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A Sister's Gift: Aggie Student Births Sister's Baby


From the time she was a little girl, Katie Andrews of Bryan dreamed of being a mother. But when she was just 15, she found out that she would never carry a child. Katie was born without a uterus.

"I knew that I could have a biological child. I just couldn't carry it," Katie said.

When she and Jarod married in 2007, they knew they would have to use a surrogate to have a child, but they never imagined who would offer to carry the baby Katie could not.

"Courtney came to us and said that she would like to do this for us," Katie recalled.

Courtney Guest is Katie's little sister. Just a sophomore at Texas A&M University, Courtney told her mom, Susan Guest, that she wanted to help her older sister.

"I just patted her on the head and said, 'Darling, that's really sweet, but you can't do that,'" Susan said.

"At first, I told her no because she was 19 at the time," Katie added. "We said, 'That's so sweet -- that's such a sweet offer for you to do that for us.'"

But Courtney was determined to help her sister. She even went to the doctor on her own to be cleared for surrogacy.

"I have this young, healthy body that can carry a child. Why should I keep it to myself when I can do this great thing for her," Courtney explained.

So they began the process, which wasn't easy for either sister. For months, the women were given several shots a day to prepare for the transfer.

After doctors retrieved Katie's eggs and Jarod's sperm, the embryos were transferred into Courtney's womb. Then, the waiting began.

"Two weeks later, we found out we were expecting," a tearful Katie remembered. "We went in for our six week check up, saw the baby and heard the heartbeat. About two weeks later, we went in for another checkup and found out we lost the baby."

"Not only did we lose the baby in miscarriage, but then to have to watch your sister experience the actual miscarriage, which was a very hard thing for me," Katie said.

But the loss didn't deter Courtney from trying to give Katie and Jarod the child they longed for.

"She told my mom, 'As soon as the doctor says I can do this again, I'm doing it,'" Katie said.

A few months later they tried again, and it worked.

"I just knew this was God's answer for all of us, that he was going to allow little sister to help big sister have a child," Susan said.

"She's just been amazing. She's shared every movement, every kick, every little milestone with us," Katie said.

"It was tough being sick and getting up early for 8:00 a.m. classes, and walking across campus gets a little hard when you're eight and nine months pregnant," Courtney recalled.

But the family says, Courtney never complained.

"She was so sick the first trimester and you never once heard her complain. She just went to school and worked. She was such a little trooper throughout the whole thing," Katie bragged.

Courtney has a boyfriend of six years, and said he stood by her through the pregnancy.

"He was very supportive and very protective and always watched out for me and made sure I was OK. He was great through the whole process," Courtney said.

"This is probably -- or definitely -- the most selfless thing someone could do for somebody else," Jarod Andrews said. "She sacrificed her life for over two years. How many 19 year olds are willing to do that?"

When asked if she was ever worried about becoming too attached to Jace, Courtney replied, "I never thought of him as my child. I always knew from the beginning that this is my nephew and it's Katie and Jarod's child. I think it has a lot to do with God protecting me and not allowing me to get the maternal connection with Jace."

On April 29, Jace Calvin made his long-awaited arrival, a healthy six pound baby.

"When it was finally over, it was like a huge weight had been lifted," Jarod admitted. "To finally see him here and to know that he's ours and that Courtney was OK."

Susan Guest recalled, "It was just amazing to see her hold that baby in her arms and to be a mother because she has wanted to be a mom as long as I can remember, since she was little bitty, and the dream came true."

Dr. Justin Gayle, Director of Women's Services at The College Station Medical Center, said it was a very special delivery.

"When we delivered that little baby boy, you would have thought you were at a football game," Dr. Gayle said. "It was amazing. They cheered and clapped and started crying. For us to be able to share that with everyone in the family, it was special. There have not been many that I've experienced that have been that emotional."

Now doting parents, Katie and Jarod are just amazed at the huge gift Courtney has given them.

"I just think she's a Godsend, the answer to lots and lots of prayers," Jarod said.

"She gave us this angel, and we can never fully repay her for this gift that she gave us," Katie added.

Courtney, 21, will graduate from Texas A&M this August. She hopes to go to nursing school, and after that, she said she will help Katie and Jarrod try to give Jace a sibling.


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