Today marks the 366th day since delivering two healthy boys to their parents – the first day of their second year. The journey to the birth was as adventurous as the journey I’ve had since (which is saying a lot, considering we now live in another country). There are so many reasons why I’m grateful to have given them a healthy start, not the least of which is that we now have four more family members.
Telling my own boys about the surrogacy in the beginning (now two years ago) was anticlimactic. They barely batted an eyelash, gave a quick, “Okay,” and went about their business. The depth of their understanding and acceptance, however, never ceases to amaze me. When listing the cousins in order of age, they are quick to make sure that “Martin and Jack” are alongside the youngest. When we talk about upcoming video calls, they squeal with delight. Movie clips of them learning to walk or playing with their toys are the highlight of some of our days. They don’t refer to them as cousins, or siblings, or friends. They are simply “the twins,” which appears to mean, “babies we love and who are family without needing a family label.”
We didn’t enter the surrogacy process thinking we would have such distance between this family and us. The distance is only as great as we allow it to be. There is nothing that compares to getting to hold them or watching the boys snuggle up next to their faces for a kiss. That said, it’s been amazing to watch my own kids carry this experience with them when it’s not part of their day-to-day lives – a gentle reminder that, even when they aren’t listening, they are really paying attention.
Today we celebrated their first year – cake and FaceTime and all. And we were reminded of the good fortune we have all had in bringing them into the world and being part of something with so many lessons to teach.