Little did I know in my early twenties how unrealistic the dream of having a family could be. Serious medical issues brought my husband and me to successful In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) and the blessing that is our first born, Sophie. Due to further critical medical issues we were introduced to gestational surrogacy and the gift of our second daughter, Chloe.
My goal in creating The Surrogacy Experience is simple: I want to help Intended Parents on their journey to fulfill their family dream. I want to help them with the decision that works best for each person and provide the personalized experience they deserve. I understand firsthand how critical finding the right Surrogate Mother is to making those dreams come true, as well as the need for support throughout the process. While we each have a story that is unique, we are united in that most universal desire for family.
This is my story.
From the age of 18 I began a path of medical concerns which would influence my life with increasing severity. I was eventually diagnosed with a rare condition that compromised my entire digestive system. The next decade was spent in survival mode: painful procedures, countless days in the hospital and slow recoveries. Finally, a team of specialists in New York provided a more accurate diagnosis of my condition. After three more surgeries, they managed to put a stop to my downhill slide. Unfortunately, the doctors felt that it was unlikely I would ever conceive a child naturally, although they thought perhaps I may be able to carry a child.
After consulting with a fertility clinic about choices available, It was decided I would try IVF and was elated that implantation worked on the first try. While the pregnancy was fairly uneventful, I was still considered high risk. Via Cesarean section my daughter Sophie was born on October 23, 2006. The initial joy tumbled to fear as my health rapidly declined.
After some time passed, the discussion of a sibling came up. Due to the complications that arose immediately after Sophie was born, my doctors told me that it was too risky for me to ever carry again. In November 2007 our fertility clinic introduced us to gestational surrogacy as an option to build our family. Quite frankly, the idea frightened me. Gestational surrogacy was something I knew nothing about, had never remotely considered and didn’t think I needed. Still, we gathered as much information as we could and took the time to decide if this was the best option for our family. Once we confirmed this would be our path, we signed on with a surrogacy agency and started the process of finding our surrogate mother.
And along came Tina. Seeing her profile and speaking with her and her husband, it was clear we shared a strong connection as well as the same outlook on what we wanted out of the relationship, how we were going to communicate and our thoughts on certain medical conditions. After the transfer and anxiously waiting for the pregnancy results, we received a call from Tina personally; we were pregnant! Since we had taken great care to find the right match for our family, the good news we received felt 100% right coming from her directly.
One of the many special memories was during the delivery, my mom and dad took Sophie to a water fountain in the hospital lobby. As she tossed in her penny, she whispered, “I wish for a baby sister.” On Aug. 28, 2009, Chloe was born in perfect health. When Sophie met her baby sister for the first time, the sheer joy and excitement on her face was something I will never forget. “My wish came true!” she yelled. All of us in the room that day knew exactly how she felt.
It is impossible to accurately describe the experience of watching another woman endure the pain of labor on your behalf. I was overwhelmed with gratitude that a woman who had been a virtual stranger to me only one year prior was willing to give me the most precious gift of all and was now a part of our family.
Most people, like me, won’t know anyone who can offer personal knowledge and guidance in this area. My goal in founding The Surrogacy Experience is to offer that personal touch and support throughout this exciting journey.