:: The S.I.C.L.E. Cell ::

my view from the prison of a SICLE (Self-Imposed Child Loss Experience) due to debilitating maternal disease
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:: Tuesday, March 01, 2011 ::

Hello. It has been a year since my last post. I am still here. I am still who you read in past posts of the Cell. I have only grown quiet through necessity. Life is demanding, and I am here for my children. If I live long enough, I will return in frequent entries. I have not grown complacent or comfortable. I am not resigned or at peace with my choice to abort my first child. I am merely in a holding pattern tending two lovely young children and watching the horizon for whatever may come.

:: ashli 11:09 AM # ::
:: Tuesday, February 09, 2010 ::
More demand, but more supply, too
The demand for housing has diminished as unemployment and other financial pressures have forced college graduates to stay with their parents and whole families to move in with their relatives. But longer term, that demand is expected to be "extremely sound," says Steve Melman, director of economic services at the National Association of Home Builders, or NAHB, in Washington, D.C.

Melman expects a resurgence to occur as economic conditions improve and the children of the baby boomers, called the echo boomers, enter their peak homebuying years.

Demand for housing already has returned to some extent and may increase further in 2010. The National Association of Realtors, or NAR, recently reported that pending home sales rose for nine consecutive months through October 2009. NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said in a statement that existing home sales should number 5.5 million to 6 million annually based on population growth, but that sales were "well below the 5 million mark" before the federal homebuyer tax credit was offered.

Yet even an increase in demand may not be enough to match the number of sellers, warns Dowell Myers, a professor of urban planning and demography at the University of Southern California School of Policy, Planning and Development in Los Angeles.

"Before, there was an unlimited supply of buyers because of the baby-boom generation," he says. "But now that unlimited supply of buyers is going to turn into an unlimited supply of sellers."

Myers says sellers eventually will outnumber buyers, unless a greater effort is made to "cultivate" them.

"There is a shortage of young people all over the country relative to the number of seniors in the future, so they'll all need to step up to meet the supply of homes for sale," says Myers.

The implications for current homeowners could be dire if Myers' read is correct as a supply-and-demand imbalance of such magnitude could cause home prices to decline. The solution? Myers recommends a greater investment in education so more young people will be able to afford to own a home in the future.

If the boomers were the pig in the python, the echoers are the stomach stoma. More education now is only a patch and probably not an adequate one. Simply put, more people equals more demand. And the idea that all children ever aborted would have been impoverished criminals anyway is a ridiculous cliche. Of all the people I've known I can't think of ONE who would not have been able to offer her progeny higher education had s/he not been aborted.

Since 1973 an entire generation of human beings, I call them the ripplers, has been wiped out. And we are practically stupid to think that the loss of this many people will have little or no effect on us morally, emotionally, socially, financially. Mary Shelley's message was a good one: mess with mother nature, get Frankenstein (in oh so many ways).

So I contend that part of the reason your home value may be in question is due to the rippler effect. Remember that the next time you tell someone abortion isn't your issue.

:: ashli 9:45 AM # ::
:: Sunday, February 07, 2010 ::
We're buying a new house. We were in our old house for 15 years. It's a weird feeling. I like where we're going, but our old home has seen a lot of drama and contains within its walls basically all of my adult history. Also...it's the only place where my first child and me were alive and together.

The surprising thing is that I feel the loss of this house in a way I wouldn't if I had not aborted my little one thirteen years ago. I suppose I still have myself, my womb that I carry with me everywhere, but it's no consolation. There's something awful attached to that "landmark:" it was a temporary home for my child, and then it was a crime scene. It's like the hotel room where 5-year-old Shaniya Davis was defiled and victimized within an inch of her life: not only do you not ever want to go there, you feel it should be firebombed off the face of the earth. So I take no comfort in my own biology; it's no kind of positive focal point for the two of us. Gentle sentimental winds do not blow within those walls.

The new house is nice and roomy. I think how one of our family will not be making the move with us, will not be there to enjoy it or the children across the street. These are unhappy thoughts that were not expected, so I find that I'm still living the abortion experience in different ways and always will. I'm like the 79-year-old Gloria Swanson who, three years before her death, began and ended her memoirs with the loss of her child via abortion. It was the mark-maker, the beginning and end, emotionally all-encompassing.

At the restaurant today my kids and husband went to get their food leaving me sitting alone at the table. Suddenly I was overwhelmed by thought and emotion surrounding our first wee one. Tears fell on the table in such a public place. I had to wipe them quickly up and repair before anyone saw, because how can I explain that I am simply moving and it has triggered something awful and refreshed the deepest agony I have ever known.

