Witnessing the birth of your baby is an incredibly special moment, and many parents having a child through surrogacy are able to share in this experience alongside their surrogate. As you know, babies don’t always arrive at the most convenient times or precisely on cue. This means that many intended parents like to be ready to be by their surrogate’s side as she nears her due date so they don’t miss the big moment.
Here’s what you need to know about being ready to get to the hospital for your baby’s birth as an intended parent via surrogacy:
How Most Intended Parents Handle Travel
People who have become parents through American Surrogacy have traveled to their surrogate’s location up to two weeks before the baby’s birth, staying in hotel rooms to wait for that call saying that it was time to go to the hospital.
While you don’t have to settle in that early to wait for your surrogate’s due date, some intended parents simply feel more comfortable being nearby. That’s entirely up to you and your surrogate.
Most intended parent-surrogate matches are long-distance, so it’s very common for intended parents to travel across several states to get to their surrogate’s hospital. You can jump in the car or on the plane in anticipation of her due date, or when you get the call that she’s going into labor. Again, that depends on what you and your surrogate are most comfortable with.
This will typically be something that you’ll discuss with your surrogate in advance, often when you’re creating your surrogacy contract together. Having an established plan can make everyone feel more confident and relaxed, so that as the big day draws near you’ll at least have a rough idea of what to expect.
What Happens If Your Surrogate Goes Into Labor Early
The thought of missing their child’s birth keeps some intended parents up at night. True, some women do go into labor and give birth weeks before their due date. However, should this happen, that doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t see your baby’s arrival.
If you get a call saying that your surrogate is in labor and you need to travel to meet your baby as soon as possible, here’s what you’ll need to do:
- Stay calm
- Check in with your surrogacy specialist, if you haven’t already
- Try to get on the first available flight or start driving
A few things to remember:
- Everyone, especially your surrogate, wants you to be able to share in this moment, so be understanding
- Your surrogate’s health and your baby’s health take priority above all else
- If you get that call and need to start traveling, grab your paperwork but don’t worry too much about packing more than the absolute essentials — most things for you and baby can be bought or borrowed when you arrive
- If you don’t make it in time for your baby’s birth, remember that you’ll have the rest of your life together, and that’s much more important
A few general tips to help you stay prepared for short-notice travel:
- Have your hospital bags packed and ready a few weeks before your surrogate’s due date, including the essential newborn supplies you plan to take
- Notify your work, family and close friends that you might need to leave quickly and that you could be gone for a while
- Make arrangements for pets or children, so you can call someone quickly to care for them while you’re gone
- Have a rough plan for how you plan on getting there and back, but stay flexible
- Have a rough plan for accommodations, but stay flexible
- Keep your phones charged and on you at all times
It can be tempting to want to plan out as much as possible, especially when it feels like so much is out of your control. But your baby will be born on his or her own schedule and sometimes, there’s just no planning for that. In the meantime, try to relax and be ready to roll with whatever surprises parenthood brings.