Saturday, February 19, 2005

Our Decision

I want to say thank you to each person who has commented here with such kindness and compassion, even those who disagree with me but are offering prayer. When Dominic and I were given the knowledge that our baby cannot live, it was utterly shocking. We were asked to make choices for ourselves, our child, and our family that we never anticipated.

I spoke to pastoral ministers at my church. We prayed. We talked to councilors and friends. And sadly we reached a conclusion. The sad truth is that our daughter will not live outside of the womb. What she has is NOT anacephaly. With all due respect to the mothers of those blessed babies, this is not our daughters problem. Both hemispheres of her brain are present as is her skull, but severely malformed, and the amount of brain tissue is small. What we are dealing with appears to be a chromosomal problem, and she shows other physical characteristics that speak to that conclusion.

There is no "full-term" for our baby. There is no "age of viability" for our baby. I could carry her in my womb for 20 years, and she still cannot live outside of it. I understand other babies can, but mine cannot. At least that is the information I have at this time.

Of course I am still praying for a miracle. I'm hoping another ultrasound will show her brain as perfect, and her meningocele healed. But I am also realistic. I have read the catechism on this issue. I have consulted clergy. I have read numerous articles on the pros and cons of carrying to what would be for another baby, full-term.  The cons are significant, including some major risks to my health because of some of her specific problems.  We have made the decision based on all of the medical information that we have been given regarding my health, and the baby's to induce labor and deliver her early.

I respect my babies life very much. She is still a wanted baby. I don't know how I will deliver her at any time, or any week, and hand her over to strangers to put in a box in the ground. I can't begin to speak to the trauma and sadness my husband and I have experienced, and will continue to go through. She will always be our daughter. She will always be loved. But this is the last time I will defend our decision. Our friends don't need it, and it will never be enough for those who disagree. And to be perfectly honest I have enough in front of me to keep me busy without worrying what someone thinks of me.

I believe from what I understand of theology that God expects me to make the best decisions possible with the information that I have. And I see no reason why any earthly person should expect more from me than Our Lord. I am usually quite open to comments, even when they disagree with me, but on this topic I am not. If you disagree or disapprove of our decision I ask that you not comment. If you do, your comment will be deleted. There's still at least one thing I have some control over. And I will wield my power over the one domain in which I actually have some. I don't know that there is any decision that anyone can be 100% okay with 100% of the time. Because in the end, this just hurts like nothing I've ever experienced before. My daughter will never experience any of the things I wanted for her, and that breaks my heart. But she will go and be in the arms of Jesus, and I know as much as I love her, I can't begin to compare to that.


1'A visitor' posted on the Tue 22 Feb 2005, 9:58 am

I got here from Cecely's blog.My prayers are with you.


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