I'm carrying my daughter's daughter! Grandmother, 58, is 32-year-old daughter's surrogate after she suffered a DOZEN failed pregnancies
Utah resident Julia Navarro, 58, is looking forward to being a grandmother for the first time, but doubly so because she will be the one in the delivery room actually giving birth to the baby girl.
After three years and about a dozen failed pregnancies, Ms Navarro's 32-year-old daughter Lorena McKinnon and her husband Micah were getting desperate to start a family.
They tried in-vitro fertilization but that failed too. When they reached out to a friend to be a surrogate, the woman dropped out after learning how complicated the process would be.
Seeing that her daughter had hit a wall, Ms Navarro stepped up and volunteered to be the couple's surrogate.
'As a family, we have to help each other,' Ms Navarro told the Salt Lake Tribune .
But being past her prime pregnancy years meant she had a lot of work to do to get her body ready for baby.
For three months leading up to the incubation, Ms Navarro had to take hormone shots every day - leaving her bruised and bleeding.
Under Utah's 2005 Parentage Act, the couple and surrogate also had to go through three months of counseling and sign a series of official contracts.
'The psychologists wanted to make sure we knew what we were getting into — that we were mentally prepared,' Mrs McKinnon said. 'Mostly, surrogacy contracts are with people you don’t know. It was weird to have a contract with my mom.'
Mrs McKinnon estimates that surrogacy usually costs $60,000 and that she and her husband have been able to save $30,000 with her mother volunteering to carry the child. The rest they've paid for by taking out loans, including some money borrowed from mom.
The money and painful preparation was worth it in the end however, when the first embryo suprisingly took. Doctors had estimated that there was a 45 per cent chance of Ms Navarro getting pregnant with her age.
Other than that the pregnancy has been easy, especially since the young couple moved into Ms Navarro's small house to help her out.
She hasn't had any morning sickness or discomfort and up until recently was able to work three 12-hour shifts at the hospital in her job as a nurse's aide.
In fact, her daughter seems to be worrying about the pregnancy more than her, constantly reminding her that she needs to drink more water, stay away from peas and not cross her legs because it will hurt her circulation.
Ms Navarro has to remind her daughter that she's gone through two successful pregnancies and knows 'how to do it, thank you very much'.
The family is now anxiously awaiting the baby's birth, which is due in a few weeks. They plan to name the girl Myla Juliette McKinnon.
Ms Navarro has been so moved by the experience that she hopes to do even more good with the baby's birth.
'I was praying, "If this baby works, I am going to help others,"' she said. 'I would like to donate some of the money from my baby shower [January 12] to children in Peru who don’t have parents or moms or dads who need help.'
Mr and Mrs McKinnon also hope to continue growing their family, since they have five embryos left, but plan to find another surrogate next time.
Daily Mail, 12 January 2014