With all the horrific things that are in the news right now, I was so struck by this incredible story of three sisters who will forever be tied in a whole new way. Tanya Ratcliff was told that she could conceive a baby but her body was not able to carry it. In order to have a family, she would need a surrogate. Not an easy thing. She was at the fertility clinic with her sisters Tara Schamel and Cassie Ripp when she got this very sad diagnosis. But both Tara and Cassie offered to carry her baby with her implanted embryos made from her own egg and her husband Dan's sperm.
Both super-duper amazing sisters underwent the necessary procedures of hormone injections (which is not easy either) hoping they would have success. They both became pregnant, but that is only surprise number one.
You see, there are four sisters in this family -- and amongst the three that have kids already, they all had girls. Tanya and Dan have seven nieces. No boys. So the family kind of assumed there would be two more girls on the way. Well sister Tara is carrying Tanya and Dan's little girl, who is due in April. But sister Cassie, though, is carrying a baby boy, expected in July. Surprise number two! No hand-me-downs for this little Prince!
Family. That is what this is about. Family coming together to help each other. Too often we hear of families being divided, or a family who cannot get along, but not here. It's so refreshing and sweet that I burst into tears when I first heard about them. Maybe it hit me harder because I had this conversation with my own sister -- I know I would be a surrogate for her, and she would for me if it was needed. It's an act of love, of selflessness ... the best gift a couple who wants children could receive.
I can't help but feel that the Ratcliffs were destined to be parents. This is just their path. Tanya was blessed with an incredibly supportive family. I wish both women the best pregnancies and the most beautiful deliveries. And because I am a mom of twins, and since the Ratcliffs will have two babies just three months apart, I want them to know that having two babies at the same time is a blessing in itself (back me up twin mamas!), and they will be fine especially since they have such a tight-knit family at their side. What a celebration they will have!
Have you considered surrogacy? And ... can we just bask in this beautiful story and smile?
Image via LearningLark/Flickr