When our doctor suggested we look into using a gestational carrier our first thought was “How do you possibly ask someone to have your baby for you?" Knowing that she would have to give herself shots, take crazy amounts of medication, and time out of her day to attend several doctor visits. She would be poked and prodded several times, all on our behalf. It would be such a huge sacrifice of her body and time. "It's too much to ask," we thought. "It’s impossible."
The hopes and dreams we had for having a child were hanging by a thread. But then we met Kara. Kara's willingness to take on this impossible task restored our hope. She has shown us it is possible.
How we met Kara is no coincidence. We know our Heavenly Father guided us to each other and we are so grateful for those who followed the promptings that lead to our paths crossing. We are here because of faithful people being willing to act on those promptings, a true testimony of God being intimately interested in all of our lives.
Kara, our gestational carrier, is a true angel on Earth. It is so humbling to meet someone so selfless and willing to provide us with something we cannot do for ourselves. She is giving us the Ultimate Gift, and for that we are so grateful. Her selfless service is truly remarkable. She has taught us more about Christ-like love in the last few months than we have ever learned before.
Thank You Kara!
We had the perfect plan. It was to have a year or two of "just us" time before we had kids. You know, travel a little bit, figure out this marriage thing, then have couple kids and sail off into the sunset with our big happy family. At least that was the plan. Before we knew it seven years of trying went by and we wondered what the heck happened to that plan?! Those years were full of hundreds of needles and doctor visits, thousands of dollars, failed pregnancies, and too many tears to count. We had a lot of good times too but the infertility was always there.
We tried everything: clomid, insemination, IVF, lots of alternative methods, and the "just relax" method (gotta love that). And we tried each of them multiple times. Our doctors did all they could, but in the end the best diagnosis they could give was "unexplained infertility." It has been so incredibly frustrating to have no answers and nothing to show from all we have tried. There were plenty of moments when we wanted to give up. The heartache and shame that comes from infertility is heartbreaking. It effected our marriage, our health, our jobs, and all aspects of our lives. Infertility can be so hard to talk about even with those closest to you. We've shaken our fists at God a time or two. We've wondered why us and questioned what God had in store. Apparently our little family was just meant to come to us in a different way than we had planned. Now though, we know that this was His plan all along. It just took us a little while to get here.
Prayer has been our guiding force. God was with us through it all, even though there were times we forgot that truth.
We had some frozen embryos from a previous IVF cycle and we honestly didn't know what to do with them. We knew the chance of success, if we tried what we had done before, was slim to none. In a nutshell we had no other option we felt good about for those little embryos. Our doctor recommended looking into using a gestational carrier and it took us a while to know if it was right for us. Through lots of prayer, pondering, and discussion it finally felt right to pursue. The miracle is that once we started on the path it happened so incredibly quickly as if God was ready and waiting to carry us through it all.
And so our journey continues...We hear nothing can possibly prepare us for parenthood and all the ups and downs it brings with it. But we like to think we are as ready as we could ever be. We are so excited for what is ahead and all the joy our twins will bring!
We know many of you have prayed for us. We want to thank you for your thoughts and prayers. Many of you have been shoulders to cry on and we thank you for that too. You don’t know how much that has meant to us over the years.
We also want to thank our doctors and nurses at Utah Fertility Center for their amazing support over the last several years. They have seen us at our worst. Thank you for not giving up on us and encouraging us at each step. You have taken such great care of us.
Most of all we want to publicly thank our Heavenly Father for providing this experience for us. The whole experience. All these years of trying we have grown so much and we are so grateful for it all. We believe that it is in our brokenness we truly can find him. We thank God for being with us every step of this crazy journey. It has been so challenging but with Christ we can do all things.
Our hearts are so incredibly full of gratitude.
Please join us now in prayers of gratitude for this amazing gift he is giving us. For Kara, for the twins, and for the joy that we are experiencing. Also please join us in prayer for Kara having a safe delivery, and the healthy arrival of our twins to our home.
If any of you that are reading this struggle with infertility, know that it is our testimony that Christ can strengthen you in your darkest hour. He will help you know the next steps to take. Every journey is different and so personal, what works for some doesn't for others but we know he will guide you.
Spoiler alert: we aren’t talking about the fun way babies are made! Our embryos were actually created by the doctor in a lab. Sarah had to take injections of medicine that stimulated her ovaries to produce multiple eggs. The doctor then puts her under and very carefully takes out the eggs. They are then put in a dish with Chris’s sperm and a baby is made. Romantic isn’t it? This procedure is referred to as IVF or In Vitro Fertilization.
Well yes, they are our full biological children. How does that work? It's pretty simple actually. We had some frozen embryos from an IVF cycle we did about a year ago. Our doctors transferred two of those little babies into Kara’s uterus and both of them took, creating our fraternal twins. Yes, our little babies spent several months in the freezer before they landed in Kara's womb.
In a gestational carrier surrogacy, the carrier (Kara) is NOT genetically related to the baby she carries. A fertility clinic creates embryos consisting of eggs and sperm from the intended parents (Chris and Sarah) and then transfers the embryos to a surrogate via IVF.
In a traditional surrogacy, the surrogate’s own eggs are fertilized via artificial insemination with the sperm of a donor or an intended father. The baby shares genetic material with the surrogate mother as well as with an intended father or donor.
Well no, we don’t have to adopt them. Utah has really great laws for gestational carrier surrogacy. In fact, it is actually illegal in many states and countries so we feel blessed to be able to do this in our home state. There is huge legal aspect to this, but our lawyer is doing a great job at making sure everything is in place. We are so grateful that our names will be on the birth certificate right when those beautiful babies are born.
Yes! You can watch our gender reveal here.
We met Kara through a series of miraculous events. You can read the story in a blog post we wrote about it.
Nope, our twins are fraternal. That means that they started out as two individual embryos and that the genders could be different.
Our official due date is August 9th but twins usually come early. The doctor said to plan on them in July. It's going to be an amazing summer for the Tuttle Family!