Ashley was 20 years old and in love. So when she found out that she was pregnant, she was surprised but took her boyfriend at his word when he said he would take care of her and a baby if she ever became pregnant, after pressing her to become more intimate in their relationship.
She was crushed when he insisted that she get an abortion. She was raised in a Christian home with supportive parents, and even though she knew her parents would be disappointed that she had become pregnant, she knew she could get through it with the promised support of her boyfriend.
But when he gave her the money for the abortion and said that he would not be able to get off work to go with her, she felt like she had been punched in the gut. He convinced her that having a baby now would squelch her dream of nursing school, that her Christian parents would kick her out and that he was not about to support a baby that he wasn’t ready for. She felt she had no choice. So she went to the abortion clinic.
Her pregnancy was confirmed at seven weeks, but they didn’t let her see the baby or hear the heartbeat. She was given RU-486, the “abortion pill,” and was watched while she swallowed it. She was immediately remorseful and knew this was going against everything she believed in. She did not want an abortion, she just wanted love and support. She asked the abortionist what she could do if she changed her mind, and she was told that if she did not complete the procedure and take the pills to induce labor, that her baby would still die, but if it didn’t then it would be born deformed or mentally deficient.
Ashley was heartbroken and wanted help. She confessed to her mother what had happened and what she had done. But instead of rejecting Ashley, her mother hugged her and offered the support only a loving mother could. They called the local crisis pregnancy center, who then called me. When I answered the call, I had no idea what to do, but told them to send her over to talk.
She came to my office, shattered. It was about 36 hours since she had taken the abortion pill, and she wanted to do whatever it would take to reverse it and save her baby. I consoled her and then excused myself to my office. I prayed, “God, what can I do?” This is not something taught in medical school or residency. In fact, we were taught that just about any problem in the first trimester is essentially untreatable to save the baby, to let nature take its course. But this wasn’t nature, and I had this gnawing feeling that something could be done.
I started leafing through some textbooks and started thinking about how RU-486 worked. It is a progesterone counterfeit. It tricks the body into thinking that it is progesterone, fills the progesterone receptor with a key that will not turn the lock. It is a very effective blocker, and there was no known antidote. The placenta blood vessels act as if the mother is having a menstrual cycle and the placenta is starved and sloughs off, along with the baby, causing an abortion.
God placed in my mind memories of my research in basic protein receptor biology. If we could flood Ashley’s system with progesterone, with “good” keys, then we might be able to out-compete the RU-486 and fill the receptors with working keys that will support the baby’s life like God designed.
We kept progesterone in our office for fertility treatments, so I told Ashley and her mother my plan and told her the risks. This had never been done, I doubted that it would work, that she could bleed, that the baby could die and then would need to be delivered, or worse. She didn’t care about the risks to her. Ashley was ready to do anything to save her baby’s life. So I injected her with 200 mg of progesterone. It was a Friday and I told her to come back on Monday.
She started to bleed that weekend and went to the ER. Praise God, they found a heartbeat and Ashley got to see her baby! She was so thankful and felt that even if the baby died, that she had done what she could and was so grateful to see that heartbeat. So she went home and thankfully, the bleeding stopped.
She came back to our office and received progesterone injections twice a week. We became cautiously optimistic with each week that went by. Ashley nervously had her 17-week ultrasound but instead of finding a baby with three arms or other major deformities, her baby looked completely normal!
Week by week, we followed her progress and by week 28, she was off the progesterone and doing fine on her own. Right on time, at full term, Ashley gave birth to a beautiful baby girl, Kaylie! Healthy and full of life! The placenta which had been attacked by the RU-486 was deemed completely normal by the pathologist.
Since that time, I have seen Kaylie in my office and have been blessed to watch her grow into a funny, spunky little girl. Now six years old and in first grade, Kaylie loves to cheer on her Wildcats!
And remember all those terrible things that were promised to happen to Ashley if she kept her baby? Ashley was given boundless compassion and support by her loving parents and they did not kick her out. Instead, they helped her along while she finished school and is now a Respiratory Therapist, saving little babies lives at a major Children’s hospital. She has bought and moved into her own home and is going back to school to get her Registered Nursing degree!
God is not just good, He is Awesome and blows me away with the extravagance of his mercy and grace! This coming January 21st, Ashley and Kaylie will be coming to the Youth Rally in DC and then the March for Life, where you can meet them in person, joining the pro-life movement to end this war on women and their babies.
Cross-posted from LifeSiteNews