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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Parent (11/16/06)

TITLE: Reflections
By Corinne Smelker


Twenty-four hours?? That’s all the time they give you from the minute the baby is born until the hospital kicks you out with a little bundle in your arms, perhaps a welcome package and a ‘goodbye, we’ll contact you if your insurance company doesn’t cover all the expenses.’

Looking down at the two little bundles she was handed, a myriad of feelings overwhelmed Stephanie. Thankfulness, gratitude to have two healthy babies despite the scare at 30 weeks and again at 32 weeks. Fear as she realized that this was truly it! The moment she and Steven had dreamt of their whole married lives.

Twenty-four hours isn’t long enough! She hadn’t bathed them on her own, barely even changed a diaper and now she was expected to be everything to these two helpless souls. What if I make a mistake? What if I turn out to be a terrible parent? What if one of them stops breathing? What if… Her thoughts trailed away as her husband drew up to the hospital entrance and tenderly helped her position the twins into their matching car seats.

Their desperate quest to have a baby had started nine years earlier. A honeymoon baby was conceived; only an entopic pregnancy was diagnosed, followed shortly by another entopic. After that tubes were removed, and eggs harvested. But even then it seemed Stephanie’s body could not do what so many other women could do so naturally and easily. Oh, she could get pregnant, but always between eight and ten weeks the heartbeat that fluttered so strongly would die, leaving devastation in its wake.

Hope, despair, rage, hope, despair, rage – it was a never-ending rollercoaster ride for Steven and Stephanie. Resignation was the final feeling, the thought that they would never have someone call them Mom and Dad; no one to pass their legacy onto, and no one to love.

But hope shows her face in unusual ways and that was when a stranger entered the picture. A stranger yes, but one who became instant family.

Stephanie closed her eyes as she relived the moments surrounding the birth of her twins. Even though she had not carried them physically, they were flesh of her flesh, and although she was not the one in labor pains and pushing, she was much a part of it as she could possibly be. A smile passed her lips as she recalled cutting the cords and holding her precious babies for the very first time.

Steven was intent on driving, for the first time upset with what he considered to be reckless drivers as he conveyed his precious cargo back to the house that had been waiting for these two babies for so long.

Despite her jitters as a first time mom, Stephanie knew she was up for the challenge of being a mom to these wonderful gifts from God. No matter how they came into the world, she was now a mother!

Finding and matching with a surrogate: $32,000
Paying said surrogate: $17,000
Paying IVF fees: $15,000
Paying out-of-insurance costs: $3,400
Becoming a parent: PRICELESS!!

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This article has been read 867 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Lynda Schultz 11/23/06
I like the "commercial" twist at the end — Mastercard will be jealous they didn't think of it. I loved this line: " No matter how they came into the world, she was now a mother!" How true and well done!
Joanne Sher 11/27/06
Loved the real, raw emotions in this - and ADORED the ending. Bravo!
Cheri Hardaway 11/28/06
Awesome job! Just welcomed twin grandsons into our little family, so that part was extra special.

And I love the ending as well!

Donna Haug11/29/06
You certainly have an insiders point of view on this topic! ;) You showed the new mom's fears very well.