“You know mothers day?”
“Can I send Aunty Lorna a card?”
“Of course you can Wil”
Now that might seem like a strange conversation to some…unless of course you’ve been following our story and then you’ll realise it’s not quite as odd as it seems. You see our son Wil’s Aunty Lorna is actually his birth mother.
Being gay, my husband Ivan and I can’t have kids the usual way. I mean don’t get me wrong. We’ve tried and tried, but never quite succeeded….and that’s where my sister Lorna, AKA ‘our angel from above’, stepped in. Oh that sounds wrong on so many levels! But it’s not. Back in 2008 she offered to act as a surrogate for us. Wil was subsequently born in 2009 and the rest, as they say, is history.
Lorna never wanted more kids. She has two beautiful daughters of he own (they’d better thank me for saying that) and that was enough for her. Lorna didn’t want any more of her own children, but she did want one for us! Completely selflessly Lorna was willing to go through god knows what to enable us to have a child. If that doesn’t make her an angel I don’t know what does. It certainly went some way to making up for how mean she was to me when we were little!!
When we started talking about the why’s and where fore’s one of the main discussion points was how we approached the situation around him knowing how he was created. As I said, Lorna didn’t want another child of her own – as far as she was concerned he was going to be her nephew and she his Aunty. We were all comfortable with this. If it felt right for Lorna it felt right for us. And that’s how it’s always been – Wil is just another of her many nephews. But we were never going to deceive him. We were adamant, and Lorna was in agreement, that Wil would always know where he came from and how he was made – age appropriately of course. Should Wil wish to identify Lorna as his Mum we would have to accept this. And, should it come to it, Lorna would have to accept that Wil may wish to identify as her child and she would have to have her door open to this possibility. Despite not wanting more kids. Of course she shared this view too.
I recently wrote a blog about the birth parents of our other children, who are adopted. I wrote about the support that we would offer them, when the time came, if indeed it did, when they wanted to meet and form relationships with them. It was much the same with Wil and Aunty Lorna.
We can’t, won’t, never shall deny who she is or where he has come from. It’s part of his history. Part of what makes him Wil.
Wil knows her as Aunty Lorna – but is well aware that she’s his Tummy Mummy – that she carried him as a special gift to us….a baby that we wanted so much but couldn’t create without the amazing gift from Aunty Lorna.
Naturally we want to be the only ones that matter to him as parents, as with all of our children we want to be the ones that they need above all others. But I can’t deny, there’s always been a bit of a niggle at the back of my mind – that their relationship could overtake ours…insecurities slipping in. Then I kick myself and realise that it’s not something that I need worry about. Our children, each of them, know that they are our world. We love them above all else and nothing will come between that. Part of that love though is accepting that we have a duty to encourage them to know where they have come from, even if that’s a little bit scary sometimes. That’s my problem, not theirs. If it means that they form healthy relationships with significant others then I just need to suck it up and be confident in their love for us.
As kids have a habit of doing, Wil kind of simplified things for me. I asked him if he wanted to make a special ‘Tummy Mummy’ card and he said no. Just an ordinary mothers day card will be fine. To him it’s a no-brainer. Let’s not complicate things. You’re my Dad’s. I’m lucky to have two Dads. Aunty Lorna’s my mother. It’s a simple fact. It doesn’t matter to him how this happened or the why’s or where fore’s. He’s just content in the fact that he has two (great!) Dads and a lovely mother Aunty Lorna.
He astounds me all the time in his maturity and openness to life. Wil I am so proud of you, we’re proud of you. I’m proud to call myself your Dad. We must be doing something right.
So Wil, let me join you in wishing your wonderful Aunty Lorna a truly brilliant happy mothers day! Thanks Lorna. Love you.