The Telegraph reports:
Katy Slade, 31, a primary school teacher, wanted to start a family with husband David but was prevented by a rare genetic condition which left her without reproductive organs. Her younger sister Lucy Marks, 27, came to her aid by keeping a childhood promise to donate her egg.
Mr Slade’s older sister Jamie Allan, 35, then stepped forward and offered to be their surrogate mum and gave birth to their daughter, Beatrix. Mrs Slade, 31, said: “If it wasn’t for our sisters we would still be childless. It’s the best gift ever and we love them so much for it. “Beatrix is our little angel and we’ll be forever thankful to our sisters for making our dream come true. “Without them things would have been so much harder.”
The couple met each other in 2003 and were together for six years before they started to talk about starting a family. When she told him about her condition he suggested adoption or surrogacy and in 2010 they started planning IVF.
Katy and David, of Romford, Essex were not eligible for free IVF treatment on the NHS and used money inherited from Katy’s nan Eileen to fund the £8,000 private cost. They underwent a series of interviews, counselling and various blood tests before they were accepted.
David’s sperm was frozen – but they then had to wait another six months while it was routinely screened for STDs and any other medical conditions. Meanwhile, Lucy had daily hormone injections to produce more eggs and Jamie underwent hormone injections to build the lining of her womb.
Just two embryos were created when David’s sperm was mixed with Lucy’s eggs and they were implanted into Jamie’s womb in December 2011. On Christmas Eve Jamie told Katy she was being sick and tests confirmed the best possible present they could have – the news that she was pregnant.
At five months Katy and David found they were expecting a girl and they decided to call her Beatrix – the middle name of the nan whose bequest financed their treatment. Jamie was induced on September 1st last year and tearful Katy said: “I held her for the first time and looked at Lucy, Jamie and David. “It was incredible that every single one of us had helped bring Beatrix into the world.”
Lucy said: “I was really glad to be able to help and when we found the treatment had worked first time I was over the moon. “I just adore Beatrix – she’s absolutely wonderful. “But although my eggs were used to create her, she will always be my niece.”
Jamie, who runs an after-school club, added: “Carrying the baby was something I was happy to do for them. “The pregnancy was normal just like my others and the delivery was straightforward and my mum, Katy and David were in the room. “Obviously I knew from the start that she wasn’t mine and I focussed on that and I will always see her as my niece.”