A 61-year-old woman from Nebraska recently gave birth to her own granddaughter. Cecile Eledge embarked on this special journey so her son and his husband could have a baby of their own.
Eledge served as a gestational surrogate for her son, Matthew Eledge, and his husband, Elliot Dougherty, carrying their baby for nine months, according to a press release by Nebraska Medical Center. "There was no moment of hesitation. It was natural instinct." Cecile Eledge said.
The family went through a lengthy process to determine if Eledge was a good candidate to serve as a gestational surrogate. Her age was a consideration, and she underwent several tests before doctors said she could carry the embryo. Dougherty's sister donated the egg and Matthew Eledge donated this sperm.
On March 25, Eledge gave brith at Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha to Uma Louise Dougherty-Eledge. The healthy baby girl weighed in at 5 pounds, 13-ounces.
"We are thankful with how the whole process worked," Matthew Eledge said. "We are really grateful that both Uma and her grandma are here, happy and healthy. For the time being, we're just going to relax and enjoy this moment."
Ramzy Nakad, M.D. delivered Uma, and several physicians on Nebraska Medicine's Maternal Fetal Medicine Team saw Eledge leading up to the birth. Dr. Nakad said while his team of high-risk specialists see many older patients, this birth was "definitely a very exceptional case."
"The entire team from doctors to nurses to lab techs showed a beautiful balance of professionalism and compassion," Matthew Eledge said.
The couple was in the room when Eledge gave birth, and a photographer captured their emotional reactions. The new dads were brought to tears and beamed with joy as they met Uma for the first time beside Eledge's hospital bed.
Thanks to a mother who dreamed of becoming a grandmother, and two determined dads, Uma will grow up knowing her whole family did all they could to bring her into this world.