Monday, December 28, 2009

A small update...but not the news you've been waiting for.

Hey everyone. I just wanted to update you on what's going on as far as results coming in :) I have had e-mails and facebook messages just pouring in asking if we have any good news to share. Well... unfortunately I can't spill the beans yet. I did want to let everyone know that tomorrow I have the results from my first blood test coming in. We are really hoping and praying that the results test positive for pregnancy and show high levels of HCG. If the levels are much higher than normal that will also give us a little heads up on the possibilty of it being twins. It's not an exact science though so we won't know for sure until there is an ultrasound. If this blood test is positive for pregnancy they will test again on Dec. 31st and we will get the results in on Jan. 2nd.

Sorry to leave ya hanging :) Enjoy your New Years!!

Sunday, December 20, 2009


I have already shared all this with IP's and since this blog is meant as a way for people to share in this process and understand how it works and feels I thought it would be a good idea to add this in here. I pray I am not getting everyone's hopes up for nothing.

I am discovering there is a fine line between pretty sure and hoping. I feel pretty sure about things, but I am also really hoping that I am right... if that makes any sense at all. As most of you know I have been pregnant twice before with my daughters. The pregnancy's were SOO completely different from one another I wouldn't have even thought it was possible. I blew every old wives tale out of the water. The one similarity between the two (aside from both being girls and the exact same weight; 7'1) is that I was farely certain I was pregnant before I got a positive on the test. With my first pregnancy I kept saying I "feel" pregnant even with a false negative on the first test, I just knew. Many women who have been pregnant before can probably attest to this. Basically I'm saying this b/c I think that this means I know my body pretty well. I'm farely consistent so I notice changes pretty quickly.

Two days ago I started to notice these symptoms:
1)Bloated Belly - This may sound weird, but honestly after I eat I look like I've got a 4 month baby belly. It slowly goes down as my food digests. The only time I remember feeling like this was in my early weeks of pregnancy with my daughters. My pants stopped fitting properly very early and I had to use the ol rubber band around the pant loop trick.
2)Sleepiness - I haven't been sleeping well for about a month or more and I really haven't felt tired at all during the day until about Friday. I was laying on the couch thinking man I could use a nap and then it dawned on me. I haven't felt like this type of sleepy since I was pregnant with Briea (my youngest). I was a stay at home mom at the time and I am NOT a napper (EVER), but in my first trimester I napped everyday. It's a different type of tired too... I can't explain it...
3)Insane sense of smell - I normally have a really good sense of smell, but in my first pregnancy my sense of smell was obnoxiously good. If my husband cooked with onions (yes he cooked b/c the smell of meat made me sick) I could smell them in my house for the next two weeks. It was yesterday that I started noticing my sense of smell. We walked into a Wok Box and a normally yummy smelling place almost sent me over the edge. There was something cooking in there that did not agree with this keen nose of mine. It was awful. We ate there and I was fine, but it definitely got my mind working.
4)My slow moving digestive system - (sorry if this is too much info, it comes with the business of (I hope) pregnancy). I am not constipated... ooh I hate using that word... but I can just tell things aren't normal in that department. I'm going to stop there...
5)Nausea - When I am pregnant my body is very sensitive to water intake. I normally drink a good amount of water so if I don't I kind of feel sick. I have had it two days in a row where I didn't drink enough water and I felt icky. It's not morning sickness... its' too early for that yet, but I feel that I am already needing my water even more than normal. That also leads to more peeing so that symptom could be just from more water.

Those are the main ones for now. I don't know if they sound convincing to you guys, but for me I feel pretty sure that it has worked. It's hard to describe everything, but I really know my body and this is how I have felt in the past... and I was right 2 out of 2 times. I don't want to get any ones hopes up just to have them dashed, but I do want to share. If I'm wrong we can use it as a learning experience and know not to trust a "waiting" body (and mind). :) Lets hope I'm right. I feel very excited, but VERY nervous to find out. There are a lot of peoples emotions resting on the result of this pregnancy test. No pressure though haha.

This will be my last post until after our second blood test. I won't be posting the results of our Christmas day pregnancy test b/c if it is positive (which I think/hope/pray it will be) we want to make sure the hormone levels are going up at the rate they should be and that we have a viable pregnancy. So after January 2nd and after the IP's have shared the good news I will update you all. Even if it's negative I will wait to share... sorry to leave you hanging. Hope you all have a wonderfully great Christmas and New Years.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Middle of the two week wait

There are so many emotions and thoughts going through my head everyday... I can only imagine how it must be for the IP's. One minute I feel so good and confident that this is going to work and then the next minute I'm scared and worried that it might not. It's so hard b/c we saw them in there and if it doesn't work than we would have lost them. I didn't realize how real seeing the transfer would make things feel. At the same time I am so grateful that it does feel this way. Even if it doesn't work the IP's were parents to these precious little embryo's and even if we don't get to meet them they were/are loved.

