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Mom who lost baby at 37 weeks becomes surrogate for another couple Bath City News

A mum whose baby died in the womb at 37 weeks has told how a high-profile TV drama persuaded her to become a surrogate to another couple in memory of her lost daughter. Natalie Newman suffered three losses in all before having two children and starting her own dream family.

But when she and her husband Jack watched the hit TV drama The Nest, starring Sophie Rundle and Martin Compston as a couple who couldn’t conceive, she couldn’t help but think of how the others were not so blessed. And seeing the pain of the characters Emily and Dan sparked an urge to help others experience the joy of parenthood.

“It detailed the pain and anguish that couples go through at not being able to have children,” the 35-year-old from Radstock said. “It made me think how wonderful it would be to help make that dream come true for someone else.”

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In November, she gave birth to beautiful baby boy Bobby to Andy Kenny and Gareth Mole who were aspiring parents. Natalie told her story to The Mirror and said: “When I saw the expression on their faces, the sheer joy, I realized I had done an amazing thing. It meant the world to me to be able to do this for them, after what I had been through myself.”

Natalie and her husband Jack longed to have children, but she suffered an ectopic pregnancy that resulted in a miscarriage when she was 18. She lost a second baby at the age of 26. But they never lost hope and when “sweet love” Alfie was born. in 2015, Natalie had never felt happier.

Lilly Newman, 3, Jack Newman, 34, Alfie Newman, 7 and Natalie Newman, 35, at their home in Radstock, Bath. Image: Jon Rowley

She thought her happiness was complete when she got pregnant again in 2017 and Alfie helped choose Sophie’s name for their unborn daughter. Alfie was delighted to meet his little sister and during those happy days they painted the nursery pink and got everything ready for her arrival.

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But at 37 weeks, four days into the pregnancy, the exact moment she gave birth to Alfie, scans showed Sophie had stopped breathing. “Nothing prepares you for this moment, your future as a family has slipped away from you,” Natalie said. “I was absolutely devastated. The scans showed the baby suffered no distress whatsoever. She simply stopped breathing and died.

Natalie was induced and gave birth to Sophie on March 6, 2018 – a date she will never forget. She said: “Holding it in my hands, tears streaming down my face, I didn’t know how I could go on, but I swore to Sophie she would never be forgotten. I posted a picture on Facebook of a pink balloon and a pink rose.

“I explained what happened, that our little girl passed away. That rose has become a symbol of Sophie and whenever we want to remind people of her when we have a family reunion or it’s her birthday, we get a pink rose.”

Pink roses and photo of Sophie the day she was born

The couple created a keepsake box with Sophie’s blanket and teddy, her hand and footprints and a card from a nurse detailing the birth which helped a distraught Alfie understand what had happened.

They closed the door to Sophie’s bedroom and cried but did not give up on their dream and four months later Natalie found out she was pregnant again. Baby Lily was born in March 2019. Natalie said: ‘She was 5lbs 15oz, the same weight as Sophie, and I just hugged her so tight, thinking that after so many years of heartache and pain, our dreams had finally come true. Holding Lily in my arms, with Alfie and Jack by my side, I felt so blessed.

That’s when she and Jack saw The Nest about a couple who take in a young girl who agreed to become a surrogate and decided surrogacy was right for their family. Natalie said: “Jack gave me a big hug and said he would fully support me, he understood how it would help me heal after losing Sophie and the other two babies.”

Andy and Gareth’s wedding celebration – Natalie can be seen with a bump.

Marketing director Jack, 34, said: ‘After getting over the surprise, I really liked the idea. It’s such a beautiful thing. Natalie is a very selfless, caring and naturally motherly person. She derives personal satisfaction from caring for others and always puts others before herself.

After joining the surrogacy group Missing Pieces on Facebook, Natalie met Andy, 39, an embroiderer from London, who had suffered two surrogacy miscarriages with her husband Gareth, 34, a professional dancer. “Instinct told us they would make lovely parents. They were full of life and love, and I knew that was good,” Natalie said.

She struck up a strong friendship with Andy and, after several meetings, agreed to be a surrogate mother. Natalie said: “I told him all about Sophie, how I was doing this for her, and he completely understood that.”

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The embryo – sperm from Andy and an egg from Gareth’s sister Rebecca, a mother of two – was implanted in March last year. At five months pregnant, she, Jack and Alfie attended the couple’s wedding in Bethnal Green, east London, and Natalie could see how much their friends and family appreciated what she was doing for them.

Baby Bobby was born last November after a 19 minute labor and Andy and Gareth had to run to the delivery room and in a scene straight out of a movie they arrived just as Bobby was crying for the first time. “I passed it to Andy, who held it to his chest so they could have that first skin-to-skin contact,” Natalie said.

Jack, Natalie, Andy (holding Bobby) and Gareth

“He was still attached to me by the umbilical cord, it was such a special moment. For me, it was like holding a friend’s baby and then giving it back to its parents. He was who he was always supposed to be with. I couldn’t sleep that night because I was on top of the world Now when Alfie and I go to open Sophie’s memory box, we tell her about Bobby, about what we’ve done.

“I know she would be so proud. I feel so incredibly blessed with my own family, but also to have helped another couple create theirs in his memory. Andy and Gareth send me updates and we visited Bobby. We have a very special friendship. It took a lot of people to create Bobby – and now there’s a lot of love for him.

Andy said: “Natalie is amazing, she gave us the most special thing anyone could give you. That moment in the delivery room was overwhelming. Our little baby was there and it was love at first sight. Meeting that little person we had hoped for and prayed for. I expected everything to be more medical, but with the five of us there, holding Bobby, it was actually very quiet and special. He has five months now and full of smiles and laughter. I can barely put into words what Natalie has done for us. We will always be grateful.”

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This notice was published: 2022-03-27 00:00:00

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