Painfully Thoughtful Thursday

I know the focus of this blog is to find the fun in everyday life. But the reality is, life is not always fun. We can look for the glimmer of light in the midst of the darkness, but life can be very hard. Very dark. Very frightening. There are days when I don’t recognize my country and it is those days I am so thankful to God that I live where I live.
This is a painful subject to write about. Painful not because I have personal experience, but rather because I don’t. I generally shy away from politically and socially controversial issues. But this time I must speak from the heart. If I don’t do it here, on my own forum, then shame on me.
Fair warning to anyone who may not want to “read more,” the topic today is the law passed in the state of New York regarding changes to their abortion law. If you don’t want my opinion then come back tomorrow. I’ve got a great Foodie Friday post in the works.

Missing Pieces

This subject has been festering in my heart like a splinter on the bottom of my foot. Every time I move or allow my thoughts to wander, I think about what has been done in New York. And now we have Virginia contemplating allowing abortion all the way through 40 weeks. That is medically a full term baby. We are no longer considering just killing fetuses unable to live outside of their mother’s womb, we are considering allowing or assisting full term babies to die. If I am heart broken over this, I cannot even to begin to imagine how God views this state of inhumanity. There is an infertile couple somewhere who would adopt that baby. In fact, there would likely be a line out the hospital door waiting for such a chance.

My husband and I together were not able to have children. Medical and financial issues prevented us from conceiving. Therefore I have never personally experienced pregnancy. A vacuum in my life that will never go away. I will never know the flutter as a new life grows inside of me. I will never know the life altering experience of giving birth. I can barely even write about it. But I must.
As I have previously written I married two people, my husband and his (now our) daughter. I helped raise her and then helped her raise her three girls until she was able to stand on her own after a difficult marriage. But it is still not the same thing as passing my genetic code on to another human being. Adoption would have been a non-genetic option available for us to raise a child of our own, but again, money stood in our way. The cost of private adoption was ridiculous and due to age factors we would not have been able to adopt an infant. I made peace with my situation.
That peace came from God. I came to trust that He had placed me in the lives of these two people for a specific purpose, and things have worked together for good.

Perspective

Have I ever been in the position of considering an abortion? Yes I have. As a newly divorced single woman I was not always as careful as I should have been and I found myself wondering if I were pregnant. I worked for a group of pediatricians at the time and all I could think was that I would loose my job because I didn’t set a good example. In hindsight I see the fallacy of this thought process, but panic was setting in.

How was I going to afford to do this? Could I do it? What were my choices? What about the man. It was not a real relationship, just someone I went out with once or twice. There’s no doubt he would not want to be saddled with me and a baby.

It was a very long two to three weeks. And then I knew I wasn’t pregnant. But in those agonizing days I vacillated about the decision. Finally, I accepted that if indeed I was pregnant I would go through with the pregnancy. I was twenty eight years old, employed and self sufficient. This child would have been a blessing to me and I was responsible for its creation. I was scared. I was excited. Then I was terrified. But in the end I knew that I could not get rid of something as sacred as a new life.

I have told no one this story until now. There was no need, it was private. But it doesn’t need to be private any longer. It can’t be. If those of us who made other choices, no matter the outcome, don’t speak up all the world will hear is the noise coming from people who believe differently.

Medical Science

Because of my experience, I have always said that I believe a woman has the right to choose abortion. The act itself as well as the emotional, physical and spiritual consequences were between her and God. God created us with free will. He allows us to make choices but unlike modern society does not necessarily insulate us from the natural consequences of our actions.

In my mind, three months is plenty of time to make the decision. What is growing is an embryo. According to the website Medline.gov this is a partial list of what is happening to the embryo during the first three months:

  • Cells divide and develop specific functions
  • Brain, spinal cord and heart develop
  • Arm and leg buds form
  • Lungs form
  • By 9 weeks all essential organs have begun to grow
  • The heart grows and beats in a regular rhythm
  • Outer ears take shape and facial features become more distinct
  • By the end of 10 weeks, the embryo is now a fetus.

I dont’ know about you, but to me that is a human being. Within the next 2 weeks this fetus will also be able to hear. Nerves are in place – rudimentary, but in place.

Thanks to ultrasound and other noninvasive tools, parents can now see their baby at this stage of development. Heart beats and all.

