Indiana Surrogate, Expectant Mom Both Carrying Twins
Family To Expand By 4 With Births Of 2 Sets Of Twins
6:03 AM, May 8, 2012
Misty and Brian Baker, who are from Kokomo but now live in Seattle, have been married for 14 years and have been trying to have a child for 10 of those years.Soon, they will have four children at once, thanks to unrelenting faith and a true friendship with Brian and Amber Pluckebaum back in Indiana.In vitro fertilization had drained the Bakers financially, physically and emotionally, but the Pluckebaums became the answer to their prayers, RTV6's Ericka Flye reported."You know, when you want a child so desperately and it just seems so easy for so many people," Misty said."I want her to know what it's like to hold her own baby, and that's really the root of what got me even thinking this," Amber said.Amber, who has two children of her own, is now pregnant with twins as a surrogate for Misty, enduring the pain and sickness as a gift of love for her friend."When she said she'd be willing to do it, it just felt so right and natural," Misty said.Amber is a gestational surrogate. She was implanted last October with embryos created by Misty and Brian.Indianapolis Dr. William Gentry selected the two healthiest embryos for Amber and four lesser quality embryos for Misty, the hopeful mom."Why not both of you try? I mean, who knows?" Gentry said. "I think her thought was, 'Sure, why not? But it's not going to work with me. It never works.'"Misty was hardly expecting success after failed in vitro treatments and a miscarriage, but she got it with a set of twins from Amber and a set of twins that she is carrying."'You were our ace in the hole,' (Gentry) said, and he said, 'Misty was our wild card,'" Amber said."The whole idea for people to say, 'Just relax,' I mean, if you could have a relax switch on the wall and turn it off, you would love to be able to do it, but you can't," Misty said.Amber knew the same emptiness, having miscarried before."The only way I know how to describe it is, my arms literally ached for the want of holding my own baby when I had my miscarriages, and nobody understood," she said.News that the Baker family would expand by four was a surprise for both families."Just complete and utter shock, I mean the doctor was as shocked as we were," Amber said."Never both get pregnant with twins at the same time, I've never had that happen before," Gentry said.There were some mixed emotions for Amber."I was like, 'Well now I feel like what's my point?' What's my purpose, because at first, it was Misty can't get pregnant, so we need me," Amber said. "Well, do you still need me? You know, and the doctor said, 'Well, she wouldn't be pregnant without you.'""I think (Misty) thought her surrogate would be successful, so she thought, 'What have I got to lose?'" Gentry said. "So, she was chilled out, and who knows how that affects the immune system to reject embryos?"Amber's concerns were soon allayed."We really feel like she was the missing piece that not only allowed us to have the children that she's carrying for us, but also have these two," Brian said as he rubbed Misty's stomach.The joy is accompanied by a bit of sadness, because the best friends are separated by 2,000 miles, with Misty and Brian now in Seattle."I never would have dreamed that we wouldn't have seen each other this pregnancy," Misty said.Early pregnancy complications prevented any travel. At a baby shower for the Bakers in Kokomo, they were involved from Seattle via Skype.The babies to be born in Seattle, a boy and a girl, will be named Connor and Hope. The twins to be born in Indiana, both girls, will be named Madison and Victoria.Through daily phone calls, Misty is building a connection with her twin daughters, and her husband has been to Indiana a few times to talk to the babies and feel them moving."I know these babies know my voice, and they know Brian's voice," Misty said. "Our babies (in Indiana) don't as much, but they will.""I want to see her face when she becomes a mom for the first time, and I can't," Amber said."I would definitely like to be there for the delivery in Indiana, but I'll only travel out there if Misty has already delivered, because I don't want to miss that," Brian said.Amber and her husband said they will always have a special bond with the twins she is carrying, but with their own children ages 6 and 4, Brian Pluckebaum joked that he's glad his baby duties are over."I'm done changing diapers. I'm done waking up at 3 in the morning and getting two hours of sleep at a time," he said. "No problems at all. Here you go Brian and Misty."The births will mark the end of an amazing journey and the start of a new family adventure."I knew that this was something in my life I was supposed to do," Amber said."There's no question that these children were loved and desired and wanted and that they have been prayed for and believed for," Misty said. "They're our little miracle babies."Both women are due in June, but their doctors believe they will deliver earlier. As soon as the babies born in Indianapolis get the OK, they will go home to Seattle.Unlike some surrogates, Amber is not being paid, other than an allowance to cover pregnancy-related expenses.The Bakers are getting assistance from their extended families and a strong church family in Seattle pitching in to help.To follow the Bakers' journey to parenthood, click here.