March 20th, 2017: Our Last Letter in Texas

Dear Russell Family,

It’s been almost two years since you read our letter “to a surrogate.” When you read that letter you glimpsed into our lives and saw who we were. You made a judgement call to agree and work with us to help Brian and I build our family. And as we write this final letter for this chapter, it will not be addressed to our kids, but the amazing family that helped us bring them here.

In our nearly two yIMG_5555ears before our kids arrived we Skyped, we texted, we cried, we laughed, we even took vacation together to explore New York and Pennsylvania. We did a lot. We bonded. Then on July 21st, 2016 we transferred our beautiful embryos and they started to grow.

In the next months, Ashly, you grew what would become our greatest blessings. On February 17th, 2017 you gave birth to Alexander Isiah and Phoebe Lily: two strong superhero fighters. They are simply beautiful. Perfect, even. And while they fought to grow in the NICU you witnessed just how strong Brian and I are. Just how committed we are not only to one another but to Xander and Phoebe. And in the month they stayed in the NICU something even more magical happened: we officially blended as one family.

Brian and I are beyond thankful for the month we had with you and your family. We’re beyond thankful that your family helped to keep us together as much as our friends and family back home. We’re beyond thankful you let us live with you, share in your home and family life. And when we said “see you later” this morning little did we know just how tough and bittersweet it would be.

And as we embark on our journey home with our children to reunite with our families up north all we can say is thank you, and we love you.

Ashly: you once called our children superheroes. You even gifted them onesies to remindIMG_5563 them of their power. But girl it’s you that is the superhero. Your power is helping to grow families. And we’re forever connected.

Until later this year when we see you face to face again we’ll continue to Skype and text. You’ll get pictures and everything and we can’t wait for the journey that lay ahead!

All our love,

Big Poppa, Abba, Xander and Phoebe

PS Brian didn’t get to say goodbye to Millie the pup. Please give her a kiss from him.

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