For much of my life, I was so entrenched in the pro-choice worldview that I would completely shut down conversations that invited me to examine or question my position. Even with my history of being pressured into an abortion at 17 and surviving my subsequent suicide attempt, I remained a vehement and vocal advocate for abortion. I even worked at an abortion facility for five years. College, grad school, marriage, giving birth to three babies—nothing swayed me from my myopic view of a “woman's right to choose” abortion.
Four Novembers ago that began to change.
While discussing abortion and surrogacy in an online forum with a group of women I knew from a natural childbirth support group, the topic of in-vitro fertilization came up. I held fast to the standard pro-abortion rights theorizing that a “bunch of cells” could not possibly be as worthy of our respect and protection as an adult woman. I was baffled (but intrigued) by two voices speaking clearly, consistently, and compassionately (against the tide of a dozen opponents) in support of the right of these microscopic humans to live to maturation.
In the ensuing conversations neither Lindsey nor Lauren ever berated, belittled, or otherwise bashed those of us who disagreed with them—but they also never backed down. Their unshakable belief and eloquent defense of the value of all human life put a chink in the armor I'd spent decades carefully constructing. What was life if not a continuum from conception to death? Wasn't I once a tiny collection of cells? I finally began thinking about these issues of life in a new way.
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As the forum expanded to discussions about surrogacy, I was primed for further interior examination of my long-held, never-before-questioned position… and I slowly began to consider that a child in womb just might be, in fact, a child.
Then I learned of a surrogate who was paid her full contract price to abort the baby she was carrying after the biological parents were disappointed by an in-utero diagnosis of Down syndrome. The chink in the armor became a chasm and the truth was blindingly clear: abortion is wrong. Abortion kills a living, growing member of the human family. And to quote Feminists for Life, women deserve better than abortion.
Only as I look back do I see the blinders. My willful ignorance, my avoidance of true introspection, my stubbornness. I can never thank Lindsey and Lauren enough for their unwavering witness to the sanctity of life. These two remarkable women (unknowingly at the time) set me on a path of discovery that culminated in my wholehearted acceptance of the right to life from conception to natural death and of a life devoted to furthering the cause of LIFE.
Thank you, Lindsey.
Thank you, Lauren.
Reprinted with permission from SecularProlife.