(NEW YORK POST) — When Cecile Eledge, 61, offered to be the gestational carrier for her son Matthew Eledge and his husband, Elliot Dougherty, “I thought, ‘I’m going to be the mother of the year to offer this!’ — probably thinking there was no way I could do it,” the postmenopausal grandma from Nebraska tells The Post.
But when doctors told Cecile she could — and she got pregnant last summer after several rounds of hormone injections and one IVF treatment — she knew she had made the right decision for her son.
“When it’s a family member,” Cecile says, “you want to do everything in your power to make their dream possible.”
Elliot’s sister, Lea, donated her eggs to the couple, which doctors inseminated with Matthew’s sperm and implanted into Cecile.
But for Cecile, this pregnancy was different from her earlier rounds with her three kids. This time, she had diet monitors in Matthew and Elliot: They prohibited her from eating processed freezer food, aged cheese — and even hot dogs, which she found particularly restrictive. “[Those were] one of my guilty pleasures,” says Cecile, who was also told to stick to organic meat.
On top of worrying pregnancy complications — for which older women are generally at higher risk — Cecile felt added stress. “It was a lot of pressure on me because I knew how much [my son and his husband] wanted this to happen,” she says.
But after a year and a half, from hormone treatment to labor, baby Uma Louise was born on March 25. More than anything, Cecile says she felt relief when she handed Uma over to her son and son-in-law. “This feeling came over me of, ‘My job is done,’ ” she says.
And the new dads were grateful.
“Matthew’s mother stepped forward and offered us the greatest gift of all,” Elliot wrote in a Facebook post. “I can’t even believe this is real life.”