What a busy couple of months - I've really felt the pressure this last month from a combination of people or factors/commitments. I feel like I'm letting more people down as our workloads increase - and Wes and I desperately need some time together as we're both stressed and need to ensure we make time for 'us', and this is all happening whilst our son is cooking nicely, can you believe we're 23 weeks pregnant! Eeeekk! It will get easier right?
Don't get me wrong, the dream is happening, It's amazing how quickly TwoDads.U.K is building and the positive attention it's receiving in terms of its potential, Fertility Clinics are now getting in touch wanting our support in a variety of ways, more brands are wanting us to work with them and crucially the referrals from Intended Fathers are increasing. These guys are seeking our support and advice, as they make the most important journey and decision of their lives - their pursuit of fatherhood, and its a joy to help and support them. We're probably speaking to on average 3 couples a week over a Skype call, all totally free of course - and all in our own time during an evening or at the weekend.
Our first TwoDads.U.K Surrogacy Event took place in April too, which was a complete sell out and again something we're so proud of. We're loving giving these guys some hope and guidance as they navigate their way through UK Surrogacy, showing them how possible it really is to become fathers through Surrogacy in the UK. We've even witnessed this week in particular, a couple we first supported 18 months ago on their journey to become Dads who have welcomed their Son (Sawyer) into the world - he was born early, but healthy and he's totally dreamy and getting cuter by the day. Another (adorable) couple who we've only known for three months have also taken our advice and our pathway seriously, the clinic we advised them to use based on their location, our experience and their needs (CRGH) have now matched them with an Egg Donor and their Embryos are being created any moment. We have the best jobs ever! Isn't science amazing?
As you will have seen we've also supported Fertility Fest this year which has been such a wonderful experience. For those of you still unfamiliar with this arts festival, where have you been!?
Fertility Fest if the worlds first arts festival dedicated to Fertility, Infertility, the science of making babies and Modern Families, like ours. It's been an absolute privilege to not only share the stage with fabulous clinicians, authors, artists and friends but a joy to connect with so many incredible human beings all woven together with a passion for supporting others, whether your fertility journey ended with a baby, or not - Wes and I have met some of the most genuine people, and we know we've made new friends that we will take into our next chapter together. This has been a real journey and something I'm proud to say we've done and supported, and I hope we can be a part of next years event. We were partners to The Queer Family Event and then we also spoke at their 'Fertility Fight Club' evening - which was so much fun. We got to talk about a topic we're very passionate about - our family, with the cheekily titled talk "Who's the Daddy?!" The objective was to talk about something which either angers or makes you passionate, linked to your own fertility journey. So we gave real life examples of (some) highly inappropriate questions we've had thrown at us since being Dads to Talulah - all are real, some of them are born out of ignorance and some are simply inquisitive, I'll let you decide which. You ready to hear them? Here goes...
'How much did you pay for her?' (Whilst pointing at her in her Moses basket - she was 5 days old!)
(Head tilt) 'Awww bless, are you giving Mum a rest?'
(Trying to explain altruistic surrogacy to someone) 'Ah OK - so you order her and they deliver her, its a bit like Amazon Prime I guess?'
'What are you like, you Gays and your designer Babies' When I was trying to explain Egg matching criteria and not gender selection (something not allowed in the UK)
'Did you feel bad taking her from her Mother?'
'Who's Sperm is it?' (Everyone's obsessed with this one - imagine asking a straight couple this question every time a pregnancy is confirmed!
'Will you raise her Gay?'
'Who does the Mummy jobs?'
'So what does she call you?'
'So who's the Dad?' To which we reply, 'We are' and then they say...
'Right - who's the REAL Dad?' to which we reiterate, 'We are!'.
We've also been busy with Fertility Road, the UK's leading Fertility Magazine. We're now writing for the magazine as a modern family created through modern science - seems a great combination and we look forward sharing this with you all. We're also proud to have been the first male same sex family the magazine has ever featured on their magazine, and I believe this is also a first for the UK Fertility Industry too.
So hopefully this explains the lack of writing of late, but I will get better - I promise and there's lots of exciting things to come. We're actually filming a commercial at our house this weekend for a huge brand which we're so happy is supporting our cause - even the script has a surrogacy theme. We've also just confirmed our support at two major fertility events taking place this Autumn too - one of which we're thrilled to be sponsoring. No rest for the wicked eh?
Next article 'More than meets the eye' Takes a look at me as a non parent a few years back, and how I've wrongly judged other parents parenting choices.
Credits: Clothing Twenty9Children & Photography Marcello Di Toro