I often find myself perusing pregnancy sites and land on some forums every once and awhile. We are at week 22 with “Baby G”.
Yesterday I came across a thread in a forum where a mother shared about her pregnancy experience. At five months she and her husband were told that their child, a baby boy, had holoprocencephaly along with a missing eye and later started forming hydrocephalus.
No doubt cause for worry and concern. Despite being told he would likely die in utero or shortly after birth, the parents decided to continue with the pregnancy. She shares, “As they were asking me these questions I feel my little boy kicking and moving inside me. No I will not terminate, I felt if he is going to die then he will make the decision when, not me. I continued taking care of him knowing this horrible outcome. I figured while he is in my belly I will cherish my time with him.”
This mother and father are a beautiful testament to valuing life at all stages. I was offered testing to see if our baby might have any number of disabilities and declined – after all, it would not change how we proceed. But for many, it does. For many couples the fear of the unknown or “less than perfect” baby when given a diagnosis is too much to handle and they take the doctor’s “advice” to “terminate”.
The baby boy diagnosed with holoprocencephaly was found to not have had it at all after he was born – a false diagnosis. He had surgery to help with the hydrocephalus. He is functioning properly with the only effect of the original diagnosis being his one eye, meanwhile his other eye is perfect.
Ultimately, regardless of our abilities or lack of abilities before or after birth we are all created in God’s image. We are all valuable human beings. And, though some babies may have died in utero with that or another diagnosis or shortly after birth, it is not for us to decide when that should happen.
God Bless these parents. And I pray for any parents who receive a “bad” diagnosis during pregnancy that they will have the courage to continue to say “yes” to the beautiful life developing within them. And, for parents who did have an abortion because of a diagnosis I pray that they will find healing through Christ’s forgiveness.
There are resources and support for families, but I am guessing not enough – or they are not widely known.
I am most familiar with 99 Balloons: “Our Mission is to serve and support special-needs children and their families locally, nationally and internationally.”
Please share more in the comments.