story about Dr. Kermit Gosnell's has appeared on my Facebook news feeds several times over that last few weeks.  I appreciated the warning about containing graphic descriptions.  I did not want to read it. I did not want to be reminded that everyday there are babies dying in abortion clinics and hospitals because of  a woman's decision. Babies older than my baby. Much older.  And yet we are not supposed to grieve for these babies. Or even call them babies.

I do grieve for these babies and their mothers.  I have been comforted by the vision of my grandpa holding my baby close.  One night I was thinking of those babies who die without having a welcoming committee in heaven. Then it occurred to me, that every baby who dies by abortion, regardless of how the mother views or acknowledges them, every baby is welcomed by grandpas, grandmas, aunt, uncles, cousins, or maybe even siblings.  They do have family in heaven to greet them. And that made me even more sad.  There is no such thing as an unwanted baby.  So many of these babies have family here on earth who would grieve over their loss, if only they had known about them.

It seems there is a concerted effort to minimize the significance of unborn babies by calling them products of conception or tissue or fetuses.  Yet why do I grieve for my child?  Does my child have significance simply because I say so?  Does my baby have more value than child who is conceived at an inopportune time to an unprepared mother?

It was so hard for me to post about our loss.  I felt like I had to because we had posted so publicly that we were expecting.  But I thought about those people who might not understand our sadness or might not think our sadness was justified because I knew where they stood on issue of abortion laws.  At the same time, I don't really think pro-choice people are heartless and would ever say, "You shouldn't be sad because it wasn't a baby."  It is a strange disconnect.

I have been honored through sharing my loss, to hear the stories of other women who have also lost babies through miscarriage or still-birth.  It is often in private messages or hushed tones.  Women grieve the loss of their unborn babies but they usually don't feel safe sharing the depth of that loss except with other women who have been through it.  I can only imagine what women go through who have had abortions.  Their bodies go through the same intensive hormonal stuff that mine did but yet I'm sure they don't feel safe to talk about their feelings of loss and sorrow for fear of judgement or condemnation.

Yes, my heart breaks for the women of abortion. A women who chooses abortion, much like a woman who makes an adoption plan, does not do so for flippant or trivial reasons.  Perhaps she feels she has no choice, no hope, no support.  We don't expect mothers who place their child for adoption to forget about her child and never grieve for them.  It is all very sad. It is a big problem. One that I don't even know how we could begin to fix but we could start by calling them babies and allowing women to grieve.


e&e said...

I heard a woman speak from this organization, which helps women wounded by abortion. So good.


Lea and her Mustangs said...

Oh Katie, I grieve also. I had 2 very emotional miscarriages and lost a daughter at 5 days. You grieve, and grieve. A place in your heart never forgives, never. Not that it rules your life but that little hole does not leave. We too have too adopted children, A boy and a girl. All our kiddos are grown and have children of their own and some have given us great GC They are awesom and makes my heart happy, but the holes are there.

John said...

Hi, Katie! Thanks for posting this! You might also like reading/posting this article: I've been praying for you as I remember all the emotions of a miscarriage. So hard. So thankful we can know that HE WILL WORK ALL THINGS together for our good if we love Him! Romans 8:28 YSIC, Jamie