Advent and Christmas have always held a particular meaning to me depending on the season and space of my life; the way I’ve internalized their meaning changes depending on who and where I am at the time. I’ve been a mother for 13 Christmases now. For the majority of that time, Advent and Christmas have been about making the season magical for my kids in that sparkly, sugar-dusted-self-defeating sort of way. Where puffs of flour appear in the air each time someone opens our door and our calendar is color coded and overloaded. Of course, all this magic-making inevitably stresses me out beyond the point of no return, negating the very magic I try to create. Sure, it’s also been about helping my children come to learn about the salvific birth of our Lord, who came to save the world, teach us to love, and lead us to heaven, and I think (largely thanks to their amazing teachers) they get that. But all of this magic-making has, slowly but surely over the last 13 years, replaced my own grasp of what this season is supposed to be for me.
Why midwifery? This is often asked when I share with others what I have been pursuing the past few years. I suppose the answer is summed up as this: when you feel a calling deep within your soul, you cannot always explain or understand why, but because you are known by a God who knows your heart’s deepest dreams and desires, you respond and trust. As I reflect on my desires as a child, I never imagined this journey of life would bring me to such a sacred place of caring for new families and being the first to hold a precious new life in my hands.
I love a good conversion story. From Augustine’s Confessions to Jennifer Fulwiler’s Something Other than God, I am drawn to the stories of those who have been transformed by the Truth found in Christ. Since I don’t fit the standard definition of a “convert,” I used to read these beautiful stories of conversion for the simple yet profound way they inspired me to appreciate my own faith and see it with a new perspective. But then I became a parent. I began a journey that changed my outlook on conversion and challenged me to see it as an absolutely essential element of faith for any Christian.
In this week leading up to the March for Life, our focus understandably turns to the topic of abortion. However, living a consistent ethic of life and building a pro-life household goes beyond the ramifications of the Roe v. Wade decision.
Below are some of the ways my husband and I have tried to live and hand on a consistent ethic of life to our children.
A friend told me in college that she couldn’t be pro-life because “not all mothers have the support they need to choose life. Pro-life people need to take care of the mothers, too.”
Until that conversation, I thought the issue of abortion was straightforward. (In many ways, it is: Life is a precious gift from God and should be treasured at all times, from conception to natural death.) But my friend opened my eyes to see beyond the babies to include the mothers carrying those babies in their womb.