Monday, February 11, 2008

Strengthening My Soul, and My Compassion

Some of the most important people in making the March for Life happen, didn't even attend the event. Today's reflection is written by one of those people. My good friend Linda S. stayed home while sending her daughter in the care of other moms. Linda provided babysitting services for moms who had to leave littles behind and she provided a ton of fresh fruit for the hungry travelers. Most importantly, she was a prayer warrior :

“Hi, Mom,” said the sweet voice over a 1,000 miles of cyberspace. My heart was touched by those two words, and my mind raced to many thoughts ... she’s safe, how much she sounded like her older sister, and how much I missed her. The voice was of my second daughter on her first trip to the March for Life.

Being one of the parents staying behind, my heart was strengthened by prayer and blessings. I also spent time reflecting and remembering the many mothers who mourn the loss of a baby through abortion.

Letting my daughter attend the 2008 March without any of her other family members was hard for me. I worried about weather, health, and safety. I love the part of the Catholic Mass that says “and protect us from all anxiety.” So, with that said, each time an anxious thought or feeling would occur, I would pray to God. He is the only one who could help and protect. Of course, my daughter had a wonderful time and returned safe and sound, with a beautiful memory, and another stand for life.

One of the blessings of the trip was being able to watch two little friends. It was wonderful to see the two girls and my girls play dress-up for hours. Such innocent fun. Forever imprinted on my mind is the sweet three-year-old sitting in a child-sized rocking chair lovingly holding her baby doll. Another vivid image is one of the radiant smile of the seven-year-old; such joy and happiness! I could see the love of their mother, who was traveling, through those children. I know how hard it is as a parent to leave the “littles” behind, and I know how hard it is to let them go. I prayed for the parents and children staying at
home, as well as the ones traveling.

Through the years, my compassion for mothers who have had abortions has changed as my knowledge has changed. I used to have an image of an ogre of a person who would abort their own baby. But the fact is, of the women I know who have had an abortion, every one of the them have regretted it. Some of the women I know are really some of the most compassionate women to cross my path. I am not making excuses for their decision, and neither have they.

When I started finding out more about abortion statistics from Life Decisions International, I found out that 70-80% of women having an abortion, don’t really want one. I think about that. These women are in a crisis, reaching out for support; and in doing so, it is the friends and relatives who misguide them in their time of need. Even in the most horrible of cases, abortion is not the answer. The people in their lives think they are helping, but in reality they are creating a horrible error. These women live with the error for the rest of their lives. Pray for women in crisis.

I am encouraged to see so many young people on fire to end abortion. Some of these people will encounter friends, relatives, and others in their life who are considering abortion. It may be the unwed teen. It may be the woman whose baby has a birth defect (but, we are "all created in the image and likeness of God”). These young people will be friends of the unborn and friends of the mother. They will be able to stand by and be a positive support for life to a temporarily tough problem. I am proud of you! Bless you!

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