13 Going On 14

The end of December and beginning of January were a crazy few weeks. This little baby has now been to a funeral, celebrated Christmas (several times), celebrated a new year, been to a wedding, and the symphony.

Some days are easy and I feel fantastic and some days I am exhausted and feel like I can’t get out of bed or function. Some days I am happy and excited and some days I am emotional and cry at stupid commercials or when my husband accidentally says something that I misinterpret and take offense to. Some days I eat super healthy and enjoy lots of fruits and veggies and some days all I want is donuts and chocolate cake. Luckily for me, my husby loves the chaos of pregnancy.

The thing I have been struggling with most is exhaustion. I work graveyard shift and switch back to day shift each week on my off days so I can take care of my kids while my husband works. This means I lose almost an entire night of sleep each week. I try to make up for it when I can or rather my body forces me to make up for it by falling asleep every time I sit down for longer than 10 minutes. I knew it would be a little more challenging this time around with my new job, but my husby is INCREDIBLY supportive and if I need a nap he will make it happen. My exhaustion also means I haven’t been working out like I had originally planned. Between getting a workout in or sleeping an extra hour I have been opting for the sleep, but I will officially be in my second trimester on Friday and am already starting to get a little bit of my energy back. WHAT A RELIEF! Producing a placenta is hard work for your body, fyi. I ordered some workout videos and have done a few the past few weeks, but not with any sort of consistency. I ordered a new workout video and a prenatal yoga video so hopefully in the next few days I will regain my motivation and get back into it. I have only gained 2lbs so I’m not concerned. I feel like sleep is far more important to my sanity in the beginning and I know I will get back into a routine as I start to feel more normal again in my 2nd trimester.

Last Thursday, January 5, I had a genetic screening which included blood work and an ultrasound. My IM is a little bit older, in her early 40s, so there is an increased risk of some

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12w6d measuring 13w0d, 6.87cm

genetic or chromosomal defects. It was not a regular appointment, just the blood draw and the ultrasound, but we got to Skype with my IM so she was able to see the ultrasound. It was a wonderful ultrasound as the baby was SUPER active. My IM even got a little wave from the baby and got to see it sucking its thumb. The measurement for down syndrome, the space on the back of the baby’s neck, appeared normal on the ultrasound which is great news!

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Hi Mom!

It always amazes me how quickly the babies grow. This little baby was measuring 1 day ahead at 13w0d and 6.87cm! It was all very exciting for my IM. Now we just have the stressful waiting period to get blood work back and find out the rest of the results.

Today I am 13w5d. I have a very obvious baby bump which I KNOW IS EARLY yet EVERYONE keeps reminding me how fast I started showing. At Christmas, a member of my husband’s family looked at me and said “wow, aren’t you only 11 weeks?” To which I had to smile and laugh it off and convince myself not to cry. I think the hardest part of pregnancy is the constant scrutiny of your appearance by every single person you talk to. You’re always either too skinny or too fat, not gaining enough weight or putting it on too quickly, or not showing fast enough or showing too soon. You hear it from family, friends, 20161230_155959co-workers, and even strangers. This is my fourth pregnancy and my last pregnancy I had twins. I got pregnant again exactly a year after the twins were born and my body’s got this. It knows what it’s doing, the baby is healthy and growing perfectly, I have had ZERO complications, and I may be carrying around a few extra pounds that make me appear slightly more pregnant than I am, but I don’t care. I LOVE showing off my pregnancy and talking about surrogacy to people. I just wish everyone respected the fact that every pregnancy and every pregnant woman is different. There is no right or wrong as long as the baby is healthy.

9 1/2 weeks

These past few weeks have been a blur! I had my birthday, my mom in town, work, Christmas shopping, surprise parties, ugly sweater parties, and support group. I have barely had time to breathe, let alone sleep or blog!

