I am a Thirty-Something mother of four beautiful girls. My love for them, and the joy I've experienced during this crazy ride called motherhood, has inspired me to help make the dream of a family become a reality for couples through gestational surrogacy. I've proudly helped A&T, as their lives were forever changed when they welcomed a son in April 2010 and K&S were blessed as parents in Sept 2012 when we welcomed their twin boys. I completed my final surrogacy journey Nov 2015 when I helped a wonderful local couple J&W and Big Brother add their family with the birth of twin boys. I am so very fortunate to have wonderful relationships with each one of my surro-families and continue to share in their lives.
Well we were supposed to review contracts yesterday but my IPs lawyer didn't have the agreement ready. We had to reschedule and will now be meeting on February 6th. I'll update more after that. Once all the legal aspects are taken care of we'll move on to cycling. VERY EXCITING!!!!
A friend I'd lost touch with that had stumbled upon my blog suggested I give a little background and explain why I choose to be a surrogate. I'm not sure I can even really put into words the passion I feel in my heart but I'll do my best to give a brief history.
For years I've thought it would be so very neat to be a surrogate but thought it was something women did for a friend or family member. I'd watched the Lifetime movies and TLC stories and was touched but I was content to wait to see if that moment ever came that someone I loved needed me.
Well the opportunity presented itself and I was very excited to think about the possibility. My brother began dating a woman who had a partial hysterectomy due to endometriosis and the conversation arose between my mom and brother about me being their gestational carrier "if" they ever chose to have children. I started doing some research despite the fact that neither my brother or his girlfriend ever spoke directly with me about it. Not long after this all came about we got pregnant with a child of our own and I didn't give much thought to it again. Our daughter was born, and as time passed my brothers request fizzled and seemed less and less likely to ever come to fruition.
About the time Isabelle was 6 months old I happened to stumble across an agency website and began to really ponder doing this for strangers. Jason, who wasn't very supportive of me doing it for my brother was strangely enough very supportive of pursuing the process with the help of an agency. We talked about it a few times and not long after that I was getting in touch with Zara at Family Source Consultants. Honestly I think at this point he was just happy I didn't want to have anymore of our own children.
Well...that is in a nutshell what lead me to this point and I'll continue by describing why I ultimately decided to seriously pursue my dream.
My motivation comes out of passion and a heartfelt sincerity for those that can't have children of their own and some of it comes from my own personal desires.
Over my years as a member and host at Parenthood.com, a popular parenting message board, I meet some wonderful woman struggling with infertility. I always felt so helpless, only able to offer prayers of comfort and words of hope. Being a surrogate is enabling me to be proactive and do what I can to ease the heartache of someone longing for a child. I am so passionate about that aspect of the journey and can't wait for the day that God willing, A&T are holding their new son or daughter. The emotional aspect of this journey is just amazing to think about.
From another perspective, I've loved the last 14 years of my life building a family and am a bit saddened to think that part is over but, at the same time have no desire to have more children. This opportunity is perfect for fulfilling that void left there. I have been fortunate to have easy and enjoyable pregnancies, even deliveries for that matter, and can't wait to go through it all again. I'd struggled for years with the thought of either Jason or I undergoing a sterilization procedure (permanent birth control) however, now knowing I get to continue this part of my life I am now 100% comfortable with it. We did just that almost two weeks ago, hubby had the "snip snip" and I can say for the first time I had no reservations knowing what the future holds.
Not only do I get to fulfill part of my yearning but financially this will make a huge impact on my family as well. When the compensation issue comes up some get a bad taste about it all but I try not to think of it that way, I know it can be touchy for some. When it all boils down the money is trivial to the big picture but it does certainly play a part in the experience. This will provide us the means for me to hopefully stay home with our girls for the next few years while putting away money for college and enjoying time as a family in ways we've never been able to before. I'll mention at this point that I'm already thinking about doing this again, perhaps multiple times which will ultimately help in acquiring those goals.
I could go on and on...there really is so much more on my heart that has prompted me to do this. I feel very honored to be a part of this. My IPs speak of how blessed they are to have me and how grateful they are but truthfully I feel equally blessed and am so excited to be doing this for them.
I can't wait to move to the next step, we've only got contracts left to do and then there is no stopping us.
This really is a dream come true for me, and I get to help someone else fulfill their life long dream too....it really is a beautiful relationship.
I had an appointment at the RE's office today...first off can I just say that driving into Chicago no longer fills me with anxiety...today was a breeze!!! Not ready to start driving cab downtown for extra income or anything but I can get to and from the RE's no problem.
I was able to meet Dr. TurKaspa and he shared a bunch of cycling information (mostly details I already knew thanks to my AAS ladies), some IVF statistics and discussed the process in detail. I did ask him about the mock cycle and I was happy to learn, he doesn't find it necessary. He said if I wasn't responding to the medications as wanted we could freeze any embryos and change the protocol. That should speed things up considerably if we don't need to do a mock cycle. He also said he uses the progesterone suppositories vs. the injections...that was good news for me (or shall I say for my rear end....LOL). I've read about some having reactions to the suppositories though so I might need to do a bit of research.
The hysteroscopy went great, uterus checked out good and everything is a go there. It was easy peasy, maybe a bit uncomfy, a little cramping and pressure but that is it. I'm on an antibiotic for the next three days to ward off any infection since they were probing around in there but it really was rather simple.
Dr. TurKaspa said to contact him after contracts are complete so we can work on med. schedules and set a transfer date.
Next step of course is meeting with our lawyers to do agreements/contracts. I talked with our lawyer today, Jason and I were to have an appt with her coming up on the 22nd but she is still awaiting an agreement from my IPs lawyer. Depending on when an agreement is drawn up we can proceed here, however she was doubtful that would be by the 22nd so our appointment will likely be rescheduled and pushed back a bit.
That's about all to report. Very excited to be moving forward and once contracts are done it really becomes "official". Can't wait to seal the deal and be on our way to making a baby (or two) for A&T!!!
Well, quick update. I had an appointment for my cervical cultures this past week and it went great. I'll tell ya, I've been through some drama with my OB office. It is a group practice and I had a run in with one doctor in particular that was not supportive of my surrogacy at all. I won't go into detail but I'll just tell you she had a very negative reaction when I told her of my plan. I was ready to leave the clinic because of her attitude regardless of the fact that I've been going to this practice for 8 years, and the one OB on staff, that I like very much, delivered 3 of my 4 children. I didn't want to chance having to be schedule with this woman again or God forbid have her be the attending doctor at a delivery!!
Well, I needed my cultures done soon and didn't have the time to research new doctors/clinics so I went back. I agreed to be seen by the nurse practitioner and she was wonderful!!! She was so compassionate and warm and the total opposite of what I experienced on my last visit. She personally guaranteed that if I chose to stay she would provide my care along with the OB that I like. She was so excited to be apart of this journey too and is 100% willing to be cooperative with the RE's office and will work with them during the process. I was very relieved and I'm so happy to know she will be holding my hand through this exciting process. She was so sweet and as I was leaving she asked to give me a hug and said some very kind words. We were both touched and near tears when I left.
Hysterosonogram is scheduled for Wednesday. I'm a bit bummed because my IM can't join me on this visit but I think it should be fairly easy so I'll be ok. I just plan to drive into the city (Chicago) and right back home so it shouldn't be to big of a deal.
I'll be sure to post an update after my appointment. Shouldn't be to much longer and we'll be getting our med schedules and transfer date!!!