What Separates Us From Animals

These days it seems like there isn’t much separation. The behavior of grown adults is shameful and often frightening. God gave us something very special. He gave us a soul. A living spiritual connection to Him that lives inside every human being. I have often wondered, when does the spirit enter? Is it at conception? Does the spirit of the divine live in that mass of quickly dividing cells? I have heard that some believe the spirit of God doesn’t enter the body until the first breath is drawn much like God breathed life into Adam. I have no answers. I would look with suspicion on anyone who claimed to have the definitive answer. I think that is one of the mysteries we won’t be allowed to know on this side of heaven. Just something to ponder.

Side Taking, Fence Sitting & Name Calling

Two cases were upheld by the Supreme Court on the same day that forever changed the lives of millions of women and babies. From a Wikipedia article:

Harry Blackmun wrote the Court’s opinion.

The Court issued its decision on January 22, 1973, with a 7-to-2 majority vote in favor of Roe. Justices Burger, Douglas, and Stewart filed concurring opinions, and Justice White filed a dissenting opinion in which Justice Rehnquist joined. Burger’s, Douglas’s, and White’s opinions were issued along with the Court’s opinion in Doe v. Bolton (announced on the same day as Roe v. Wade). The Court deemed abortion a fundamental right under the United States Constitution, thereby subjecting all laws attempting to restrict it to the standard of strict scrutiny.[41]

We never hear about Doe v. Bolton. I had never heard of it until today. Between these two court rulings abortion became legally protected (Roe v. Wade) while making the placement of restrictions on obtaining an abortion virtually impossible (Doe v. Bolton).
If I had to be totally honest, I don’t have a problem with Roe v. Wade. It is Doe v. Bolton that is the problem. This is where I see the federal government stepping on the rights of each state to determine what is best for its citizens. State’s rights is a huge issue for me and one that seems to be slipping farther and farther out of our hands.
Both the adamant Pro-Life and Pro-Choice folks would deride me for being a fence sitter. I am not firmly in either camp, thus I run the risk of alienating some or all of the above. That’s when the name calling comes into effect. I don’t want to argue about this. I don’t want to be called names or for folks to figure out where I live and come hunt me down like a rabid animal. We no longer live in a country of civil discourse, respect for other people’s opinions, or even the right to HAVE a different opinion. And no I do not blame Donald Trump.
What I want all of us to do is treat other people with compassion and kindness. None of us has full perspective of what it is like to live in someone else’s shoes. Even if we did it could never be the same experience. There are so many reasons why people do the thing that they do. My problem is not with the people; it is with our government.
All of them. I repeat ALL of them are falling all over themselves to cater to a specific group of people in order to get their vote. Identity politics is going to be the death of us yet. Don’t be tricked into thinking they want your vote because they want to help you. They aren’t giving hand outs because they care. Everything they do is to gain power and control over us.
This country was founded on ideals of freedom. Our founding fathers worked hard to insure that as many of the pitfalls of government would be avoided by giving so much power to the people. It seems those days are long gone. But that’s another long story for another day.

Don’t Buy The Lies

If for some reason you are reading this, are pregnant and scared, please know you have a choice. You can choose life for you and your baby. If you are not able to raise it there are so many agencies who will provide help and guidance for you during the pregnancy and assist you in finding a family to raise your child.

Also, don’t believe that by submitting to a quick procedure you will be able to go on with your life as if nothing has happened. There are consequences…physical, emotional and spiritual. No one can predict the life long affect this decision could have for you. Weigh all your options. Talk to medical professionals, priests or pastors for spiritual guidance, family for emotional support. Don’t carry this around with you in shameful hiding. It is a dark and scary place. Bringing it out in the open is the best way to see clearly and make the best decision for you and your unborn child.

In Conclusion

I haven’t solved any issues here today. But I have expressed my opinion and hopefully provided an alternative point of view. I believe that God is in control of everything. He allows. He intervenes. He creates. He loves. In a perfect world mankind would never destroy what God created. But we don’t live in a perfect world. All we can do is our very best each and every day to walk humbly with God and treat each other with love and kindness. So much of the rest will take care of itself.

See you back here tomorrow for Foodie Friday!
Until then, keep looking up, embrace today and go have some fun!

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