We hold our son, and I can't help thinking of what it took to give him life. My wife had nearly everything to do with it, but so did my muscular dystrophy. At 19 they said my smile would fade away. They said I probably wouldn't walk later in life. They said we had little chance of having a healthy child. I'm 38 years old, and I thought I might not get here.

But here I am, walking, smiling, laughing and living with my beautiful wife and healthy son. This is my life.

Max Teleki


My first son was planned for my third year of post-doctorate training. (Pregnancy before age 30 reduces the incidence of breast cancer.) The second son arrived on schedule 21/2 years later. (Negotiate second-year contract before I'm "showing.")

With one now in the Peace Corps and the other away at college, I stand in their silent rooms and think, "Now what?" My husband and I feel ridiculously unprepared. How could we not have planned for this?

Linda Oaks


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