Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Goodbye, Hello!

May 28, 2012

Where has the time gone? Baby “C” is now a year and a half old and a darling little girl. I have missed blogging so much but have nothing new to write about in regards to surrogacy.

My life has been busy taking care of my two children, now six and almost four years old and enjoying all that life in Santa Barbara has to offer. Since I’ve been missing blogging so much and wanted a creative outlet using my passion for cooking, photography and adventures with my kiddos, I’ve started a new blog, www.happysbmom.com. Please come visit!

 

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Wow, Time Flies!

October 4, 2011

Children are an excellent gauge for measuring time. We breakdown the years by seasons, the months by holidays and birthdays, the weeks by what’s going on at school and in our lives, and the days by breakfast, lunch and dinner and everything in between. Lately, I’ve lost track of it all.

Has it really been almost a year since our journey ended so beautifully? It was a happy ending but a happier beginning; as we have made such dear friends in the process and my family feels more complete having them in our lives.

We are rapidly approaching baby “C’s” first birthday (11-27) and I couldn’t be happier about the experience we’ve had. Their entire family has grown to be such a wonderful part of our lives.

The strangest part about having been a surrogate is knowing that I’ve gone through IVF. Carrying another baby and giving birth for the third time have faded into my distant memory, while seeing her happy and thriving with her family makes me feel like I’ve been able to give what I wanted and will always be thankful I did!

I feel like what I did for them pales in comparison to the friendship and acceptance their family has given to mine. I know I gave them a wonderful gift but hope they realize what a gift they have been!

Pop! Goes the Belly

November 10, 2010

We are 35 weeks, 4 days and my belly is measuring 37.5 weeks. Mom and dad of this little girl were at our check up today and we got another quick peek at her via ultrasound. I can’t imagine what this experience is like for them, but from my view, I couldn’t ask for a better surrogacy experience. They are so involved yet not imposing in any way. I’ve read of intended parents cleaning out and restocking the surrogate’s pantry and fridge or throwing away Teflon pans. They have trusted me to carry their baby and I’m honored to do so and enjoy the time spent with them.

I am not yet unbearably uncomfortable; just getting up from lying down or sitting on the floor (it happens a lot when you have a two year old) are challenging. I don’t want to talk about my weight, but will, since it will be fun to see how quickly it goes back down. I’ve gained the 35 pounds I typically gain during pregnancy and don’t want to gain much more! I feel like I’m eating regular portion sizes (not for two), I eat healthy (other than the occasional treat) and am always on the go with my little ones. At least we know the baby is nice and healthy and her share of the weight will be gone at delivery. She’s estimated to weigh around six and a half pounds now and growing right on track. The Braxton Hicks contractions are picking up and I can no longer comfortably cross my legs when sitting down. Tomorrow, the 30 days till our due date countdown begins! I’m not ready yet, but will be soon.

34 Weeks

 

Weeks, Months, and Trimesters

September 19, 2010

Pregnancy is broken down into weeks, months, and trimesters and it can all get so confusing. 40 weeks seems pretty simple to grasp, but then you have to factor in the two weeks from ovulation to fertilization and that’s where it starts to become unclear to some. On the day of conception you are already two weeks into your pregnancy. Sources differ as far as which weeks mark the beginning and end of the trimesters and can be measured by development, gestation or conception. If you’re talking about how many months along, its the month you are in rather than how many you’ve completed. So, with that said we’re currently 28 weeks, 7 months or in the third trimester. If she decides to arrive around 40 weeks, we only have 12 weeks to go!

I was four days late with my daughter (first born) and was induced at 38 weeks with my son due to several factors. I’ll share these stories soon. I am all for natural, unmedicated births but know that in the end there are many circumstances that need medical intervention. What’s most important is to listen to your body and allow room for change in whatever birth “plan” you intend.

I passed the glucose tolerance test and happy to have that out of the way. Paperwork has been filed regarding the birth certificate and the parents to be will be listed as the birth mother and father, as I am only the gestational carrier. We now have check ups every two weeks, December will be here before we know it!

Our Little Potted Garden

May 9, 2010

Mind over Matter

March 29, 2010

Mind over matter is not relevant when it comes to in vitro fertilization. After our last embryo transfer, I felt so sure that I was pregnant. Knowing a fertilized embryo had been placed in my well prepared uterus, and then injecting progesterone and estrogen to create a pregnancy like state to encourage its growth played a huge role in me thinking I was pregnant. Sadly, I wasn’t. This time around, I’m just thinking positive. I’m trying not to analyze every cramp and craving, knowing I can’t force anything. What’s meant to be will be and I really hope that this time, it works. Let there be a little embryo growing in there so mom and dad to be can be blessed with a little baby this year.

