This wasn’t the first time I thought of being a surrogate. My cousin’s wife Sandi worked for a Surrogate Agency and had mentioned it to me back in 2011. I heard the couple’s story and my heart broke. I just couldn’t imagine the feeling of not being able to have a baby, that is all I dreamt about growing up… and to have that taken away from me was hard to even imagine. I knew I wanted to help. My husband and I prayed about it, and were scheduled to meet the couple that night for dinner as an introduction. That morning while I was at work I had an uneasy feeling. I went to my coworker friend and said, “I think I am pregnant” she looked at me in shock. “Are you late on your period? Or are you feeling symptoms?” she asked. I responded with a deep sigh, “Neither… but I just have a feeling.” On our lunch break she drove with me to the nearest dug store to buy a pregnancy test, I took the test in the bathroom stall of my workplace and I waited anxiously… LONGEST 3 MINUTES OF MY LIFE!! Then the pink line began to appear, my heart jumped into my throat… it was positive. I was ecstatic but couldn’t express myself as I was at work and had my heart set on being a surrogate. I walked out of the bathroom stall and smiled at my coworker. It’s just those mother instincts that kick in, your body knows. But deep down inside I couldn’t help but be sad too. It was a bitter sweet moment for me.
I had to call Sandi right away and let her know that we would not be able to meet the parents or move forward with the surrogacy as we were now expecting our own baby. I felt horrible, I didn’t want anyone to think I was being selfish. Yes, Ray and I agreed to have another child and we weren’t necessarily trying but not being as careful either. Shortly after that is when I heard this couple’s story and knew in my heart that I wanted to help. God knew my heart, but he had other plans for us and this surrogacy was not part of it.
In 2015, I stopped working to be able to stay at home with my children. It was the best decision I ever made. As grateful as I was to be able to do this, I found it extremely hard. It was a huge transition for me and early on I felt like I didn’t have a purpose. My husband reminded me what an important role I had in our family and that it was just the enemy trying to bring me down. I wanted to feel like I was helping the family, other than the cooking and cleaning. Going from two incomes to just one was also a struggle. Circumstances took place that made it just a little harder to manage the day to day spending. We worried but we also had faith and knew that God had always provided for our family.
A year later, I found myself in church, as our pastor talked about our God given talents. I sat there thinking about my talents and gifts that I could share with others. I was good at party planning and could make a pom pom out of tissue paper like no one’s business. I was good at cooking, no that couldn’t be it… What was my God given talent?! That night, I laid myself down and prayed that God would shed light on my gift. I wanted to help, maybe volunteer at my church like the others and help spread His word.
My best friend and I were on our way to the store and I vented to her how sometimes I wish I could just go back to work for a little bit just to relieve some stress. With concern in her eyes
she asked what was going on. I told her that Ray and I had been praying for our family finances and just needed a certain amount to get out of debt and have money in savings.
Here I was, struggling with two crucial aspects of my life; wanting to better my family financially and find my God given talent.
3 hours later my phone pings, it’s my cousin texting me if I was free to talk later that day. I said Yes but wondered what he wanted to talk about? He called me and told me that he and Sandi had opened up their own surrogacy agency and wondered if I would be interested in being a surrogate again. That’s when I realized that the resolution to both of my struggles had just presented itself to me. I was blessed with four beautiful children, and thankfully, all four pregnancies were complication free and my deliveries were a breeze. This was my gift! Which brings me back to what I had asked Ray “What if I became a surrogate?” he looked at me with confusion as normally when I mentioned it, it was just in passing. This time I genuinely wanted to know how he felt about the idea. My husband is so supportive of me, and he understands that this has been in my heart since 2011. They came over the next day to talk to me and Ray about it in detail and they explained the fertility issues their couple was having. A very close family member to me and a friend were also having similar issues, and if I could help them I would… in a heartbeat. I knew at that moment I wanted to learn more and pray about this.
We prayed and I feared what people would say, what my family would say. I hated the idea of having to explain to people what I was doing and then receiving negativity. Suddenly this beautiful thing that I wanted to do was becoming a constant feeling of fear and anxiety. I prayed some more, thinking maybe this is God telling me not to go through with this? As time went on, especially after meeting the couple it became clear to me and Ray that this was God’s plan for all of us. The night we met up for dinner with the couple, everyone else at the table was speaking and all I can do was look into her eyes and without saying anything I could feel every ounce of pain she felt. Every tear, disappointment… my stomach turned with sadness. That night we decided to move forward with the surrogacy, it was finally all coming together.