Fam­ily made by the love of friends

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - NEWS - JANE HANSEN

THIS Mother’s Day, not only will Hal­imah Shams cel­e­brate her two best gifts, sons Kabir and Waris, but her he­roes — the two other mums who lent her their bod­ies to bring the boys into the world.

She and hus­band San­fee Khaira had suf­fered 13 mis­car­riages in 10 years and also lost a son born too early at 24 weeks. The Neu­tral Bay cou­ple turned to paid sur­ro­gacy in In­dia but, when their em­bryos died, they aban­doned all hope.

But in 2012, friend Amanda Saxby, her­self a mother of four, of­fered to carry a child for the cou­ple. Kabir was born on Christ­mas Day 2012.

“It’s such a huge ask and you don’t want to put any­one in that po­si­tion, and it was not just her but the whole fam­ily,” Mrs Shams, 45, said.

Mrs Saxby, 48, said she would have done it again if she was younger. “I didn’t think twice about it. Yes it was hard some days when you felt like rub­bish, but I could not imag­ine go­ing through life not ex­pe­ri­enc­ing hav­ing your own child,” the mother of four from Glen­more Park said.

Com­mer­cial sur­ro­gacy is banned in Aus­tralia. Any woman who of­fers to carry an­other cou­ple’s child has to do so al­tru­is­ti­cally and pass psy­cho­log­i­cal test­ing by the IVF clinic.

When Mrs Shams’ friends met Amanda at Kabir’s baby shower, fate took an­other turn.

“I wanted my cir­cle of friends to meet Amanda at the baby show and she in­spired an­other friend of mine, Sim­ran Mehta who said: ‘ When you are ready, I’d love to help you out if you want an­other child’,” Mrs Shams said.

The lucky last em­bryo took and seven weeks ago, Waris was born.

“With­out them, I am not a mum, so the he­roes of this story are th­ese won­der­ful women,” Mrs Shams said.

San­fee Khaira and Hal­imah Shams and their chil­dren.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.