I had to give my mom the (twenty) pregnancy tests that I had bought online ($0.89 a piece) so that I wouldn't take them. My will power is not strong enough to resist seeing them sitting there and wanting to know sooo bad. I know the waiting will be all worth it when we find out Christmas morning. It will be weird waiting for that test to change. I just remember what it was like when my husband and I were trying to get pregnant. We took the test and while we were waiting we really didn't know if we could be... we were hoping, but what if we didn't get the dates right or what if I didn't ovulate that month or if I was late... there are so many unknowns whereas this way you know that yes IM "ovulated" (in a sense) on this day, fertilization happened this day and the transfer was a success. All we are waiting for now is to see if the implantation and continued growth of the babies was successful. We've been through so many steps so far it feels much more of a possibility. I hope I hope I hope!!!

I am really frustrating myself. Every twinge or cramp I feel I have to stop and think about what it could be. I read that some people get crampy when the embryo implants. I was nauseous the other day and I got so excited until I looked online and even for twins it was too early to feel symptoms. Darn... I was just needing water. Then I jaunted down the hallway and felt a little contraction type motion in what felt like my uterus. Or if I cough or giggle I feel it... it's almost like it's tender, but not painful just kind of irritable. It has kind of been like that ever since the transfer so it's most likely from that. I'm trying not to think about it, but my senses are hyper vigilant right now. I am also taking higher than average amounts of iron, to ward of any signs of anemia that tends to come my way when I'm pregnant, so it is highly likely that that's why my digestive track has taken a hit and is now trying to work it's way back to normal. Basically I just need to chill out, try and not think about it and go on with life as usual... easier said than done, but I've got to try.

I will post the outcome of the pregnancy test we will be taking on Christmas day as soon as the IP's give me the go ahead. I will let them tell their family first of course. They may even want to wait until after our 2nd blood test results arrive on Jan 2nd. before we go public with the info. If it's positive we will be walking on egg shells until we see those beating hearts on the first ultrasound.

Oh yeah... If we are in fact pregnant we are technically 3 weeks and 2 days now!!! The counting starts two weeks before the conception date... some weird pregnancy loophole, but I'll take it!

Monday, December 14, 2009

A few pics...

I wanted to share the pics of the IP's little embryo's that we got. What we are seeing here (the little white dot) is actually little bubbles of air on either side of the embryo's since they are too small to see without a microscope. Still cool nonetheless :) The large black thing ontop is my bladder! wowza!

That moment when the dr. injected the IP's little emby's into my uterus was just amazing! I can't describe it. Everything that we had been working towards and hoping for was finally happening. They are in there!!! They are actually in there!! I imagine them growing and thriving and preparing to meet their very excited parents in 9 months. I know that there is a chance that this won't work, but for now there are two babies in my belly and until I hear otherwise I am going to try and make them the best home possible and pray for them like they are already here.

IM was with me during the transfer and it was SOOO nice to have her there. She stood beside the "bed" and snapped pictures of the procedure on the ultrasound machine. It was so interesting to be able to watch it all happen. There were a couple things that really weirded me out. First was how hugely massive my bladder was. I saw her put the speculum in and then watched and FELT as it pushed against my bladder. It was ridiculously full which I suppose was a good thing, but not very comfortable. There was no hope in me not being able to pee that morning when I got up so then I panicked and downed two bottles of water and a cup of tea two hours before the transfer was scheduled... needless to say I had to empty a tad bit off the top while we were waiting. Another thing that was strange was how she could make my uterus move. If she pushed on my bladder... yay... or cervix you could actually watch my uterus bounce and float in there. It was very strange. At one point she actually poked a little (not painful at all) at my cervix with a q-tip haha. We could see the q-tip and then my uterus sway slowly in response... definitely weird, but cool. :D

It was so neat to bring the pics out to the IF-intended father after (he was in the waiting room). You could just see the excitement in his eyes. Both these parents already love these babies, it is written all over their faces and it's wonderful. We spent the rest of the day chilling at the hotel. IM was having quite a lot of discomfort from her over stimulated ovaries and really needed to take it easy. Her job of retrieving the embryo's was by far the hardest part of this whole process so far.

These last two pics are just pics of me waiting in my oh so sexy grey gown skirt for the transfer to begin and a pic of the wonderful manicure we got done the day before. IM and I went for massages, mani's and pedi's and it was so awesome. Perfect way to relax our nerves in preparation for the big day :)

Saturday, December 12, 2009


The day has finally come!! It's been almost a year since we first started talking about this possibility and now we've done it! This morning at 10:15 (Saturday Dec.12th) we transferred two embryo's on day three. One was rated as a B+ and the other as a B, both at a wonderful 8 cell stage (they like to see between 6 to 8 cells on day three) and looking good. There ended up being 5 healthy embryo's out of the 7 so they now have three frozen for future baby's all of them rating at least a B (one was a B+). There is a huge sense of relief having completed this step in the process. Now all we have to do is sit back, relax and wait. Since Christmas is coming up and the clinic will be closed they really encouraged us to take an at home pregnancy test. My first blood test is Dec. 24th and my second is Dec. 31st. Those will give us the numbers to see how well they are doing, but for now a positive sign would be just such a huge answer to prayers. One or two it doesn't matter as long as they get a healthy little munchkin. The dr's warned us that there is a 1 in 3 chance that the IP's could end up with two and in that case YAY!!

