Mother sacrifices self to save unborn baby girl
NEW YORK — A New York mother gave the ultimate sacrifice, choosing to forego cancer treatment in order to give her unborn baby life.
In 2010 Elizabeth Joice was diagnosed with cancer. After surgery and four rounds of chemotherapy, she was declared cancer-free. Doctors told her it would be nearly impossible to conceive.
And yet she did.
In the summer of 2013, she and her husband, Max, announced they were pregnant. One month later, they learned the cancer had returned.
Doctors gave them three choices. They could abort the baby and begin treatment immediately. They could start treatment and continue with the pregnancy, which would have been harmful to their baby. Or they could delay treatment and continue on with the pregnancy.
Joice chose the latter.
“Having a kid was one of the most important things in the world to her,” Max said in an interview with The New York Post. “She said, ‘If we terminate the pregnancy and it turns out I can’t have a baby [later], I’ll be devastated.’ She knew this might be her only chance.”
Joice was due in March, but doctors delivered baby Lily by Cesarian section in January so Joice could begin treatment as soon as possible. But it was too late. The cancer had taken its toll and Joice’s health declined, but not before she had the opportunity to bond with the baby girl she fought so hard to save.
The family posted a montage of photos of their first and last moments that Joice and Lily shared together.
Joice died March 9 with her husband by her side.
An online fundraiser is seeking to raise $50,000 to support Max and Lily. It has already received over $27,000 in donations.