I asked the Lord for three sons....and when He stopped laughing, He said, "One son."
In 1994, I was in a low time in my spiritual walk with the Lord. I wasn't in the Word of God as much as I should have been. Therefore, sin crept into my life. I became proud. I went from being a staunch Pro-life Conservative to a Liberal Feminist Pro-choice Democrat. I was a supporter of Bill and Hillary Clinton and a defender of Women's rights.
In other words, I was foolish in my thinking.
So, when we decided to start our family after being married for six years, I asked the Lord for three sons. We felt we were ready to handle the challenges of parenthood! And maybe we were, but we weren't quite ready for what the Lord was about to do to and through us...
August 1994- I discovered I was expecting our first child! We were so excited. After work, our routine was to go running at the nearby high school. Except this time, as I ran one lap, I felt a sharp pain in my side. I told Scott we had better head home. That next week, we met with the nurse practitioner who recommended an ultrasound since I was having pain and my uterus was enlarged. "Could you be having twins?" she asked. "Well, I suppose," I told her. "My mom is a twin."
Well, the ultrasound showed we were not having twins, but that I had several fibroid tumors all over my uterus and one attached by a band of flesh floating around on my right side. The nurse said that's probably what was causing my pain. After she left, an assistant came in to complete my file. "You know," she said. "You could just have them terminate the pregnancy, remove all the tumors, then get pregnant next year."
Terminate the pregnancy.
I recognized those words. I knew those words as a nice sterilized way of saying Abortion. There it was...my worldview staring me in the face. She's right, I thought. I live in America where women have the right to an abortion. But how could I terminate the life of my unborn child just because of inconvenience? Was she crazy?
High Risk Pregnancy
"You have what we consider a high risk pregnancy," my doctor told me.
Those are not the words a woman wants to hear when she is pregnant. But that's what I was told. No more running, no exercising at all, and work only part time. I was disappointed, but willing to obey the rules if it meant having a healthy baby.
November 1994- I still experienced pain on a daily basis, but like most women, I learned to ignore it and continued working part time. After Thanksgiving, the pain was severe. One afternoon while sewing a baby blanket, I noticed the pain would not stop. I laid down on the couch, but the pain worsened. Then, the contractions started. I called Scott who came home immediately. We were rushed to the hospital by ambulance. I was so afraid that I was losing the baby and that thought, along with the pain, was intolerable.
Later, in the hospital, the doctor saw my agony and admitted me immediately. Medications stopped the pain which stopped the contractions. I was told the news that would forever change my life: I was to be bedridden for the duration of my pregnancy. 20 weeks I was to spend in bed. "The only time I want you out of bed is to go to the bathroom and to make yourself something to eat," the doctor ordered. "But doctor, I'm not working for fun...we need my paycheck!" I told him. But he explained to me that if I wanted this baby, I had to stay in bed.
Fibroid tumors aren't rare. They are quite common. One in five women have them. What made my circumstance unusual was that the one tumor attached and floating in my abdomen was growing rapidly. How rapidly was what alarmed all the doctors. One of my doctors (I had many on my case since it was so unusual...) told me that the tumor would outgrow itself and die. And when that happens, the pain would be excruciating.
Oh great, I thought. Something to look forward to...
Ok, so lying in bed all day might sound nice, and it is for a couple of days...but once you get into the second week you start to go nuts! But I found myself lying in a bed in our family room watching TV or doing cross-stitch all day long. I had to strap on this monitor and monitor the contractions day and night. I had to visit the doctor each week for an ultrasound. My sweet mother-in-law would pick me up and take me to the doctor every week because I couldn't drive. At last, at 5 mos gestation, we found out we were having a son...so I named him Nathaniel. I named him Nathaniel because I have always loved that name, and, also, because it means Gift of God in Hebrew.
December 1994- Unfortunately, because I hadn't had any contractions and was feeling great, I broke the doctor's rules and drove myself to have lunch with my boss and co-workers one afternoon. It was unfortunate because the tumor decided to degenerate right there in this pricey restaurant where high priced attorneys, Superior Court Judges, and even the Attorney General eat lunch! I knew as soon as I sat down that I was in trouble. Sure enough, when it came time to leave, I told my co-workers that I couldn't move. The pain was horrible! And I had such a nice lunch, too: Linguini with escargot in marinara sauce.
Well, my dear friend drove me to the hospital and as I tried in vain to get out of her car, I knew I was in big trouble. The contractions were coming quickly and I was losing the baby.
They had to put me on the hard drugs to stop the pain. I was on morphine for 13 hours until, finally, the pain stopped and I could go home two days later. In the hospital, one thing I noticed was that when I was on the morphine, my heartbeat was erratic. The baby's heartbeat, however, remained normal. When I was in excruciating pain, the baby's heartbeat remained steady and strong. Interesting, huh?