The actual transfer was really quick and painless. It felt similar to getting a pap with the worst part being my excessively full bladder. It was so neat. We got to watch the dr. inject the precious little embryo's into my uterus and we took pictures of the little spot on the ultrasound machine that looked like a very little grain of rice. What we were seeing wasn't actually the embryo it was an air pocket that the embryologist put on each side of the embryo's so that we are able to see where it is. It's so weird to sit here knowing that I have two little gifts in my body ,however it feels perfectly normal to think of them as the IP's little ones... maybe b/c I've had so long to prepare for it.

Now we just relax, wait and pray... easier said than done...
Thanks everyone for all your support. We all feel very positive about this working. Keep praying!!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Excellent retrieval!!!

I am just sitting her stunned at how awesome things have been going so far. This retrieval has gone better than I even thought was possible. It has blown our expectations and hopes out of the water. They managed to retrieve 5 eggs vaginally from her right ovary. This in itself is just so awesome b/c a vaginal retrieval wasn't supposed to be an option. Her ovary must have come down sometime in the last couple days. They were also able to retrieve 2 eggs from her left ovary. We had initially been told that this ovary was behind some organs and therefor inaccessible. So we have ended up with 7 eggs!! They are going to go ahead and try to fertilize all of them. We are hoping for at least two healthy strong looking embryo's to do a day three transfer. That would put us at Dec. 12th and we would be finding out on Dec. 29th (hopefully) via a blood sample if the pregnancy was a success. IM and I both agree that we don't want to take any pregnancy tests prior to that blood work at the risk of disappointment. If we get a positive result and it then turns out to be a chemical pregnancy or something along those lines it would be so hard to deal with thinking it worked and then basically having our hopes shattered. We will suck it up and wait the excruciating 17 days to find out... at least that's the plan. If the IP's decide they want me to test I am at their mercy. haha :D

Thankfully for now IM is resting in her hotel room and recovering from the retrieval process. The abdominal retrieval was quite painful, but thankfully they were able to give her some pain meds so that she can rest and heal. Lets hope this is the only time she will have to go through this.

I have started my Prometrium today. I believe this is a synthetic version of the hormone progesterone which we all know is important during pergnancy... although I'm not totally sure what it does. I will have to ask about that. It is ummmm.... interesting... It is taken similar to a Canestan tablet... via a vaginal suppository. I have to take two pills three times a day and sit or lay down for a few minutes after each dose. It's only day one so I haven't had any symptoms yet, but some that I may experience include nausea, bloating, breast tenderness, headache, change in vaginal discharge (sorry if that's too much info), mood swings, blurred vision, dizziness and drowsiness. We'll have to wait and see what happens. From my understanding I am on these tablets until I am 10 weeks pregnant so I better get used to them. So far so good.

I am leaving tomorrow afternoon for Vancouver and will remain there until the transfer is complete. I can't believe that we are finally here! I have been in conversation with this couple for almost a year and it has been wonderful to get to know them. It seems so surreal to think that this may be the beginning of what we have been talking about this whole time. I am so looking forward to going not only to complete the transfer, but also to spend some more time with the IP's. I really enjoy them and they are such fun to be around. It's going to be awesome to share this journey with them. I can't wait!!!

Monday, December 7, 2009


Great news!!! We've got 6 follicles waiting to be retrieved first thing Wednesday morning!! YAY!!! Such a relief after the week of unknowns we've had. She start her HCG injections tonight at a very specific time. She's the first retrieval of the day so we should have little emby baby's growing shortly. Here's hoping they are healthy and ready to start growing in a nice cozy uterus.

So I had to delete what I wrote earlier in this post about only using three eggs... I thought I remember them telling us that, but that is not the case. We are still following our beliefs and morals about life and we will be treating these little embryo's as special, but we are going to use as many eggs as we can get. If there are more than two viable healthy embryo's then we will keep them.

Wow!! YAY!! Can't wait to get all the news and time lines and dates and everything. Looking forward to everything. Man the two week wait after the transfer is going to be deadly haha.

Sunday, December 6, 2009


We got great news this morning at IM's (intending mom) u/s (ultrasound). They found 6 (I think she said 6 or 7) follicles that are almost matured to the right size and should be ready by tomorrow. There are some follicles in her left ovary that are too mature, but not too the point of ovulation. If her u/s goes well tomorrow she should be ready to start her HCG that evening and schedule the retrieval for Wednesday morning(Dec.9th)!!!

I just can't describe the relief I felt when she said those words. I had been hoping and praying that they would get good news, but part of me was preparing to hear that we wouldn't be able to do it this cycle. This puts us at possible transfer between Dec.12th to 15th. One week away!!

