When Tracy Caliendo became pregnant after several failed IVF cycles and a miscarriage, she picked up the phone and called a surrogacy agency.
“I was like, ‘Let’s do this,’” Caliendo told TODAY Parents. “They were really confused when I said I was pregnant."
The 43-year-old from Manhattan explained her reasoning for wanting to pursue a surrogacy pregnancy while she herself was pregnant. Something didn’t feel quite right and she was worried about losing another pregnancy.
“I was desperate to have a baby and would do anything to make sure it happened,” Caliendo said.
Oh, it happened all right.
Caliendo and her husband, Pete Pasetsky, 42, welcomed a daughter named Harlow in August 2017. Their surrogate gave birth to twin girls Piper and Presley four months later.
Then, 13 weeks after the twins were born via surrogate, Caliendo noticed she was developing a stomach pouch. “I am thin, so it was pretty noticeable,” she told TODAY Parents. “I thought something was wrong with me and made a doctor’s appointment.”
"I remember crying because I thought I couldn’t have more children and then I get four babies."
It turned out Caliendo, who struggled for years to conceive, was three months pregnant — again. “It was the freakiest thing,” she said. “I couldn’t believe it.”
During an ultrasound, Caliendo learned she had placenta accreta, a pregnancy complication associated with preterm labor. Dylan arrived early at 29 weeks. (A full-term pregnancy is 40 weeks.) Though Dylan has some developmental delays, Caliendo raves, “He’s doing great.”
The proud mom regularly celebrates Dylan’s achievements on Instagram and shares adorable photos of her family which includes her “amazing” 12-year-old son, Hunter, from a previous marriage. “Higher powers made him perfect because they knew I was going to have four littles,” Caliendo said.
Though life with four babies is challenging, Caliendo does have help, and says she loves every minute. She leaps out of bed every morning excited to change diapers.
“I just feel so lucky to have these kids,” she gushed to TODAY Parents. “When you struggle with fertility issues it changes your perspective. I remember crying because I thought I couldn’t have more children and then I get four babies. I am beyond blessed.”