Meet Mariah!

” Few things in this life compare to the joy you feel seeing your IP’s faces the moment they see their child for the first time. “

Q: What led you to become a Surrogate?

I have always wanted to be able to be a surrogate since I first heard of it in high school and made a life goal of “make one, take one (Adopt), and give one”. After having my own son, I realized how much love a child gives your life. It’s like an eternal silver lining. Surrogacy was something I felt calling me for a couple years and it finally felt like the right time to pursue part of that life goal. I’m so grateful I did.

Q. Who was/is your largest support person/s throughout your journey?

My mother was a massive support person as well as my 5 year old son becoming the perfect little comrade.

Q. What made you decide to choose your Intended Parents?

It was just kind of a gut feeling. Their profiles were so in sync with who I am as a person but the first Skype call meeting is when I knew they would not only be amazing teammates on the journey but I knew they would make incredible parents. I wanted to be able to help make that happen for them.

Q. What are some of the highlights of your journey?

There are a number of highlights. The nerves and excitement of the first time I met the IP’s and knew for sure they were the right choice. The thrill of the transfer and the joy of seeing that positive pregnancy test and sharing it with them on Easter morning. When we all reunited for the 20 week ultrasound and they got to see, feel, and hear their little girl for the first time all in the same three days. After that it all felt so real finally. The last half of the journey was a whirlwind and when anxiety or stress kicked in, I always knew I had them in my corner. Of course, the true highlight was when she was born. I’ll never forget their faces. I also got to spend time with them over the next week and there is something so special about watching people who were always meant to become parents, finally fall into their roles. That growth is beyond beauty.

Q. Do you have advice for women who are interested in becoming a gestational surrogate?

I think you should prepare your heart. It’s not always an easy process and there are a lot of lows, but the highs…those are the moments worth pursuing. I never expected to fall in love with it all like I did and I think that if it’s something you truly feel is right for you, do it. Few things in this life compare to the joy you feel seeing your IP’s faces the moment they see their child for the first time.

Q. What did you find was the biggest misconception people had about surrogacy?

I wish people could understand that surrogates don’t feel like we are “giving away a baby”. From the beginning we never feel like it is our child but that doesn’t change how much love and kindness we will give to the process and baby. Intended parents trust the surrogate to grow the baby, and we trust the intended parents to raise the baby. It’s a challenge that needs both sides and there will be a bond created undoubtedly but it’s a bond of love and trust.

Q. How has becoming a surrogate impacted your life?

It allowed me to show my son that being brave enough to care is the first step. It will be hard and there may be a lot of struggles but if we can give, we should give. If we can love, we should love. I have seen my son grow in empathy, compassion, and kindness in ways that most5 year olds probably wouldn’t understand. It’s also allowed me to have opportunities to open conversations with other strangers about surrogacy and IVF that would have never happened but were much needed due to so many misconceptions.

Q. What would you tell someone who was considering working with a surrogate?

I would say finding an agency and a match that you are confident with is the most critical part. Just like with anything in life, expectations and hopes rarely turn out the way you think they will but having a strong, solid team will make those lows or changes much more endurable. Communication was such a key aspect in all of this. I knew I could count on my IP’s to be there when I needed them for support or just conversation. Family Source provided guidance and support for both sides in times of confusion, chaos, or excitement. I can’t imagine a better crew.

Interested in becoming a Surrogate? Click Here to get started!

Staci Swiderski, CEO and owner of Family Source Consultants has been involved in the field of reproductive medicine since 2002. Staci has vigorously grown the comprehensive egg donation and gestational surrogacy agency to become a worldwide leader in the third-party reproduction field. Staci is a former intended parent herself. She and her husband welcomed their son via gestational surrogacy in 2005. Additionally, Staci had the experience of assisting an infertile couple (AKA Recipient Parents) build their family through her efforts as an egg donor, with her donation resulting in the births of their son and daughter.