This week I felt like this whole thing was teetering on the edge of a cliff... a short cliff... one where we would have fallen to the next ledge, but not all the way to the ground... a cliff none the less. It was very nerve wracking. Then to top it off I lost my estrogen pills!! These are the pills that I must take 3 times a day so loosing them for any amount of time could set me back a dosage. I had given them to my 1 year old to shake (they're child lock). We were in the living room and honestly what could possibly happen. I went to go take my evening dosage and I couldn't find them anywhere. I searched every square inch of my house for 2 hours!!! If I loose these now not only do I miss this dose, but I also miss however many it takes for me to get my prescription faxed over from the Vancouver clinic, filled by the pharmacy (if they have it in stock otherwise it takes two days to order more) and then picked up by me. We were looking at a minimum of 3 missed pills!!! I didn't know what that would do to our cycle, but it didn't sound very good. I couldn't think of anywhere else to look, went to bed and laid there trying not to beat myself up over letting Brie play with them. What was I thinking!! All this would have been avoided if I would have just put them back where they go!!! I was lying there all frustrated and stressed out at myself and thinking to God, "You know where they are!! Please just tell me!!" (I had been praying fervently the whole evenings search). Then I remembered something that my oldest daughter had said that afternoon (she's 3 1/2). I was folding laundry on the living room floor and Kiley runs over and says "Mom Briea's in the garbage" by the time I turned around Brie was walking away playing with something else. At that point I didn't think anything of it. Remembering this I bolted out of bed, slowly started taking out each piece of garbage and that's where I found it. When I saw that lid I almost flopped over with relief. Thank you Lord!!! Disaster averted! Needless to say it took me a little bit to settle my nerves and fall asleep that night. That will NOT happen again! I am super anal about where they are at all times from now on.

Well anyways, keep praying that things go well!! I'm so excited now I could burst :)

Saturday, December 5, 2009


This week has been an emotional roller coaster for all of us involved. The IM (intending mom) has been in Vancouver since December 1st. She had her first ultrasound on the 2nd and we didn't get the best news. The dr. doing the u/s (ultrasound) made it sound like the abdominal retrieval that was necessary for her wasn't for sure going to happen. This was a shock to everyone b/c the very first step that we took in this process was for IM to get an ultrasound to "confirm" that retrieval was possible. We had been told that it wouldn't be a problem although more invasive and difficult than usual. She had her blood taken and her hormone levels came back in the normal range which was good news. Since they weren't able to view her ovaries during that first u/s they scheduled another one for the 4th.

This u/s went much better, but we were told there are still some obstacles to overcome. They found both her ovary's, but since one is hidden behind some organs they can only retrieve from one side. They saw quite a few maturing follicles in each ovary (yay!!). The problem that they came across is that there is one follicle in each ovary that is maturing at a faster rate than the others. If this larger follicle stimulates ovulation than that will mess this cycle up. It doesn't mean the end of everything, we will try again, but it would be very disappointing. The dr. dong this u/s was one of the people who will be doing the retrieval and she assured IM that the abdominal retrieval was possible and that she would do everything she possibly could to make this happen.

So we got some good news and some not super good news. She has her third u/s on the 6th and at that time we should be able to find out if the retrieval will happen this cycle. If everything looks good then she will begin her HCG that day. 36 hours after that they will retrieve the eggs and then 3-5 days after that the transfer will happen. There's still hope so we just need everyone praying that the eggs start maturing on the same timeline. We are all really hoping for a Dec.10th or 12th transfer.

Monday, November 30, 2009


I am now in another waiting stage, but this one will probably be a short one. I have done most of what I need to do to get to the implantation stage as far as my body is concerned. The IM (intending mom) however is into the stage where she gets to start all her hormones. This is an exciting step in the process b/c it really is when we get to find out if all this is actually going to be possible. She has started her injections as of Nov.26th and will be leaving on Dec.2nd for an ultrasound in Vancouver. This ultrasound will check to see how her ovaries are responding to the hormones. What they need to do is get her body to produce an abundance of eggs and have them mature in her ovary. Naturally in your body you only produce one egg (more with multiples) and it does a maturing process that starts in the ovary and continues in the fallopian tubes. The process that the IM has to undergo can be uncomfortable and the clinic said that women can have a feeling of being "full" (not in her stomach, but just in general I think) since her ovary is actually swelled with the excess eggs. The actual retrieval of the egg can be painful as well. Normally for an egg retrieval they go up through the vagina and then use a needle to go through the side of the vagina and through to the ovary. I know that this process will be different for my IM since her anatomy is slightly different. I'm not sure how the process will change, but it will be interesting to hear how. I really hope it's not too painful for her, although she did say the way they will have to do it will be more invasive. She will be staying in Vancouver until the transfer happens. Everyday she has to go get blood taken and then wait for the clinic to call her with her hormone dosage for that day. It's a very precise science behind all this. I find it so interesting.

So keep your prayers coming! We are still on track for those dates, however we should have a better idea once the egg retrieval process begins. The eggs need to mature outside the uterus for 3 to 5 days (we are doing 3 since we want to transfer two eggs, if there are two). I feel so hopeful!! :)

Monday, November 23, 2009


We got good news today! My endometrium is 8mm!! YAY! It needed to be atleast 5mm for us to move on to the next step. The IM will be going off her BCP's today (from what I understood), which will essentially begin her cycle and then she will begin her hormone injections sometime this week (I think). It's confusing me right now, but basically we just do whatever the nurses tell us to. I am now taking three estrogen pills a day. Morning, noon and night and still on my synarel nasal spray.

The actual ultrasound that I had was easy and laid back which was nice considering it was an internal one. I have had one other (internal) one during my pregnancy with my youngest daughter so I knew what to expect. The dr. who did the prcedure made me feel very comfortable which was nice. It seems really funny b/c I spent half of yesterday and half of today flying here and back for a 2 min. procedure. I was at the clinic for a whole 12min. It makes me extra glad we got good news b/c it made the trip well worth it.

