New Delhi: They cannot speak or hear and yet, their desire for a child made a couple fly all the way from Australia - to be rewarded with, not one, but two baby girls through surrogacy in India.
It took them a nine-month wait and then a 13-hour flight to see their dream come alive. For Ronald Gregory, 51, and Vicky Nadya, 41, a hearing- and speech-impaired couple from Queensland, the dream of having a baby seemed far when doctors told them surrogacy was the only way to have a child.
"It seemed distant to us," Vicky told a news agency by writing on a piece of paper, the way she has been communicating with people here.
Vicky said the eight years of wait for a child was a phase of disappointment for them, but nothing matters now.
"A week ago, we saw and felt the two tiny babies for the first time in our arms. I am very happy. When we got to know that we have had twins, we were surprised and glad. They are beautiful," wrote an excited and contented Vicky.
"In the past five years, we made several attempts to conceive through an IVF treatment," she said.
IVF (in vitro fertilisation) is a process in which egg cells from a woman are fertilised with sperms outside her body and later injected into the ovaries. However, in Vicky`s case, none of the attempts was successful due to her age and weak eggs.
Her doctors in Australia advised her to opt for surrogacy. Since surrogacy is not legal there, she could either go to the US or India for it. Finally, the couple chose India.
"Some couples from Australia have already come to us for surrogacy. Ronald and Vicky were confident that it was possible here," said Shivani Sachdev Gour, a doctor at ISIS Hospital in the Indian capital.
ISIS hopsital conducts IVF as well as surrogacy programmes under the parent organisation Surrogacy Centre India (SCI).
According to Gour, so far about 250 babies have been born under SCI Healthcare`s Surrogacy Programme and handed over to their families.
For this case, the doctor chose the Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) with surrogacy, a technique where a sperm cell is injected directly into the ovum.
About nine months ago, Ronald and Vicky visited India to donate the sperm and begin the process. The surrogate mother of their children is from Delhi.
The babies were born under Gour`s supervision.
Even with their physical impairment, the couple says they did not face any problem in India.
"India is a good place. People here are nice, friendly and easy to talk to. When we don`t understand what they want to say, they write it down on paper for us," explained Ronald.
The husband and wife are very excited to become `dad and mum` in the first attempt at ISIS. They have even sought names for them and decided upon, Isabella and Tamara.
"The babies are healthy, though three weeks premature. They are under supervision. The couple can take them to Australia after three weeks once all the formalities are undertaken," said Gour.