In 1996, I gave birth to a beautiful baby boy, but a few months later, I was rushed to the hospital with a condition that was deemed "life threatening". Massive blood clots in my leg had broken away and travelled to my lungs. I could barely breathe and was on the edge of death. With many prayers, I survived but was firmly warned to not have any more children.
But as always, God had another plan.
In 2002, I was pregnant again, but my doctors insisted that I terminate the pregnancy. The high risk doctor even wrote me a 3-page letter describing all the reasons why I should terminate the baby. They were sure that neither one of us would survive. I had always wanted many children and could not even think
about what they were suggesting.
My cardiologist accepted my decision and did everything he could to help me save this baby. Within weeks he was inserting a catheter into my heart with no anesthesia – nothing to harm the baby. In order to bear the pain, I said Hail Marys non-stop through the whole procedure (since then, I still judge the day by the number of Hail Marys I need to say).
Although the cardiologist had convinced the other doctors that the baby and I might be ok, he also warned me that we would need to be careful. There was still a long road ahead. We were by no means out of the woods, and there was a risk my baby could be born with medical needs or facial deformities. I continued to pray intensely.
In February 2003, a healthy baby girl was born. She is now 18 and planning to go off to college. She has been an incredible source of pride and joy to me all these years. She has an unbelievable amount of caring and compassion for all humans and has become the "mom" to all of her friends. The journey has had its challenges, but with God, all things are possible.
Judy Stritt is passionate about her love of God and using her gifts from the Holy Spirit to help students learn and be confident in their learning. She runs a tutoring centre in a Catholic school, works as a home tutor for her local school district, and has taught 6th-grade religious education classes for the past 7 years.
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