Celebrating Elizabeth

Her Life Was Short, Fragile, and Precious Beyond Telling

Celebrating Elizabeth

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My fiancé and I received our baby’s devastating diagnosis at our usual doctor’s office. I had hoped the ultrasound would show that the baby was fine; the tiny arms of our child on the screen appeared to be waving vigorously. Then the ultrasound technician stepped out of the room, and a doctor entered.

“Your baby has anencephaly—an extreme case—and will not live. I recommend that you terminate this pregnancy.”

When we asked what anencephaly was, he briefly explained that the baby would be born without a brain. When we inquired further, he pulled out a medical book and showed us a picture of a dead baby. My fiancé and I were reeling with questions as the doctor started talking about steps I should take before getting pregnant in the future.

I stopped him. “I want to talk about this baby. Is my baby a boy or a girl?”

The doctor responded, “It’s a girl, but I recommend that you terminate the pregnancy.”

I felt defiant. “She’s still our daughter—whether I have her for an hour, a month, or a lifetime. I want to be with her as much as I can.”


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