Woman uses semen from dead son to conceive a grandchild

Natalya Klimova is a successful businesswoman from St. Petersburg, Russia. She is disciplined, strong-willed, and doesn't let anything stand in her way. When her husband died, she took over his company and kept it thriving. Her friends call her the "Iron Lady."

But even the strongest people in the world have trouble dealing with some of the challenges life throws at them. How they deal with adverse situations can appear extreme or bizarre to others. Natalya's story is a good example of this...

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Natalya's biggest joy in life was her son Artem. He was a sensitive and talented young man who was loved by his friends. He studied hard to fulfill his dream of becoming a doctor. But when he was 19 years old, Artem was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma, a form of cancer that attacks the lymphatic system and is often deadly.

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For two long years, Natalya did everything she could to help Artem fight for his life. She got him the best treatments money could buy and stayed at his side every step of the way. But in the end, nothing could save him. On October 27, 2009, Artem died in his mother's arms.

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But Natalya wouldn't give up. She refused to let her child disappear from her life and in her grief, she came up with a plan that left everyone around her shaking their heads in disbelief.

Before Artem had started chemotherapy, a sample of his semen was taken and frozen. This is a standard procedure in case the chemotherapy renders the patient infertile.

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Natalya didn't just want a grandchild, she wanted one that was as similar to Artem as possible. Using anonymous egg donations, artificial insemination, and several surrogate mothers, Natalya attempted to have the grandchild she desperately wanted. It took a few tries, but finally Natalya achieved her goal: on October 27, 2010, exactly one year after Artem's death, little Egor was born.

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Natalya still wasn't completely satisfied. She didn't want to be Egor's grandmother, so she fought in court for the right to be registered as his mother in the official birth records. Little Egor bore a striking resemblance to Artem when he was a child.

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Natalya decided that if she was going to be the mother of a small child, she had to look the part, so she began getting beauty surgery to look younger. By this time the whole country had heard her story. Many people were outraged, calling her crazy and morbid. Others, however, admired her for refusing to accept such a sad fate and fulfilling her dream.

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Not long ago, Natalya opened up about her situation. On a popular talk show she announced that she was looking for a grandmother for Egor. Natalya doesn't have any living relatives and doesn't want to leave the boy with strangers when she is on business trips or in the hospital. She's looking for a friendly older woman who is willing to take on the role of Egor's grandmother and help her to raise him.

You can get an impression of Natalya from this video (in Russian), which tells her unique story...

Many people still think Natalya is crazy. She has refused to go through the "normal" grieving process and has instead chosen to create her own reality. Some see this as selfish, others consider it courageous. And maybe it's simply a bit of both. But if you haven't lived through something, how can you really judge? What do you think?

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