I just can't believe how fast this is all going! It's blowing my mind right at the moment. The IM will be going to Vancouver on Dec.2nd for an ultrasound and the most likely staying there until after the egg retrieval, fertilization and transfer. It looks like we are on target for our transfer date being sometime between Dec.8th and 10th. Wow! That's only around 2 1/2 weeks!! It's so neat to think that next Christmas could be their baby's (or babies) first Christmas!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Heading to Van

I leave on Sunday!! wow!! I am so excited!! I feel really positive about this ultrasound going well. I doubled my does of Estrace yesterday and that evening I couldn't eat dinner b/c of some nausea that appeared. I think it will take a bit for my body to adjust to the extra amount of estrogen that's in my system. I've had morning sickness worse than this so it's nothing to complain about and it's really not aweful at all it's just enough to take my appetite away. Hoenstly I thought it would be a lot worse so I think it's going awesome so far!!

So I read over the symptoms that I listed in my last post and realized that yeah I have been having more side effects than I thought. Obviously not bad considering I forgot they were even side effects, but defiantely something to note since it is all part of the experience. I have had some dizziness and lightheadedness. I was always confused b/c I would just finish eating and then I would stand up and it would feel like I had low blood sugar... now I know :) I have gotten headaches, but again thought that was just normal. People get headaches sometimes, whatever haha. So out of the listed effects I have only gotten a few and it really has been fine. Totally worth it. In fact if I hadn't read the paper they gave me I probably wouldn't have paid much attention to these.

Please keep us in your prayers Monday morning (8am). Pray that my endometrium is preparing for baby and a wonderful 5mm thick. I have two days completely by myself in a city where I don't know anyone. This is going to feel like a holiday!!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

The next step

I got my period today as expected. Yay! I've never been this happy to see it arrive before haha. I have to start on my Estrogen (Estrace) on Saturday. I begin by taking one pill a day and then after 5 days of that switching to two a day. Then on Nov.23rd I fly down to Vancouver to get an ultrasound at the clinic. This ultrasound will tell us how thick my uterine lining is. If it is atleast 5mm we are in the clear for the IM to begin her injections. If it is less than that I will need to be on the Estrace for a bit longer before we can begin. Some of the side effects of the Estrace include dizziness, lightheadedness, headache, upset stomach, bloating, nauseau, weight changes, increased/decreased interest in sex, and breast tenderness. It will be interesting to see how this pill effects me. The pharmacist said it's similar to a birth control pill, but since the estrogen levels are quite a bit higher I may notice the side effects more... uh oh! It's ok we'll see what happens. If I do get any of these they usually taper off after about two weeks, once my body is used to it and I will only be on it until the transfer happens which will hopefully be around the corner.

I just can't believe how fast it is all happening at this point. Once IM starts her injections we are looking at about 15-18 days until we can do the embryo transfer. I can't believe it!!! That puts us at approximately December 8th to 11th. I knew that we were aiming to do it about that time, but hearing that it's actually a possibility really makes me excited!! Please pray that everything goes smoothly from here and that the transfer is a success.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Goodbye BCP's!!

Today I am officially off of my birth control pills. I had to take the Synarel (nasel spray) along with the BCP's for 6 days and now I am just on the Synarel. I am hoping I will get my period here in about three days and then I can start my Estrace. The Synarel will stop me from ovulating (suppresses my ovaries) and the Estrace... well I'm not sure what the Estrace will do I just know that I need to start that after my period comes and of course when the clinic tells me to. I will ask them exactly what it does when I talk to them next.

So far the Synarel has been just a piece of cake. The only side effects that I've noticed have been minor sleep interuptions and a few extra zits than normal. Really nothing major at all. I was hugely relieved especially after how hard the BCP's hit me. I'm a hormone supplement pro now! hahaha It was a bit of a learning curve with the Synarel. The first few days I took it were gross. I would spray it into my nose and a few minutes later I would start tasting it as it ran down my throat. Poison is probably the closest I can come to describing the flavor. One of my friends suggested that I sniff with my nose more when I spray it so that it goes up my nasal passage instead of down my throat and what do you know she was right. I rarely taste it anymore. Learning the new meathod really just felt like the cherry ontop of the cake.

Both of my daughters have the "uncomfirmed" H1N1 virus. They haven't gotten swabbed, but all symptoms point to it. Poor little ones. I am betting that I will get it here shortly, which will suck, but I can say it will be nice to have it out of the way for when the pregnancy happens. I/we won't have to worry about getting it and it harming the baby. We'll see if I'm singing a different tune if/when I'm lieing on the couch in a fever induced daze.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

First dose of something

It begins!! I'm so excited!! Today I went to the pharmacy and picked up my first hormone treatment. It's called Synarel. It's a nasel spray that I take once in the morning and once at night. What Synarel will do to me is suppress my reproductive system and stop me from ovulating. It has similar side effects as the birth control pill I was taking, but usually those only last for about two weeks. I'm thinking it might be easier this time knowing that all these things are most likely coming. The birth control pill took me by total surprise. I'm ready this time. Bring on the hot flashes and sleepless nights b/c then I know it's doing the job :)

The intended mom starts on her birth control pills today. We need to now align our cycles to eachother b/c my body needs to be ready to receive a fertalized egg at the same time that she is ovulating. It's realy interesting. All this has made me realize that none of this is possible without God. Science can only go so far and it's amazing how many things need to be insync and working for this to happen. Our cycles have to match, my uterin lining has to be the prefect thickness at the right time, the dr's have to be able to harvest a good amount of healthy eggs from IM (intended mom), then IF (intended father) needs to have a good amount of healthy sperm, we then need atleast one or two healthy embryos to survive three days (outside my uterus) and then finally we need the embryo(s) to survive and grow inside of me. There is so much going on here and I feel so positive about the whole process, but I know that we really have to trust in God through this whole thing. None of this is possible without him.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

It`s been awhile

It`s been awhile since I have written something. Not much had been happening on the surrogate front.

