50-Year-Old Mom Who Served as Daughter’s Surrogate Welcomes Baby Girl
Kaitlyn Munoz was only 25-years-old when she was told she would never be able to carry a pregnancy again. Because of her Sjögren’s diagnosis, her kidneys would not be healthy enough to endure another pregnancy. The Texas mom was devastated at the idea her son Callahan wouldn’t ever be a big brother and struggled with the news until she received a call from her mom Chalise Smith.
“I said, ‘I know you have two embryos left from IVF — and I want to carry those embryos if you would like me to, and be your surrogate,’” Smith, 50, told TODAY in an interview. “Kaitlyn was like, ‘Mom, do you realize what you’re saying? This is a huge deal.’ I explained that it wasn’t a rash decision.”
After getting approval from her daughter, her daughter’s husband Miguel and the rest of the family, the mother of eight was cleared by doctors to have her daughter’s embryos implanted via IVF and carry her ninth pregnancy. According to a post made by Smith, the following months were full of “Many emotions and feelings…Excitement, fear, faith, hope, anticipation, doubt, joy and undoubtedly love.”
Munoz expressed her happiness over the support from her family and friends and thankfulness for her mother’s sacrifice. “My mom has given me, Miguel and Callahan the most significant gift. While I have not carried and experienced a second pregnancy, I am overwhelmed with gratitude as I watch my mom rock pregnancy at 50 years old,” said Munoz.
A short nine months later, a healthy baby girl, Alayna Kait-Chalise Munoz, was welcomed into the world. Smith said there wasn’t a dry eye in the delivery room. “They felt the power of the love. They felt the power of selflessness and sacrifice. It was very emotional. We just had a moment of glory on this earth, just a moment of heaven.”
Smith, 50-years-old at the time of birth, was grateful to have few postpartum symptoms and an easy recovery after the delivery. “The next day, I didn’t even feel like I had a baby. It was like a physical tender mercy,” Smith said. “My recovery was nothing.”
While Smith’s recovery was easy, saying goodbye was not. Mom and daughter live over 1,000 miles away from each other, with Smith in Utah and Munoz in Texas. “We had a hard time saying goodbye,” Munoz said. “My mom gave me the greatest gift in the world.”
Despite the distance, Smith says their mom and daughter bond is stronger than ever with a whole new layer of love. “I always tell people it’s crazy because she was grown in the same uterus as me, just 25 years later,” Smith told Fox 13 Salt Lake City. “It’s kind of crazy.”
Our best to the new happy family of four!