We are very excited to share our second Surrogate Feature of 2021 highlighting Lacey! We virtually chatted with Lacey about all things surrogacy including matching with intended parents, her family’s involvement with the process, her experience working with different families, and more!
Lacey is an incredible 3x surrogate with Circle and has helped create two beautiful families! After her first journey, Lacey returned to Circle and to her IPs for a sibling journey. Once their family was complete, she came back again for another journey to help a new set of soon-to-be dads build their family.
Lacey and her supportive husband have two children of their own and decided that once their family was complete, they wanted to help others know that same experience of parenthood. Lacey is currently more than halfway through her third journey and is excited to experience the joy on her IPs’ faces when they meet their baby!
What first brought you to surrogacy? What made you interested in becoming a surrogate?
Lacey: When I got pregnant for the first time, my husband and I had only just started talking about it. I went off birth control and 2 weeks later he deployed. Two weeks after that I found out I was pregnant. It was a couple weeks after that I was at a dinner party when someone went to hand me a drink, I said “no thank you” and she said out loud “oh yeah that’s right, you’re pregnant.” She didn’t’ mean to tell everyone, but I started explaining that I had just found out and was a little in shock. Another girl at the party started crying. She apologized and explained that she and her husband had been trying for years and couldn’t get pregnant. I felt like after that I started to find more and more people who had been struggling with infertility. It wasn’t something I had put much thought into when I was younger and didn’t understand how big of an issue this was for so many. After I delivered, I talked to my husband about surrogacy.
My pregnancy, my delivery, and then my recovery was pretty easy and after that I knew surrogacy was something I wanted to do.
When you decided you’d be interested in pursuing surrogacy, how did you approach the conversation with your partner?
Lacey: My husband like facts. He likes to see what options are out there and he likes to understand things. So, when I knew surrogacy was something I wanted to do, I started looking into all the different agencies. I looked into independent journeys and I knew all the risks before talking to him about it. Once I had all that, we sat down one night and looked at everything together. He is very supportive and only asked that I waited until we were done having kids in case anything went wrong.
He has always been a rock and enjoyed the journey as much as I did!
During the matching process, were you interested in helping a specific type of family or were you open to any match?
Lacey: When we started, I didn’t have a family in mind. I just knew I wanted to help. Once we started talking to Circle and learned how many gay couples where waiting to start a family, it changed my mind. I started thinking why not? If they are willing to do all this work, spend all this time and money, why not be a surrogate for them?
For your first journey, how did you know when the match was “right”?
Lacey: We knew with the first match they were the right IP’s for us. We only looked at one profile. We read about their family, how they grew up, how they met and why they wanted a family. We wanted to “meet” on Skype. After the Skype call, it was like we had known them for years. My husband and I still make jokes today about how I’m like one of the dads and he’s like the other.
How did you build the relationship with your IPs during your first journey?
Lacey: Like any relationship, it started out with a lot of questions. The biggest one being why I wanted to be a surrogate. We were busy with our young kids, just 1 and 3 at the time, so it was a lot of texting. What really bonded us was when they came for the 20-week ultrasound. They stayed a couple of days, spent time with our kids, and met some of our friends. We didn’t talk every day, but any time I needed anything, they were there!
Did you involve your children in the journey?
Lacey: For my first journey, our children where very young, just 1 and 3 when it started, so they don’t remember any of it. Funniest story about my kids, was from my almost 4 year old daughter, when I delivered. My husband dropped her off at day care and the teacher asked our daughter if I had the baby. She said yes. The teacher asked her if she had a new brother or sister, she said no. So, the teacher asked “was it a boy or girl.” She said boy so the teacher asked again, “so you have another brother.” To which she replied again, no. This left the teacher very confused. When my husband picked her up the teacher asked him. After some laughter, he explained I was a surrogate, and our daughter wasn’t wrong. For the second journey they were older and had lots of questions, but it was a sibling journey, so they had fun playing with there “not brother” while we waited for his brother to be born. Now I’m on my 3rd journey with new IP’s and they are very excited. My kids love getting on Skype calls with them and love explaining to everyone that mommy is a surrogate and what exactly that means.
Did you continue to stay in touch with your IPs after the baby was born? Had you talked about doing a sibling journey during your first?
