This article was originally shared as a Facebook post on my page, Rev. Karen Dempsey. It received such a beautiful response that I’ve decided to keep it here as a blog post.
This post may seem long, and it may contain surprises, but please bear with me
“So, back in April I discovered I was pregnant (yay!), and towards the end of June we found out it was not to be (not so yay).
This morning, I should have been in the Rotunda with a full bladder, having my twelve week scan. Instead, I was in a crematorium, leading a funeral. Kinda apt.
I’m sharing this now because not to share feels like withholding. I know for sure that it’s a topic we don’t talk about enough. We’re too afraid to say the wrong thing (In fairness there’s nothing much anyone can say, other than “Oh NO, that’s shit. Let me know if there’s anything I can do for you”) That’s always nice to hear.
The other reason I’m sharing this, is because it would be remiss of me not to acknowledge the fact that I am now living the reality of being a woman living DIRECTLY under the looming threat of the 8th Amendment.
This pregnancy was very welcome, and much wanted. However, there came the time when it was very apparent that it was not going to continue, and it would not result in a baby- no matter what anyone did or said or wanted. Nature was taking her course, and so I did what I always do- I trusted my body and I went along with it.
Thankfully, all has gone smoothly, and although I’m tired and physically depleted, my health is intact. Other women are not so lucky. As I was miscarrying, I was very aware that of anything should go wrong, if I got an infection or if I started to haemorrhage, the healthcare I would receive would be severely restricted- because of the 8th Amendment.
As long as there was a trace of life in my uterus, that potential life would carry equal weight to my actual life- even though the potential for life would OBVIOUSLY end if my life ended.
I want to rant and rave about how STUPID that is! I want to rant and rave about how the 8th Amendment RISKS lives and TAKES lives- it doesn’t save them.
And so I lay in bed, reading articles about this nonsense we call the 8th Amendment and- more importantly- the comments people were writing on them. Comments from people I know, who I thought would know better, who clearly had no idea of the true reality of what they’re so vehemently protecting when they defend the 8th.
I have so much to say about this, but for now I want to drive a very real point home.
I have spent the last three weeks at the mercy of the 8th Amendment. If you love me, and if you value my life, PLEASE inform yourself about what the 8th Amendment really means.
I trust you to value my life. I trust you to value my role as a living and breathing mother to my living and breathing son. I trust you to vote to #RepealThe8th. Please trust me to make my own decisions about my body, my family and my healthcare”
Trust women. Repeal The Eighth.