It’s hard to believe that it was only 6 years ago that fitness trainer Shaun T created the Insanity work out
So many people now use this innovative fitness regime to get into amazing shape that it is now one of the world’s favourite ways to work out. While Shaun T had all of the career success that anyone could wish for, he and his husband and business partner Scott Blokker struggled to start their family.
It wasn’t an easy journey
“We went through all the things that couples struggling with fertility go through . . . tests, doubt, grief, not knowing, waiting.”
Their journey to parenthood saw them enduring 12 attempts, 6 different egg donors, 5 different surrogates, 2 doctors, one miscarriage and thousands of dollars to finally welcome their twin sons to this world. Little Silas Rhys and Sander Vaughn share the same egg donor, while Sander is from Shaun’s sperm and Silas is from Scott’s sperm.
The little baby boys were delivered just 2 minutes apart
Shaun is ever the proud papa, exclaiming that the interviewer can, “ask all the questions you want! It blows my mind how much I’ve learned.”
Their sweet little boys turned one in November, coming such a long way since their birth at 32 weeks and their first 3 weeks of life spent in the NICU.
“On their last night there, we had no monitors, no nurses, just us. I remember thinking, ‘This will be a piece of cake.’ I was so wrong. They cried non stop!”
The couple experienced many of the normal ups and downs – mainly downs – during the first 4 months of their twins’ lives
“It was terrible,” says Shaun, able now to laugh at the dark times in the past. “We got into more fights than we’d ever had in our entire relationship. I even questioned whether we’d ruined our marriage by having kids, but it wasn’t the kids. It was the not sleeping!”
Having 2 preemies in their home meant that both Shaun and Scott were feeding their babies around the clock. Scott can look back on it now with a smile. “No more than two hours of sleep at a time for weeks in a row is killer.” He shares that baby Sander wouldn’t eat, or would spit up when he did. “We felt bad, but at 3 a.m. it was, ‘Okay, who wants Sander?’”
Now that the babies have outgrown their sleepless nights, Shaun and Scott have their roles down pat.
Scott manages the family’s schedule, while impish Shaun is all about the entertainment. “I do all the planning—babysitters, shopping, doctors—and Shaun brings the fun.”
The pair each took a month of paternity leave, and were able to hire employees to help out with their Insanity business
Scott’s parents live next door, so they were a massive help.
They now have a set routine that helps them keep their babies happy and their partnership strong. “We high-five all the time. It reinforces we’re a team as parents. I’ve received two great pieces of advice. Scott’s dad told me, ‘You’re not coming into the babies’ world. They’re coming into yours,’ and that made me eager to show them the life we live. The second was from my grandfather, who was married to my grandmother for 56 years.
He said, ‘Never go to bed angry,’ and we don’t. The connectedness you feel at the end of the day is the driving force for how you wake up the next day, so every night we fall asleep holding hands.”
We couldn’t be happier for Scott and Shaun, and wish them all the happiness in the world. Their story lends hope to all parents who are struggling to conceive with IVF, and gives hope to all of us. What do you think of their story?