by Christie Z. Brooks
Ten years ago today, I welcomed my second daughter into this world. Her arrival didn’t happen the way I expected it to happen. She was early, but she was still precious and beautiful in my eyes. I looked her over intently, from the top of her fuzzy head, to the tips of her tiny toes. The same day we welcomed Madison into our family, the angels welcomed her into heaven. We didn’t want her to leave, and we would have done anything for her to be healthy and strong. But her little body was too fragile for this world, so we made the decision to let her go early.
Being predeceased by your children is unnatural, and intensely painful. But to then have your loss be tossed around like a political football by those who have no idea what it’s like to be put in the position of having to make such a heart-wrenching decision is like rubbing salt into the wound.
When you think of abortion, you probably don’t think of situations like mine. But you should. I’m not ashamed of my choice, and I don’t suffer from guilt or regret. I don’t need wishes for strength or peace today, on this 10th anniversary. What I really need is for people to stop stigmatizing and politicizing abortion. Leave these decisions to the parents. If you really want to lessen the number of abortions, promote birth control and sex-ed, and donate to charities like the March of Dimes which promotes research into birth defects.
Ten years have passed. I’m not the same person I was before Madison entered my life, but I’m thankful she did grace our lives, albeit too briefly. The daily reminders of her absence will never cease, but the passion she ignited in me will be one of her greatest legacies. I won’t stop sharing my story with lawmakers, and I won’t stop supporting other women like myself who suffer a similar loss.
For someone who never took a breath, she sure did have an impact on this world. ♥