“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, and to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”
-Ralph Waldo Emerson
People always ask, “What made you become a surrogate?”
I have always had a passion for helping people. I have accomplished many things in life from egg donation to joining the military but felt there was still something missing. I began researching ways I could help my community and things such as donating blood, plasma, and eggs all populated in my search engine that evening.
I began calling surrogate agencies; only to be turned down time after time again because being in the military was a disqualifying factor. I was feeling discouraged but decided to call one last agency; Surrogate Solutions. Within minutes on the phone I was treated like a person instead of a number and at the conclusion of my call, I had a meeting set up with my caseworker that following week to proceed with the process. It was the spring of 2016. A sunny day it was as I drove 3 hours north with my 5-month-old in tow to meet with a couple who were struggling to conceive. They had tried everything, from multiple costly fertility treatments to exploratory surgeries only to be left in disappointment time and time again. They needed someone. They needed help. They so desperately wanted to be parents and were not fortunate enough to be able to make that dream a reality on their own. There I sat with my bouncing baby boy, and I realized how fortunate I was to be able to conceive naturally, while this woman sitting across the table from me longed for what I had. As I was headed home from our meeting, I reached for my phone and called my caseworker. “They are wonderful, let’s do it.”
One and a half years later, countless vials of blood, hundreds of injections in my body, doctor appointments, a failed transfer, 2 little embryos, and one complicated pregnancy; they were finally parents. I delivered their twins via emergency C-section in November of 2017.
Her voice was nervous and excited as I called to let her know she was about to become a mother. We lived 5 hours apart and because of that, they missed the birth by 40 minutes. I will never forget her face as she walked down the hallway entering the NICU where her son was and shortly after she met her daughter who was wheeled down from the nursery. That moment when she saw them for the first time was exactly why I chose to become a surrogate. She was finally a mother and her dreams had come true. The emotions running through all of us at that time were indescribable.
I’ll never forget the day I became a mother, it was the greatest day of my life. And to be able to give that gift to someone else was unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. My life was complete, I felt fulfilled.
The most frequented question I receive is “Was it hard to give them up?”
To that, I answer, “I did not give them up, I gave them back.” Those beautiful babies were never mine to begin with.
Their parents trusted me from long before they were in my belly to care for them until they could have them in their arms. A piece of me was put on this earth to bring Aurora and Sebastian into this world, to nurture and protect them in my womb, to deliver them to their parents, and to make their family complete. I feel honored to have been chosen to bring them into the world, and have been blessed to watch them grow up, and for that, I will forever be grateful.
This story was written by Kaitlyn Chen for our Hello Parents series. Our mission is to create a community of extreme inclusivity. Appreciating what makes us different and what we all have in common. No judgment. Just a village of support.
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