A couple weeks ago the intended mom talked to the fertility clinic we are using and they informed us we had until Oct. 28th to get all our counselling and legal contracts completed. That set us all into a mad dash b/c we had thought we had until sometime in November to get that in and we weren't far along in the process. It was quite interesting actually. Going over the legal contract that we were going to be signing really brought up some questions we had to think about. For example, what would happen if the baby had a genetic or congenital disease that would make it unable to live once I gave birth? Would we continue on with the pregnancy and who would make that decision? If I happened to get pregnant with 3 or more embryo's would there be any case where we would be willing to reduce the size of the pregnancy? These were all things that we really needed to think about and it REALLY made me thankful for the intended parents. We have the same morals and values when it comes to the important things. I don't know what we would do if we didn't agree. What if we came to an impassable moral dilema? Everything had to be legally laid out, but at the same time I really trust that we are on the same page and that they take my feelings seriously. I'm glad that part is finished now. We can get to the fun stuff now ;).

My husband and I are heading to Mexico for a week with two of our closest friends. We are SO excited. This is the first time either of us have been out of the country and also the longest we have ever left the kids. I'm going to go and not look back hahaha. I know I will miss my girls, but it will be so nice to have this second honeymoon before we begin the pregnancy and hormone treatments. I can't believe that November is when we start it all. I'm so excited!!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

HSG experience

I had my Hysterosalpingogram (HSG) today!!! I'm relieved to have it over with and I definately psyched myself out for nothing. I was weird... that's the best way I can describe it.

So I get in there they give me a gown to put on. It's big enough to fit a full grown man which was actually kind of nice since all I could wear underneath were my socks. The nurse then brings me out a nice heated blanket to put on while I wait IN THE WAITING ROOM for them to bring me in. Thankfully there were only nurses hustling about b/c otherwise that would have been quite uncomfortable. So they call me in and the nurse sort of explains what will happen. This procedure is done vaginally, which was one part scary for obvious reasons and one part a relief since I had sort of imagined them using a huge needle to inject the dye through my stomach (obviously not the easiest way). She shows me all the instruments that they will use. They have to wash my cervix and then they use a long thin needle thing that has sort of a metal bulb looking thing at the end. She explains that the dye can cause some cramping and minor irritation to the uterus, but that the part that most women find uncomfortable is when they clamp the needle thing onto the side of my cervix. That sounded not fun to me at all!! She then procedes to tell me my dr's name. This is when I started to feel weird b/c I realized that it's an older man from my church whom I have known since I was a baby. I was kind of wishing for the needle through the stomach idea at that point. Thankfully my fears were put to rest when he came in and he didn't mention anything about knowing me. I was VERY relieved about this. I was not in the state of mind to talk about how my parents were doing and where my brothers were living now.

I was unsure of exactly how much detail I should go into. Should I tell them I'm going to be a surrogate or should I try and give as little information as possible. That question was answered for me pretty quickly when the first thing out of the dr's mouth was "So you've been trying to get pregnant for awhile?" I wasn't prepared to lie and when my answer of "we are going to use IVF" only caused more questions to come my way I quickly realized that obviously I should just say what I'm doing here. Especially since he goes to my church and he will find out eventually. So I spit it out and both were surprised (this is Dawson after all), but very supportive. He asked a few more questions just out of his own curiosity, but after that we got to continue with the procedue. Yay......

They laid me down on this cold metal table with this big half circle ultrasound machine. I was pretty relaxed and "comfortable" for the begining, but once I realized that they would soon be clamping something to my cervix I started to get quite nervous. That's when I heard the great news. The dr. says clamping it won't be necessary today. Woohoo!! Relief flooded through me. Now all I had to worry about was the dye. They turned the ultrasound screen towards me so that I could watch as he slowly injected the dye and it started to float out into my fallopian tubes. I was surprised by how small my uterus and fallopian tubes were compareds to my pelvis. I honestly didn't feel a thing. The dye didn't bother me one bit and it showed that my reproductive organs appeared to be fine with no blockages to be seen. I was relieved to hear that it was over, but overall it was not a "bad" experience. The nurse was so awesome she definately made all the difference.

Hope that was not too graphic for you all ;) Thanks for letting me share.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

It's booked

Everything has happened as I had hoped. My cycle has started and I am already looking forward to not having to deal with this for 9 months. My HSG (Hysterosalpingogram) is scheduled for September 30th. I'm farely confident that everything will be fine since I have had no problems in the past and my body has handled my pregnancy's fine, however it's always better to be safe than sorry. It would be awful to go through everything, spend all that money only to find out later that there was something wrong within my body that was causing problems. I'm happy to be one step closer.

