I must admit, though I’ve certainly heard the story of Gianna Jessen, I thought this was the sort of thing that happens once in a lifetime, and certainly not near me.
Yesterday, I went to visit a friend here in Ottawa. I met her other friend and after she left, my friend, we’ll call her Brenda, recounts what the friend who just left told her.
She is a healthcare worker (I know the details, but I’m leaving this deliberately vague) and yesterday was called in on the case of a baby born prematurely with multiple problems. This is because the mother went for a chemical abortion early on in the pregnancy (not sure how many weeks–but I think it may have been around eight weeks). It did not work and the baby lived. At 18 weeks, the mother rediscovered she was pregnant but did not at that time want to have another abortion. (Words you don’t hear often because abortion is most often “effective” in that the baby really is killed.)
So said baby was born and is now going to be adopted, but is very low birth weight and has some health problems.
That will never figure into the statistics, nor will any newspaper ever report it.
Here’s another angle on the story. My friend “Brenda” is pro-life. Her friend who recounted this story is not. Brenda listened to the story and asked why the mother didn’t abort again. She joked, something along the lines of saying “did she suddenly get all moral?” in that way that you do when you are anxious and not sure what to say.
To which the friend replied, “You can’t say that, there’s a big difference between 8 and 18 weeks.”
So though I am shocked by all of this, I think the take away is that once again, people are largely pro-life in instinct and want to protect babies. Ie. at 18 weeks it’s a “real baby” where at eight weeks, it’s not.
This is why Stephen Woodworth’s bill and the subsequent discussion is so very important. It’s not about abortion, it’s about when life begins. And uncovering that, hoping that the media doesn’t immediately distort the discussion, will be very critical for those of us who already get it.
Gianna Jessen: Abortion survivorby