Three-year-old Abigail Beutler can walk the halls of Congress with her mother, U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, because her parents refused to give up on her.
Herrera Beutler, a pro-life Republican Congresswoman from Washington state, recently shared with CNN how she and her husband chose life for Abigail after doctors diagnosed her with a typically fatal condition.
Abigail is the first known person to survive outside the womb without kidneys, a condition Potter’s syndrome, the Blaze reports. She now is 3 years old and a big sister, according to the report.
Four years ago when she was pregnant with Abigail, Herrera Beutler said she and her husband, Dan, were at the doctor’s office for a prenatal visit, thinking they would learn the sex of their unborn baby – their first child.
Instead, doctors informed them of devastating news: Their unborn daughter, Abigail, had no kidneys and would die in the womb, according to the report.
“They took us into a back room and just said, ‘There’s nothing that can be done. Your baby’s gonna die.’ And we’re at this point, just, you’re weeping,” she said.
She said that her doctor told her: “You know, a lot of women at this point would be across the street scheduling an abortion.”
But the couple said they couldn’t do it.
SUPPORT PRO-LIFE NEWS! Please help LifeNews.com with a donation
“Being able to hear the heartbeat … we had this gut feeling of there has to be something — I mean, a doctor may say it, but she’s moving. That’s pretty convincing. We know she’s still alive,” said Dan Beutler, the congresswoman’s husband.
Dan Beutler said abortion never crossed their mind; they just knew that Abigail was valuable and they had to try to save her life. After the diagnosis, the family shared their tragic news publicly and asked for prayers. They got a miracle.
Someone who read their story in a newspaper contacted the Beutlers and told them about an experimental treatment involving a saline injection that could help their daughter survive, according to the report.
The Beutlers said they contacted many different hospitals before one, Johns Hopkins, agreed to meet with them. Even then, the family said it took a lot of urging before doctors agreed to try the experimental treatment on Abigail.
“It’s not new technology. It was a willingness issue,” Herrera Beutler said.
The treatment ended up saving their daughter’s life.
“Immediately, when that fluid was introduced, her chest heaved and she began to breathe that fluid in,” Dan Beutler remembered. “And so you don’t know what’s happening, but you know that she’s doing what she’s supposed to.”
For the first two years of her life, Abigail was on dialysis until she grew big enough to receive a kidney transplant. In February 2016, she received a kidney from her father.
The pro-life Congresswoman said Abigail’s story is making an impact for life. Families of unborn babies with conditions like Abigail’s now are learning that there are treatments available that could save their lives, she said.
“The one thing we have committed and we know is true is maybe it took this to break through, because now she’s not the only [one]. She’s just the first. There are other babies who have survived because of her,” Herrera Beutler told CNN. “One just got her transplant last week, another, two weeks ago. … Now, when I Google this horrible diagnosis, we know that there’s hope.”