16 September 2011

Courage

People tell me I am strong for surviving the after-birth ordeal of having a special child.

But I can tell you that the truly brave are the women who choose to continue with their pregnancy, knowing full well they are carrying a special child, at an early point where they have the chance to abort.

It is a quiet courage that has nothing to do with bravado, and everything to do with sheer faith and belief in the sanctity of life.

It is a mother fighting against all the voices telling her "abort! abort! don't let your baby suffer!" and her own uncertainties about every step ahead, knowing deep inside that she needs to give that grain of life at least the chance to decide it's own path - however long or short it may be. It is total respect for life.

While the world around her - doctors, concerned friends and relatives, medical statistics - may point to the dire prognosis and make her feel as though she is making a grave mistake, she has to, despite her own fears, soldier on blind into the unknown with the life inside her, because God has made her, by nature, protector of that life. It is a role entrenched into the DNA of a mother.

So to all the mothers who chose or choose to carry a sick baby, especially a Trisomy 18 baby, to term, this is my humble salute to you. Jill. Christine. And many other women among us.

It is courage more worthy of celebration than any battle fought and won.

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