My Babies are There so I Need to Be There
Frank Mergler and Susanne Mergler-Deuschel were at work in their hometown of Kassel, Germany when they got the news. Their twins were being born half way across the world, and 6 weeks earlier than expected.
Frank and Susanne were using a surrogate who had moved to Wichita, Kansas during the pregnancy, and the twins were now being delivered at Wesley Children’s Hospital.
“We were really excited. We planned to be here 2 weeks later to be ahead of the birth, but then her water broke and we had to head to Wichita not having finalized all the planning,” Susanne said. “Literally the next day we jumped on a plane. We were so excited to get here, we could not wait.”
However due to heavy rains, Frank and Susanne were stuck in Chicago while their children were still over 700 miles away.
“It was bad, just simply bad, because the bonding is so important. It’s the first moments or maybe hours you want to spend with your children and you feel like they are on their own in the hospital and you are so far away,” Susanne remembers.
“We felt like nobody is taking care of them, which is not true,” Frank said. “The hospital and the nurses are there and the surrogate is there. So we knew they wouldn’t be totally on their own, but I think every parent feels that my babies are there so I need to be there.”
“This has been an endeavor for 13 years and working with the surrogate for 4 years,” Susanne said. “So you can imagine you wait for 13 years, for 4 years, for 9 months, and it feels like you can’t wait one more minute.”
By the time Frank and Susanne arrived in Wichita, Lukas Martin Georg Mergler and Lilli Maria Klara Mergler were already 2 days old.
“We walked in and had not seen our babies. They are the most beautiful babies in the world and we were just thrilled,” Susanne remembers.
However in the rush, Frank and Susanne had no place to stay in Wichita.
“We had the flight, we had the rental car and that was it,” Susanne said. “We really didn’t think about anything more than that. We wanted to see the surrogate and we wanted to see our babies.”
That was when Frank and Susanne learned about Ronald McDonald House Charities and the services they provide.
“We had such a warm welcome. It’s so cozy. We can grab a cup of coffee and head to the hospital. Then come back late and their was something to eat,” Susanne said.
“That was a total benefit to us. We could spend the whole time in the hospital and didn’t have to think about anything. We could go back in the evening, sleep and eat something. It was perfect,” Frank said.
“No distractions about everyday life. Just focusing on what is most important,” Susanne said. “We are so grateful.”
Frank and Susanne stayed with Ronald McDonald House Charities Wichita for one month, and home to Germany as a family on May 29th.