Lacey: We stayed in touch after the first journey. We don’t live too far apart, so we even got together. A sibling journey wasn’t talked about during the first, but when we met up when my first surro baby was a year old, they asked then if I would be willing to do it again for them. I said absolutely! Even after the second one was born we stayed in touch. It’s been almost 3 years since then and now we don’t talk as much, but it feels natural. We have an open agreement if the surro babies ever have questions, I’ll be here!
When coming back for a 3rd journey with a different set of IPs, were you looking to work with another gay couple/individual?
Lacey: We talked about this a lot and had such a good experience with the first couple that we were open to another gay couple.
Were you nervous for the matching process given that your previous journey had been with parents that you already knew?
Lacey: A little nervous. It’s like going on a blind date! Once we get the conversation going it was easy to talk with them. That’s also how I knew they were a good match for us.
Your children have grown significantly since you first decided to become a surrogate! Has their involvement in the process change as they get older and are able to understand more?
Lacey: Oh yes! I love hearing them explain to people what it means to be a surrogate. The way they talk about it, you can tell there are proud of what I’m doing. They understand that it’s not our baby, that it’s helping another family, and they understand that they may not see this baby again.
They also love getting to talk to the IP’s and ask them questions about what they are most excited about when the baby comes.
You are currently pregnant for your 3rd journey! How has this process been different than your previous journeys?
Lacey: I have been very lucky with all 3 journeys! I responded well to the meds and have been successful on the first transfer all 3 times. This journey has been different due to Covid (like so many others), egg donor delays, first time with bleeding/spotting after an ultrasound, and IP’s not getting to be there for some of the milestone appointments, including the transfer itself. It was also weird as my husband likes to put it “not being in the room when I got knocked up.” He had been there for the first two journeys. Also, you don’t think about how important a hospital tour might be until they say you can’t go on one. I’ve done this, so I know what to expect, but for the IP’s this is there first and they have no idea what to expect. We were told only one person in the room for the 20 week ultrasound so I found a private clinic so they could both come in.
I was busying looking at their faces when she pulled up the ultrasound. It was the same look and feeling as my first IP’s had when I gave birth the first time, just pure joy and love!
Having only worked with gay male IPs/fathers, do you feel you have a different perspective on surrogacy? Working with men who went into the journey to parenthood knowing already that they would need the help of an egg donor and surrogate?
Lacey: I don’t know if it’s a different perspective but I feel like an expert. LOL! Between being pregnant 5 times and doing IFV 3 times, I feel like I can answer a lot of questions and have deeper conversations about what is going on or what to expect with my IPs. I know they spend a lot of time on this journey and I hope that my knowledge is helpful and makes the overall process easier and less stressful.
Did you feel your intended fathers wanted to be more involved in the process since they have a unique relationship to surrogacy and using a surrogate to grow their family?
Lacey: I do! Between having to use a surrogate and then with Covid, they asked a lot of questions and asked for me to share as much as I can with them. We touch base before every appointment and I send pictures and updates when something new happens with the baby. It was fun explaining what hiccups feel like since they can’t be here to feel them!
Do you have any advice to share with prospective surrogates?
Lacey: Don’t be afraid to ask questions, to Circle, to the IP’s, to the clinic you are using. If something doesn’t feel right or you don’t feel it make sense, you should find out the answer. Be open and honest with your IP’s, they are here for the journey as much as you are.
And don’t be upset as time goes on if you don’t stay in touch as much. I feel like it’s natural for you to both move on with your lives. Your families will always have this bond of surrogacy, but you gave them this great gift of family, so why wouldn’t they want to go out and experience it?
Also, use your journey to educate people. There are a lot of misconceptions out there about surrogacy! People tend to remember the worst stories and we should be out there spreading the good.
Thank you Lacey!
We are so thankful for Lacey and the beautiful gifts she has given to all of her IPs! Being a surrogate is a generous, brave, and selfless act and we at Circle Surrogacy are lucky to have the best surrogates!
If you’re interested in learning more about the surrogacy process or have questions about becoming a surrogate, check out the surrogate page on our website to learn more! If you’ve done your research and are feeling ready to apply to become a surrogate, you can also fill out our application today!