August 15, 2020
Who would have known that our feet would be the punctuation of our birth? Little tiny feet pressed onto a stamp pad and then permanently stamped onto baby books and birth certificates. I remember that moment in the hospital after our daughter was born. The nurse putting Gemma’s footprint onto little pieces of paper that we could add to her baby book. I remember thinking that these footprints had to be perfectly stamped. They had to accurately depict our precious little baby’s feet, all ten of those tiny perfect toes, at that exact moment, because, with each passing day, those feet were going to grow. This moment, the size of her feet at birth, needed to be saved; needed to be never forgotten. I love those footprints. And I also love all the handprint art that she has brought home from school. Tiny precious hands. Tiny “precious feet”. Little precious life.
I saw this picture and it touched my heart so deeply. I think that was the point of this picture; to touch the hearts of individuals, and maybe even open some eyes. I do not know these tiny feet. After watching the video from Live Action.org (Click here for video), I know that they are ten- week old feet from the womb of a mother. I know that this picture was taken by Dr. Russel Sacco in the early 1970’s after visiting a pathologist at a hospital in Portland. I know that it was one of the responsibilities of the pathologist to destroy the bodies of aborted babies, but he preserved several in hopes of finding a more humane way of treating these bodies. I know that when Dr. Sacco saw what the pathologist preserved that he saw an opportunity. After permission from the pathologist, he decided to take photographs of these aborted babies for educational purposes. This photograph was him holding these feet between his two fingers to accurately show their size. He chose not to copyright this photograph so that it could be used throughout the world. Tiny “precious feet”.
When I saw this picture, I was amazed at the perfection of these tiny feet at just 10 weeks of development. 10 weeks. I thought about God and His attention to detail. Those feet were perfect because a perfect God created them. Each little toe perfectly created. “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.” (Psalm 139: 13-16) “Intricately woven”. I love those words. Those tiny feet were intricately woven by the God of the universe.
Tears streamed down my face as I stared at those tiny “precious feet”. I could feel the heaviness in my heart. How heartbreaking to think that these feet, these perfect feet, will never be stamped as the iconic footprint in a baby book. They will never take their first steps or run around a playground. Those perfect tiny “precious feet”. A perfect life. I am sure that God’s heart broke when that perfect life was taken. That life that He had so intricately woven. When God’s heart breaks, our hearts should too.