Babies born with malformations win Life Stories

The story of a woman who decides not to enter the elite of world sport in order to have a son, Borja, who is born without legs and without an arm; the story of Guadalupe Táuler, the last of 10 siblings, who was born with a lump on her skull, and the story of some boys around the Plaza de San Miguel in Valladolid, are the winners of the II Life Stories Contest.

Rafael Miner-April 14, 2022-Reading time: 5 minutes

Photo: Start of the Race for Life in Madrid on March 27, 2022.

It is not well seen to make 'spoilers', that is, to advance how the stories are, and even less their end, but they are moving. The pregnancies of Borja and Guadalupe, each in their respective families, and the life of some boys from Valladolid in the Plaza de San Miguel, have won prizes this year in the II Short Story Contest on 'The gift of life and sport', organized by the Association Athletes for Life and the Family, chaired by Javier Jáuregui, in which Omnes has collaborated.

The Jury was composed of Francisco Gil Sánchez, Manuel Ruiz-Tomás Parajón, José María López-Ferrera and Joaquín Albadalejo Giménez, who had to decide on a few stories that will be published in their entirety in an electronic book on this Omnes website, as was done a few weeks ago with the award-winning stories in 2021.

The boys from Valladolid are the ones who collided in the Pisuerga River, "while we were swimming, with another tiny, naked, floating, helpless and somewhat swollen body. Thrown into the river dead or alive, perhaps by an anonymous being, hopeless and desperate." "There, on the left bank of the Pisuerga, one summer day, a collective lament was raised. From that day on, none of us ever swam in the river again," narrates Fernando Barcenilla, one of the winners.

"Our little gladiator".

Mercedes Lucena, a student of the Colegio de Fomento de Córdoba El Encinar, winner in the under-19 category with 'La línea de una batalla', tells the story of Jorge, "our little gladiator", and his parents who, despite the malformation of their son's legs and right arm, and the comments that "he would be a nuisance for us and that the best thing would be to get rid of him", went ahead with their gladiator. Borja was no good for anything," they said. "I am truly sorry because they will never know the word resilience in person," writes Mercedes Lucena, encouraged by professor Ana Isabel Serrano.

"For me," Mercedes Lucena portrays, "his metallic legs were flying. Soon, and to everyone's surprise, he overtook his companions, and the finish line was getting closer and closer. Before he got there, he stumbled and fell to the ground. However, gritting his teeth, he got up and continued running, and thanks to the advantage he had, he crossed the white line. For a few moments, getting up from my seat and shouting, that patch of paint looked to me like the line of a great battle."

"A spark of hope".

Blanca Táuler, a student of the Senara school in Madrid, in the free category, with her story 'Los ojos de nuestra hermanita' (Guadalupe), "in which we see life, a spark of hope", has been awarded in the free category. "In the 12th week of pregnancy, at the clinic, they detected a malformation in the baby, which days later was confirmed; our little sister had meningocele; a defect that appears as a small bag near the spine. That pocket, affectionately called a 'little bag', frightened us all".

Blanca Táuler, first from right, in the Race for Life

"My parents saw in the eyes of the doctors the difficulty, a spark of risk; and it was decided to transfer her to the Gregorio Marañón hospital where the medical staff, neurosurgeons, ultrasound, gynecologist..., were specialized in high-risk pregnancies," adds Blanca Táuler. "With peace, my parents were ready to go ahead; in that moment of affirmation everyone was ready to fight, the doctors supported, welcomed and accompanied with their knowledge and technique, defending the life of our little sister. Another meeting at the family dinner with the news of the 'lump'," writes the Senara school pupil.

"Every 15 days, mom and dad went for checkups, the baby developed at his own pace and everything seemed to hold up. We only prayed that the brain would not move, and that when it was removed it would not affect the brain functions. I listened to Dad, in times of stress I would go out for a walk, from time to time I would go alone and other times I would see in my brother's eyes a spark of anxiety, and I would say to him: 'Juan, shall we go out for a while? He would tie his sneakers and we would go up to the Retiro, to feel that we were not alone. I realized that the more I felt overwhelmed, the harder I stepped on my feet and the faster I wanted to go". The rest we leave for the publication of the full story.

"I look and I can't find you".

In third place, 'last but not the least', Fernando Barcenilla, a physical education teacher at the INEF in Madrid for years, and former sports manager, among other activities, was the winner in the sports category, with his story 'Farola de la Plaza de San Miguel, "a square where Francisco Umbral played as a child" in Valladolid, he told Omnes.

"Why have you disappeared, street lamp of the Plaza de San Miguel? Who decided for all of us? What uncontrolled official dared to move the sculptural stone that held the marvelous lamps that illuminated the incipient and deep thoughts? Thus begins a story, that of Fernando Barcenilla, which ends up talking even about the Virgen del Henar, and the Virgen de las Angustias.

"Months of suffering and hope".

"In my story I tell the story of my sister, who was born this summer with a lump in her skull, and I explain a bit about how we lived through it, and how we defended our mother's life. And I also relate it to the sport we did to relieve the stress we were carrying. With her, there are ten of us, she is the tenth. I am the third," explains Blanca Táuler, a student at Senara, and I refer to "those months of suffering and at the same time of hope in life.

On the cause of Life, Blanca points out that "we must defend all women who are uncertain about life, because it is a marvel", and poses in the photograph with other girls who came to the Urban Mile organized by Deportistas por la Vida, as a prologue, last March 27, to the March Yes to Life that summoned thousands of demonstrators in Madrid. Among them, Ana, a neighbor of Blanca, who studies at the Pureza de María school, and has also come to the Race.

The winners of last year's short story contest on the following topics The gift of life and sport were María José Gámez Collantes de Terán, a first year high school student from the Adharaz Altasierra school (Espartinas, Seville), from the Attendis group, with a story entitled Run! María Moreno Guillén, from Badajoz, also a student in the first year of Bachillerato at the Puerta Palma-El Tomillar school in Badajoz, from the same educational group, with the story titled The happiness of my lifeand Lorena Villalba Heredia, a native of Gijón, with the story entitled Nyala, after overcoming, triumphing.

The stories

'The line of a battle', by Mercedes Lucena

'The eyes of our little sister', by Blanca Táuler

Plaza de San Miguel street lamp', by Fernando Barcenilla

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