Saturday, April 13, 2019

Testimony of a Gynecologist

In the last months, I have read in social networks some arguments related to the unborn baby that I want to comment on. I have read that they are just a bunch of cells. I have read that they are not human beings. I have read that they are not living beings. I have read that they are not beings with conscience. And that therefore, those cells do not have any right that should be respected. In view of all this, I want to give my testimony:

I have been a gynecologist for 30 years. Since 1988 I have treated many women who have placed their trust in me. I have taken care of their pregnancies. I have delivered their children. Many of those babies are grown now and are parents themselves, and in some cases I have delivered their own children.

In all these years, I have done ultrasounds on many of my patients from the very early stages of their pregnancies, as part of the medical care I provide them. But along the way, I have witnessed many other things that go beyond the mere medical assessment, and I wish to comment on them:

I have seen the hearts of babies beating very early, strongly, with such force that it is not unusual for us to see first the beat, and then the baby himself.

I have seen them at 7 weeks old do small jumps on their backs.

I have seen them at 9 weeks old move their arms and legs, move their whole body, do flips, jump, turn their faces, get on their sides, open their mouths and make so many gestures that are common and familiar to any human being.

I have seen them complete, with brain and heart, with eyes, ears and mouth. I have seen them with hands and feet, with liquid inside their stomach, with urine in their bladder. I have seen the cavities of their heart pumping blood to their entire body. I have seen how they touch their hands, how they bend their knees, how they extend and stretch them as if they were on a swing.

I have seen them grow inside the womb, I have seen them when they yawn and I have seen them have hiccups. I’ve seen them move their respiratory muscles. I've seen them make fists with their hands and I've seen them move their eyes. Waiting for the moment of birth.

And seeing them inside the womb, I have been able to recognize that they are more than just cells, I have recognized a living being, with its own physiology, with its own structure. I have seen a human being. I have seen a being of my species, only younger than me, a being that is a continuum in time with the being that will be in the future. A being that is not only a prospective, but it is a reality there in the womb of his mother, just like the little child who, although he is a prospective for the future, is already a reality in his present childhood. True, he is not a human being aware of his environment, just as a newborn is not aware either, or a child who is a few days or weeks old, or as the adult who has lost some of his cognitive functions. But he is a human being, as much as them, just like them, he is just a human being.

I have seen those embryos become fetuses, and those fetuses being born, and I have seen them then come with their parents, as little children, to my practice, witnessing the miracle of having one, two or more little brothers. And I have seen them grow up and become good men and women. And I have seen them become mothers and fathers who love the life that was given to them and the life they now give.

I have seen many parents weep with joy when they see their child for the first time on a screen, and I have seen them immensely happy when they are born. And many times I have heard them say how that baby has changed their lives, and how they are now willing to give their lives for the love of their little one. It is not rhetoric. Any father knows this, any mother understands it. Willing, willing to die for the love of their baby.

And I have seen cases of women who suddenly found themselves in a reality they did not expect, with an unplanned pregnancy, with a baby they did not think would come. Sometimes they are alone, and because of that they are braver. But when they have become aware of the transcendence of what they are living, and have accepted the arrival of the baby, and have continued under my care, I have not ever seen a single woman regret it, I have never seen one, that after a few years, does not see her son or her daughter as the most valuable thing in their lives. Never, I have never heard one of them saying: "I would have preferred not to have this child".

After giving this testimony, I only hope that those who think differently do so out of ignorance, hopefully out of lack of information.

Do not argue that they are just cells, do not argue that it is not a living being, do not argue that it is not a human being or that it has no conscience. Do not insult your own intelligence with those arguments, which are so false and empty that it is incredible that a human being with conscience even takes them into account.

Dr. Sergio Villareal