Maridith Morris writes: I wanted to share my feelings as a pregnant woman watching my medical options disappear. I find this especially disempowering considering my intimate knowledge of healthcare from ICU to labor and delivery. Here is the full text of my letter to the editor published in the Des Moines Register April 19th.
This spring marks ten years I’ve been a nurse. Of all the lessons I’ve learned in ten years of nursing, perhaps the most important has been that there are many fates worse than death. There is pain and suffering beyond imagining, lives of confinements to hospital beds and views of only windows. There is the hole that is left when you lose someone you love and death refuses to claim you alongside them.
I’m 16 weeks into my fourth pregnancy to make it this far, and I don’t know yet whether my baby is healthy enough that they won’t live a life of pain and suffering. I won’t know until after 20 weeks. What I do know is I would sacrifice my own comfort and peace to spare an innocent life the suffering of a complicated illness or deformity that would lead to surgery after surgery. I know I would rather bear the loss myself than gamble with leaving my three children to live in pain without a mother. Because complicated pregnancies lead to complicated outcomes.