Alicia Hernandez, a family friend, was visiting our home one day as we discussed an abortion case study. Alicia was especially attentive and finally interjected, “I had an experience like that.” This is what she shared.
In 2007 I lingered between life and death. I suffered a pulmonary blood clot which hospitalized me in critical condition for nearly a month. My sister assisted my husband in caring for our five children during this stressful time. At last I was able to return home, but I was still in jeopardy and required blood thinners and other medications indefinitely. I was also told by the doctor I would no longer be able to bear children.
In spite of this prognosis, three months after leaving the hospital I was pregnant. When doctors learned of my condition they were immediately alarmed as the medications I was taking were likely to cause brain damage and other birth defects to my baby. My condition also increased the likelihood of repeated life-threatening blood clots and paralysis in my own body again. Clinics and medical personnel insisted that I abort the child, who they were certain was already inflicted with handicaps.
I understood the seriousness of the situation, but I also feared the seriousness of aborting a human life, not only for the infant, but also for me. I had a close friend who’d aborted a child and ever since she’d been haunted by distressing memories, flashbacks and nightmares of each step in the abortion process.
I was not active in any church at the time, but I desperately sought guidance from God through soul-searching prayer. My husband and extended family, out of concern for my health as well as the baby’s probable defects, pressured me to follow the doctors’ advice and abort the child. Four physicians and two clinics actually refused to treat me if I did not follow through with the abortion.
Then one night I dreamed I saw my unborn son, whom I had named Daniel, standing between his two older brothers. He looked very normal, with a big smile on his face. Telepathically he conveyed this message, “See Mommy, I’m all right.”
This dream seemed so real that I knew I wanted to keep the child, believing he would be born normal. Finally I found a doctor who would care for me and my unborn son. My medications were changed to reduce the likelihood of brain damage to my unborn child and paralysis to myself. The changes included two painful injections per day directly into my stomach, which I was committed to endure for the sake of my baby.
On the other hand, Daniel’s father was so upset by my decision to keep the baby that he abandoned me in Arizona by taking a winter job at a Minnesota ski resort in order to avoid being present at the birth of a brain damaged or handicapped son.
Daniel was born a month and a half early by a planned C-section. He was born normal and has developed normally. In fact, my four year old Danny is the healthiest and most robust of my six children. Because my husband did not want this son, I christened Danny with only my last name and did not include his father’s last name as is customary in Latino tradition.
When my husband rejoined our family in Arizona after Danny’s birth, newborn Danny cried, closed his eyes and pulled away whenever his father tried to hold him. As Danny grew older, he refused to speak to his father and refused to eat any food his father prepared while I was away at work. Danny actually rejected his father the first three years of his life. Only recently, at age four, has Danny finally begun to accept and speak with him.
Danny has described several times both seeing and remembering his older sister. His descriptions are of her when she was little, and he even described things she did and said. The thing is, he wasn’t born yet and could not know these things unless he was seeing them before he was born.
The Castaways: Real-Life Accounts of Aborted Souls (2015), p. 66