As we move into the thick of the holiday season, our staff at Shared Conception wishes you and yours all things good and delightful! In the spirit of the holidays, we are sharing this story of intended parents who strive to thank their surrogate mother.
Written by Carolyn Savage
“How do I thank the woman who gave life to our daughters?
I’ve given this question a lot of thought since last December, when we learned that Jennifer, our gestational carrier, was pregnant. It has stumped me because merely thanking her seemed inadequate. I feel so much more than gratitude for what she’s done for our family—and for me.
When I became pregnant with Logan Morell, the genetic child of another couple, after a mistake at my fertility clinic, my life took a challenging turn. My husband and I decided to protect the unborn child I was carrying and immediately reunite him with his genetic parents upon delivery. Those decisions were easy. What proved to be difficult, however, was living with the consequences of our decisions. Since there was no one to call for advice, we found ourselves stumbling through when we really could have used some good “been there, done that” wisdom. Although we are very proud of what we did for Logan, and would do it all over again if faced with the same set of circumstances, there was an emotional toll that I don’t think I fully understood — until Jennifer delivered our girls to us.
When Jennifer’s pregnancy first began, we didn’t get our hopes up that it would result in a live birth. The old adage, “don’t count your chickens before they hatch,” takes on a literal meaning for those who have experienced pregnancy loss. When the weeks passed and the proverbial “other shoe” didn’t drop, it was as if a weight that I didn’t even know I was carrying was lifted. I realize now that the burden I was carrying was grief. The loss of the child I brought into this world, but didn’t get to raise, turned out to be a complicated circumstance to live with. (Thankfully, we do have occasional contact with Logan now.) The promise of our twins helped me focus on the blessings I already had. The grace in what Jennifer was doing for us helped me understand what we had done for Logan and his family. How do I thank her for that?
I can’t, not fully. So, instead of just thanking Jennifer, we will honor her. We will honor her by making sure that Reagan and Isabella learn from Jennifer’s kind heart and compassionate soul. Our daughters will always know that Jennifer ushered them into this world. That she nurtured and loved them first. As Reagan and Isabella grow, we hope that they can spend time with and learn from Jennifer. After all, the more loving adults in a child’s life, the better, and Jennifer’s love for our girls is obvious. Most importantly, Sean and I will honor Jennifer by striving to be the best parents we can be.
Honoring Jennifer seems much more fitting than just thanking her. After all, not only did she deliver our children to us, but she also helped me find my way back to my spirit, and that deserves much more than gratitude.”
Carolyn Savage, their surrogate and Sean Savage
From our Shared Conception family to yours, happy, happy new year!