Women can overcome the most difficult, tragic, and violent circumstances life throws at them. Women are stronger than they know and more capable of love than they may have ever imagined. The abortion industry promises women a ‘quick fix’ for their unplanned pregnancy, a ‘solution’ that doesn’t actually solve their problems. But taking a human life, especially the life of one’s own child, isn’t a quick fix. It goes against every motherly instinct. This is one reason why abortion regret runs rampant, particularly years later. Many people were not conceived in ideal circumstances, yet their courageous mothers overcame their situations by giving birth to them, proving that love, in the midst of difficult trials, can save lives.
Jennifer Christie learned she was pregnant about a month after she was found barely clothed and barely alive in a hotel stairwell. She had suffered a brutal sexual assault by a man who became a serial killer of women. Upon learning that she was pregnant after rape, Jennifer and her husband, Jeff, accepted that there was a new life who had come into the world, and they chose life for him just as they did for each of their other children.
Jennifer has said that what she did in choosing life for her son is not “amazing,” as some call it — it’s simply loving her child:
Some people read my story and want to hold me up as an example of a good person. It’s a kind thought, but I’m not a good person because I kept my baby. I’ve been called amazing…Amazing? Think about that for a moment. I take into consideration the writer’s heart when commenting and I’m blessed by every encouraging word, but I ask you to think about that one. I’m an “amazing woman” because I love my son?! How offended would you be if I applauded you for loving your child? I don’t see my baby any differently than you see yours.
Her husband Jeff, in a previous article about their experience, wrote about their son, conceived in rape:
He’s not our only child. He’s the youngest of five. Just like the others, he was placed in our lives by a God who entrusted all of them to our care. As with all our children, our love for him started the moment we knew he existed. We welcomed him into our fold with the same devotion and reverence as his brothers and sister. They all love each other – usually – as siblings, and none of them consider him different or lesser, they are all equal partners in their mission to survive our parenting. They know how he came about but it’s evident that they just don’t think about it when they look at him. This child-like acceptance that their brother is just here in the world and he is innocent of how, encourages us as parents.
Jennifer’s story is incredibly powerful. It’s just the story women need to share with each other:
Kali was only 13 years old when a sexual assault left her pregnant. When she was 12 weeks along, she told her mother and stepfather. Kali says they were the only ones who supported her continuing the pregnancy at first. Eventually, her father came around as well, after seeing his grandson on an ultrasound. But Kali lost almost all of her friends. Live Action News’ Nancy Flanders reported:
“After I was assaulted and everybody found out that I was, in fact, pregnant, everyone was against it,” she explained. “I was assaulted at thirteen. Everyone said, ‘You’re going to ruin your life. You’re making a mistake. It would be so much easier if you got an abortion. You’re too young.’”
Kali says people bullied her (even spray painting “whore” on her house because of false rumors) and called her son the “rapist’s baby.” She says even medical staff “made inappropriate comments concerning her baby, telling Kali that she was going to give birth to a rapist.” Kali reportedly had to change doctors three times, due to poor treatment.
Kali gave birth to her son, Smitlee (named after Kali’s father and stepfather), at 28 weeks gestation. He is now a healthy four-year-old, being raised by his mother, who is now 19 and in college studying criminal justice and forensic science.
Kali speaks about those who told her she should have aborted her little boy:
I hope that my story will open their eyes so they realize that not everybody has to be pro-abortion in a tragic situation and to realize the beauty behind it — and that baby was totally it for me. That’s what I told everyone — that I’m doing this for him. I hope they change the way they treat people…. There is no better gift in the entire world, no matter what anyone else tells you. There is no better gift than that baby.
The Rodriguez Family’s Story
When Evan and Olivia Rodriguez went to an ultrasound appointment to learn the sex of their baby, they also received troubling news. Their daughter, Layla Sky, had anencephaly. They were immediately advised to abort. The couple did not want to do this, so Olivia instead went to a Christian, pro-life OB/GYN, who prayed for them and said he would support them as they continued their pregnancy and loved their daughter as long as she lived.
Live Action News’ Nancy Flanders reported on the couple in 2015:
“Our faith was a big part of the decision [to continue the pregnancy],” said Mrs. Rodriguez. “We just wanted to make the right decision and we wanted to do what was right before God. Our hearts and spirits didn’t let us take that step to take our child’s life. It shouldn’t even be a choice. […] Miracles happen all the time. But also, we’re at peace if that’s not the will of God.”
