"You're my life's one Miracle, Everything I've done that's good And you break my heart with tenderness, And I confess it's true I never knew a love like this till you.
You're the reason I was born Now I finally know for sure And I'm overwhelmed with happiness So blessed to hold you close The one that I love most With all the future has so much for you in store Who could ever love you more?
The nearest thing to heaven, You're my angel from above Only God creates such perfect love.
When you smile at me, I cry And to save your life I'll die With a romance that is pure heart, You are my dearest part Whatever it requires, I live for your desires Forget my own, needs will come before Who could ever love you more?
Well there is nothing you could ever do, To make me stop, loving you And every breath I take, Is always for your sake You sleep inside my dreams and know for sure Who could ever love you more?"
What took ten minutes takes a lifetime. In 50 years there will still be presents missing under the Christmas tree.
:: ashli 10:15 AM # ::
:: Wednesday, December 21, 2005 ::
I wanted to thank everyone again for contributing to the current crisis pregnancy situation. I also wanted to let you all know that the mother just recently read the series of posts on her situation and was very upset with some of the information I gave. She was also upset by some negative comments made on another blog. She is in an extremely fragile state right now.
Perhaps in May I will be able to say whether the situation "ended" well, but I will not be posting regular updates, as I had planned.
I hope you can forgive me, leave it in God's hands, and rest in the promise that your contributions are going to a very worthy cause.
Thank you so much for the tremendous, somewhat miraculous effort on behalf of your fellow man.
You are all precious gifts.
:: ashli 7:39 AM # ::
:: Saturday, December 17, 2005 ::
THE NEED HAS BEEN MET!!! (With just a tad over a hundred bucks to spare on medical bills no less!)
Thank you so much to all of those who stepped out in faith and in compassion and made a contribution to this mother and her daughter. You are truly blessings from above. I am touched and grateful to the point of tears.
Among the beautiful cards many of you sent, one came "with a prayer for room in the inn and in the heart." This simple prayer is actually quite phenomenal, and I pray it for all of you who made such room for someone else.
May God bless you richly and draw you near this Christmas.
Please check back for updates on this situation. I intend to post a series of eventual progress reports and lots of cute baby photos (sonograms). Pray that there will be glorious photos of a sweet newborn in May, and know that you have been an important part of it.
:: ashli 12:57 PM # ::
:: Wednesday, December 14, 2005 ::
"It is easier to be enthusiastic about Humanity with a capital 'H' than it is to love individual men and women, especially those who are uninteresting, exasperating, depraved, or otherwise unattractive. Loving everybody in general may be an excuse for loving nobody in particular"
Fund-raising is an interesting thing. I have on occasion received criticism for what I am doing or even how I am going about it. This is from people who lack adequate information to make a particularly accurate judgement. That is not a dig but a mere fact.
"Concerns" about the mother have been raised, and I want to address them. Not as a lambast for anyone with a concern but as a simple explanation for anyone with such concerns or with an interest in human study and how something like this situation works:
This is a God issue. He will provide for this mother and child with or without a particular individual's help. I have given the information that I feel comfortable giving, information that honors the mother the best that I can while maintaining her privacy. I have not been attempting to "paint a picture" but only to put the need out there with as many details as I can tactfully provide. This is not a game, and I am not a professional fund-raiser.
I am the first to admit that I am not particularly adequate for this task, but God has given it to me anyway. Take it up with Him if I am sucking.
Everyone is well within their right to determine for themselves that they do not have enough information to contribute. They are well within their right also to make total assumptions, however inaccurate they may be, that cause them to reject the idea of giving to this cause. I have no opinion of them personally. I am only grateful for the help that I do receive in this "hostage" situation where a little girl's life is literally at stake.
Unquestionably, I would run myself into the ground to save a child's life and a mother's heart. I'm not ashamed of that.
There are a variety of individuals and a variety of responses. Some people won't give a dime to a woman who "got herself pregnant", because it was within her control not to engage in "risky" activity. Some will have mercy on the woman and give. Some will not have mercy on the woman but will give anyway for the sake of the child. Some will donate over a thousand dollars and refuse to let me give them even the remotest information on the situation because they know I am the one asking and they trust my nature completely. Some will give [a much-appreciated gift of] less than $10 contingent upon an epic biography on the mother. A biography, btw, which they will not receive.
I am not an idiot. I would not put myself out there like this for an invalid or unworthy cause.
This situation is what it is, God knows the details, and He will use who He chooses to meet the need... for the sake of the mother and child and for His glory.
Nothing is guaranteed. We could all spend ourselves financially and emotionally and this mother could still flip out and kill her child. Or they could both get hit by a bus on her way to the grocery store to use foodstamps for the first time ever. I can promise a worthy endeavor, a tremendous college try, but I can't promise a happy ending.
Sometimes you get what you pray (and pay) for and sometimes you don't. In the end, it's all about faith. Christians should be used to the idea by now.
:: ashli 2:43 PM # ::
I tell you, I have gotten the best Christmas present I could get this year: watching you folks in action. You continue to blow my mind with your compassionate activism on behalf of a mother and daughter you have never even met. How lucky am I to watch God pouring you out like glittering snowflakes upon this situation at Christmas!
With permission, an anonymous letter I received this morning:
Just read your S.O.S. for the pregnant mother's mortgage. My 6 kids (4-14 yrs. old) just won a $* prize in a poster contest that they would like to send, and I will add another $*, so you have a total of $* to be sent to the church on Wednesday. It will take 3 days for the check to get to Florida.
