You won’t soon forget the story of a 52-year-old mom who carried a baby for her daughter, or the amazing maternity photos that capture their journey.
For hopeful parents Heather Weaver and Chris Ambroziak, the road to baby would be far from easy. That’s because Weaver has Polycystic Kidney Disease, and is actually gearing up for a kidney transplant. Carrying a baby would simply be too risky.
“I’m at 20 percent kidney function now and as that gradually continues to go down, we run the risk of trying to grow our family and trying to deal with a kidney transplant,” Weaver told ABC 57 News, adding, “We didn’t want to overlap that. We wanted to have our family and then we would cross that hurdle of the kidney transplant later.”
When the adoption process was taking longer than they’d hoped, the couple started considering surrogacy. Little did they know that the person who would carry their baby was someone very close to them: Weaver’s own mother.
Fifty-two-year-old Denise Weaver offered up her womb right away, but her daughter and Ambroziak wouldn’t hear of it. “My exact response was, ‘no freaking way!’” Weaver recounts. “I didn’t even give it a second thought. You are 52! This is not going to happen. I’m sorry, but this is not going to happen.”
But eventually, the couple realized the grandma-to-be would probably be their best opportunity to have a baby. “I don’t know if it was out of desperation or if they were flat out of options, but she came back to [me] one day,” Denise said.
Doctors gave them the go ahead for IVF. And a month later, Denise was pregnant. Eventually the trio would be ready to celebrate the happy news with a maternity photo shoot. Photographer Lorrie Palmer of Lorrie Ann Photography stepped up to help them achieve a unique session that incorporated both grandma, mom and dad, and of course, the soon-to-be-born baby.
“I wanted the pictures to show the unconditional love that was there and the happiness that was brought out of a painful fact that Heather was not able to carry her own child,” Palmer told ABC 57 News.
A silhouette series accomplished that goal. “I wanted to be able to show Heather what she would look like if she were carrying this baby,” Palmer explained about the image that shows Weaver standing directly behind her daughter.
“What you are seeing is only one person, but in reality, it’s a grandmother, a mother, and a daughter.”
In October of last year, baby Addison Grace was born.
According to ABC 57 News, Weaver and Ambroziak may consider adoption in the future but are focusing their attention now on baby Addison, and Weaver’s upcoming kidney transplant.