Wednesday, February 3, 2016

This tenuous life

Sometimes we forget how tenuous life is.  Once born, our lives are at the mercy of pure chance: a semi on the highway, a tiny bacterium or virus, a misplaced step on a flight of stairs and it can all end.  Just getting born is a crap-shoot. We talk callously about poor women who "pop babies out" like it is easy, but it is not.

I had several miscarriages in my youth and  a still-born child.  It tore the heart out of me.  Now it's happening again, just not to me. There will be blood and tears and pain.  And again I am helpless.

I am writing a book on rare genetic disorders and I understand how this happens and that some children might be better off not being born.  My belief system does not include any kind of grand ringmaster directing the affairs of men.  I believe that we are all miracles - miracles of stardust and chance.  I think our souls are no more or less than the energy we contain and expend and that just as energy and matter cannot be destroyed or created, these souls are recycled and born to another or in another time.

Still, at this moment someone I love is losing part of her heart. There will be no child to hold, just pain and damage and doubt. 

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