WELCOME SARA CONNELL
Sara Connell is an author, speaker, and life coach with a private practice in Chicago. She has appeared on Oprah, Good Morning America, NPR, The View, FOX News and Katie Couric. Sara’s writing has been featured in: The New York Times, Good Housekeeping, Parenting, Psychobabble, Evolving Your Spirit, and Mindful Metropolis magazines. Her first book, Bringing in Finn; an Extraordinary Surrogacy Story (Sept 4, 2012 Seal Press), was nominated for Book of the Year 2012 by Elle magazine.
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Even before the seven-year journey I took to have a child, I would have said that every birth is extraordinary. The phenomenon of an egg and a sperm joining to create a human life is, to me, miraculous. Paradoxically, I’d always thought, the way an egg and sperm come together—through sex—is a wonderfully basic thing that anyone, regardless of education, creativity, skill or life advantages can do.
Nine years ago, when my husband and I gave ourselves over to the primal desire of having a child, this is what we wanted: a totally normal conception followed nine months later by an extraordinary event—the birth of a healthy child.
Normal, however, did not turn out to be our path. Instead of dinner out and making love, we drove back and forth from the fertility clinic and took turns injecting hormones into my stomach and behind. We worked up to IVF and got pregnant! With twins! Five and a half months into the pregnancy I went into pre-mature labor and the twins were delivered, stillborn. A year later: a miscarriage, more IVF (six rounds in all). The word “extraordinary” did not enter into conversation during this time, unless it was to describe our extraordinary feelings of grief, despair, and loss.
We took a break. And during this time, my mother, who had, according to her, never done an extraordinary thing in her life, saw a story about a post-menopausal woman who’d become pregnant and made the collosally generous and yes- extraordinary- offer to be a surrogate for our child.
Fearing our fertility clinic might refer us to a team of psychiatrists, we proceeded with caution, trying to guard our hearts. But to our surprise, our doctor did not dismiss our idea. While the viability of a woman’s eggs are influenced by her years on the planet, it turned out that the uterus does not age in the same way. (definitely extradordinary!)
After batteries of tests, my mother was cleared to be a “gestational host” ( a woman who carries the biological child of a couple). My eggs were joined with my husband’s sperm and then transferred into my mother’s uterus—and on the second joint IVF attempt, we heard the amazing news: we were pregnant and the pregnancy was advancing.
My mother moved in to our house in Chicago. We read Harry Potter books to the baby. We took walks and cooked my mother nourishing meals of her favorite foods. And in February 2011, thirty-nine weeks after we received that call of congratulations from our doctor, Finnean Lee Connell came into the world. Two beautiful hands, ten perfectly shaped toes, a face with a tiny nose that lifted up at the end like my husband’s. A beautiful, vibrant new life that the doctors in the delivery room pronounced, perfectly, wonderfully, “normal.”
At two and a half years, Finn is talking, running, making friends and running to the potty – sometimes making it, sometimes not- when he needs to go. He is – as many parents truthfully but obnoxiously say- our greatest joy; in every way “normal” and most definitely, extraordinary.
ABOUT THE BOOK
Bringing in Finn is the true story of a couple who wanted nothing more than to have a family and a mother who would do anything for her daughter. After unsuccessfully trying to conceive naturally, years of fertility treatments, miscarriage and a late term loss of twins, Sara and Bill Connell were emotionally and financially depleted and at a loss as to how they could have a family. When Sara’s mother Kristine offered to be their surrogate, the three embark on the journey that would culminate in Finnean’s miraculous birth and complete a transformation of their at-one-time strained mother-daughter relationship.
Publisher: Seal Press
Publication Date: October 8, 2013
Number of Pages: 336
THANKS TO CRYSTAL AT WOW!,
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