Danielle Pickens & Kristy Whatley: Two Silver State Surrogate Mothers
Two years ago on New Years Eve, Danielle Pickens, her husband, Justin, and their extended family were anticipating a bountiful 2013. They were celebrating with intended parents Karin Lee and Edward Wong, who were in Las Vegas awaiting the birth of their triplet daughters whom Danielle was carrying.Kristy Whatley, Danielle Pickens, Stacie Grubner and Michele Subia all have a lot in common. Not only have they all been surrogate mothers at CSP, but they also have worked together as colleagues at Stewart Title in Nevada. Even before that, however, Kristy and Stacie worked together at a local day care center, but neither knew the other was involved with CSP until the day that someone from the agency called for Kristy. Stacie, however, answered the phone and thought the call was for her. CSP's Nevada surrogacy coordinator, Michele Subia, also found a job opportunity at Stewart Title, and Danielle Pickens was working there already. These women have bonded in more ways than one.
Danielle Pickens is a two-time surrogate mother who has worked with two couples to help fulfill their dreams. She delivered a girl at 39 weeks for her first family, who lived in Arizona, and with whom she is still close and in frequent communication. Her second couple, the Wongs, was featured in the fall 2013 issue of our Intended Parents newsletter. Living in London, but originally from Singapore, the Wongs had suffered multiple pregnancy losses before connecting with CSP and Daniele and her husband, Justin.
Though two embryos were transferred, Danielle became pregnant with triplets. Carrying a high-risk pregnancy, she was hospitalized twice for medical conditions like pre-term contractions, hyperemesis gravidarum and early positive fetal fibronectin tests.
Said Karin Lee: "We really appreciate the time and sacrifice Danielle made. Though she told us carrying triplets was her gift to us, we know she and her family endured so much, both in daily life and especially with the hospitalizations. She was put on bed rest for an extended time and Justin had to do the housework and care for their two little girls, Kailey and Madi. It was difficult for them, but every time we checked, she was very positive and relaxed," explained Karin. "We can't thank her and Justin and their incredible families enough. It was a huge team effort."
Danielle's obstetrician, Dr. Laura Gorski at the High Risk Pregnancy Center at Sunrise Hospital, decided on an elective C-section on January 8, when the triplets would be at 35 weeks gestation. With 19 people waiting for her and the babies in the operating theatre, Danielle actually strolled into the delivery room herself. Danielle also broke the Sunrise Hospital record and the CSP record for carrying the triplets so healthily for so long.
Danielle, Justin and her two girls are now embarking on their third and final surrogacy journey, again with the Wongs, who wish to give their daughters another sibling.
If you have a work colleague and/or friend interested in surrogacy, you can earn a referral fee once they have entered into a signed contract. The amount of the fee is dependent on the state where the surrogate resides.