Today we have our first counsellors appointment. This is mandatory with the clinic we are using which I think is a really smart idea. Basically they want to make sure that I am mentally/emotionally okay to continue in this process. I also think it's very important that our marriage be strong enough to survive or should I say flourish during this time. I know that pregnancy's can be hard on marriages and I'm sure surrogate pregnancy's are a whole different ball game. I feel like we are good to go, but it will be nice to have someone else's opinion. The women we are going to see is also a Christian and I have been told she is just awesome. I'm actually really looking forward to our meeting.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

End of pack one

So today is my last pill (of the pack)!! I'm really excited b/c it means a. I'll get my period and we can find out if my body is going to get back to normal in time for this to happen by December and b. I get to have my hysterosalpingram done in 9 to 11 days which brings us one step closer in the whole process. It feels like we've been at a stall for the past little bit so it will be nice to see some progress.

I'm going to talk about menstration right now ... pre warning for anyone who is uncomfortable with this ;) haha.

I haven't had a period since before I got pregnant. So that makes it about 19 months now. wow!! I'm a little nervous about getting it. Is it going to be super painful or heavy? I don't remember what it was like after I had my first daughter. I know it's inevitable so I'm happy to just get it out of the way so I can quit wondering when and if and how. So here's hoping everything is normal and as it should be.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Starting to adjust

I am hugely relieved to discover that the side effects from my birth control pills are slowly starting to level out. I was really wondering how I was going to handle the next four months of this. I knew that I was defiantely going to find a way, but it wasn't going to be the easiest part of this whole thing. I feel like such a little whiner, seriously it's just the pill!! There are millions of women on it and they don't complain. Honestly though it felt like I was on drugs. I started slowly sleeping better and not having nightmares. I only feel jittery in the mornings, but it feels more like I'm cold and shivering and my mood swings are much more controlable. Pretty much everything has gone back to a somewhat normal level and I am feeling more like myself again. It was a huge relief!!! I was thinking that it might take some time for my system to get used to the hormones, but I never imagined that it would be this quick. I hope that means they are still working.... I guess we'll find out when I'm done my first pack and my cycle is supposed to come ;)

So it's good news. We are heading in the right direction and I'm no longer a little bit crazy :) Thanks for puting up with me!!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Feeling a little crazy..... already.

I know I have only been on these birth control pills for a few days, but I am already feeling the effects. My dr. put me on a strong dosage and man can I tell. I have taken birth control a couple times in the past and I definately noticed a difference in myself, but nothing like these ones. It honestly feels like a first trimest pregnancy for me.... which isn't saying much since I've been very fortunate with them in the past. I'm completely up and down with my emotions, usually down at the expense of my poor husband and if I don't eat on time I start to feel nauseaus. I can't sleep at night b/c either a. my mind is on and I can't stop thinking, my dreams even wake me up or b. I'm having a nightmare, which hasn't happened in SOO long. I'm even jittery and having crazy anxiety/panick attacks. It's seriously the weirdest feeling. Maybe it's all in my head. I can only imagine what I'm going to be like once I start with the 'big time' hormones. Maybe it's a good thing that I am feeling these ones so much, atleast we know they are working. Maybe it means that my body responds well to hormone treatment... that would be awesome! It's all speculation at this point, but just thought I would share my thoughts.

I want this blog to be as honest as I can possibly make it. I'm sure there will be times of discomfort and obviously pain (ie, birth), but I wouldn't change it for the world. I want to share all the ups and downs, my fears and excitments. I want to complain about feeling crappy one day and marvel at a new deveolopement the next. I just want everyone to know that this is what I signed up for, I was educated in my decision and I am 100% onboard no matter what is tossed my way. Sitting here feeling crazy and hormonal and I'm still excited and enjoying the experience and we haven't technically even started yet.

Thanks to everyone who is joining me in this!!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Lets Get Started

I had an appointment with my dr. yesterday and I am officially on birth control. Since I have been breastfeeding my daughter for the past nine months I haven't yet had a period. With this extra strong dose of hormones we are hoping that it will get my cycle back on track. I also have to go and get a Hysterosalpingogram, which I'm sort of dreading. This is a process where they inject dye into my fallopian tubes and uterus to make sure that everything is still in working order for carrying babies. It's only a short procedure, but apparently quite painful. I know it's worth it so I'm just looking forward to getting it over with.

I've been reading a LOT of blogs lately. I'm so interested in finding other women who have either been a surrogate or used one. So far all the stories I have read have been very positive. It seems that a lot of the surrogates enjoyed the whole process and loved sharing it with the intended parents. Likewise the intended parents have been very involved and a great support to the surrogate. I'm glad that there are experiences out there that I can share in and learn from. I think that building a relationship with everyone involved really helps make the process as easy and natural as it can be and in the end just a joyful experience.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

First visit to the clinic

Yesterday I got back from my consultation with the clinic in Vancouver that will be orchestrating this whole thing. The outlook is very positive. On paper it looks like we are all prime candidates. We are all still in our twenty's so that should mean that everything is young and ready to function as it's supposed to. It looks like the procedure to harvest the eggs may be more difficult and invasive than we had hoped, but the good news is that they can do it! We got a list of all the steps that we are going to need to take once we decide to start the process. Our goal is to do the embryo transfer sometime in December. It really hit me that it's coming fast!!! We are already well into August! I am very excited to begin.

