Tuesday, June 28, 2005
I cannot imagine  

Perhaps you have heard of the very tragic story regarding Susan Torres, the 26-year-old pregnant woman who collapsed on May 7th of this year because she was suffering from stage 4 melanoma. The melanoma had attacked the top of her spinal column, and although she was rushed to a hospital, she has since been declared brain dead. Legally speaking, by the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia, she is no longer alive.

At the time she was 17 weeks pregnant with their second child. Now, she is being kept alive in the hope that her unborn child will be able to be delivered. Her husband Jason Torres, also 26 years of age, has firmly declared that this would be her wish. Both he and his wife are Catholics. His wife is a convert to Catholicism. Jason has indicated that he has struggled with all of this with God in prayer including yelling at God. However, he makes the point he does not see that as a problem because he is keeping the dialogue open.

Doctors have placed his wife on the necessary equipment including a ventilator that will continue to supply his wife and her child with what they need to keep the child alive and growing. The situation is delicate because of the condition of Susan Torres and the fact that the cancer continues to attack her body. Fortunately, because the baby's system is somewhat separate from the mother's, there is a level of protection for the child from the cancer.

The doctors are hoping to let the child mature until the 25th week of pregnancy, which would be in two weeks, before attempting to deliver the child. Jason Torres would opt to let the child live longer in the mother's womb before attempting delivery in order to give the child the best opportunity of being healthy and avoiding all the possible problems that a prematurely born child might have.

In what must be an unbelievably difficult time, Jason Torres continues to, as he puts it, plod along. His brother is helping him to deal with all of the logistical details including the mounting medical bills. A fund has been set up to allow people to donate to help cover the now hundreds of thousands of dollars that have been incurred. Although Susan Torres had medical insurance, there is a question of what will be covered given that she is legally considered to no longer be alive. To this point, the insurance company seems to be giving the Torres family a break.

In recent days, Jason has seen a sonogram of their child which showed that the child had grown and was kicking. The family has also been encouraged by the well wishes, prayers, and donations. They have literally heard from around the world including from one person who sent a first class relic of Blessed Mother Theresa. All of this is encouraging to the family who are under such strain, especially Jason. For now, he continues to pray, to give interviews, to stay by his wife and child's side, and to hope.

[Based on a June 27, 2005 article in the Washington Post]

I really cannot imagine what this must be like for Jason Torres. The idea that he is yelling at God is probably understated. I do not know what I would do, but I do know what I can do for this young man who is bearing such a heavy burden. He needs prayers, "offerings up" to God, and, yes, money. For more information about the situation and information about how to donate, go to the Susan M. Torres Fund web site.

Posted by David at 3:15 AM  |  Comments (0)  | Link


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