Sunday, May 13, 2012
Bond forms in the womb
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I envy my wife and her special relationship that she has with our daughters. I think that most of us can also recognize that women as mothers have a special and unique bond between themselves and their children, a bond that is different than the father-child bond.
Now understand, I love my daughters, and I certainly participated in their coming into the world. But I envy the very special part that a woman plays in this process of life-giving, an experience that as a man I can never have.
A woman has this special and awesome experience of being allowed to carry that new life within her body. Another human being, a new hope for the world, a new generation, as her own child forms and warms within her. It is here where that special bond begins.
Only a woman can sense the growth, can feel the movement, can anticipate her child's excitement of moving from that borrowed protective place and into the outside world.
Then, by that act of birthing — a transition that I, as a dad, am present for but not present to — a woman can participate in the sharing of her own flesh and blood with her infant. Only at the birth am I able to see for the first time this new life, while my wife sees with her eyes what she has already known with her body.
She bonds with the infant that she had protected and held in safekeeping: a new person from her, but separate from herself. A woman experiences this special and awesome gift — to be allowed to carry that new life within her body and then into the world.
I think of this and then am saddened when I read about women speaking of their right to end this new life through abortion, using the reason, "Don't tell me what to do with my body."
This new person is entrusted to a woman. Yes, it is in them and of them, but he or she is not them: not the woman herself.
I understand that women carry the possibility of holding a child within them whenever an intimate encounter transpires, and men need be especially responsible for this as well. But it is for this reason, that the possibility of new life is always there when a man and woman meet, that only in love and openness to accepting new life should intimacy transpire.
Therefore, it is the moment that is sacred. But we have taken this sacred moment of joyful ecstatic union and have made it into a recreational pastime similar to bowling or playing cards.
I know that it is not a perfect world, but too many men walk away, and this is wrong. And too many women throw away, and this is wrong as well.