September 18th, 2003 will always be the most special day of my life. This is the day that I held my beautiful daughter Emily for the first time. This was the day that my prayers were answered and that I held a precious gift that I never thought I would ever have.
I was born with a congenital heart defect and had been advised by my cardiologist not to attempt a pregnancy. This was not a shock to me because I had been told that I should not get pregnant since I was a teenager. One day at work I was telling my story to a co-worker and my charge nurse Doris, overheard and came to me later and offered to carry a baby for my husband and I. I had not even really thought about gestational surrogacy until that moment. My heart got so excited about the possibility of going through this with my friend and after having five of her own children Doris knew she was up for it.
Doris, my husband and I met with Dr. Kiltz and began working on project baby. We attempted IVF two times using the embryo’s from my husband and I. Doris and I grew closer as we worked together to regulate our cycles so that she was ready to have the embryo’s transferred a couple of days after retrieving my eggs. Both attempts did not take, but a beautiful friendship between Doris and I flourished. The three of us being very religious people prayed and decided to give it one more try. We decided at that point that if it did not take this third time we would explore other options in the future. Doris and I believed that God had a plan and we just needed to listen and have faith that in the end it would be fine.
On February 4th, 2003 Doris who was at work, called me and told me that she had taken a pregnancy test the night before and it came back positive and that lab results from earlier in the morning also were positive. There are no words to tell you how excited my husband and I were! In those months to follow Doris and I did everything together. Not only did this wonderful lady help create this beautiful miracle, she also included me in every part of the journey. Pregnancy was not easy for Doris,but she never complained once. She felt strongly about giving us a baby and always told me it was an honor to do it.
On September 18th, 2003 my beautiful baby girl came into the world. Emily Joy has brought us so much happiness. I remember every part of this day.The moment she came out and I held her for the first time all I could say was “oh she is so beautiful… thank you God, thank you Doris.” Doris has remained close to our family and did us the honor of agreeing to be Emily’s Godmother. Emily is my reason for pushing through flare ups with my illnesses. She is the last thing I think of at night and the first thing to bring a smile to my face every morning. Today she is five years old and began kindergarten last fall. She is the gift I never thought I would ever have. I have told God that if I was to never be blessed with a single thing again in my life that would be ok with me because I have the greatest gift. Today Doris is facing some trouble with some illnesses of her own and our bond is strong enough that she lets me be there for her now. I will never be able to thank her for the sacrifice she made to give me a family. My hope is that someday I can pay it forward by helping someone else with something and teach Emily to be a giving person as well. Without Doris’s giving heart she would not be here.
I want to end our story by telling all of Dr. Kiltz’s patients to “keep the faith.” I also want to thank Dr. Kiltz and his staff at CNY Fertility for all of the wonderful help and care that they gave us. Dr. Kiltz is an amazing person who truly cares about his patients and does everything in his power to create a happy ending. He was always calm and encouraging and that is so nice to have when you are anxious and nervous. Thank all of you for your commitment to my family and I. We will never forget our amazing time with all of you! It was a wonderful journey that in the end gave me a beautiful child but also a beautiful friendship!
God bless all of you! Joy Trudell (Jerrod and Emily too!)