Friday, August 18, 2017

All Life!

Melissa Ohden writes in her webpage, "Systemically aborting babies deemed “different” or disabled is not only a reflect of intolerance and discrimination, it also deepens and embeds these ugly attitudes.
Just the other day, I was on a flight to Texas, when this realization hit me full force.  It’s not the first time that it’s crossed my mind, and I know that I’m not the first person to reach this conclusion, but I think that it bears discussing.
For me, the extermination of individuals prenatally diagnosed with disabilities (even a suspicion of disabilities) is personal.  Not just because I’m an abortion survivor, but also because I’m a mother who lost a unborn child at 11 weeks. A chromosomal abnormality ended Gabriel’s life in the womb.  My husband Ryan and I were told that our son likely had Trisomy 18.
I shared in a series of articles published on LifeNews not long after we lost our son that I know that God created Gabriel exactly as he was, Trisomy 18 and all.  I know that God didn’t take him away from us.  He redeemed our loss of Gabriel by blessing us with lessons about life, loss, and love.  He further solidified for us the sanctity of every life from the moment of conception.
Yet I won’t pretend that these lessons through loss were, or are, easy, or that they came to me quickly.  The first Sunday after the miscarriage, I was still weighed down heavily with grief. I choked back tears as I watched families entering the sanctuary.  I wanted to blend in with the crowd to avoid even speaking to anyone.  I wondered if coming out of the house just a few days after the  miscarriage was the right thing to do.
And then I saw him.  A young man, about 20 years of age, was sitting with his mother.  It was just the two of them, his arm wrapped affectionately around her shoulder.  They were visibly joyous and loving.  And I was, admittedly, jealous.
I  thought that my heart might burst from the pain that I felt in losing Gabriel was intermingled with the joy that I felt watching these two interact.  You see, this son had Down syndrome, and although Gabriel’s diagnosis was different, I felt an instant connection to them.  I could identify with them and desperately wanted to be them.
I’ll be honest.  In those first few weeks after we lost Gabriel, I walked through a valley of intense grief.  Although I knew God was right there with us, supporting and guiding us, I had my moment of despair in which I questioned Him.
So as I watched this son and mother interact, my question of God was not “How could you have let this happen to us?” Quite the contrary, it was, “Don’t you trust me enough to care for our son with special needs? Am I somehow unworthy of having him here like this mother?”
Over the past 1 1/2 years, I’ve been healed from the pain of losing Gabriel (as healed as you can be), and I know that losing him was not because God saw me unfit to care for him.  Yet I still long for him, and my eyes and heart are attuned to seeing mothers and sons like us in the world.
On that recent flight to Texas, I saw “us” again.
One row behind and to the left sat an adult son with Down syndrome and his mother.  I cherished their laughter as they chatted away in their seats, straining to hear what they might have found so funny, without looking too obvious that I was listening in.
As the plane hit turbulence, I could hear the mother’s words as she tried to calm his nerves.  As I glanced back at them, wistfully, thinking about our Gabriel and missing out on opportunities like this with him, I suddenly realized that I was not the only one watching this duo. But those others were looking with annoyance and disdain.
I could hear the loud whispers from the passengers across the aisle from me about how he was interrupting their sleep and that the mother should ‘make him be quiet.’  I watched as a man in the row ahead of me kept shaking his head and putting it in his hands whenever this young man would cry out and his mother would comfort him.
As I watched all of this occur, I couldn’t help but think about how our world today views lives both inside and outside of the womb that are “different” or disabled.  We know that as many as 90% of children with Down syndrome are aborted. We know that children with even suspected medical issues are targeted for abortion, whether it’s a simple cleft palate or a complex heart problem.  Anyone who may not fit the mold of society’s “normal” are, by and large, aborted.
Not only is this a tragic loss of human life, but I believe that this is a tragic loss to our world. By ending these lives, we surround ourselves, more often than not, by only those lives that are largely similar to our own.  When we are surrounded by such sameness, it becomes more and more difficult for many to be appreciative and simply, even tolerable, of those who are different than them.
Maybe if 90% of all children with Down syndrome were born instead of aborted, the man on the plane shaking his head in annoyance would have had more opportunities to be around individuals with strengths and needs that are uniquely theirs.  Maybe if those 90% of children with Down syndrome were born, the people on the plane complaining about the noise would have been more used to being around individuals who voice their discomfort and who are, in turn, comforted.
What a tragic disservice has been done to children, to families, and ultimately to our world, as a result of targeting children with disabilities for abortion.  In a society that screams for tolerance and diversity, it seems as if we are in search of a rather homogenous society of the “perfect”. It is an ugly cycle: the more we abort children with disabilities, the fewer the opportunities to learn from them, the more ready we are to abort those who are “different.”
Until people respect, appreciate, and understand the importance of every human life, from the moment of conception and regardless of circumstance, they will be far less likely to see the importance of protecting  them and allowing them to live.  Ending the systemic abortion of lives deemed “different” or disabled is an important and integral first step in breaking this cycle of intolerance and discrimination.
As an abortion survivor, this fight to protect ALL human lives is personal.  As a mother who was blessed with a son who would have been born with special needs, this fight is necessary.
Gabriel, fighting this side of the fight to end abortion, is in honor of you."