The Lord was showing me something....
December 31st 1994- On the last day of 1994, early in the morning, the tumor decided to degenerate again. Another ambulance ride...and with the same paramedics crew too! They recognized me. Poor guys. I was a mess: very pregnant, crying, and in a lot of pain. Once at the hospital, I had to remain in the ER for 8 hours due to lack of beds. They had to put me on Magnesium Sulfate to stop the contractions. That stuff is awful! Ugh. Once it enters the bloodstream, it gives you the symptoms of the flu and hallucinations. Yuck!
That night, finally settled in a hospital bed, I was mentally and emotionally exhausted. When will this end? I thought. How will it end? Alone in the dark, I cried out to the Lord. "What did I do? Why is this happening to me? I mean, my sister had normal pregnancies. My mom had normal pregnancies. Why me? I pray to You, I go to church, I have never smoked a cigarette in my life, I exercise all the time...why is this happening?"
January 1995-I was able to go home seven days later. And this time, it was for the rest of the pregnancy. By February, Scott and I were thrilled. I had reached my seventh month, so our son's lungs were formed and healthy. He was out of danger. Now we just had to get to nine months...
April 1995- Finally, it was time to go to the hospital for a good reason! I was in labor. We had made it to nine months. After receiving an epidural to help with the pain, our son was born on April 18th. We were told just six days earlier that he would be born very small and weak and sick from all the narcotics I had to ingest hourly. But he defied all their expectations. He was 8lbs 11oz 21 inches long! We couldn't believe our eyes when we saw him. He was alert and not at all drugged up. He was pink and chubby, not thin and pale. It was a miracle. Our miracle boy was born.
That next morning, he lie sleeping next to me in his bassinet. All the doctors came by to see the Miracle Baby, they called him. They still couldn't believe how perfect he was!
When we brought him home, I was changing Nathan's diaper one morning, and I leaned over and placed my ear onto his little chest. I was so used to hearing the whoosh whoosh sound from the Doppler device the nurses used to listen to his heart, but now it was a normal lub-dub sound of a strong heart. He suffered no damage at all from what he and I endured. Praise God.
But it would take months before I realized why the Lord had me go through all that I went through.
I had the tumors removed from my uterus nine months later. My doctor was able to save my uterus. We could have more children! But six months later, all the tumors grew back. I sought the advice of four doctors. All of them examined me and noticed the tumors were inside and outside the uterus. It would be hard for me to get pregnant and if I did, it would almost certainly result in a miscarriage. They all advised against my having more children.
The news hit me hard. I had always assumed I could have many children. I remembered my prayer...
I asked the Lord for three sons. "No," He said. "One son. Be content with what I have given you."
That's a hard concept to deal with when you are a determined liberal woman living in America. I wasn't use to accepting things. As I dealt with the news, I finally began to realize the lesson the Lord was teaching me:
I realized that had I listened to that nurse...had I listened to my own worldview...I would have terminated the life of my only child.
That was the hard lesson I had to learn. We tend to think we have control over our lives. We fool ourselves into thinking we have our future all worked out.
The Lord had to make me completely still in order to reveal to me that the baby inside had nothing to do with me. He was the Lord's creation....not mine. I was just a host, nothing more. Nathan was not "my body". He was his own body. When I was in pain, he was fine. When I was under the influence of powerful drugs, he was fine. When my heartbeat was erratic, his was normal.
"You had nothing to do with the creation of that child," the Lord said to me. "Now do you understand?"
Yes, I cried. I understand.
And I laid my son on the altar of the Lord and dedicated him to God. He's yours, Lord, I thought. His father and I are just here to teach him about You and to take care of him. He belongs to you.
Of course, it took almost two years before I could exercise again and about that long before I could accept the Lord's decision. But accept it I did. We were blessed with one son. We are blessed to have our Nathaniel. Our Gift of God.
That is my story of how I went from pro-life, to pro-choice, to pro-life again all because of my foolish thinking. I bought into the lies of feminism that teaches the false idea that women have rights to their bodies.
But now I know the truth. God is in control over all. And when a baby's life is terminated inside the womb, it is the taking of a human life. Period.
That's why it is most important to align our worldview with God's. There are consequences to our choices. There are consequences to our ideas. I know, I have toured Auschwitz and saw the consequences of ideas.
Our ideas, worldviews, and decisions do not affect us alone....but all of life around us.
I tell my story not to glorify myself or my son. I tell my story to glorify God. And if my story keeps one woman....just one...from ending the life of her child, I would gladly go through it all again.
Update: Nathan is now 19 yrs old and studying computer art. He is very talented and desires to be a concept artist working in film.