Thursday, August 21, 2008

Bellymommy

On November 21, 2007, I posted a new ad in the Gestational Surrogacy classifieds at SMO.

On December 2, I received a reply from a European potential intended mother (IM) named Mia explaining that in the last ten years, she and her husband Urs had only achieved four pregnancies, all of them lost to miscarriage, to include a devastating loss at 22 weeks. The culprit - an immunological incompatibility which causes her body to attack the placenta. Her tone was warm, kind, and enthusiastic. The email was short, but I was already getting the feeling that things would be moving in a positive direction. In one of the next few emails, Mia said this:

I hope that our surrogate will become a close friend of us and that we have a lot of contact, during the surrogacy- journey and later on. I think it is very important for the child to meet its bellymommy (I don't know if this is the right expression in English). I would tell the child very much about the surrogate mother (of course, because she is a member of our family) and I very much hope that there will be a close relationship between surrogate mother and the child. It is also her child- without her loving gift the child wouldn't exist. This kind of thankfulness I want to mediate to our child.

It is difficult to exactly define, but to me, my relationship with my surroson Sam and any future surrobabies feels more like that of "aunt" (for lack of a better existing word) than "mother." Many intended mothers (IMs) quite understandably are uncomfortable with a surrogate feeling as if the child they carry is also theirs. This idea of Mia's and Urs' child borne through me also being my own reaches far beyond my personal viewpoint on the relationship between me and my surrogate children. But the fact that they have this concept as a part of their expectations is tenderly endearing and comforting as a surrogate. Many of us fear being cut off completely after the delivery. "Thanks for the baby, it was good while it lasted. Sayonara, sweetheart, you're not needed anymore." I have unfortunately seen it happen many times over the years, and a primary cause of this is intimidation of the surrogate's continued relationship with the child or children. The fact that Mia and Urs not only expected, but encouraged a close relationship between surrogate and child spoke volumes. I was smitten.

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Kymberli is the contributing editor for Surrogacy (Surrogate Point-of-View). She writes daily at I'm a Smart One where she chronicles her life as a gestational surrogate after her own struggle with infertility.

3 comments:

luna said...

kym, I'm so glad you are telling this story here. a true opportunity for crossing bridges. I hope your next match of IPs are as wonderful as Mia and Urs.

Rayven, 2xGS said...

Yeah, great job Kym!

I also agree with the term "aunt" for lack of better word....it is a totally different feeling giving birth to a surrogate baby than one of your own.

SeaStar said...

Thank you for a glimpse of cooperation and connection beyond my life's previous breadth. I can see feeling like and "auntie" to one's surro-son. Love finds so many different ways to manifest.