As I have been reading articles on the HHS mandate, and the Institute of Medicine, a government funded element of the National Academy of Sciences that HHS hired last year to come up with recommendations for “preventive services” to be mandated under Obama care. I find myself asking " why is fertility such a bad word to this administration. When reading the recommendations of this committee “The committee recommends for consideration as a preventive service for women: the full range of Food and Drug Administration-approved contraceptive methods, sterilization procedures, and patient education and counseling for women with reproductive capacity,” which the administration accepted verbatim into the HHS mandate, I wonder when sterilization became preventative care?
There was a time, not that long ago in our society, when fertility was considered a blessing from God. Now we have to prevent it? This mandate is saying that girls as young as fifteen are considered women of reproductive capacity. Girls under 18 can get an abortion with out parental consent, and with this new mandate, you can bet they can get sterilized without parents approval as well. So our children, who cannot vote, drink alcohol, or in some states even drive, can independently make the decision to kill their unborn child, and possibly receive sterilization. How is this good for women? How is this health care for young girls? Studies have shown that contraception is linked to breast cancer. Abortions have long lasting emotional and at times medical side effects. Now adding possible sterilization, a choice made at a young age, and someone possibly living with that pain for the rest of their life. I know a lot of people think, who am I to tell someone else how to live their life, but as Christians we have a responsibility to stand up against injustice. Just because something is legal, does not make it right.
I find fertility beautiful. I think of my husband and our relationship. I have four living children and three little angels in heaven due to miscarriage. My pregnancies have never been easy. I am sick with nausea and vomiting the entire 9 months. I am exhausted and don't always feel beautiful, however, I am so humbled by the gift that I have been given as a women. I am able to carry life within me. I am able to bond with my child in the most intimate way. I get the joy of safely growing life within me. It is amazing. I also think of the love my husband and I share. We have used Natural Family Planning throughout our marriage, and yes there are times that calls for abstaining within our marriage, however it has made our love grow stronger. There is something to be said for denying yourself out of love. It brings a closeness and a bond that is hard for me to explain. I have seen Steve's love and respect grow towards me throughout our marriage, and mine in turn for him. The thing Natural family planning has given to us is, a greater respect for each other, and for our bodies.
Contraception teaches us, that it is okay to have sex with whoever,whenever, as long as it is "safe sex". They preach this over and over to our children in school health classes. It takes away a level of respect. Women/men are no longer seen as the beautiful beings we are made to come together in sacred union of marriage, to share the most intimate level of love sharing and trust possible. Sex has become a commodity. People have become a commodity because of it. We are not to be respected, we are to be conquered, to give into our beastly desires and thrown to the side after use. Society through contraception is teaching us that we can do whatever we want without giving it a second thought. How is that good for women, and for that matter, how is that good for men?
Being an object of desire is much worse than being the love of some one's life. I have a husband who has given his life to me. He has given up certain dreams and things that he wanted to have, for our family. I have given my life to my husband, and I gladly sacrifice personal desires for the beauty we have in our relationship. We love God and we try each day to serve him, and we try each day to help each other get to heaven. Now I am not saying we are perfect, we can have a knock, down, drag out fight better than most. We get frustrated with each other, there are times I could kick the man, and I am sure he feels the same way about me, but we are committed to each other, and we love each other. I find comfort in the fact that even though my body is not what it used to be, that his respect and love for me has grown.
Fertility is not a condition that needs to be "prevented". Fertility is a gift from God. I understand perfectly that everyone is not called to having lots of children. However, abstinence and Natural Family planning can help balance the number of kids you have. It also helps you know and understand your body as a women. I know the minute something is off, because I know my body. I have a great respect for my body and what God made it to do. I love being a woman. I love that I am hormonal and irrational at times. I love that I am strong and loving, I love that I am a complex and to my husband at times a mystery as to how my moods may be. I love that God has given me the ability to carry children and give birth to children. I love that I don't have to be a man. I appreciate my differences from men. I am grateful that God made men and women to compliment each other. I am always in awe of how my husband can make up for areas I lack, and I can make up for areas that he lacks. I love that together Steve and I make up a pretty good ONE. We are better together than apart.
So in closing my hope is that others can see what a gift fertility is. What a gift it is to be a women, a wife, a mother. I hope people see through the lies being thrown around in the name of woman's rights and health care. Enjoy being a women, God made us quite spectacularly!