At 49 years old, Utah mom Chalise Smith never thought she’d be pregnant again. But upon learning that one of her daughters, Kaitlyn Munoz, had been struggling with infertility, she made the ultimate sacrifice.
Chalise volunteered to become a surrogate for Kaitlyn’s second child.
Kaitlyn, 25, had been struggling with infertility for years and went through egg retrieval and in vitro fertilization to start a family with her husband, Miguel Munoz.
In May, Kaitlyn’s dream of expanding their family finally came true when her mom gave birth to a healthy baby girl.
Chalise, a mom of eight, said the decision wasn’t made “lightheartedly.”
Chalise, a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, said she felt called to be a surrogate after witnessing Kaitlyn’s infertility journey for so long. Before telling her family, she relied on her faith and thought hard about what she wanted to do.
“It was on my mind daily. I thought about it. I prayed about it, just wondering and asking if this was a direction or path for me, and before I even told Kaitlyn and Miguel or my husband, I just kept these thoughts to myself,” Chalise told Good Morning America.
Three weeks later, she felt the urge to call Kaitlyn to let her know what she had been considering. Right then and there, she offered to be the surrogate for her embryos.
Kaitlyn was at a low point in her infertility journey when she got the call from her mom.
“I was definitely surprised,” she said. “I mean, I’m a third of eight kids. So she is Wonder Woman, and the idea that she was willing to get pregnant at 49, and she turned 50 while being pregnant — just the fact that she was willing to do that for me was amazing.”
Even though she had successfully carried her first born, Callahan, via IVF, she learned in January 2021 that she had an autoimmune disease that had damaged her kidneys, making it impossible for her to carry another pregnancy safely.
“I was devastated,” Kaitlyn said, who had grown up with seven siblings and dreamed of recreating the same experience for her son. “All I ever wanted was a big family like the one I had.”
After getting her husband and family on board with the plan, Chalise got medical clearance to carry her ninth pregnancy. Luckily, she was deemed physically healthy and had no underlying conditions, so her doctor gave her the go-signal.
“It went really well,” Chalise said of her surrogate experience. “With the IVF cycle, I had the shots for the first 10 weeks of the pregnancy. My husband became a great nurse administering those shots. We told our extended family 15 weeks after I passed some of those markers in that first trimester and from there on, it was great.”
While six months pregnant, Chalise went to Disneyland with her family to celebrate her 50th birthday.
“I just trooped across that park every day with my kids and it never became a problem, so I feel like honestly, I was really blessed,” she said.
On May 17, she gave birth to her granddaughter, Alayna Kait-Chalise, who weighed 7 pounds and 13 ounces.
Kaitlyn chose that name to honor her mom, who made the beautiful sacrifice of carrying her child for her.
So far, baby Alayna is doing great.
“She has such a calm nature and she is just the sweetest little thing,” said Kaitlyn. “She lets you know when she’s hungry but other than that, she sleeps and just chills with us throughout the day.”
And her two-year-old is already in love with his new sibling.
“If she’s in her bassinet, and I’m walking around, picking up something, he always looks at me and says, ‘Oh, where’s baby Alayna?’ So he’s very concerned for her and he just adores her and wants to hold her all the time,” she said.
For now, Kait and Miguel are focused on their two kids but remain open about the possibility of further growing their family in the future.
Congratulations to these families for their new bundle of joy! Click on the video below to learn more about this wonderful story that perfectly demonstrates a mother’s love.
***Did you enjoy our feel-good and positive story? You can help support our site by simply SUBSCRIBING and sharing our stories with your friends and family.