Tiffany Jo Baker, 3x Surrogate
“It was Father’s Day weekend—the perfect weekend for a child to be born.”
I was recovering from a C-section with a pain pump button in hand, what seemed like a dozen pillows situated around me, and my husband nearby on the sofa-turned-bed. This wasn’t just any delivery, though. I had just delivered baby number seven! My family and I had spent the last 10 months on a journey with an amazing couple, to help them get to this point of holding their baby for the first time. This wasn’t the first time I’ve delivered for a couple. The last time, I went into labor on Labor Day, with twins.
“In all, as a surrogate, I’ve delivered two sets of twins and a single baby for three families dealing with infertility.”
I get a lot of questions when people find out I’m a three-time surrogate. Many have to do with how I decided to be a surrogate, got matched with the couples I worked with, and handled carrying a baby for almost 10 months, then going home empty-handed. There is a thread that weaves throughout my and my intended parents’ paths, and connects my life, my surrogacy journey, and my answers. For me, the connecting fabric and framework is my Christian faith: my faith and my relationship with Jesus Christ have impacted my surrogacy story in several profound ways.
Created with Purpose
I believe God has called and created each of us with purpose. One of my favorite ways that God has used me is as a surrogate, which I never would have imagined growing up. The first time He planted that seed into my heart was when I was sharing with a group of friends at church that I had just found out my husband and I were pregnant with our second. My eyes focused on a friend across the circle as a look of pain and joy flashed across her face simultaneously. In that moment, I felt God speak two things to my heart. One, my friend was dealing with infertility. Since she had never said anything up to that point, I had never known. And two, God had given me a gift. In time, I’ve come to realize the fullness of His gifts as they pertain to being a surrogate: the gift of pregnancy, of a loving, stable home and family, and of a personality that is more logical than emotive to help with the rollercoaster ride of fertility treatments and surrogacy.
The Power of Community
Probably the biggest lesson I have learned from being a surrogate is that none of us have all that we need in order to do all that we are called and created to do. In short, we all need each other. In the bible, believers, or Christians, are sometimes referred to metaphorically as “the body of Christ.” This beautifully describes how we have been called to work together with the different gifts we have been blessed with. God made some of us to be “hands” and some to be “feet” in the body of Christ. That may mean a person creates things with their hands or another travels the world, showing the love of Jesus in each step He takes. Through being a surrogate, I’ve realized that He has called me to be a “womb” in the body of Christ. Looking back over the years, I have seen how God has and is using me to come alongside others to help them birth the dreams and desires God has put in their hearts. Throughout my surrogacy journey I’ve had friends and family who have used their gifts and abilities to help me with simple, but significant, things like making meals, giving our girls car rides, and praying for us.
“It just goes to show that the body of Christ is a support system, and God made us to be in relationship with other people; we couldn’t survive without each other.”
Sanctity of Human Life
Surrogacy has always been a life-giving mission to me. Going through fertility treatments, pregnancy, and delivery reminds me of the awesomeness of human life and how God created every piece of us with a perfect plan and purpose. None of us are a mistake. The fact that one egg and one sperm join at the exact right time, in the right place, and under the right circumstances to produce life is a miracle no matter how it happens. Those who are dealing with infertility understand the preciousness of eggs, sperm, embryos, and children. Many refer to their embryos as “embabies,” and when they don’t make it to implantation or a positive pregnancy test, there is often a deep sense of loss, sadness, and grief. With 1 in 8 couples under the age of 35 and 1 in 6 over 35 dealing with infertility, and 1 in 4 pregnancies ending in loss, the sanctity of human life is no clearer than it is to these families.
Hope in the Hard Parts
Finally, having a relationship with God has come to mean everything to me. Knowing that He is a loving God who has a purpose for my life and is with me during the good and bad times gives me strength during difficult moments and hope for the good ones to come.
What makes the ups and downs of anything easier to deal with is having peace that you are doing what you are supposed to be doing and knowing that God is with you each step of the way. He has proved faithful to His word repeatedly in my life. From the beginning of my surrogacy journey, when He spoke to my heart to pursue becoming a surrogate, to His comfort and peace even in an early pregnancy loss, then finally to the births of five healthy surrogate babies, having God as my guide, friend, and Heavenly Father has been priceless.
One of the great things about God is that He is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8). What He has done before, He will do again. He doesn’t change. His character and goodness are available to everyone who chooses Him. If you are on a surrogacy journey, whether as a surrogate or intended parent, may God give you purpose and people to come alongside you. May He show you how precious you are, and fill you with hope each step of the way.
Tiffany Jo Baker is a caffeinated mom of two teen girls, surrogate mom who has delivered five babies for three families dealing with infertility, proud dog-mom, and wife to an extreme outdoorsman. She is the podcast host of All the Things TV, author of the devotional Soul-Care for Go-Getters, speaker, and strategizer who uplifts the soul and success of women working out their why at home and online so they can birth their God-given dreams. Find out more at www.tiffanyjobaker.com and @TiffanyJoBaker on Instagram and Facebook.