Knightdale mom, Rachelle Chapman, who was paralyzed when playfully pushed into a pool at her bachelorette party in 2010, is now searching for another surrogate to help grow her family from three to four. @ABC11_WTVD #ABC11 pic.twitter.com/MMPq1eLbc4— Andrea Blanford (@AndreaABC11) August 28, 2019
Rachelle Chapman and her husband Chris used a surrogate to have their first daughter, Kaylee who's now four years old.
"I know she wants a sibling so bad and it's something she talks about all the time," Chapman said. "So it got us thinking about having another child."
The couple has three more frozen embryos, all of them happen to be girls.
"Perfect because Kaylee wants a little sister more than anything in the world," Chapman wrote in a post to the Knightdale Community Facebook page as well as her own earlier this month where she announced they're searching for a surrogate.
"I have to have a surrogate because I'm on a lot of medication," Chapman told ABC11. "It's not because I'm in a wheelchair or the paralysis, a lot of people are pregnant in my situation."
The first time around, Chapman said it all came together much faster than she and Chris thought possible.
She posted to Facebook about their hopes for finding a surrogate and an old acquaintance from their time as undergraduates at East Carolina University responded.
"She saw my blog and said, 'I would love to do it for you, I remember you and Chris and I'll totally do it,'" Chapman said.
This month, since posting her desires of finding the next surrogate to help grow their family, Chapman said she's received about a dozen messages from people in her community interested in learning more about that process.
"Young moms reach out, people who have an established family who are done with their own kids who are ready maybe to help someone," she said.
Chapman, who is quadriplegic and uses a wheelchair, said she and her husband remember well the uncertainties that came with the birth of their first child, but she's learned to adapt with the help of her "tribe."
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Her mother lives with the family in their Knightdale home and helps out with Kaylee in areas where Rachelle is limited.
"It's gonna be different having two kids of course -- hopefully having two kids -- but I know because of my experience adapting that as a family, we're going to adapt," she said.
According to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services statistics, out of 100 couples in the United States, about 12 to 13 of them have trouble becoming pregnant.
For families considering surrogacy, UNC Fertility staff recommend taking two steps before visiting a clinic: first, seek a lawyer to help sort through the legalities of surrogacy; second, seek counseling to ensure you and your partner are prepared for the journey ahead.