Judging from conversations with other pregnant people in online forums and groups that I am a part of, birth and delivery during a pandemic can vary wildly depending on the location. My delivery took place at Skyridge Medical Center in Lonetree, CO–a large and well-known facility in the Denver Metro area. Skyridge generally sees between 10-20 surrogate births a year in their facility and while that is a low number compared to overall births, I was very impressed with the systems and procedures they had in place to accommodate me as a surrogate and Carrie as the intended mother.
Due to hospital rules and regulations regarding COVID, many other surrogates I know had to make the agonizing decision whether to include the intended parent/s or their own support person in the delivery room with them. Because Skyridge is a hospital experienced with surrogacy, they had regulations outlined to allow both the surrogate and the baby to each to have a support person present. I knew that if things were to change that I would absolutely want Carrie to be present for the birth of her child whether that meant that I would be able to have an additional support person present or not. As some surrogates don’t have a close relationship with the intended parents of the child they are carrying, you can probably imagine how that could turn into a very difficult decision.
Because my daughter was born via c-section, I decided to opt for a repeat c-section birth. I did have the option to try and deliver naturally, and I spent a lot of time in conversation with Carrie, chatting it through with trusted friends, and in consultations with my physicians before making the decision. I had recovered quickly and without complication from my first c-section, didn’t feel the need to experience natural childbirth, and knew that a repeat presented less risk to the baby during delivery, so opted for the repeat c-section. As births rarely go as planned (ask just about any mother or father out there), I prepped for what I hoped would happen while holding it loosely in case the baby or my body had other plans.