A Bereft Mother’s Look at Nancy Fitzmaurice’s Death and the Euthanasia Debate
In the past few weeks I have seen a number of links to articles regarding euthanasia, particularly reacting to the decision of a UK judge to honor the request of a desperate mother to allow her twelve year old daughter to die. These posts have been shared all over Facebook as an outcry by the church of what a slippery slope it would cause and how little our culture values life.
Church, I am disappointed in you.
On what grounds are you really making this morality call?
Have you read the words of the mother or listened to her testimony before the judge?
Have you walked in her shoes?
This mob mentality is why I consider myself neither pro-life or pro-choice.
I am pro-Christ, and I believe He has compassion and mercy that the church is refusing to grasp.
Here’s the lens I look through when I read about Nancy Fitzmaurice and her mother’s unthinkable decision…
Days before Nancy was born, her mother was diagnosed with an active Group B Strep(GBS) infection and it was likely that there was irreversible damage done to Nancy because it had gone untreated in the womb. The complications of GBS left Nancy blind, septic, and suffering meningitis. Charlotte, her mother, didn’t abandon her to die, she followed treatments to preserve her life. She cherished the days she would have, in spite of the grim prognosis.
She lived for twelve years, beyond what the doctors ever expected. Her mother didn’t abandon her to the medical system, she stood by her side and watched her daughter suffer and fade away.
Her decision was not easy or convenient.
Charlotte Fitzmaurice is a bereft mother, and I wouldn’t dare assume otherwise.
It infuriates me that Christians would stand at the sidelines with their arms crossed in front of them and judge the decision that this woman made, not giving a minute to understand the heart-break that it was.
Have you had to make the choice to allow machines and pumps to do what your child’s body cannot?
Have you had your whole world stop as you move into the hospital to spend every moment you can with your child who cannot survive outside of it?
Have you watched your child suffer physical pain that could not be treated?
Have you watched your child deteriorate to the point that she is almost unrecognizable?
If your answer to any of these is no, please don’t use this case for your pro-life cause.
Your judgement of this mom deeply hurts parents like me.
We often make a rash call of morality, but most often it’s made from our comfortable safety and security, instead of with our hands dirty with those suffering.
Do you think I didn’t have faith when my husband and I asked the doctors to remove life support from Miranda? Do you know how fiercely I prayed for a different outcome? How many times I asked Him to spare her in whatever condition He could leave her here with me? Unless you were by our sides looking at her bruised and broken body, you will never understand how desperate we can get when we have HOPE.
I believe Christ was right there by our side through it ALL.
Charlotte Fitzmaurice was a mother desperate to have her daughter delivered to peace. I do not know if she has faith in Christ, but I’ll be the last to judge the decision she had to make. It is a decision she will grieve the rest of her life and she needs no guilt from anyone else.