I had my second (and final) ultrasound at CCRM Tuesday December 6. My mom was in

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8w4d, baby measured 2.09cm and right on track

town and was able to come along. The baby looked perfect and was measuring right on track at 8w4d. We didn’t get to hear the heartbeat, but I was able to Skype my IM so she could see the flicker on the screen again. She seems really excited and I am so excited for

her! They did labs again and all my hormone levels came back perfectly which means I am weaning off meds!!!! I will be off meds completely December  21st which, drum roll please…., means I get to have chocolate for Christmas! I can handle no caffeine, despite working graveyards, but no chocolate has been nearly impossible.

I have officially been released to my OB. I had my first appointment with a nurse practitioner Friday December 9. I haven’t gained any weight yet, which is awesome considering I’ve been too exhausted to do any exercise. We went over all the fun dos and donts of eating and exercising. She kind of laughed at the strict rules CCRM has, but they also have a very high success rate so it was worth the added caution to get where I’m at today. I only have another week on meds and then I get to be a normal pregnant woman. She also gave me TONS of info on all the screening tests available. The bombshell was when she informed me my doctor no longer delivers at my hospital of choice. I was like….uh….WHAT???!?!?! I was a little shocked to learn this as she now mainly delivers at a hospital that is 45 minutes to 1 hour away from my house, depending on traffic, and which I know nothing about. I was a little panicked, but I knew I could discuss it at my next appointment and I had some research to do!

Tuesday, December 13, I finally got to see my doctor! She asked if it was just one this time, while giggling, and asked if I was ready to do it again. I told her I better be ready because I’m almost 10 weeks! My first question was about her not delivering at my hospital anymore. She said, for me, she would deliver there, but only if she didn’t have a patient in labor at her primary hospital. She also explained that the other hospital is her primary choice because most of the nurses have 15-20 years experience on staff and it’s more like a family where as the hospital I used on all 3 of my previous pregnancies is more like a factory. It was nice to hear her explain it that way and it made me a little more open to using the other hospital. I still have to do some research and have a backup plan for any emergencies, just in case, but I’m open to the idea. She is pretty amazing, and after delivering twin B breech to avoid a c-section with my last pregnancy, I really value her opinion and know she’s on my side.

She then started my ultrasound and although we couldn’t get Skype to function properly (I am not a big fan of its unreliability) we were able to record the ultrasound and put my IM on speaker so she could FINALLY hear the heart beat! Baby sounded perfect with a heart rate of 164 and measured 9w3d. We even got to see the baby squirming around a bit. My

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9w4d, baby measured 2.74cm and one day behind

doctor did recommend the screening tests due to my IM’s age but stated she could talk to my IM directly via telephone so as not to do the awkward speaker phone thing and that way she would have time to answer any and all questions. It was the fastest appointment I have ever had.

There’s not much to talk about when things are going smoothly, and I would like to keep it that way. Now I get to finish meds, enjoy the holidays, and I will go in for my next appointment after the new year!

 

The first ultrasound

I was wrong…those 9 days waiting for Beta were NOTHING compared to the two weeks waiting for an ultrasound! I tried to stay distracted and not think about it, but when you are, hopefully, carrying someone else’s child, it’s all you can think about.

I was mostly nervous because I wasn’t having a lot of common early pregnancy symptoms. I was exhausted, but I work 12 hour graveyard shifts, so I’m always tired. I have have little to no morning sickness, I really only feel nauseated if I overeat, I have had no breast tenderness, no spotting, no nothing…just exhaustion.

I actually started getting really nervous about a week before my ultrasound was scheduled. I didn’t think anything was wrong because I hadn’t had any cramping or bleeding, but I was worried that I hadn’t had any morning sickness because I had with all my other pregnancies. I don’t know if it was because of my crazy schedule or maybe I was just going to be lucky this time, or maybe, worst case scenario, there was no baby. Chemical Pregnancy is a real concern. I had a chemical pregnancy of my own, and another surrogate had recently had one. It was definitely at the back of my mind. I just kept counting down the days and telling myself “in (blank) days, you’ll know for sure.”  I kept focusing on not wanting to break my IM’s heart. She is absolutely amazing and I really want her to be able to have this baby!

