The following is a transcript of a speech, as prepared for delivery, by Elizabeth Ann "Libby" Bruce, at the Democratic National Convention on Wednesday, September 5, 2012.
Nine weeks ago today, on the Fourth of July, my daughter Ruby was born.
Ruby is a perfect, healthy little girl, and because I have endometriosis, I feel particularly lucky to have her. When I was 18, I began experiencing severe pelvic and abdominal pain. I went to so many doctors, but nobody had any answers. Several doctors outright dismissed me, treating my pain as the product of a dumb kid's dramatic imagination.
Finally I went to Planned Parenthood. They listened to me as no one else had. They answered my questions. A caring nurse practitioner told me she thought I had endometriosis. She connected me with an excellent, respectful surgeon who removed the excess endometrial growth in my pelvis.
Finally I got better. Twelve years later, I am still grateful for the excellent, affordable, respectful care I received from Planned Parenthood. I am especially grateful because endometriosis is a leading cause of infertility. Without Planned Parenthood, my pain would have continued, and I might not have my daughter today.
When Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan make threats about "getting rid" of Planned Parenthood funding, it's clear that they haven't given a thought to women like me, women with limited resources who are sick and scared. They haven't thought about planned and wanted babies like Ruby who are able to be here only because their mothers received the health care they needed.
President Obama understands, and he cares. And that's why I'm here. I'm here tonight for my daughter, to stand up for her, so that when she grows up, Planned Parenthood will be there for her too.