The difference a month makes…

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It still feels surreal that I’m writing this from a completely viewpoint, a different perception, as I talk about My Surrogacy Journey®.

Our first webinar

‘We did it!’ Wes said, following the mouse cursor arrow clicking ‘End Call’ on our first webinar. We had tears in our eyes as we revealed ‘What is My Surrogacy Journey’ to an eager crowd. That night meant everything to us. We’ve slogged our hearts out for that moment, we had to deliver. We had almost 100 inquisitive intended parents, egg donors and surrogates, and possibly the odd curious/supportive individual that also work within a similar field. But that’s OK – we’re here for the greater good – this is not about competing. It’s about ‘usualising’ the topic of Surrogacy and all pulling together to support as many people as possible. We’re different – and that’s a good thing. See, that’s the strange bit. This is unlike any other business we’ve owned or worked at – which is odd for me as I’m from a super competitive Business Development and Marketing background, and Wes’ background in catering and events is equally as responsible. This is different though. This does not feel like work. Something I’ve noticed is that competition doesn’t exist is the normal way, we’re new one on the block, so I’m sure we have lots to learn – that’s fine – however we’re confident that what we’ve created is something other organisations will be closely observing. We’re breaking the mold and we’re being bold about it too.

The first concept of our logo in 2019

We literally haven’t stopped since March 2020 when we went into Lockdown 1. Something just told us to get on with our plans and turn those flip chart scraps of paper into a reality. So we did. The plans to launch our own not for profit surrogacy organisation began 20 months prior, and it was Wes’ brainchild originally – and something I fought against for months. I was so loyal to TwoDadsUK I couldn’t see how it could work. I just couldn’t see his vision and I thought we couldn’t pull it off. Our home office was peppered with huge sheets of paper stuck the walls, reminding us of our focus – of our main objective. I began working with a life coach from Lotus Flower Consulting, to help me focus our energy and creative randomness. Wendy began to help me prioritise, to reflect and review my effectiveness – it seemed to work though. We were flying through our tasks and we were speaking to clients, old and new and the response only spurred us on more. The feedback and support was overwhelming.

We evolved the brand with the help our our fab design team at Jade Studios

So, if you’ve followed us for a while you’ll know we spend a fair chunk of our life on social media, so having a strong campaign leading into the launch was everything to us. It wasn’t about teasing the audience (because I hate those campaigns) but it was about letting you all know how serious we are about this company – and that something different was launching Without doubt, it’s our biggest and most responsible task we’ve ever attempted. We had to get it right. We’ve already supported over 300 intended fathers to parenthood but this was different – we were supporting a new group of people, people who’s journey to parenthood was beyond cruel. That’s the responsibility. Gay Men approach Surrogacy from such a happy place – it’s the beginning, it’s the first and last last step to build the family society told us we couldn’t have. Where as for heterosexual IP’s it’s different, arriving a Surrogacy is painful, years of hurt, pain, loss and frustration bring them to surrogacy – so we had to get this right.

It’s all about our members

Developing individual membership pathways was always the intention. As two men we have to fit into a heteronormative world daily – so creating bespoke, and respectful membership and benefits was the beginning of individualising our members care. Francesca our co-founder is one of the UK’s leading Fertility Nurses, so understands all too well the importance of individualised care. After-all – your fertility journey is personal and individual to you, and so should this journey too.

We speak to around 10 Intended Parents a week. It’s often heartbreaking talking to people who are sometimes broken and you have what they want; sometimes life just isn’t fair. So anything we can do to try and help those people, to give them hope – is absolutely our responsibility to do so.

Wes Johnson-Ellis

The future is now…

So fast forward to now, a month since we launched and we’re now a team of thirteen. A team so tightly committed to changing the landscape of surrogacy support, and supporting a community of people with hope. We have our first cohort of Members too, now live – all on their own journey. Our Partners enable us to deliver some of our innovative and carefully and sensitively crafted services. We’re delighted to extend our passion and vision to these incredible organisations. So whether you’re a surrogate, an intended parent, known egg donor, Partner or directory members – this is the beginning. And we couldn’t be prouder that you chose us. Thank you.

There’s lots more to come though – Wes and I struggle to sit still. Our events are ramping up and the topics continue to address some of the burning issues within Surrogacy. Our Advisory Board is growing and has some of the leading experts in their fields supporting our members, making this a global board admired by many. We quite often have to pinch ourselves when we see the direction My Surrogacy Journey is heading. My Surrogacy Journey – The Podcast launches in April presenting by myself and Wes, Francesca Steyn and Anna Buxton. We wanted to combine our passion for the topic of surrogacy – but ensure we appeal to everyone.

So thank you, thank you for every ‘like’ ‘share’ and ‘follow’. We’re buiding something truly wonderful – and it’s all thanks to you.

Stay tuned. x

Hi everyone, So I’m Mike, guess I’m the crazy one who had the idea to sell our souls to Social Media and open up our world for everyone to comment on and observe our lives. I spend most nights (when not with Talulah and Duke obviously) with my phone glued to my hand, posting, sharing, liking and filming - all in readiness for Facebook, Insta and now YouTube. It’s getting to be a full time job, which is tricky - as I have one of those! For the last 18 years I have worked within Medical Recruitment and have worked in a variety of high pressured Operational and Business Development roles in London and the Midlands. More recently I am working for myself as it gives me greater flexibility with our new family via my Consultancy firm MJE Consultancy Ltd, where I attract and recruit Fertility Nurses, Embryologists and IVF Consultants and other specialist Doctors, as the Fertility Industry is my passion. I’m obviously one half of TwoDads.U.K and very proud of that fact too, and without doubt being a father is and has been the best job I’ve ever had. Nothing prepares you for the impact these little humans have on us, I know if you’re anything like me, the joy of being a parent just keeps on giving (whilst equally testing me too!). Don’t get me wrong, there’s days where I want to sit on the garage floor and drown myself in Gin but on the whole, life is better than it ever has been...

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