Grandmother gives birth to her granddaughter after volunteering to be surrogate mother for her son and his husband
32-year-old Matthew Eledge and 29-year-old Elliot Dougherty initially considered IVF as an option when Matthew's mother surprised them by offering to be their surrogate
A 61-year-old grandmother has given birth to her own granddaughter on March 25 in Nebraska, after she volunteered to be a surrogate for her son and his husband. The couple, 32-year-old Matthew Eledge and 29-year-old Elliot Dougherty, initially considered IVF as an option for conceiving the child about a couple of years ago and they were amused when Matthew's mother offered to be their surrogate.
Cecile Eledge last gave birth more than 30 years ago and went through her menopause 10 years back. She told the couple that she "loved being pregnant" and that she would "do it again in a heartbeat" if she could, stated a Daily Mail report.
Matthew shared his mother's "crazy" statement with Dr. Carolyn Dougherty, a reproductive endocrinologist in the family hometown of Omaha, Nebraska. She told them that there was nothing wrong with the idea.
A series of tests including a Pap smear, blood and cholesterol tests, a mammogram and an ultrasound were performed and the doctors found that Cecile was in incredible shape and would be able to carry a baby full-term.
Matthew told the Daily Mail: "She has lower blood-pressure than all of us [her children] and she’s 61. I don’t know how to describe her; she’s remarkable. I have such a deep respect for her and am so gracious that even as a grown adult she continues to go above and beyond for me."
Cecile was confirmed as the best surrogate and the couple were reduced to tears yet again when 26-year-old Lea Yribe, Matthew's sister, offered two of her eggs having just had her second child. The 61-year-old had a series of hormone treatments and with the use of Matthew's sperm, the doctors were able to implant the eggs into Cecile's uterus. She surprisingly became pregnant in the very first attempt.
There were some complications with regards to excess morning sickness and scary spikes in blood pressure because of her age but she delivered a healthy baby girl on March 25. Doctors were also astonished that Cecile had the baby naturally and not through C-section like they thought.
Ariel Panowicz, a photographer, was able to capture some extraordinary images of the moment the new fathers met their daughter for the first time as her grandmother held her in her arms.
Matthew said: "Growing up we would always tease my mom. She’s very cute and sweet, so she let us get away with it. But in the midst of all the joking, you can forget what someone is really like at the core of themselves."
He continued: "But being in that room [during the labor] was such a visceral moment. All the joking had stopped. She was like a warrior – so strong. I just have such a deep respect for her and the incredible woman she is."
Cecil handed baby Uma over to her parents quite easily. Matthew said: "She said throughout the whole process that she didn’t see Uma as her baby, she saw it as her grandbaby. In fact, she was so exhausted after the pregnancy and birth, she said she was actually glad to hand her over before the real hard work began. She said the whole process was 'so worth it' in the end."