Surrogate Gives Birth to Her Own Granddaughter for Her Son and His Husband

“As a grown man, she still continues to be my guardian angel...”
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By Stephanie Grassullo, Associate Editor
Published March 29, 2019

Cecile Eledge is proof a mother’s love never runs dry. The 61-year-old’s son, Matthew Eledge, is all grown up now, but that didn’t stop her from offering him the greatest gift of all. After selflessly stepping up as surrogate for Matthew and his husband’s baby, the woman gave birth to her grandchild, Uma Louise Dougherty-Eledge, earlier this week. Cue the waterworks.

When Cecile first made the offer, Matthew had a hard time taking her seriously, according to a Buzzfeed article on the family’s experience. But after mentioning it in passing while at an appointment, their doctor didn’t think it was such a crazy idea. The Reproductive Health Specialists at Methodist Women’s Hospital in Omaha ran a Pap smear, a blood test, a cholesterol test, a stress test, a mammogram and an ultrasound, all of which revealed Cecile to be healthy enough to carry a fetus to term.

“I would like to take a moment to pause and share my overwhelming feeling of gratitude. As many of you know, my husband Elliot Dougherty and I have been in the process of building our family. As a gay couple, this process can be confusing, challenging and expensive,” Matthew opens up in a Facebook post. “There is no clear path, and regardless of your decision, it’s guaranteed you will need to rely on others to make this dream a reality. Thankfully for us, we are surrounded by the most selfless, most loving women in the world.”

Right from the very beginning, Uma Louise was an enormously loved little girl. Dougherty’s sister generously donated her eggs to her brother and brother-in-law, and Matthew’s mother offered to be their surrogate. As Matthew says, “her aunt gave her the seed of life, and her very own grandmother provided the loving garden for her to bloom.”

“Growing up as a weird, gay kid, I honestly couldn’t have asked for a better woman to raise me. She loved me unconditionally, she fiercely protected me from the world and never once did she shame or judge me for who I truly was,” Matthew says. “Now, as a grown man, she still continues to be my guardian angel, as she has carried and nurtured our child for the first nine months of her life.”

For Dougherty, the whole experience has also been a “pinch me” moment. “It has been such a beautiful journey. We are so incredibly grateful,” he says on Facebook. “I can’t even begin to describe and capture all of the feelings I have…What an honor it is to have these two women in our life. What a beautiful gift this has all been.”

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