Family / Family-building / Parenting

On sleeplessness and surrogacy

This post is brought to you by insomnia. I was awake from two-ish until well past four-ish last night, as was my partner, with our two children making guest appearances in our little show of sleeplessness. In some ways, it was good that they both needed resettling around four: I was awake anyway, and so felt somewhat useful and redeemed to find out that it wasn’t all for naught. With an eight-year-old and a five-year-old who more or less sleep through the night these years (with, ahem, some notable exceptions), I find it particularly maddening when I wake and keep my own self up at night after years of forced wakefulness at the behest of squalling infants and malicious toddlers. It feels wrong. I feel wronged.

Can you tell I’m a little punchy today? Sleep deprivation will do that to me, which is one of the major reasons we will never have another child. Because if you think I’m “punchy” now, 6 to 10 months of nights like last night and I am “committable.”

So, even if it were biologically likely that we could mix up another gayby in this 41-year-old-uterus, we won’t be. This is no big reveal: my partner and I closed the talks on #3 years ago, and haven’t looked back.

But here’s a secret: I’d secretly love to be a surrogate.

And it’s not as though I really loved being pregnant, especially the second time around, when I spent the first 12 weeks pukey and exhausted. And – oh yeah – I didn’t sleep well throughout either pregnancy, either. As for birth, my older son was a C-section, but my second was an impromptu, 11-minute-long, home birth that I can really only describe as (and I cringe as I even think about typing this word, but it’s true…) transformational. I would happily go through another pregnancy and give birth again it just to recapture some of that 11 minutes.

I just don’t want another baby at the end of it all.

The idea of doing it for someone else, though, is quite appealing. It feels like some kind of cosmic evening out of resources. I particularly imagine being a surrogate for two dads, but, really, for any person who would make a fantastic parent.

The fact of the matter is, though, that I won’t ever do it. Age aside, it’s simply not within the cards for me to take on surrogacy at this stage. I’m not willing to go through anything more invasive than a kid’s medicine syringe in the privacy of my own home to get pregnant, for one. More important, I wouldn’t do it to my kids, both of whom but the older one especially would love the idea of a new baby. I’m not quite sure how I could justify it: what’s the difference between the two we have currently now and this hypothetical third that would warrant such different (though, obviously equally as loving and healthy) homes? I don’t know.

So, no third. Not for our family, and not from my uterus to someone else’s, much as that appeals to me.

But sometimes, late at night when I can’t sleep, I think about it.


Have you ever contemplated surrogacy? Have you been or are you a surrogate? Tell me about it!

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One Comment

  1. While I would birth all over again, and while we considered a 3rd for a long time, we have now adopted the philosophy that it is best for us to quit while we’re ahead. I don’t have to suffer from insomnia to consider what could have been, but I can imagine the joy of quiet darkness to consider that parallel universe.

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