Tuesday, November 22, finally rolled around. My IM had asked about trying to Skype during my appointment and I was worried. I was worried that if something was wrong she would need to hear from our nurse, not from me, not from my husband, and not from the ultrasound tech. I think I didn’t want to do it for me as well. I was a little selfish because I didn’t want to hear or see her heart breaking, but I downloaded the app on my phone anyway, and we went on our way to CCRM.

My husby went with my for support, especially because I was so nervous. We got into the room and asked the tech about Skype or video taping the ultrasound. CCRM doesn’t allow you to video record, which I found a little strange, but she said we could Skype after we checked things out first, just to be safe. I thought she was a genius!

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Measuring 6 weeks, 5 days, 7mm long

My heart felt like it was beating a million miles a minute as she started the ultrasound. I almost held my breath as she started moving the wand around looking for a gestational sac and finally, she found one! I took a HUGE sigh of relief and was so overjoyed for my IM!! She is going to be a mommy! There is one, healthy, happy, perfect, little baby growing inside me. The ultrasound tech did a few measurements, baby was measuring 6w5d, 1 day ahead of schedule, and the heart rate was 119, they want to see something over 100.

We did get to Skype with my IM and my husby held the phone up close to the monitor so she could see the heart flickering. It’s too early to hear anything yet, but she could see it, and all she kept saying was, “whoa.” We shared our congratulations and went to get blood20161122_144612 work and meet with our nurse. She said everything looked perfect as well and as long as labs came back normal, which they did, we would keep all med protocols the same and be back in two weeks on December 6. I was so relieved and beyond excited! (Although I was a little sad it wasn’t twins again…maybe next journey.)

I took the ultrasound pictures to work to show off. I had told all my fellow dispatchers, and a select few officers, but I was so excited to share with everyone. I had gone to briefing Sunday night and my Sergeant teased me about having nothing to contribute and I had told him I would have something soon, because I was hoping I would have good news to share. When it came to my turn at briefing I was excited to announce I had something important, but not work related to share, and my Sergeant was intrigued. It happened to be a rather full briefing as we had the swings sergeant, an officer from the power shift and a rider in the room in addition to my usual team, but I wanted to share anyway. I held up the ultrasound picture and let everyone absorb it for a second and then announced “yes, I am pregnant and it’s not my husband’s.” They all kind of laughed uncomfortably and then just looked at me. One of the officers who knew what was going on said I probably shouldn’t lead with that because it makes me sound like a …you know. Anyway, I laughed about it and explained I was a surrogate for the second time and the twins had just turned one. They were all super supportive and the swings sergeant said, “Man. It’s one thing to make someone’s banana bread, but this…good for you.” It made my night.

Today, I am 7 weeks pregnant with one happy little baby. I had a fantastic Thanksgiving and my birthday is next week. I have much to celebrate this holiday season, as does my IM.

 

The longest 9 days

Patience is a virtue….right? Unless you’re waiting the LONG 9 days between transfer and a blood test to find out if the transfer took and you are pregnant, then it’s Mount Everest and you’re standing at the bottom with two broken legs. There is a LOT of waiting in surrogacy, it’s kind of a theme.

I knew I wanted to take a home pregnancy test (hpt) because I am NOT a patient person. I asked my IM if she wanted to know and she said no, and then to let her think about it and she would let me know… she never let me know, so I assumed she didn’t want to know.

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5dp5dt

I took 4 pregnancy tests! (Impatient, I told you!) I started Monday, 5 days after transfer. I knew it was early, but I did it anyway because I was curious and I had been so exhausted. It was positive, a very faint positive, but nonetheless positive! We call it a “squinter.” I was ecstatic! I wanted to tell my IM so so so badly, but I resisted and tried to respect her wishes. It was difficult! I am not good with secrets.

I waited 2 days to retest and again got a very faint positive. I was, honestly, a little disappointed. I was hoping the results would be a little more obvious like they were in my first journey, but I had to remind myself that I had two babies in there the first time, and that EVERY JOURNEY IS DIFFERENT!