All is Well

March 26, 2010

Mom to be and I arrived at the clinic a few minutes before our 10:45 appointment time for the 11:30 embryo transfer. They want you to have a comfortably full bladder, which makes the uterus easier to view. I finished my huge bottle of water only to find out they were behind schedule so I had to start over again, rather than be stuck with an extremely full and uncomfortable bladder. I was nice and hydrated when our time came. We went back to the procedure room, the same one as before and went over post transfer instructions with the nurse. I took my valium, then undressed from the waist down, put on the gown and booties and got comfortable. The valium kicked in immediately and I was very relaxed. Our doctor came in with a picture of the beautiful five day embryo they had thawed and got everything ready to go. The nurse did an abdominal ultrasound and we were able to see my uterus as the doctor guided in the catheter. He called through the window for one embryo using the mom’s name and minutes later it was complete. A tiny little embryo was placed in my uterus where we hope it implants and grows. The nurse and doctor pulled me further back onto the bed so I was laying flat and I rested there for about twenty minutes. I actually fell asleep and had vivid dreams which I no longer remember.

I got up, got dressed then was wheeled to the restroom, then the car. We picked up lunch for the road then headed back home. The valium made me so relaxed, I managed to nap on and off throughout the afternoon. Two more days of being a “couch potato” then I can resume daily activities but need to avoid strenuous activities and heavy lifting until after the pregnancy test which is scheduled for April 5th. This waiting time is called the two week wait and those who have been through IVF know how hard it is! There is so much anticipation and wonder. I’m going to do my best to only think positive thoughts and keep my mind as distracted as possible.

On the Road Again

February 22, 2010

I took another trip down to the fertility clinic today, with many more to come in the near future. My uterine lining was on the thick side (17) but the nurse said if my estrogen was low enough (between 80 and 100), we could move forward. The call this afternoon said they want me to take birth control pills for another week to lower my estrogen and thin out my lining. When I asked, she said my estrogen level came back at 80. I guess that number didn’t mean much after all. So another week of hormones then I head back down next Monday for another check up. Hopefully as I loose that thick lining, I’ll loose a few pounds with it! Our tentative date of Transfer is March 25th. I guess my body wants to wait until it is officially spring grow that little seed.

Drug Delivery

December 23, 2009

I got my drugs today along with the most delicious homemade veggie tamales. I made the mistake of giving my little boy a bite…he LOVED them! They were so good I didn’t want to share but did because that’s what good moms do. The intended parents are such thoughtful, caring and generous people. I am so happy to be doing this for them! A box labeled PERSONAL & CONFIDENTIAL was filled with lots and lots of needles, lupron, progesterone and a few other prescriptions I don’t have instructions on yet. I’ve been on the pill for a few weeks now and I’ve finally mellowed out a bit or perhaps I’m just getting used to my moods. I’m interested to see how the lupron will affect me. I start injections in four days!

I have almost wrapped up all of my Christmas shopping, getting it done stealthily with a 17 month old and a four year old has been an accomplishment in itself. Today we came home to a big box from FED EX at the door with pictures of their “Santa” present all over it. They did warn me during the online check out that the play kitchen ships directly from the manufacturer and the box may reveal its contents. Yes, it had pictures plastered on three sides! Thankfully, I was the first one to see it so I managed to cover it up and shove it into the house before they could see what it was. Phew! I can’t wait to see their excitement on Christmas morning. They have been very good this year. I’ve been talking to my four year old about the baby and she is completely accepting of it and understands that it is someone else’s baby, I’m just going to let it grow in my belly and then it will go to them when its born. She still remembers her brother’s birth and is hoping she gets a new toy when this baby comes too.

I’m projecting my thoughts into the future a lot these days. With 52 weeks in a year, and pregnancy lasting 40, I tend to think about the seasons and holidays in pregnancy terms (as in how far along and BIG I’ll be). If all goes well, by this time next year I’ll be a few months post pregnancy and a new little baby will be enjoying his or her first Christmas with their amazing, loving family.

gestational surrogate fertility drugs

Happy Holidays!!

It’s really happening!

December 17, 2009

A little over three months ago a friend asked if I’d be interested in being a gestational surrogate. My initial feeling was an absolute yes, but I knew this was a huge commitment with all sorts of possible challenges and something I really needed to fully process. After giving it much thought, weighing out the positives and possible negatives, it seemed like such a wonderful thing to do. We met to casually discuss our views on the situation and both felt it was a natural fit. I had a phone consultation with the surrogacy coordinator at the fertility clinic and was given my first task to get the ball rolling. They couldn’t begin the medical side of the process until three months after breastfeeding has stopped. My son was 14 months old and I was ready for my nursing days to be over. Since then, I have undergone a psychological evaluation, dealt with life insurance, health insurance, the contract, attorneys, had two ultrasounds, a pap smear, and given 10 vials of blood for screening. The three months flew by and here we are, with a schedule! I started birth control pills on December 4th and will begin Lupron injections on the 27th, which is a synthetic version of the naturally occurring gonadotropin releasing hormone and suppresses shedding of the lining of the uterus during menstruation. I will continue taking the pill until December 2nd. If all goes well, I’ll start my period a few days later. The mom to be will go in for egg retrieval on the 21st and we’ll transfer ONE embryo on the 26th!

I am truly looking forward to being pregnant again. I’ve had two easy pregnancies and quick, drug free (with the exception of pitocin to induce with the 2nd) labors. I am thrilled to be able to carry a baby for an amazing family, and give them peace of mind knowing their offspring is in a happy and healthy womb.