Thursday, August 17, 2017

An abortion survivor

Melissa Ohden, is a wife and mother of 3 (one in Heaven).  She is also an abortion survivor.  If you are considering abortion, please read her story and know that you will never regret if you choose life for your child.  Melissa's story is an incredible story of forgiveness!  Melissa due to the Lord is alive.  Every life is intrinsically valuable and I ask that you read and contemplate this story and understand the beauty of life and how abortion harms life and the power of forgiveness.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

A Powerful Journey through Infertility and Adoption

A precious couple named Walt and Annie share their story about infertility and adoption in this compelling YouTube link.  
Their story is so compelling as their genuine, raw spirits of their journey walk the listener through joy and sorrow and sorrow and joy!  They walk through the uniqueness of being family friends and then becoming personal friends to marriage. He and his wife walk through infertility.  They are candid about every step.
Walt, who at the young age of 10 or 12, had a vision from God about a child who had olive skin with dark brown eyes, named Chloe wonders if his family is to ever have Chloe, the girl from his vision. 

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Charlie's Story-Update

Live Action News, founder Lila Rose, has someone share about Charlie Gard a young boy whose parents were overruled by the parliament in England,

"It appears that the battle to save Charlie Gard’s life has come to an end. Today was the final day in a hearing that would appeal court decisions barring Charlie’s parents from taking him to the United States for experimental treatment, which they believed could help his condition. In a shocking turn of events, the lawyer representing Chris Gard and Connie Yates announced that they were withdrawing their appeal instead.

Charlie was originally placed on life support after he became seriously ill. He was then diagnosed with a rare RRM2B mitochondrial depletion syndrome. Initially, his parents wanted to take him to the United States for an experimental nucleoside therapy treatment, which they believed could save his life. They raised over $1.4 million for his treatment, but Charlie’s hospital – Great Ormond Street Hospital in London – disagreed that the therapy would be beneficial and insisted that Charlie should instead be taken off of life support. The decision sparked a months-long legal battle, with Charlie’s parents losing appeal after appeal, until the European Court of Human Appeals ultimately ruled against them.
The case garnered international attention. A Vatican hospital offered to take in Charlie for treatment, President Trump offered to help baby Charlie, and United States lawmakers introduced a bill to make Charlie and his parents U.S. citizens. However, the hospital and the courts initially held firm and refused to allow Charlie to be treated elsewhere. The hospital also refused to let his parents take him home to die.
As the controversy grew, Great Ormond Street Hospital eventually requested a new court hearing so new evidence could be considered. An American doctor, Dr. Michio Hirano, traveled to London to examine Charlie and to meet with specialists. Dr. Hirano was optimistic that the nucleoside therapy could help Charlie, saying British doctors could be wrong in their diagnosis. Instead, Dr. Hirano said, Charlie could be suffering from muscle weakness, and if this is the case, there is up to a 55 percent chance of therapy helping him.
Given the optimism from Dr. Hirano, the decision from Charlie’s parents to withdraw their appeal to seek experimental treatment is shocking. However, according to their lawyer, it is an issue of time “running out” for Charlie. The lawyer said Charlie’s parents were “distressed” by the results of the latest tests, explaining, “For Charlie, it is too late, the damage has been done… it is no longer in Charlie’s best interests to pursue treatment.” They now instead want to spend what little time Charlie has left with him.
Gard and Yates also don’t appear to be mincing any words about who is responsible for this turn of events. Armstrong said the delay in getting Charlie treatment has robbed him of the opportunity to have the nucleoside therapy. “Dark days lie ahead for these parents,” Armstrong said. “The parents wish to treasure their remaining time with Charlie, however short that may be.”
Yates took the stand herself, saying, “This is the hardest thing we’ve ever had to do. Following [the] most recent MRI scan, we’ve decided to let our son go.”
“He is not brain dead,” she continued. “A whole lot of time has been wasted. Charlie’s quality of life could have been improved greatly (by earlier treatment). But the delay in seeking treatment has brought Charlie to ‘the point of no return.’ Our poor boy has just been left to lie there for months without treatment… left with this illness to deteriorate to point of no return,” she said. “But no organ has failed. No proof he is in pain or suffering. The prospect of improvement now [is] too low. The deterioration in his muscles means there is no way back. Treatment is now not in Charlie’s best interests and we will let our little boy go.”
As she spoke, Chris Gard cried openly.
Yates also argued that it was not too late to prevent such a tragedy from afflicting another family. “It’s not too late for others. We owe it to him [Charlie] to not let his life be in vain,” she said. “We thank GOSH. We love Charlie very much. Our son is a warrior. His legacy will never die. His spirit will live on for eternity. Mummy and Daddy love you so much, Charlie. We always have, we always will.”
While it is not yet clear when – or if – Charlie will be taken off of life support, this is a tragic end for the Gard family."

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Quality of life-ethics

Quality of life is subjective. A wealthy person might think someone who is middle class has no quality of life because they don't have a BMW. There are people who may say that poor people in Africa have no quality of life. 
The ethics of "quality of life" are extremely concerning. This term is subjective and causes any person to be the target. This term truly is chosen to be the new definition of value. And every person has innate value and this term is subjective as it allows people to say who is valuable. "Quality of life" gives some people who want to target people groups the freedom to do so. This term gives people the freedom to analyze certain people and people groups to say that they don't fit this definition and therefore are worthy of dying. If medicine has to choose to kill people or keep them we need to find new "medical" developments. Medicine shouldn't have to decide between killing someone and keeping them alive.  We can't normalize death like taking someone off of life support. As we know talk about life support I want to say that this topic is of a delicate manner that I approach it. I believe that life support is used for God's glory and also is sometimes not. Life support is used to help people to stay alive yet at what point are we trying to play God? Life support has one ending, taking someone off it. When we take someone off of life support we are killing them  and choosing to play God. God takes life and makes life not man. The term quality of life opens up doors that for judgement calls to be made on life that only God is allowed to make. The concept of trying to make such a statement on life support is absurd.  Every person deserves life.  This term is used to justify some of the medical field's view to say it is okay to end a child's life who is sick because they can't live long.  Who says that time span determines value?