Meeting the parents

After months of talking to the intended mom I finally got a chance to meet her. We were going to meet halfway and bring our mutual friend along. It was going to be so fun with just me and the girls.

I felt like I knew her already. We had talked on the phone a couple times and I had seen pictures. I felt like I sort of knew what to expect and as it turned out I wasn't disapointed. She was easy to talk to, a well rounded normal person. We had a great weekend.

A few months later we finally met the intended dad on a trip out to their house. We live about a 10 hour drive away from eachother and since we were heading that way we decided to drive down for a visit. It was awesome and refreshing to see them together. They obviously love eachother and I know that without a doubt they will make great parents. It made me happy to see their home and imagine their lives with a baby in the picture. One things for sure this baby is wanted and it will be loved.

It felt like it took stages for me to realize what it might be like to actually go through with this. There was never any doubt that I wanted to, but it didn't feel real at first. I don't know if it was a coincidence or if meeting them brought me face to face with reality, but all of a sudden it hit me as to how hard it could actually be. I will fall in love with this baby there is no doubt about that. I fall in love with most baby's I hold let alone carry for 9 months. It is going to be hard to walk out of that hospital empty handed. There is no way that it couldn't be. I want to go into this realistically. I can't fool myself into thinking that it will be a peice of cake or else I won't be prepared for when it happens. What I do know for sure is that it won't be the same as with my own children. I won't go through this pregnancy ever thinking anything else but that this is their baby and I can't wait to see them meet him/her. They will get to look at their precious baby and stare in awe at it's hair and eyes and tiny little nose. So although I caught a glimps of how hard it could be once this is all over, them being there reminded me that it's going to be awesome. It will be their birth and it will be wonderful!! And when I leave the hospital I'll be welcomed home by my sweet girls and my supportive husband. Now it feels like so much to look forward to.

I can't wait!!!

The Decision

The decision to become a surrogate felt like an easy choice for me. When I gave birth to my youngest I thanked God for our beautiful, healthy baby girl, but I also mourned the end of my pregnancy. I enjoyed it so much and I have always seen pregnancy, birth and the joy of becoming a parent as such a beautiful process. I never took for granted the fact that my husband and I always seemed to have an easy time getting pregnant. It almost seemed unfare to me. There were people, some of whom were close friends, who had a hard time conceiving and who had suffered losses. The idea that we were able to conceive and give birth to two healthy baby's, without any complications or difficulty seemed too good to be true.

The idea of surrogacy first came to me about a year after we had our first daughter. She was at such an enjoyable stage and although I was starting to feel ready to be pregnant again I knew that I was not ready to have another baby. I wanted everyone to get a chance to feel what I was feeling. To love someone so much it hurts and to marval at every little thing they do. The first smile, sitting, crawling, laughing, walking and even crying. There is just nothing like it. I started talking to a family who I had found over the internet. She had been in a car accident a few years earlier which had caused her to undergo an emergecy partial hysterectomy and had left her unable to carry children, but still able to produce her own eggs. We talked for about 6 months, but whenever I offered to meet them it became evident that they weren't really serious about the whole thing. It gave me a lot of things to think about. Did I really want to do this? What if the parents wanted me to have an abortion for some reason or reduce the size of pregnancy if it was multiples? I wasn't willing to do that! It became evident that if I was going to do this it would have to be for a couple with the same beliefs as me.

A few years passed. We had our second daughter and the idea once again came back into my head. I meantioned it on one of those silly surveys on facebook. I hesitated before writing it, but something in my mind urged me on. One day passed and I got an e-mail from one of my old high school friends saying that her best friend was looking for a surrogate and asked if I would talk to her. I was so shocked I couldn't believe it, but I was also so excited. I started talking to the intended mom. She was great. She was also a Christian and had the same beliefs and values about preserving life that I did. I talked to my husband about it... a little bit nervous about what he would say. He never enjoyed me being pregnant as much as I did. To my surprise he said almost immediately "if it's something your passionate about and you believe strongly that it's something your supposed to do, than I will stand beside you 100%." I almost cried I couldn't believe it. What an awesome man!!!

I felt very nervous to tell the intended parents about our decision. My experience with the people before made me worried that they might not want me. I got up the nerves to mention it to her in an e-mail and she replied back that they wanted me to do it. I was relieved and very excited. We could really plan on this. We could start talking about what we will do instead of what we might do. It was very exciting.

To my surprise everyone who I told, including my mother, were all very supportive. I was worried about what people would say. Most people thought I was crazy, but all agreed that it was awesome. My mom thinks about some things differently than I do so I was worried she would try and talk me out of it, but she accepted it and encouraged me right away.

Ultimately my feelings consisted of excitement and peace about the decision my husband and I had made. I KNOW that this is something God has called me to do. I believe that God is blessing this couple and I pray everyday that they will get the chance to be parents. It's exciting to be on the crazy journey with them and it warms my heart to see that I will get to help them bring a child into their warm and loving home.