Yes, there were going to be some challenges with this pregnancy but Dr. Silver's confidence in a happy outcome was a very welcome relief to both Bryonna and I. The relief went to our heads and we laughed and joked and took silly selfie pictures like a couple of school girls. If there had been any doubt how much my heart was entangled with my new friend and the baby that was growing within her, there certainly wasn't anymore.
I wouldn't be the only one whose heart became entangled in Bryonna's life. I ask my Pro-Life Utah team to be my backup while I went out of town for a week. I wanted to be sure Bryonna had someone to call if things got rough.
By the time I got back in town Bryonna had endeared herself to Deanna and Mary K. Bryonna dubbed us the three Mary's. Two of us really were Mary's and it just seemed easier for Bry if she could call us all Mary. She called Mary K the serious Mary and Deanna was the funny Mary. Both the serious Mary and the funny Mary became as fond of Bryonna as I was.
Bryonna scheduled a 3-D ultrasound. It happened to be on a day I needed to be at work. The serious Mary and the funny Mary would accompany her to the appointment. Bryonna had an appointment with Dr. Silver later that day and I would meet her at the university hospital for that.
I received a couple of messages from Deanna and Mary K before I arrived at the hospital. It sounded as if they had a very good time. In fact it sounded as though I missed quite a party. The baby had his foot in front of his face so they could not get a good picture. They told Bryonna to wait for thirty minutes and they would try again.
Pro Life Utah is helping raise money to help Bryonna with her medical expenses.
I'm not exactly sure what took place while they waited but there were stories about Bryonna's boyfriend and a tiara (hmm..) and tormenting Mary K with Bryonna's dog who had come along for the ride. Everyone knows Mary K is no fan of dogs no matter what size or temperament they might be. Poor Mary. But everyone was in good spirits and seemed to be having a jovial time.
When I met up with Bryonna she was truly glowing.
"I have something to show you!" she said in an excited yet secretive voice as though she were about to reveal a great and wondrous secret of the universe. She pulled the 3-D ultrasound photos from an envelope and one by one handed them to me.
Oh my goodness! What a sweet and precious little boy and what a proud Mama. Everything seemed to change for Bryonna after having a window into her own womb. Sometimes regular ultrasounds can be a bit hard to make out, kind of like ink blot tests. But the 3-D pictures were just as clear as day.
I think up until now all of this talk about a baby had been academic. We had previously had many conversations about this life within her. She had readily acknowledged this separate little person, but there was something different in the way she viewed it now. I can only think that this visual proof made it real for her in a way she had not experienced yet. She seemed to gush with a maternal love I had not seen in her prior to this.
For me this was living proof of how powerful ultrasound images can be. At the Pregnancy Resource Center they told me that very few women who see an ultrasound of their unborn baby will go forward with an abortion. Knowledge is power. An ultrasound provides a visual understanding that often inspires a woman to take her power back. I say that because women are often victims of abortion rhetoric that tells them they are somehow incapable of facing life head on and that violence against their own children is a way to solve a problem while obscuring the humanity of their unborn baby. This is not empowerment. This is a very weak and vulnerable place to be.
The women's rights, women's choice rhetoric has hurt women in many ways. This choice is often the result of pressure from boyfriends, husbands or other family who feel justified in abandoning her because after all, she has a choice. No woman who is clear in her mind what the horrific practice of abortion entails can be at peace with that choice. Often women do not fully understand what is involved in the abortion procedure. Discovery of these details later can be very painful. Violence never empowers anyone.
The abortion culture leaves women wounded, weakened and often scarred for life. But this is not where Bryonna was. Bryonna was standing strong for herself and for her baby. The motherhood glow looked beautiful on her as she spoke of her son with tenderness. My, what a change I had witnessed in this lady over the last few months! She had come from feeling frightened and inadequate to a place of strength and confidence. Whether her choice was to raise her baby or lovingly give the baby up for adoption it would be a choice she could be proud of and a choice that she could live with. This was empowerment.
This is a true story that is unfolding even as I write this. Even I do not know how the story ends. But we do know that Bryonna's medical bills are mounting and she has been unable to work. Please consider donating to this courageous young woman.