Some people would have preferred him to die. More than just that, they would have preferred him never to be born. Some doctors from the Winnie Palmer Hospital, in Florida, had recommended to the parents not to have the little Jaxon Emmett Buell because of the serious malformations his skull and brain were affected by. Their sentence was clear: the child would not have survived. Jaxon’s father and mother, however, have always been contrary to abortion and refused to interrupt pregnancy. Make no mistake: there are problems, nobody can deny it. Statistically, Jaxon is one of 4859 children born in the United States with the same condition, most of whom die while still in the uterus or shortly after coming to birth. But he was stronger than genetics, and thanks to his parents’ courage, he was born and celebrated his first year of life. A slap in the face of all those who believe that only healthy babies “deserve” to live.
Technically, Jaxon was diagnosed with anencephaly, a serious congenital malformation which can be diagnosed during the first month of pregnancy, when the unborn child lacks a part of the skull and of the brain or the whole of it. “After our second ultrasound, at 17 weeks, when we discovered that it was a boy – told Brandon, the baby’s father – we knew that there was something wrong; the sonographer kept looking insistently at his head. The day after Brittany received a call from the doctors. They said there was a problem with the results of the ultrasound scan. She explained it to me in tears”. “We went home that night thinking about the fact that we had been recommended to have an abortion, but we could not know how Jaxon would have lived if he survived – continued Brandon – Who are we to decide? We have been given a child, a possibility, and we must become his voice. We have done everything in our power to give him a chance to fight and all he has done since he was born was fighting”.
“I was devastated – said Brittany, the mother -. It made my heart suffer because something I had always desired, was finally happening in my life, but then I was told that my baby could be born dead. I had to find the strength. I did not have the happiness women experience when they are pregnant, I was very concerned about my son’. Every day could be the last day, but this is precisely why parents experience an incredibly intense love with their child. Every look, every interaction assume a special meaning, and Jaxon has already made us happy with many smiles. Jaxon’s story has moved America, and there are many people who support this special couple. Jaxon Strong – the nickname given to the baby on social media – now has more than 100,000 followers on Facebook.
Serious anomalies of the fetuses and risks for the physical and psychological health of the woman are often cited as reasons to justify abortion. In those cases, considering the unbearable suffering the baby would have to go through, its life is thought not to be worth living. But every life has something wonderful in it and the special relationship inside this incredible family bears witness to it. Jaxon will die, of course. But all of us will. Yet, his story will serve to give courage to those who face difficult decisions, and perhaps will help them understand that it is wonderful to be able to look at your son, whatever his life expectancy is. Because it is life that we are talking about, a life Jaxon’s parents have wanted to give to their unborn child; whereas abortion, whatever one may think, is always synonymous with death.