Australian Women’s Weekly NZ

Not without MY BABY

Sophie Parkinson was only 16 when she started making plans to have a baby, because that was the year she was told that she couldn’t. As a teenager the pull of motherhood felt distant but still strong enough that she knew it was something she’d one day want. She was devastated when her doctor told her it was impossible for her to get pregnant, but consoled herself with the knowledge she could still have a family – it would just take planning and money. Adoption is difficult in France, where she was born, so she settled on surrogacy and turned the savings she had put aside for a motorbike into the beginnings of a baby fund.

“It was no buying a house, no buying a fancy car, because I wanted to have a baby,” Sophie, now 30, tells The Weekly. “It was hard to deal with at first, but I wanted kids – I was sure of that.”

In 2012, Sophie was offered an internship in Brisbane as part of her Master’s degree, and came to Australia, where she fell in love with a young Aussie, Julian Parkinson. They made a home together in the riverside suburb of Bulimba and began to think about parenthood. Every year about 300 Australian couples travel overseas to have a baby through surrogacy, and in July last year, Sophie and Julian joined that cohort, travelling to Ukraine to begin the taxing process of egg harvesting and embryo creation.

Even though she had known she would

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