Sunday, April 30, 2017

3rd Trimester!

We're into the 3rd trimester and it still floors me! Seeing this picture of L with our baby growing in there is still unreal to me and so miraculous! How are we finally able to be so lucky? How is this amazing woman doing this to make our dreams come true? I am still in awe.

Everything is going well and we've been enjoying putting some of the baby's room together... still a work in progress and will hopefully post some photos next time when it's a little more ready.

It's all so exciting.

I am starting to get what is probably the normal freak outs - all the way from what are all the little things that I still need that I don't have? to how am I going to be a good parent?!?

July 12 is still the due date and we are still excited about a surprise gender in the delivery room!

Next up is planning a hospital visit.

Overall, feeling beyond blessed. 

Sunday, March 19, 2017

24 Weeks!

I still cannot believe we have a baby in the oven. It really feels miraculous!

Here's our little one at 20 weeks:

Everying has been going so well and we're on track for a July 12 due data, gender a surprise.

In fact, the only hiccup has been that with surrogacy, you have to get a pre-birth order (PBO) in at around 24 weeks, viability. A PBO is a legal document that states that we are the parents of the baby and that when that baby is born we have rights to make medical decisions. They want that in place in case of pre-term delivery.

Well, we were told last week by our lawyer that Maryland requires you to put the name of the child in this document, which was not a big deal - we've had our names chosen since we got engaged 10 years ago! They are family names and very special to us.

So I put both girl and boy name in this document but the lawyer came back and said it had to be one name which meant we had to find out the gender.

I was so upset. In fact, it surprised me how upset I got. I cried a lot when I got home Thurs night and couldn't stop crying till 11pm or so. I thought maybe I was PMS'ing which was adding to all of this.

But when I really thought about it - this was the ONE thing I've had control over, wanting to be surprised in the delivery room. I've always wanted that, long before we had fertility issues, long before I was even married or thinking of having children. 

So not only have I always wanted this but this was also the one thing I've had control over and it was about to get taken away from me.

And the past 9 years of infertility struggles was wrapped up in this whole thing. That I haven't been able to have children the way I want and one more thing was getting controlled for me.

Luckily my best friend kept pushing me that night to talk to the lawyer about coming up with a creative way around this, like maybe she could find out the gender and put a post-it note on that part of the document that we had to sign...

I wasn't hopeful but I did call the lawyer the next morning and she was more than happy to get creative with us. She hadn't realized how important this was to us and said she's never done it other than this way but sure, she could help.

She was even willing to get the legal document done for us, have it sent to her house and then bring it herself to the hospital on the day of the birth! I said I really appreciate that but that was a bit too much above and beyond. 

She then said she could send the document to me as along as I had self-restraint on not opening it AND if I remembered to bring it to the hospital at birth.

I said, first of all, I've had access to the gender this whole time in our genetic testing report and never have opened that link. And secondly, I'm very organized and have been waiting for this baby for 9 years and will have that document packed in my bag ready for that day.

So the lawyer is going to get the gender from the OB's office, leave that section blank on our documents, hand-write the name in after we've signed the documents, then send it to me in a sealed envelope.


I'm so happy and relieved that there was a way around this for us.

And we've also been having fun getting a bunch of second hand stuff from our friends and from craigslist. We have a glider, a bassinet in our house already. I'm getting the crib, stroller and car seat from a friend today. Only big thing left is the dresser. 

And my best friend is keeping a "baby registry" for us on a google sheet that lists the things we might need and who is donating it to us. 

I guess the plus side of having a baby at 42 is that all your friends are looking to get rid of their things!

I'm so excited. Come on July 12!

Monday, January 2, 2017

It's a Very Happy New Year!

We have a #baby coming in 2017!

Here's my public post from yesterday. It was scary to post this. It still feels like the other shoe will drop at any moment... and I am teary-eyed sharing this but it's out there in the world now and I still can't believe it.
Happy New Year! What are we most excited for in 2017? Through the gift of surrogacy and our friend L’s amazing heart, we are expecting a new Nats fan! We are still having a hard time finding the right way to describe what feels like a miracle to us. L is helping us to realize a dream come true, by carrying our child and increasing our family by one long-awaited member. We are so humbled and grateful, and cannot wait to meet our baby. And we're going to be surprised by the gender. ETA: July 12.
May your new year feel just as miraculous & abundant with love!


