I almost let my son die.

I almost let my son die.  If not for my loving wife, I may have let my son die.  This is what the “harmless” door knocking Jehovah’s Witnesses can do and truly expect from you.  They demand blood. 

Excerpt from the book The True Nature Of Human Nature

Preston was going to be born with a rare heart condition known as “Transposition of the Great Arteries,” also known as TGA.  Without going into the details, the layman explanation of the condition is that the heart was fine, but the arteries, the plumbing of the heart, was inversely installed.  The oxygenated blood that was meant for the body was re-pumped back to the lungs, and the deoxygenated blood destined to be replenished with oxygen in the lungs was redistributed into the body again.  In essence, he was going to choke to death almost as soon as he left the safety of the womb.  He would die in minutes, hours or days.  If there were sufficient mixing in the heart (something that occurs in almost all newborns), he would live a month or two tops.  The diagnosis of TGA was a death sentence.  A baby born with TGA, if no remedial is done, will die.  It is certain death.

Herein lies the issue.  The Jehovah’s Witness organization does not allow the use of blood transfusions.  They use the bible as evidence that God would not allow such a thing.  If a Witness were to proceed with a transfusion, they would be disfellowshipped, the most severe form of excommunication that exists.

Here is the defining moment for me personally.  My wife followed her own path to emancipation, and I am happy to say we all met at the same destination of peace.  We found the best doctor in the world to do the procedure, Dr. Jan Quaegebeur and the procedure in his hands had a 99% success rate.  We discussed with the other doctors that we needed this to be a bloodless surgery, and they agreed to do their best.  They gave our son blood expanders and would recycle his blood as required. 

However, the day of the surgery came and Dr. Q, as he is called at the hospital came up to us and said that he would do the best to avoid a blood transfusion but that he could not guarantee a bloodless surgery.  There is a certain amount of blood required in the blood pump before it can operate and being that Preston was two weeks old, he did not have a lot of blood available.  I kept saying out loud “this is supposed to be a bloodless surgery!” but my loving wife intervened and said, “Please do whatever it takes to save our son” and she signed the requisite waivers.  I felt relieved that my wife made the tough decision but also ashamed.  Did this false religion mean more to me than my son?  See chapter 4 for a more in-depth view of this situation under the discussion of “Social Compliance.”  I feel that in the end, I would have caved in and accepted the procedure with blood, but I will never truly know.  I only know that I have Dr. Q and my loving, intelligent wife to thank for in saving the life of my son.  A blood transfusion was, in fact, necessary or the chance for death was certain.  I never wanted to broach the subject again, but my wife did and one day said “Are you ok with my decision for a blood transfusion?  I pick the life of my son over God”.  I agreed with her decision, with the weight of my shame in full view of my facial features.  I thanked her for doing what I was not ready to do, save our son. 

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