I think we forget that very important fact as surrogates. We forget that each of our own pregnancies were different. We forget that these are IVF babies and our bodies had to be prepared with a magic concoction of hormones provided by the fertility clinics. We forget how much time and effort goes into making us the best little baby growing machines out there. We forge

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7dp5dt

t that in normal life most of us wouldn’t have a clue we were pregnant yet. We get so excited for ourselves to be pregnant again and for our IPs to become parents. Mostly, it’s just hard to have no control.

I was discouraged and impatient, but it was there, I was pregnant, according to my pee on a stick. I had used up the box (only bought a two pack because I was in complete denial of my impatience). I thought I would be able to wait 2 more days until Beta with no problems, but I was WRONG!

The next day my husby and I were driving around and I decided I wanted more pregnancy tests. Some of the other surrogates had mentioned pink dye tests showing up a little darker and I wanted to test that idea! We went to the dollar store and I bought

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8dp5dt

two more tests. (I mean they were only a dollar!)

I retested again on Thursday, twice, and still got faint positives. I decided that was enough and I would wait one more day until Beta. It was still so difficult not to tell my IM!

Friday morning I went in around 8:30. My IM had texted that she was with me in spirit and I know she was more nervous than me because she didn’t know about the pregnancy tests! We didn’t have to wait long for results and before noon we knew we were pregnant with a Beta of 120.3! My IM was so thrilled, as was I. The nurse let me know my hormone levels, as well, and asked me to come in on Sunday for my second beta to make sure my hcg levels were rising. I get to increase my PIO to one full unit and my suppositories to 3x a day. I Am obviously thrilled about those. I confessed my impatience to my IM and she confessed her mom had been stalking my blog for hints, we

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8dp5dt

agreed to chat again on Sunday after results.

Sunday morning I again went in around 8:30 and had another blood draw. We again got the results quickly. They were hoping for a rise of at least 53%, my second beta was 279.5 which is 132% increase! I got to call and tell my IM the good news! She was, again, thrilled and told me congratulations and I told her congratulations back!

We received the official pregnancy letter from CCRM with an expected due date of July 14, my youngest daughter’s birthday, and the next steps. I will have my first ultrasound November 22 at 6.5 weeks pregnant  and another December 6 at 8.5 weeks pregnant.

Now we wait for my pregnancy symptoms to get worse, or better depending on how you look at it. I’ve definitely been exhausted lately, but I work graveyards so I’m always tired. I also have morning sickness, increased sense of smell, breast tenderness, and more exhaustion to look forward to, but I can honestly say I am looking forward to every single one of those symptoms.

Transfer

I worked overnight October 25 until 6am October 26. I went home and was able to get about 30 minutes of sleep before my husby dropped me off for breakfast with my IM. She had flown in the night before and was planning to leave right after transfer.

We met for breakfast at 8am, talked and talked and talked, she’s amazing by the way, and got to know each other a little better. She then drove me to CCRM for 9:30 check in. Our ConceiveAbilities  case manager met us there as well. She offered hugs, warm wishes, and sticky thoughts.

After a quick blood draw and some signatures from my IM we were taken upstairs to prepare for transfer. We were both excited and nervous and ready! The nurse came in to have me change and make me take my giant Valium. I was able to chat a little more with my IM before they came in to do my acupuncture. I  was exhausted and so relaxed that I fell asleep. I am discovering I really enjoy acupuncture.

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One perfect little embryo

After about 20 mins, they were ready for transfer. My husby showed up just in time, however he had received a call from school they my eldest daughter had thrown up and needed to be picked up. He was able to stay for transfer and my IM offered to give me a ride home.

They rolled the little embryo in on an incubator and allowed my IM to take a few pictures. They did an ultrasound to check how full my bladder was, but it was a little low despite me sipping water since breakfast. This only meant she had to push pretty hard to get a good picture of my uterus for transfer.

