Camille Hammond’s triplets are teenagers now - a fact that she doesn’t take for granted after years of infertility issues. After undergoing five years of IVF treatments to no avail, she turned to her last hope: her mother, Tinina Cade, then 55 years old. In 2004, doctors cleared her to be implanted with three embryos made from Camille’s eggs and her husband Jason’s sperm. All three were successful. “She’s my hero,” Camille, 44, says.
Being 55 years old and pregnant with triplets was hard on Tinina, now 69 and living in Richmond, Va. At one point, she was so large, she had to use a wheelchair to get around and couldn’t walk up stairs. It helped in those moments to remember her purpose. She says, “You need to be real clear about what you’re doing and why — especially because physically, it’s one of the most demanding things [you’ll] ever have to do.”
The triplets, now 14, have always known the special role their grandma played in their lives. In fact, when the kids were in pre-kindergarten, they once asked another kid, “Didn’t your grandma carry you?”
“It was such a normal part of their story, they just assumed everyone’s like this,” says Hammond, who now runs a nonprofit to support other families struggling with fertility issues, based in Baltimore, Md., and named after her mother.
Tinina says she feels the same way about daughter’s triplets as she does her other grandchildren — there was no confusion over her role once she delivered them. To her, the responsibility was to her daughter, not her grandkids.
“What would you do for someone you love? You’d do anything. That’s part of being a loving parent,” Cade says.
Based on The Mirror