The debilitating maternal illness from which I suffered was for a time. Abortion is forever.

I traded diamonds for dirt. Nothing was worth this. Nothing upon nothing.

:: ashli 9:31 PM # ::
:: Saturday, January 30, 2010 ::
It has been 13 years today since my husband and I ended the life of our first child in a second trimester abortion. A day hasn't gone by that I did not think of him/her, want him/her, miss him/her. More important than what we miss is what s/he misses each passing day and year: life and all the wonder of it.

Tennessee, if we had not ended your life in January you'd be 13 in July. I'd have a teenager. It's amazing and sad to think of all that you are missing, because my health care sucked and I couldn't hack a severe case of HG unmanaged and virtually unassisted. These things are no excuse, but I know things could have been different for us, and they are different for many others because of you. Your life, however abbreviated, was and is important. Small consolation.

I think of myself at age 13. The bud began its blossom; 13 is a special time. The last year of Jr. High. School dances. Hormones. Crushes. Cliques. The beginning of so many new and worthwhile experiences. You will miss it all. We robbed you of it. How to navigate life after such a contradiction...

It is my faith that where you are is better. Yet there is still something so sad about you missing this life (and something unspeakably horrible about you missing it on your parents' account). This life is something special. It's such a unique experience and valuable because of that uniqueness. It's more than intuition; God provided for this life. There's a reason. What it is I cannot say. I only know that it is so, or else it wouldn't be--we wouldn't be, this life wouldn't be...but only harps and halos, and it's not. You should be here, like so many other boys and girls, and you're not. And it's a terrible, shrouded reality.

No one remembers except me...and your dad who has not said a word about it, but the crease in his forehead deepens above dark thoughts. I know he knows, for he saw me crying days ago in anticipation. It has been a strange year, this one. I may come to see you soon, if God allows. And you know your aunt, who has lost two to abortion and who yet supports abortion, has only just had a new baby. We thought that sweet little one would come on your day, and oh, what a strange conflict that would have posed with no one at all remembering you and our sorrow, and evermore would rage a family-wide celebration when silently, inwardly your day was upon our minuscule, lonely pair. I prayed so that the bairn would come early or late but not, dear God, on his due date, the anniversary of your death. And lo, the 26th found him squalling at his mother's breast and me desperately grateful. Your day remains yours without distraction or added conflict and pain. Such pathetic consolation, but there it is.

Your dad, brother and sister are out. I have been given rare alone time. Time to spend with the memory of you. Time to wrinkle time and run through impossible schematics. Time to dream of saving your life again and again. Time to imagine complete evaporation of the hideousness that abortion wrought into all our lives. Oh why, why, WHY? All this pointless pain! Such a dreadful waste; your life was no trade. You were the most precious thing I had, and I responded to my crushing by crushing you. So young and dumb, I knew no other way--or more honestly, I would consider no other way. And now I know on the other side of life how late it is. And it grows with each passing year, the gap between us, the furrow of regret. Who says it gets easier? It only grows more quiet. Cancer is often very quiet but will kill one all the same. (Reader, take heed.)

What is there to do but let you rest as you will whether or not I grant it now. So it's hopeless for here. In this life. It is indeed. Abortion has simplified everything in a most awful manner. When you were alive there were unanswered questions; we were in the heart of God's Hand, carried by the waves to where I couldn't say. When you were sadly ended it was hopeless with no chance of arriving anywhere; the bell jar was all. What a terrible thing.

Hopeless. I turn the word over and over. It will not conform. It just won't be anything else. Very stubborn is hopelessness. Very unyielding. You are gone. And I am dead inside somewhere...that part of me that was and is your mother and can't live without you. That part is gone and yet remains; my house is haunted by it's tiny, murdered occupant. And I don't regret those rattling chains a bit, because, as I have told your brother and sister time and again lately, love never dies. Abortion, while the antithesis of love, cannot touch love, cannot damage it in the least, and I am glad of that.

So this evening, in the agony of an empty you-shaped space, I hold the memory of your existence in the impenetrable womb of my soul where love grows safely in the deep black loam of the Restoration that is sure to come.

I am ever sorry, my very precious one. My regret is the deepest chasm.