Transfer is not the most comfortable thing in the world, it’s very similar to getting a PAP done, speculum and all. They use a little tiny needle that looks like a straw to pick up the embryo and put it gently in your uterus. There is a tiny air bubble that can be seen on the ultrasound to show things have been moved. They double check to make sure the embryo is no longer in the needle and that’s it. We transferred one perfect little embryo in what felt like 10 seconds.

My nurse came in to discuss my daughter being sick. She wanted us separated completely and was hoping I had somewhere else to stay or someone who could take my daughter while I was on bedrest, but unfortunately that was not the case. The main concern was fever because if I develop a fever, my body would reject the embryo completely and that was the last thing I wanted.

During my second round of acupuncture, in which I fell asleep again, my IM and nurse discussed our situation a little more.  We decided it was best for me to stay in a hotel while on bedrest. I have to admit I was a little bummed because my husby had taken the time off in hopes we would get some time together because we work opposite night shifts and have little to no time awake together.It was especially hard because they didn’t want him to even come visit me just in case.

My IM’s mom had frantically been calling around to try to get us a room, my IM was staying too, and had changed her flight to the next afternoon. She was able to find us a hotel close to my house so my husby could bring me a change of clothes, a toothbrush, and all my meds. He even brought me dinner for the evening.

I mostly just slept the next two days away. My IM flew out the next morning so a friend and another amazing employee of ConceiveAbilities brought me some snacks and dinner to get me by. I also watched a few movies and some junk tv. Ithe was tough, especially because they want you mostly horizontal and not sitting up more than 45° except to use the bathroom.

I was bored, and lonely, and bummed because it was not how I had planned, but I understood and everytime my IM apologized I simply reminded her I was here for her. This little embryo will hopefully make itself at home and soon be her little baby. She has every right to want to give it the best shot possible!

The past few days I have been exhausted. All  I want to do is sleep. I am staying hopeful, but also trying to prepare myself just in case . First Beta is Friday and we will know if this little one decided to camp out or not!

 

Giant Needles

Due to my underwhelming lining at my first monitoring appointment, I had another appointment Monday the 17th. Thankfully, the little blue pills were helping! My lining was up to 9.2mm (needed to be >6) and my estradiol was at 206 (needed to be >200.)

I had another monitoring appointment Thursday the 20th. Things were perfect in preparation for transfer! Lining was at 10mm (needed to be 8-12), estradiol was at 2106 (anything >300 is good with no max), and progesterone was 0.22 (needed to be <1). We got an email from the nurse titled “Ready, Set, Transfer”. It was also my last Lupron injection!

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These are all my fun pills. The little blue and the GIANT white are both vaginal suppositories

October 21 I had the pleasure of starting Endometrin (vaginal suppositories), Medrol, Doxycycline, and PIO (the butt shots!) The needle is HUGE and it’s intramuscular, ouch! This time around, my husband has a little practice under his belt so they don’t hurt quite as much. (Like a DART!) I’m not using the ice pack before the shot and it seems to be helping because I’m not getting lumps anymore.

I had one final blood draw yesterday, but everything still looked perfect! We are set for transfer at 11am on Wednesday the 26th!

My IM is ecstatic, and so am I. She is flying out Tuesday night and will fly back home after transfer. I’m kind of bummed we won’t get to spend more

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Giant needle

time together, but we’re already planning to meet for breakfast (assuming I can figure out child care), she will be there with me for transfer, and we are going to be wearing lucky Chucks!

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Progesterone in Oil (PIO)

Now we just wait these last two days, continue all my meds, and hope everything still looks perfect on Wednesday!

The other little blue pill

I had my first monitoring appointment yesterday, and things didn’t go exactly as I had hoped. My lining was a little thin, only 3.5mm, but did have a triple pattern, and my estradiol was 39 but should be around 50.