So, that's the short version. What happened in the last couple of months is this:

Mon, Oct 24 - L and I went to the transfer together and it was really the first time she and I had spend time together just the two of us. I took her to lunch and our car rides were long enough (20-30 mins each) that we had decent time to chat which was good. 

It was nice being in the transfer room with her and really knowing everything that was going on. It also felt weird to be on that side of things and just be an observer. I guess I was more than that, a supporter. 

The clinic gave us both a picture of the embryo and it was fun to see her say 'hey buddy' to it. She has a son so I think she's used to talking that way but it was nice that she personalized it and said that she'd never seen an embryo before. 

I sent the photo around of me, L and the embryo that we took and my mother in law said the same thing - she'd never seen an embryo before. This was pretty striking to me because B and I have seen soooo many of these photos by now that we are so jaded and never got attached to any of them. 

I had told L that I didn't want to see any home pregnancy tests because I didn't want to get my hopes up or whatever. I'll have to go back and look at the exact date but about a week later she texts me early in the morning and says 'are you sure you don't want to see tests?' and I just replied with 'send it over!'

I knew she wouldn't be saying that if there wasn't reason to. And I cried and cried when I saw that positive test with a nice strong second line (my second lines whenever I did have them were always faint). And I cried even more at what she wrote: 

A week later at 14 days after transfer her HCG was around 1200 and 2 days later was in the 3000s. So good!

6 Weeks
At 6 weeks, I was so nervous for the heartbeat appt and they were 45 mins late seeing us. But oh wow, I really couldn't hear anything else after I saw that heartbeat and just kept hearing them say "everything looks good", "this is exactly what we want to see", "everything is measuring right"...

Wow, oh, wow! I took a video of the heartbeat and just couldn't stop crying. We'd NEVER gotten to this point. 10 times pregnant and this never happened for us. Can you imagine? And this is 10 years into our marriage and finally. Just finally. 

They told us July 12 would be the due date.

Here it is at 6 weeks, just a white spec in the middle of the embryonic black sac attached to it and the large black oval is the uterus:

I also just had to write on their "hopeful" wall. That's what I've had in my home over the last 4 years. Their is called "believe it's possible":

Thanksgiving was that week and we got to celebrate with everyone and especially B's family who we don't get to see often. They made a big deal about it giving us meaningful cards, a beautiful baby print necklace and a frame that says Our Joy. Along with lots of gender neutral baby clothing from our niece and nephew (who are now 5 and 3). I couldn't stop crying.

Part of that is that I wasn't ready for all this celebrating. I was still waiting for the other shoe to drop. I was still super nervous. But it was also because I wasn't used to this celebrating being for ME. For US. It was truly special. 

And they got to meet L which was so, so nice, and gave her meaningful cards and a gift which meant a lot to her too.

8 Weeks
Two weeks later we're in for the 8 week appt and still nervous, still hoping that heartbeat is there, and there it is! And this time we got to see it with our actual doctor so it was pretty emotional!

Here it is at 8 weeks, starting to look like a baby!

And at that appt, we 'graduated' from our clinic! Momentous! I even got a text from a friend who has been through this to say happy fertility clinic graduation day! Means so much!!

10 Weeks
Then the 10 week appt with L's OB was interesting. I was kinda nervous. And felt like I was going to feel weird there, an outsider maybe, but the doctor said this was the 3rd surrogate situation to come in that day!! Pretty cool! And the best part was actually HEARING the heartbeat. Oh, it was such a great sound. I got so teary-eyed. 

I had the NIPT bloodwork test rushed to make sure there wasn't anything wrong with our baby and really wanted the results before Christmas to enjoy the holidays and put my mind at ease. 

Here it is at 10 weeks with little oven mitts for hands!

And the Thursday before Christmas (2 days before), I got the results early and everything looked good. I had the ugliest cry you can imagine. Got down on the floor because I couldn't stop crying at this milestone. We're here. We've done it. We're almost at 12 weeks and everything looks GOOD. 

You can't even imagine. I got down on my knees and thanked God. 

How incredible. On Wed, we'll be at 13 weeks. 

We're having a baby!! :)