Evan Rodriguez, who played for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during his wife’s pregnancy, told ABC News, “We decided to continue with the process because we felt like, who are we to determine a baby’s life? So, we are going to leave it in God’s hands.”
Layla Sky was born on November 13, 2015, and lived outside the womb for 40 minutes before passing away in her mother’s arms. The couple posted on The Fight for Layla Sky Facebook page, saying, “Every life deserves a chance no matter the diagnosis.”
Just a short while later, the Rodriguezes became pregnant with a little boy, Jeremiah. On their Facebook page, Olivia posted on November 13, 2016, the following photo, saying, “As much as it hurts, I guess you didn’t want my arms to be empty on your first birthday. Nothing will ever replace you and your name will always be on my lips. I love you Princess.”
Hannah Peters had a heart for children with special needs, but she never imagined that the child she was carrying would be diagnosed with a serious condition, known as Rhizomelic Chondrodysplasia Punctata, a fatal form of skeletal dysplasia. “Early on in my pregnancy they started to see all the signs that Jude had a form of skeletal dysplasia,” she said. “From then on, I was strongly encouraged to terminate and try again. I was told things such as, ‘You’re young, you can just try again,’ ‘What quality of life do you think this baby will have?’, ‘Do you really want to make this baby live like this?’, ‘This is not your normal baby.'”
But no matter the pressure put on them, Hannah and her husband, Sully, believe that God gave them their son for a purpose. While Jude’s parents were told that he might not make it though infancy, according to Hannah’s blog, Raising Jude, he has already lived for three-and-a-half years.
Hannah wrote in an early blog post [emphasis added]:
… I don’t look at Jude and see his disorder, I will not find his identity in that. I look at Jude and I see a Brave Little Warrior. I will not put an expiration date on my baby. And I am so proud that he has already far beaten the ones that medical professionals tried to put on him.
I know that God is the ultimate physician; no earthly man can tell me what is going to happen. Jude has proved to be a fighter and I will continue to fight for and with him and give him anything he needs.
The Buell Family’s Story
Jaxon Buell was diagnosed prenatally with a rare disorder which wasn’t even named until his birth: Lissencephaly, a condition defined by Healthline as one in which babies’ “brains don’t fold properly and remain smooth,” which “can affect a baby’s neural function and symptoms can be severe.”
Doctors advised Jaxon’s parents, Brandon and Brittany, to abort their son. A Live Action News article quotes Brittany:
I was irritated. It made me mad because they were so quick to offer [termination] without even knowing for sure what his diagnosis was. They gave up. We ran all the tests we could. We were 23 weeks along at that point and they told us we had one week left in Florida to terminate.
The couple refused. Brandon felt as if Jaxon was telling them, “Don’t give up on me.”
Doctors didn’t expect Jaxon to survive to birth. Then, when he did, they didn’t expect him to survive long outside the womb. Brandon said he and Brittany were told that Jaxon wouldn’t see or hear and probably wouldn’t function normally at all. But Jaxon proved all the naysayers wrong, and he will turn four years old this August. He smiles, takes steps, laughs,coos, and has a strong and loving bond with his parents.
Jaxon’s story has changed hearts and minds along the way, saving countless lives. The Buells told Focus on the Family in 2016 that even medical professionals now see children with poor prenatal diagnoses differently because of Jaxon:
A gynecologist from another state wrote, ‘When we come across an ultrasound like yours, we are trained to suggest termination. But because of your son, I will stop doing that.’ We could have talked for hours and not convinced this doctor to change her methods. But our son — just by being who he is — sparked a change in her heart. … Every day Jaxon wakes up and takes a breath, he gives hope to families in similar situations to ours — and to anyone who is struggling to overcome the odds.
Jennifer and Jeff, Kali, Evan and Olivia, Hannah and Sully, Brandon and Brittany: these are mothers and fathers, men and women, who chose life in difficult circumstances. Their stories and their children prove that love saves lives. Whether those lives survive outside the womb for just forty precious minutes, are conceived in violent circumstances, or are completely unplanned or diagnosed as disabled: all lives are worthy of love. And women who choose this love save lives.