This was expected, sort of, because Mother Nature took her sweet time in getting Aunt Flo to arrive, but was still a little disappointing. As surrogates we are always shocked and upset when something happens or doesn’t go as planned because, for most of us, we haven’t had any problems in the past. We sometimes forget that life happens and we really have very limited control over this whole process. My IM is still amazing, of course, and doesn’t seem concerned if the transfer has to get pushed back a few days. She is so laid back and positive and supportive. We are very lucky to have her!

20161014_203413My situation is not the end of the world. I just have to add another medication, I mean I’m already taking so many, what is one more?? This one, however, is a little blue pill that can be taken orally or vaginally called Estrace. I am SO LUCKY because I get to take it vaginally, YAY! (can you sense my sarcasm?) It’s really not so bad compared to the other suppositories which are HUGE. I will have to do a side by side comparison once I start taking the others.

Anyway, this should help to correct both issues from my monitoring appointment and will hopefully get things on track to maintain a transfer date of October 26. They have scheduled another appointment for Monday October 17 to see if the pill is helping and we will just go from there. CCRM is pretty amazing and they obviously know what they’re doing, so I believe this will help.  Only 12 more days to transfer!

 

Shots, shots, and more shots. (And not the alcoholic kind)

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The wonderful med kit

I started my Lupron shots last week so things are really starting to move forward. These shots are a piece of cake or 💉=🍰 as my IM put it in emoji form. We are getting excited and counting down the days until transfer. Less than 3 weeks left! My IM insisted I could call to yell at her anytime I gave myself a shot and it hurt. I have yet to yell.

Surrogacy is the ONLY time anyone ever gets excited for their Aunt Flo to show up. It’s also when she decides to be extremely LATE to the party! I was supposed to start on Tuesday and not even a hint that she was on her way by Thursday. I knew it would be a little off because I was on birth control for two weeks then off for a (sort of) period and then back on for two weeks and now off again to get things moving. She most likely just got confused and lost. Anyone know how to get her a GPS?

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Lupron needle on the left, PIO (butt shots) on the right

I emailed my nurse because I was a little concerned that my period was so late. They decided to bring me in for an ultrasound and labs the following day, Friday, just to see what was going on. I was so nervous because I was terrified something was wrong or it would completely throw off the calendar. They told me my lining was thin…ish. It wasn’t so thin that they could just say skip it and go straight to the next meds, but it also wasn’t thick enough to say just give it a few days. She needed to wait for my labs to come back and talk to the doctor to know anything for sure. This was not the greatest news ever. I mean it wasn’t the worst, but I was still in limbo until my labs came back. At this point I still hadn’t said anything to my IM because there is no point telling her “hey, I have no idea what’s going on.” My AMAZING nurse said she would send an email to all of us, myself, my IM, and my case manager, as soon as she knew what the new plan was.

I got an email from my nurse at 4:47pm. My lining was 4.6mm (medium), estradiol was 89 (good), progesterone 6.1 (high), and LH was 1.3 (going back down after surge). Which meant my stupid, and fashionably late, Aunt Flo was on her way so we just had to wait it out, which meant transfer could possibly be delayed.

I was devastated and frustrated and confused and emotional. Knowing it was coming did provide a little relief because I was FREAKING OUT! My cycle is very regular and I had been on the patch for months prior and I could almost time it to the hour of starting. I don’t know if it was just the chaos of going on and off birth control or if it was stress related or what, but I was unprepared for this little speed bump. Your first thought is always of your IPs. I felt terrible that I may be delaying this process any further. My IM has waited a long time for this and I’m sure being so close is agonizing. I felt like I was disappointing her a little bit, but she is INCREDIBLE. She sent me a text message “…just a quick text to say will go with the flow! Or let the flow go with you.” HAHAHA. It put a smile on my face and helped me relax a little.

Today I had my monthly support group and talked about my current issues and how excited I had been to transfer on the twins 1st birthday, but apparently that was the kick start mother nature needed. (I guess she doesn’t like people talking bad about her behind her back!) So I immediately sent a, very relieved, email to my IM and nurse and we got EXCELLENT news, we will be able to keep the same transfer date! They changed my med schedule up just a bit and it will all still depend on my lining checks, but I am cautiously optimistic.