To you, and to the Restoration,

:: ashli 7:04 PM # ::
:: Saturday, July 11, 2009 ::
Sorry for my long absence. In May I was diagnosed with a pancreatic tumor that turned out to be cancer. The average survival rate for pancreatic cancer, from diagnosis to the big dirt nap, is three and a half months. It's wicked deadly. So I thought I was out of here. However, after removing most of my pancreas (and my spleen) the tumor was found to be of the NET variety (neuroendocrine tumor), and my particular NET cancer appears to be of low aggression. You may remember the headlines last month re: Steve Jobs and his pancreatic NET-related liver transplant. Yeah, I think my life has been shortened.

Here's how it all came about:

I was visiting a dear friend who happens to be a doctor. I quipped that I grew a better mustache than he. He sent me for labs. I almost didn't go, but I thought it might be interesting to see if anything showed up that might relate to all my horrible HG pregnancies. Everything was normal except an elevated DHEAS level, a marker for adrenal tumors. But the number wasn't terribly high. Normally it's in the 700s for tumors. Mine was in the low 400s. Just to be on the safe side my friend ordered a CT scan. CT scans are no joke, so I didn't want to do it. In fact, the day before the scan I called him and said I wasn't going to do it. Didn't he know my family tree is worm-eaten with cancer? I argued with him for a good half hour, and then finally complied; that's my schtick.

Got the CT, and 4 days after my birthday, on my daughter's birthday, I got the news: adrenals clear, but there is a "small thing" on the pancreas. Then came the inconclusive biopsy. Btw, if you ever find that you have a tumor that will need to be removed surgically no matter what, don't let anyone biopsy it beforehand, because the biopsy can cause malignant seeding, which I am now at risk for, having had a totally unnecessary fine needle biopsy. I didn't know that malignant seeding was a risk, and when I asked, I was literally laughed at by the gastroenterologist who performed the EUS/FNA. Come to find out, there IS a risk, and my surgical oncologist acknowledged it. At any rate, next came the serious surgery, 10-day hospital stay and grueling recovery, which I am still not out of. Next on the menu is the rest of my life, however short or long it is.

And now you may find interesting the phone conversation I had with my endocrinologist who called to inform me that she received a certified letter from the lab where I had my initial blood test. The letter included a list of names of those affected by a faulty lab assay that mistakenly elevated normal levels of DHEAS. My name was on the list, along with the assurance that they had corrected their assay. Obviously, if they had not made the mistake, I would not have had the CT, and the NET would have grown, metastasized to my liver, and that would have been my modus of exit (i.e., I would have died).

Most of my pancreas is gone and also my spleen. It causes problems. I wish I could go to the pancreas/spleen store and get new parts. Or I wish new, cancer-free organs would regenerate. But they don't. No one can make a pancreas or a spleen. It would be a miracle. And yet, there are over 3,000 young Americans today with little spleens and pancreases that are being perfectly, Masterfully formed. These are healthy organs built to sustain long lives. No man can match their handiwork or even come close. And yet all these miraculously made organs, inside these tiny, miraculously made people will be destroyed and thrown in the trash in abortions performed this very day. IT IS SUCH A WASTE.

I knew before that life was precious. Cancer just brings it home. When you get your tumor, you'll see what I mean. And if you're an abortion supporter, maybe you'll reconsider. But hey, why wait? Love life now. (And not just your own.)

Well, that does it for the Cell, kiddies. My clock is ticking audibly now, so I'm investing my remaining time in my children. The years have been long. Thanks for reading me.

:: ashli 10:21 AM # ::
:: Saturday, June 06, 2009 ::
This reads like a sad, sad comedy. It's sad that George Tiller did not truly know Jesus and sadder still that apparently neither does anyone else at his church. If his church had truly represented Christ, they would have warned him against his occupation and the fate that awaits murderers who are not sorry and choose not to reform. If every church had responded to George Tiller in that manner, perhaps it would have inspired something within him. Whether it would have caused him to reform or to abandon the church...at least he wouldn't have been living under false assumptions. His church allowed him to think that he could murder children and yet have a living relationship with Christ. That is so dangerous.

If you love your brother, you warn him, even when it hurts. You show him the chapter and verse which reveals his offense so that he knows it is not coming from you. You let him vent and walk away if he must, but you risk the friendship (and the donation, hello) for love. You risk it for the good of your brother.

I can't think of anything more heartbreaking than a church that does not know Jesus.

I wish Tiller had lived long enough to be given a chance to find Christ, repent and sin no more. As long as there is life, there's a chance. But what is done is done, and I can at least be grateful that no more children will die at his hands.

:: ashli 9:55 PM # ::
:: Sunday, May 17, 2009 ::
AP reports Roe no more. Many people still do not realize that even Norma McCorvey herself is anti-abortion.

:: ashli 4:18 PM # ::

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