Taylor Clements died today. We had eagerly anticipated the glorious March 1995 arrival of our new baby boy. I had carried him in the safety and security of my womb for 18 weeks when the complications began. Due to bleeding, then separation of the placenta, and ultimately losing my amniotic fluid, I was confined to total hospital bed rest to insure against him being born too early.
But alas, he was. On November 8th, at 20 weeks gestation, he was born. The Neonatal ICU Unit worked tirelessly to intubate him, but his little air passage was (2 weeks) smaller than the smallest tube available and without the required additional oxygen, fifteen minutes later he died.
It was, without a doubt, the most emotionally painful experience of mine and my husband's lives. Sarasota Memorial Hospital Neonatal Doctors & Nurses bent over backward to accommodate me and my family and friends. They supplied us with a baby memorial package which included pictures, handprints, footprints, measurements, etc. They wrapped Taylor in a baby blanket and handed him to us which allowed all of us to be with him and to say our goodbyes.
All of the memories and emotions come flooding back to me now as I write this letter. It's difficult to type through the tears, but this is a message I feel compelled to convey.
My husband and I carefully observed his perfect little hands and feet, his little nose and mouth and ears. All perfectly formed, all perfect. At 20 weeks gestation, he was 11 inches long and weighed 14 ounces. And even at 20 weeks, it was obvious the resemblance clearly favored my husband.
As we held him and gloried in amazement of his perfection, one recurring thought kept coming forth; he is so perfect and detailed and large.....yet right down the street, for a price, men who call themselves doctors abort babies 2 weeks older than Taylor. How in the world can that possibly be?
My husband and I have been very active in the pro-life movement for many years. We have accumulated quite a library of abortion videos, pictures, postcards & posters, detailing the humanity and perfection of the tiniest of the preborn babies. But it wasn't until we held our own 20 week old baby boy (40 weeks is full term), that it struck us as to just how perfect and complete they are. Sure we'd known about the little fingers and toes, but Taylor had fingerprints!
As painful as it is, I am writing of this experience for the sole purpose of possibly persuading the young women contemplating abortion to give their babies life. These babies are "fearfully and wonderfully made" and only God, who created them in His image, has the right to "choose", as He did with Taylor.
God did not take him from us, He simply chose to keep him.
Goodbye Taylor, we will always love you and we'll see you when we get there.