I Used to be Pro-Life


pro-lifeI have mulled this post over in my mind for months now, afraid to open Pandora’s box on a topic that so many are wholly invested in. However, I think it is important to be upfront and discuss the moment when my heart and mind were brought into the reality of what a pro-life nation truly means.

I used to be pro-life. Deeply pro-life. If you should happen to go back and search my Facebook past, it is clear where I stood. Crystal, actually. The knowledge I had about what happened medically during an abortion was strictly based on what I had read, and the only emotion I had to reflect on was the emptiness portrayed in the Ben Folds Five song “Brick.” Those ideas, along with the Bible outlining any question I may have had, culminated to form my extreme stance on how horrible abortion is.

There is one problem: I have never had an abortion, nor have I ever needed one.

It’s so easy to judge someone’s actions when you’ve never actually walked in their shoes, isn’t it? That is what I had the pleasure of doing. It is a privilege, by the way, not to have to be thrown into making such a decision. Just make good choices, everyone! Abstain from sex. Like seriously, it’s so easy, right? I took my middle-class white girl privilege and ran with it, not even realizing it was a stumbling block.

Until a few years ago, when a family friend discovered that she was finally pregnant. She and her husband had been trying and had only dealt with loss so far. This time though, it all worked out, and the child they longed so deeply for was a small reality.

Until it wasn’t.

At ten weeks, they had a genetic screen run and were devastated to find the baby had several medical issues. They both work in the medical field, so they got another opinion. And another. And another. Each time, the outcome didn’t change. They were absolutely devastated, and they had a choice to make: to attempt to carry as long as possible, knowing their child would likely be stillborn or to terminate.

After much discussion, agonizing, and prayer, she chose to terminate the pregnancy.

I remember standing in my mom’s living room, hearing this story and trying to process the horrible trauma that she just endured. Then, I tried to imagine one thing: what would it have been like to go through all the tests, all the agony, and all the heartache to be told “No.” What if a medical professional would explain to her that she doesn’t have a right to this decision. That this in fact, is not her choice. What if she was reprimanded and told, “You should have known when you became pregnant that something like this could happen and you would have to deal with the consequences.” Full knowing that this doctor may have never experienced this situation personally, but matter-of-factly would try to reassure her that they’d probably be okay.

In that instant, my position changed. The older I have gotten, the more I have realized the depth of pregnancy and motherhood. It changes you to your core physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. There are so many situations that one can look at and examine and try to determine what is “right” and “wrong,” but the fact remains: no one should be able to regulate a woman’s body but herself. End of the story.

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Kate is a born and bred Hoosier, who has planted roots on the Southside. She and her husband are the proud parents of two rambunctious little boys. They have the privilege of raising their toddlers out in the country, where she enjoys a bit of a slower pace of life. Kate graduated from IUPUC in 2009 with a degree in Elementary Education and is a second grade teacher. When she isn't busy wrangling toddlers, she loves reading, writing, and working on her latest adventure: running. She strongly believes that no Mama should feel alone, and enjoys writing honestly about being a wife and a Mommy, and all the adventures it brings.