There is so much beauty in parenthood, and what’s even more beautiful, in my eyes, is the determination and hard work that many parents put in to making their dreams of being a family a reality. Now, one creative entrepreneur from New Bern, North Carolina is celebrating the children who are born through in-vitro fertilization with a collection of adorable onesies.
The designs highlight the extra-special love that went in to bringing these babies into the world. Complete with cute sayings like “I survived the ice age” and “The little embryo that could,” these baby onesies mark the joy of overcoming the difficult journey of infertility.
The onesies come courtesy of Emma Wehrman, 30, a homeschooling stay-at-home mom of four and owner of Sew Cute By Emma, an online Etsy store specializing in personalized items.
Wehrman shared her onesies in a post on Facebook, explaining that she created them for her friend, Kimberly Langston, 33, and husband, Ernie, 42, as a special surprise. Langston is 12 weeks pregnant with the couple’s “beautiful miracle.”
Langston has been through a long and heartbreaking journey to parenthood, including the devastating loss of her twin sons, Ean and Evan, conceived through IVF, at 24 weeks due to premature labor, two failed transfers, and uterine surgery.
While Wehrman originally designed the onesies as a tribute to all that her friend has gone through, she also notes that they honor the ability and technology for people who struggle with infertility to have biological children.
“I think the road they’ve been on makes them that much more thankful for this blessing,” Wehrman said. “I know this baby is already so loved and cherished.”
For families like Langston’s, the cost for becoming a family is high, both literally and figuratively. Not only did Langston lose two sons and almost her own life through a placental abruption, but the couple has spent about $90,000 through four rounds of IVF.
“2,542 days of prayers, 462 shots, 2 losses of children, 5 losses of embryos, 1 vasectomy reversal, 4 female corrective surgeries, 4 IVFs and 1 miracle baby on the way,” Langston says of her experience trying to have a baby.
Langston also told Babble that she was so excited to receive the onesies and plans to have the baby, whom she has dubbed “baby E” in memory of his or her brothers, photographed in them.
Due in August, Langston said she hopes that people will understand what some parents go through in trying to have a family — and how much love goes into the babies they work so hard to have.
“We meet our ’embabies’ (what IVF patients refer to their babies as) through a telescope before they are put into our uterus and we always pray to see them at birth,” she explains. “We fall in love with the tiny embryos that hatch in the dish thanks to science. IVF babies are truly miracles … and we go through tons of procedures, shots, heartbreak, and sometimes surgeries to conceive these tiny miracles.”
After hearing the news that there is actually a bill out of Tennessee aiming to label any child conceived and born through artificial insemination as “illegitimate,” seeing these onesies — and realizing that they represent the support behind families created through love and science — is especially heartwarming.
The bill, HB 1406, was filed by Republican Tennessee State Representative Terri Lynn Weaver last Friday, and would apparently make any child born through artificial insemination illegitimate, even if the parents were married and even if the husband gave consent.
Currently, there is a statute in Tennessee that states children born through AI to a married couple with the husband’s consent are legitimate, so the new bill hopes to repeal that statute.
I mean, what. the. heck. In the words of my husband reading over my shoulder right now, who has time to worry about that?!
Well Weaver, for one, and Senator Joey Hensley, also a Republican, for another, who has proposed the same bill in the Senate.
I can’t imagine that a bill like this would ever pass, and also, I’m a little confused on what it would accomplish to define children as “illegitimate.”
Is there a legal definition or ramification for being illegitimate, or is it just a hope to throwback to the era of stigma and shame surrounding “illegitimate” births and pearl-clutching? Is illegitimacy something you have to declare on your license? Your resume? On that sticker you awkwardly place on your chest when you go to networking events? “Hi, my name is Bob and I’m illegitimate.”
I don’t know, and I honestly don’t care to find out.
Instead, I’ll just be hoping that every baby who is born into a family — through IVF, surrogate birth, C-section birth, adoption, or gliding out on stardust, as I imagine Beyoncé’s twins will enter the world — does so with the same knowledge and belief that they are loved. That’s honestly all that matters.
Also, if they can wear a cute onesie celebrating how awesome they are, that won’t hurt, either. Because science is pretty darn cool, especially if it makes babies.