Our family erects the pro-life booth at the fair, and my kids work the booth with me. We talk to many young women during "fair week", but we never know how many lives we've touched. This is the perfect way for us to know we are helping someone, so we are very happy to do this. We will keep the courageous mother and baby in our prayers."
Christmas really does not come in a package. It comes in the hearts of all of you as you actively honor the love, grace and mercy that our Creator has bestowed upon all of us in sending His greatest Gift so long ago.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
*I omitted the financial information so as to avoid any pressure or comparison. Every donation of any amount is a precious gift of life and is much appreciated.
:: ashli 2:04 PM # ::
I want to thank the pledger who can't afford to send Christmas cards, or buy any presents for her own kid or even a Christmas tree this year. This precious soul is living on credit, savings and equity in hopes that business will pick up after the first of the year, and s/he is planning on tapping into her/his IRA if necessary, to keep her/his own house.
I am in awe of people like this. They humble me to the core. Please take a quick moment to pray for this individual.
(May God bless you richly, my dear friend.)
:: ashli 1:07 PM # ::
I have decided only to update the online total with donations received because we had a little problem early on with people making pledges that they, for whatever reason, did not or could not honor. So as soon as the church receives a contribution, you will see it deducted from the total need posted online here at the SICLE Cell. (I normally hear from the secretary of the church, who checks the mail at the post office, approximately once a week.)
Any funds that we receive over the total mortgage need will go to pay the mother's other mounting bills, especially medical bills, as Medicaid has not yet kicked in (and they seem to be taking their sweet time on that). We have been tossing the idea of a midwife back and forth to try and figure out a way to get affordable medical care for this mother thus avoiding excessive hospital fees, but unfortunately, she has some health issues that may make that impossible. Her health (and the baby's health) is our main concern obviously and we are taking the utmost care not to jeopardize that in any way.
As I say, the mortgage payment is currently one of her biggest financial concerns but there are plenty more to contend with, so whatever we receive over the amount, if anything, will go to help the mom financially and will certainly not be misued.
This is a genuine, worthy endeavor and I am eternally grateful for those who are playing a tremendous, positive part.
:: ashli 12:59 PM # ::
:: Tuesday, December 13, 2005 ::
A question arose from someone interested in making a compassionate contribution to the current mother/daughter crisis. This person was interested in knowing more about the issue with the home. In case you are too, here is a semi-brief explanation:
Recurring pregnancy-related issues are interfering with the mother's ability to work. She is out of work now but is attempting to stabalize her condition so that she can find another job (which will probably pay minimum wage). Because of these issues she knew she would not be able to keep up the mortgage payment on her home, and she was going to abort her child so that she could go back to work to ensure that she would not lose her house.
I have been attempting to find donors to cover her mortgage payments for her entire pregnancy in order to assure her that pregnancy will not be a factor where her home is concerned. By providing this economic relief, the hope is that the mother will not feel forced to kill her child to avoid homelessness, a choice no woman should ever be faced with.
Mom (who is 19-weeks-pregnant as of today) is not renting but holds the title to the house, which she had just purchased and was moving into on the day that she found out she was pregnant... when she was neither expecting to be nor prepared to be.
I hope this serves as an explanation for those who felt they would have liked a little more information. Due to very delicate privacy concerns, I am not at liberty to say more, and I hope everyone will understand. If anyone would like to do as this blogger has done and contact the pastor of the church involved in handling the mother's mortgage payment, please feel free to verify the legitimacy of this very real and very worthy endeavor in such a way.
I really do appreciate the current interest generated here and here. As of today, the need is down to $1,249.
(My fondest gratitude to the most recent donor... who knows who s/he is.)
:: ashli 10:23 PM # ::
:: Sunday, December 11, 2005 ::
Another donation received, bringing the total human response to 5 actual people!
Thank you, thank you, thank you, Fab Five!
The mother is going through a lot of trauma and still needs $1,750 to render the mortgage payment issue a non-issue.
People, she chose life against all odds. Let us be the hands and feet. Let us back up all our talk with the utmost action. It is too much for just a handful to bear, but it is no problem at all if a ton of us responds.
Please send a contribution of any amount to:
New Philadelphia Presbyterian Church P.O. Box 344 Quincy, Florida 32351
:: ashli 7:36 PM # ::
So I'm posting it again. And I'm going to keep posting every day with financial updates until the need is met.
As of today, we need $1,950 to secure this woman's mortgage payment so that she is guaranteed not to lose her house through May when the baby is due. I know all the particulars and quite frankly, I can't post them here because you would know who the mother is and she does not want to be identified at this time. So you're just going to have to trust me. I know how that sounds, but there's just no way around it.
I feel like this particular situation may be suffering a case of the "bystander effect". As in the Kitty Genovse case, there may be a feeling of diminished responsibility because surely, with all the blog press, tons of people must be helping this mom and baby, right? Again, we only got four donations - four donations we are profoundly, eternally grateful for, but only four out of hundreds if not thousands of readers.
$1,950 is the magic number, people.
Please contribute any amount to: New Philadelphia Presbyterian Church P.O. Box 344 Quincy, Florida 32351
This church will send the payment directly to the mother's mortgage company. Please clearly mark your tax-deductible contribution "Crisis Pregnancy Ministry" in the memo field.
Please do not rely on anyone else to make a contribution. You may quite literally be the only one who will.
Be the antithesis of D. Nathan. Ask, care, give.
:: ashli 9:00 AM # ::