When I began my dream of starting my own surrogacy agency, I never imagined what it would truly feel like to create something from the ground up and watch it blossom. Well the petals are in full and they couldn’t be any brighter. In March, I launched my company – Canadian Surrogacy Community. As a two-time surrogate myself, I watched the world of infertility for years and saw the ups and downs and ins and outs of how things worked. One thing that kept creeping up in my mind was that something was lacking… A sense of intimate support. This wasn’t the type of business that one simply takes money and then moves on. This required a level of one-on-one commitment that nobody was yet providing. So I made it my mission to do just that – give each IP (single, married, gay, international, etc) my full attention. I learned everything about them. I memorized their files and information and spent hours screening through their applications and questionnaires to see how I could help them best. I designed time sheets and profiles and organized everything so I missed nothing in the process. I spent the time to Skype or FaceTime to see their expressions and judge how my words were effecting them. Sometimes there were tears and sometimes there were laughs, but either way I knew that when the conversation ended I had the full story and was ready to help them if they wanted to move ahead. I wanted the most personal approach to walking them through one of the most difficult journeys they would face. That is what made me stand out above the rest. I built relationships with clinic coordinators, lawyers, counsellors, doctors. I go to the screening appointments, retrievals, transfers and I get on the phone and coordinate between everyone when faxes are lost or messages are mixed. I host parties to welcome international IPs and I take the calls from Australia at midnight. I spend my time reassuring and ensuring that at the end of the day when I finally lay my head on the pillow that I feel I’ve done my best to get everyone a step closer to the end goal. When it comes to my surrogates and egg donors I leave no stone unturned. It is necessary to make sure each woman has any and all information and support she needs to make a concise decision about giving the gift of life to a complete stranger. A piece of my heart goes to each one of the surrogates and egg donors who trust me to care for them. They have given of themselves in a way that most women can’t understand. They sacrifice, love, nurture, hurt, and grow a miracle for my IPs in all stages of the journey. Every chance I get to remind them how selfless they are, I do. As a surrogate, I understand the dynamics of the unwavering commitment to something far greater than just 10 months of getting fat. Some people might think that as a business woman it is unprofessional to delve so deeply into the lives of the people who hire me. It’s unprofessional to be ‘friends’ or to share intimate parts of our lives with one another. But as someone who has watched so many amazing and heartbreaking journeys unfold, I unquestionably know that what makes me different from all the other agencies in Canada, is my ability to just be real. I don’t sugar coat the truth. I don’t make promises I can’t keep. What sets me apart is that I deeply care about the outcome of every single screening test, conversation, contract, appointment and ultimately the transfer of that wee embryo. And I will be at every single birth that blossoms from my company so I can see the happiness that floods the room after so many difficult months and years of never giving up. Because as a Mom of four beautiful children, I do grasp what it means to desire and ache for your own children. My life would never be complete without my babies. My goal for my first year running this company was ten couples matched. I have seven moving ahead. I’m going to have ten and the next year I’m going to have double that. And the best feeling in this world came not two weeks ago when that very first amazing woman who trusted me, had one beautiful embryo transferred into her. The very first POSITIVE pee test to show up on my messenger one evening… well, that feeling was something close to the butterflies you get when you fall in love. It’s indescribable! I danced and hopped around my kitchen with a sense of happiness that I felt when I got pregnant with my own surrogate babies. I hugged my kids and told them all about the beautiful miracle about to blossom because of a dream I had not so long ago. I could have given up so many times and said I just want a 9-5 day job. Not every day is sunshine and rainbows. It’s difficult and fabulous and the emotional rollercoaster never ends. The strength it takes to forge ahead every day is challenging. But I do it, because I wanted to be a part of something bigger than myself. It’s why I wanted to be a surrogate four years ago. Miracles don’t always happen overnight, but when modern science clashes with the will of a powerful Mom, determined Intended Parents, and a selfless surrogate, miracles are definitely going to happen. My gratitude overflows for all the people who have allowed me to be a part of their lives since the beginning of Canadian Surrogacy Community. Let’s blossom together!