Enriching, Engaging & Incredible Beyond Words as told by Lori to Cheryl Anderson
My house was finally quiet…I had just put my 3-year old triplets down for a nap. I picked up the paper and started scanning the Help Wanted ads, as I knew Kindergarten was just around the corner. Although I had a master’s degree in early childhood education, I hadn’t taught school since I had given birth to my triplets (Megan, Emily and Hunter).
An ad suddenly caught my attention: “Special Surrogate Wanted”. I read on. A couple was looking for someone to carry their baby for them.
I remembered all the trouble my husband and I had conceiving, and felt this instant need to give back and help someone else. I picked up the phone. Before I knew it, I was connected to Creative Family Connections, a company that specializes in building families through assisted reproductive technology. In this call, I indicated that I was open to working with traditional or same-sex couples or single parents. There was no pressure either way.
Within a few weeks, with my husband fully on board, I had filled out an application and met with two attorneys from the agency. I was caught by surprise when one asked me: “What do you plan to do with the money?” I replied that maybe I’d start a college fund for my triplets when I learned that the intended parents would pay me $20,000, plus expenses, with another $5000 if I became pregnant with twins.
The following weekend, I met the intended parents: Michael and Tracy, who couldn’t wait to become dads! We all got along very well. We had similar thoughts on pregnancy and its associated issues, and we agreed to move forward.
The next steps included appointments with the psychologist for everyone, as well as a checkup for me at the fertility clinic. Diane, the founder of Creative Family Connections, accompanied me to this appointment. Her being there really helped me. After some more screening, I was deemed “good to go”!
Next, the doctors expertly synchronized my menstrual cycle with an egg donor’s, and after retrieving 12 eggs from the donor, they created embryos in a Petri dish. IVF, or in vitro fertilization, was underway.
I was already taking an additional medication to ready my uterus for implantation, and I had three embryos transferred a few days later. This was a very simple process and no more painful than my annual pap smear. As an added bonus, I was told to rest for 24 hours. (What mother of 3 wouldn’t like to do that?)
Now the waiting began. Was I pregnant? To determine this, I had to wait to have the clinic perform a beta (blood) test two weeks after the egg retrieval (the day of fertilization).
My thoughts throughout these weeks were: “Am I pregnant? Please let me be pregnant.” I was ecstatic when the first word I heard from the nurse at the clinic, after my scheduled beta test, was “Congratulations!”
“Really?” I asked.
“Really truly!” chirped the nurse, “you are not just pregnant, Lori, but your numbers are really high.”
I quickly called Michael and Tracy, who quickly called Diane, and there were shouts of glee everywhere.
I remained a patient at the IVF Clinic through the first ultrasound, since the doctor wanted to hear a good, strong heartbeat. Then, I returned to my own OB-GYN for the duration of the pregnancy. With all of us in attendance at the 8-week ultrasound, we were overjoyed to learn it was twins! Michael and Tracy were thrilled to have an instant family, as they called it!
I know that all surrogacy relationships may not be quite as ideal as mine, but my whole family became so close with Michael and Tracy that it was just incredible. Even my children learned about this wonderful way to help other people have children. They were with me every step of the way.
Creative Family Connections’ attorneys took care of all the legal filings in advance, so that Michael and Tracy were the legal parents, treated as such by the hospital staff, and were both listed on the birth certificate.
The babies came right on schedule and were as healthy as could be: a girl and a boy, Logan and Chance. These lucky children not only have two loving parents, but our families will always have an amazing bond that will be there forever.
Surrogacy for me was never a planned step in my life. It has, however, enriched my life more than I ever imagined. I am so grateful that I could help bring two children to life…and into lives that will be filled with unconditional love from morning to night. If that is not the gift of life, then what is?
Creative Family Connections LLC, is a woman-owned, specialized law firm in the DC area which helps prospective parents fulfill their dream of becoming parents by finding them gestational surrogates and egg donors. www.creativefamilyconnections.com