Parents of children with disabilities now have a resource

Crystal Showers-Maynard played with her son Jace when she got home from work. Jace was born with myelomeningocele, a form of spina bifida in which the spinal cord and spinal canal does not properly close. Throughout her pregnancy Showers-Maynard received help from Birthright’s The Melissa’s Smile Assistance Program.

Thirty two weeks into her pregnancy, Crystal Maynard received worrisome news.

A prenatal care visit revealed that her unborn son, Jace, had myelomeningocele, a form of spina bifida in which the spinal cord and spinal canal do not properly form.

"I Googled about 80 million articles," she recalled after learning the news. "My entire world changed in just one day."



Chelsea Hinkle gently slid her phone across the table to show off the ultrasound image of her babies.

As she rubbed the sides of her protruding abdomen, Hinkle held a smile as she described the feeling of excitement waiting for the arrival of her twins in July.

At work, she carries a set of keys that jingle against her side as she walks. "They just love it," she said. "They go right to sleep."

Birthright examining effects of 72-hour waiting period for abortion

Helen Pennington, a counselor at Birthright in St. Louis, stopped at the facility’s “hope wall.” Pennington reports a 21 percent increase in cases at Birthright since the 72-hour waiting period for abortions was made into law in Missouri.

Last week, a woman came to Birthright seeking help. A friend was with her for moral support.

The woman already took a pregnancy test at Planned Parenthood. It was positive. She was told she had to wait 72 hours before she could have an abortion; the Missouri law went into effect a little over a year ago.

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