Double the gift

Jessie Quick has been through a roller coaster ride of a pregnancy, but the light at the end of a tunnel will not be a baby of her own.

It will be two babies for another couple.

Quick is having twins as a surrogate mother for a couple from an island nation.

Jessie and her husband, Mike, have five combined children already and operate an in-home daycare and dance studio. Being around children comes naturally to the Marshalltown couple and now they are able to give that gift to a couple who can’t have children of their own.

“This is the kind of gift that not many people can give,” Jessie said. “It will be a fun thing for me to be able to say that I’ve accomplished this.”

The 33-year-old is due with both a boy and a girl on Nov. 7. She has a scheduled C-section for Oct. 17 in Des Moines, though she may not last until then.

Jessie was implanted with embryos that include a donor egg and the soon-to-be-father’s sperm. Her first three months of pregnancy she described as horrible with really bad morning sickness. She also got a spell of hives.

The middle of her pregnancy has been much better. As she nears the end, the discomfort is really setting in.

The couple got connected with the island couple (whose names are not to be made public as part of this process) through a service called Earthly Angels of Mississippi.

“I was looking for somebody who didn’t have any children,” Jessie said.

Throughout the pregnancy, the Quicks have grown closer to the couple they have yet to meet but who will raise the twins.

They text each other and have Skype sessions after Jessie’s doctor’s appointments.

“This couple has been trying to have kids for 20 years,” Michael said. “We’ve been blessed with the children that we have and are blessed to give that feeling to another couple.”

The island couple plans to stay in touch with the Quicks and provide plenty of photos of the twins as they grow up in another country.

Jessie feels it’s a little weird that she is this far along in her pregnancy and hasn’t gone shopping for baby items. She’s not sure how she will react the day she will have to give up the babies, but feels she is ready.

“I think it’s going to be mentally weird,” she said.

She expects an emotional time after she gives birth and the gift of twins to the other couple.

“I’m sure everybody will be bawling,” Quick said.

Jessie can’t pinpoint one specific reason why she decided to be a surrogate mother. All the costs associated with the birth will be covered by the new parents. Jessie and Michael both look forward to seeing the new parents enjoy their two children.

“I think it will be very rewarding even with all the struggles,” Jessie said. “I feel like it’s a calling.”