"Love One Another!" 14/2009 → Christian family
Today I am the happy mother of two-year-old Matthew Anthony, but until recently it seemed as if the whole world was against my child and myself. When l look back, I wonder how I managed to live through it all and not break under the pressure. Only God knows how, for He was watching over us.
Life sometimes presents people with a stark choice: “you must die; and you must live.” This happened in our case. In my fifth month of pregnancy, I discovered I had cancer. The doctor treating me told me straight out, coldly and without holding out any hope: “You must abort the fetus.” For her it was not a child, but a problem.
I had no counselor at the time. There was no one to talk to, no one to take me into their arms, no one to comfort and encourage me. I was alone with my unborn child and uncertain future, for, according to my doctors, there was little hope of my surviving the birth; what was more, Matthew would be hydrocephalic. Thanks to God neither of these dismal prophecies came true.
I had no work then, for my boss had let me go, and we were living — as we are still — in rented quarters. My only recourse, as it seemed to me, was prayer. So I went to a church named after Saint Matthew the Apostle (my little son bears his name) and began to beg God and the Blessed Virgin for help. I do not know how long I stayed there praying.
On leaving the church, I saw the following notice on the bulletin board (I had not noticed it on entering the church): “Gynecologists’ and Oncologists’ Conference, free consultations.” I went there and found a wonderful doctor, who saw no problem, but only Matthew. He agreed to treat me. I felt that we were important and in safe hands. At 12:35, April 15, 2006 (Holy Saturday), I gave birth to beautiful, healthy baby boy. After the birth, the diocesan Pro-Life Foundation took care of us, and so finding money for my treatment, digs, and living expenses became a little easier
I fought for Matthew’s life. Now I am engaged in a fight for my own life — formy son’s sake. It is by no means easy and, although my struggle with my illness is up and down, I find a measure of solace in recalling that Someone is looking after me. I believe that with God and with people’s help we will win and that I will be able to go on raising my son.
I have undergone three operations. Unfortunately, the cancer is very persistent. My son’s smiling face is my best medicine and greatest motivator for keeping up the struggle. But there is still the financial hardship to overcome. I believe that thanks to God’s help and the kindness of the people around me, we will succeed.