NanaR - Blood Experience
I've been thinking of this a lot lately. The following experience ties my first doubt in with my present life.
As a backdrop to this, you should know that I was a 5th generation "raised in the truth" JW through my mother (her great-grandfather got "the truth" from Pastor Russell). So my mother, her mother, and her grandfather were all "raised in the truth". (Right about now I feel like the guy in Star Wars -- "the force is very strong in my family" *hah*).
When I was rather young (about 10 or so), my mother had a heart attack. At that time I got to spend a lot of time with her just talking about things. It was during this time that she told me she had had heart surgery around 1944. Her surgery was performed at the Mayo Clinic to close a "patent ductus" that failed to close when she was born in 1918. The doctors said it was a miracle that she had lived as long as she had, that she only had about a 50% chance of surviving the surgery (which was performed by going through her back, cutting out a rib, and then correcting the problem with her heart), and that she would not live even a year longer without it.
I also learned that at the time of this surgery, my mother received blood transfusions. She explained that "the Society" did not forbid blood transfusions at that time; that came later, in 1945 I think.
My mother survived, met my father when he returned from the war (he was a WWII Navy Veteran), married him, and gave birth to me and my sister.
I was very young, but even then I could see the connection. No surgery, no marriage, no me. Blood transfusions, I was told, were BAD. I was told that under absolutely no circumstances, including danger to life itself, was I to have a blood transfusion. I was even told, "No one has ever lived BECAUSE of a blood transfusion. People simply survive blood transfusions." But my mother would have never even had her surgery if she had refused blood in 1944. No surgery no marriage no me
But... but... but...
You could say the seed was planted.
Of course I absorbed everything I was taught. I had 3 children by C-section, refusing blood each time. I am rH negative and accepted Rhogam therapy as I was told IT was okay. I am VERY thankful that none of my children ever needed a blood transfusion, until...
Fast forward more than 40 years from my mom telling me about her surgery. This past April, my youngest daughter delivered by C-section following a very difficult labor. She lost half of her blood volume. She had a very high fever and a very rapid heart rate. The doctors were afraid she was going to go into cardiac arrest. She couldn't go to the NICU to breastfeed her baby due to being so sick.
She had never been baptized, but she had been "raised in the truth". She was refusing blood. Her fiance was begging her to change her mind. Her father (inactive, but still considers himself a JW) was simply being stoic and refusing to talk about the matter. I decided I had to do something. I sent everybody out of the room, and this is what I told her:
"I'm not going to tell you what to do. You must make this decision yourself. However I will tell you that I would go and donate blood for you right now if the hospital would let me (they would let me donate, but I couldn't designate the donation for her specifically). Also, I think you should know this. When your dear grandmother was just a little older than you, she had heart surgery and received blood transfusions. That heart surgery saved her life. In a very real sense, neither you nor I would even be here without those blood transfusions. Listen to your heart, and I will support whatever decision you choose to make."
She called her fiance and sent the rest of us out. Her father left (perhaps he sensed what was going on). When I came back in, the nurse was heading out to find the doctor to get the blood ordered.
My daughter received 2 units of blood and was well almost immediately. She was able to hold her precious daughter that very day.
That early seed of doubt bore good fruit, to my way of thinking?
What was your first seed of doubt?