Instagram friend is my surrogate after cancer rendered me infertile
An infertile cancer survivor is finally set to become a mother after her Instagram friend agreed to be her surrogate.
Marissa Smith, 30, of Toronto, was diagnosed with reproductive cancer at the age of 25.
Despite 17 surgeries to prepare her body for pregnancy, she was unable to conceive.
Then she stumbled across surrogacy-related Instagram posts written by Ariel Taylor, 31, who had already been a surrogate mother three times.
The couple became close, met in real life and became best friends.
Marissa Smith (L) and Ariel Taylor (R). Marissa finally becomes a mother after being left infertile after cancer
Knowing that Ariel liked American actor Jesse McCartney, Marissa then managed to get him to record a cameo video and ask if Ariel would be her replacement.
Ariel said yes – and now she is 25 weeks pregnant with Marissa’s baby – conceived through IVF using Marissa’s husband’s sperm and Marissa’s egg.
The little boy is expected on July 9th.
Expectant mother Marissa, a special education teacher, said: “When I was told I would not be able to carry a pregnancy, it was very, very difficult.
“I had hoped to be a mother for so long.
“But thanks to Ariel, we can finally experience parenthood.”
In 2018, Marissa was diagnosed with a cancerous tumor in her cervix and uterus.
She then underwent four surgeries and 12 procedures on her reproductive system to make her uterus suitable for pregnancy.
But after three years and one unsuccessful round of IVF, she was told she would never conceive.
And in May 2020, doctors suggested considering a surrogate pregnancy.
Marissa Smith, 30, (L) was diagnosed with reproductive cancer aged 25 and despite undergoing 17 surgeries, a three-year IVF with her husband was unsuccessful
Marissa Smith (L) and Ariel Taylor (R) became best friends and “family” after meeting via Instagram
Ariel and Marissa. When Marissa wanted to ask Ariel to be her replacement, she enlisted the help of actor Jesse McCartney
Marissa was matched with a surrogate and began the surrogacy process.
But in 2021, both embryo transfers failed.
Although devastated, Marissa had already spent a lot of time researching the process online due to the fact that she was using a surrogate.
And she had stumbled across Ariel’s posts.
Ariel, who has an eight-year-old daughter and two stepdaughters with her fiancé, had already completed three surrogates.
Ariel, a social worker and psychotherapist from London, Canada, said: “We became friends because I was a surrogate and she used one.
“We became very close as she went through this process of losing her old surrogate.
“She was having a really tough time and people don’t really understand how it feels — but we bonded so quickly because I got it.”
Marissa and Ariel then both temporarily muted, Ariel becoming Marissa’s new replacement.
Marissa said, “We started talking about how nice it would be to be on the journey together.
“I knew she liked Jesse McCartney, so I got her a cameo of him and got him to ask if she would carry my baby – I sort of proposed to her.
“Apparently she agreed.”
Ariel (L) agreed to be a replacement. She is now 25 weeks pregnant with Marissa’s baby – conceived through IVF using Marissa’s husband’s sperm and Marissa’s egg
Marissa Smith (R) and Ariel Taylor (L), linked over their interest in surrogacy, with a happy ending to the story
The friends now go shopping for baby things together and go to the ultrasound scans. The baby is due in July
In October 2022, Ariel underwent an embryo transplant using Marissa’s eggs and her husband’s sperm – a week later she found out she was pregnant.
The trial has brought Ariel and Marissa closer than ever — and they now consider each other family.
Marissa revealed she’s “over the moon” – but admits it was a struggle.
She said: “I’m still processing my trauma from my fertility issues.
“Just because something is finally going right doesn’t take away the pain and trauma that we’ve been through to this point.”
But she added that she was still happy about the pregnancy.
She said: “It’s very surreal when we’re together, I still don’t really believe she has my baby in her tummy.
“But I couldn’t be happier and I feel so lucky to have the chance to have a surrogate because so many people don’t get that opportunity.”
Marissa goes to all midwife appointments and ultrasounds with Ariel, and the two go on baby shopping trips.
The best friends have already decided what will happen after the birth of the baby – Ariel will become an aunt.
Ariel said Marissa and her husband will tell their son that Ariel is the surrogate and there will be no secrets.
Ariel, her partner, and their children are already like “extended family” to Marissa, she added.
Marissa said, “There’s nothing I can do to repay her and show her how much I appreciate what she’s doing.
“We will continue our friendship forever – she is part of our family now and we are part of hers.
“I don’t even have words to describe how I feel about Ariel – I will never be able to thank her enough for what she has done.”
She added: “We are so, so excited – we can’t wait to welcome our little fella.
“We’ve waited forever for this.”
Ariel added: “It’s so nice for me because I love being pregnant but don’t want another baby of my own.
“We were friends before, but the process also brought us so much closer.
“I’ll also be a part of how she reveals the heartbeat and gender, the intimate special moments that you wouldn’t normally be a part of.”
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-11923619/Instagram-friend-surrogate-cancer-left-infertile.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Instagram friend is my surrogate after cancer rendered me infertile