Monday, 05 June 2023

"They told me I was a strong woman and I could do whatever was thrown at me."

“My story is a little crazy.”

That simple sentence may be one of the most understated ways imaginable to describe April Horton’s journey. Words like “inspiring,” “courageous,” and “stunning” might be better descriptors, but even they pale in comparison to April’s story itself.

Twenty years old and divorced, April and her 2-month-old daughter had moved to a new town in rural Texas, looking for a new start. They had only been in town 12 days when April was hit by a truck, leaving her paralyzed from the ribcage down.

“My life, I thought, was completely over,” April said. “I was completely destroyed, devastated. I thought I had no future. Nobody wants to be 20 years old and in a wheelchair.”

Two years—and several surgeries—later, April started working at a local pregnancy center, The Open Door Pregnancy and Family Resource Center, as a work study opportunity through her community college.

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Finally, her life was back on track. That was August. By December, April discovered she was pregnant.

“I’m thinking, ‘Okay, I have a boss now that’s pro-life, and they’re teaching abstinence, and you’re divorced and a single mom who already has one kid,’” April said. “I thought, I’ve already been through a devastating event, maybe I can’t handle this physically. Who knew if I could carry this baby to term? Who knew if I could handle this child emotionally? I didn’t even know if I could love another child.”

“I was just thinking, ‘Maybe I should just go and have an abortion and never tell a soul.’”

Abandoned by the father of her new baby, April feared the worst—rejection, condemnation and shame—from her co-workers. Despite her fears, April went ahead and told them she was pregnant.

Tweet This: Thanks, @SenTedCruz, @JohnCornyn, for hearing April's inspiring #prolife story!

She waited for the condemnation to come, but it never did. She waited for her co-workers to treat her as an exception to the rule, but they never did.

“They told me I was a strong woman and I could do whatever was thrown at me,” April said. “They helped me set up resources like diapers—which are so expensive. They just empowered me all the way. They didn’t ever doubt my ability, even when I did.”

As a mother of two, April has held onto her position at the pregnancy center, where she works alongside her newest co-worker, Allyson, who occupies a Pack n’ Play at the center’s reception desk.

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April, along with her co-workers at the center, brought 4-month-old Allyson to four congressional offices—including that of GOP presidential hopeful Sen. Ted Cruz—to tell her story Jan. 21 as part of Heartbeat International’s Babies Go to Congress.

“I can’t even begin to tell you the impact those ladies have had on my life,” April said. “There is not one day that I don’t wonder, ‘What would’ve happened without those ladies in my life?’ I would not have been so blessed with the little girl I have today.”

“I get to watch both of my girls grow, and they just love each other so much. I don’t even know how I thought I couldn’t love two babies. That’s just the craziest thing.”

Tweet This: Pregnancy center "empowered me all the way." #prolife @heartbeatintl

In addition to Sen. Cruz’s office, April and Allyson visited U.S. Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) and U.S. Reps John Ratcliffe (R-TX) and Sam Johnson (R-TX) as part of the event.

Jay Hobbs

Part-time thinker, full-time husband, daddy, pastor, and baseball fan, Jay Hobbs served as editor of from its 2015 inception through the spring of 2018. Jay served on staff at Heartbeat International from 2012 to 2018, the last four of those years as Director of Communications and Marketing. Jay's writing has appeared at Newsweek, The Washington Times, The Washington ExaminerThe Federalist, The Daily Signal, The Christian Post, CNS News and The Gospel Coalition, as well as several national pro-life news outlets.

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