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A small fraction of the total number of needles I will use

Anyway. Now that my least favorite relative has decided to show her ugly face I will begin the new meds. I am not looking forward to the vaginal suppositories because, frankly, they are disgusting. I will take the butt shots over the suppositories any day. The only downside to the butt shots is the GIANT needle, but I think my husby has finally figured out the proper technique so they will be far less painful this go around. The patches are also not the greatest because they leave this terrible sticky residue on your skin that is nearly impossible to get off. BUT, it is all still worth it. Every single pokey, sticky, disgusting second is worth it.

Legal Clearance

Yesterday we received official legal clearance and are good to set a transfer date. We can now begin the countdown and my IM can start to get genuinely excited! The twins will turn 1 on October 26, and I will be starting a second journey.

Legal took a bit longer than expected, but there was a bit of a delay only because my attorney is very busy and we had to book a consultation a few weeks out. Once we reviewed our contract and had a few questions answered the rest went extremely quickly.

After we received “official” legal clearance, our case manager sent out a congratulatory email to all of us which included our contact info so we can FINALLY communicate directly. We had sent a few emails back and forth through our case manager, but it’s always a relief to be able to ask your IPs a question and just check in with them from time to time, especially when you’re waiting for something to happen.

Shortly after we were cleared, we received a very sweet email from my IM about how excited she is. We are, of course, just as excited. She shared how she’s not normally a “crier” but we may have to bear through some tears with her. I, on the other hand, am most definitely a crier, and will happily share any and all tears with her. We know this is an emotional rollercoaster and expect her to have lots of mixed emotions and questions.

I’m excited for a completely different second journey. I will get to share all the “firsts” with my IM. First ultrasound, first heartbeat, first gender reveal, and the first time she will get to hold her new baby and be a mommy. I’m looking forward to having a whole new experience because it will make this journey just as special as my first surrogacy.

Now we are just hoping the next six weeks fly by. We will be anxiously awaiting my meds (the only time I will EVER be excited about receiving a bunch of needles) and hoping things go smoothly in preparation for transfer!

Six weeks and counting….

 

Medical Workup

Last Friday I had my medical workup for round two! It was much more timely and a much shorter day than I remember from the last time. From start to finish was only about 3 hours this go around.

I had an ultrasound and Doppler first where they checked to make sure my uterus, ovaries, and blood-flow looked normal. I was told everything looked “beautiful”. It’s hard to accept any compliments centered around your uterus, so having a “beautiful” uterus is….good? Um, thanks? Every ultrasound I had during my last surrogacy the techs told me the same thing. I mean, it’s a little awkward, right? Is that just the choice word these ladies use to help make us surrogates feel more comfortable? You’re up there on the table, your butt hanging off the edge, your feet up in stirrups, and the ultrasound tech all up in your business with the internal wand and they tell you “your uterus looks beautiful.” Hey, a compliment’s a compliment and I will gladly accept and say thanks, but maybe next time buy me a drink first? (Non-alcoholic, of course!)

Next, both husby and I had to leave a urine sample and get some blood drawn, although I had to have like 10 millions viles drawn and he only had to do 3. We shared some wonderful “that’s what she said” jokes with the phlebotomist who was quite a good sport. We then sat down and had a condensed consultation with the nurse in charge of my case. She basically just updated us on changes since we have done this before. I was happy to learn there are less suppositories now and a lower does of PIO to begin with!!

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All the wonderful tools and objects that will be used for my exam

We then went right to the hysteroscopy. This, ladies and gentlemen, is AWKWARD in every way you could imagine. We walk in to a cold, sterile room and on the counter on the far side of the room is a tray full of wonderful objects they are going to use during my examination, not to mention the giant scope that is going to go places no scope should go.

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“The Scope”

This time I have to get completely naked and put on the most interesting paper gown you will ever see. It looks like one of those crazy outfits you would see in a fashion show that no one would actually EVER wear in public, except it’s bright pink and made of tissue paper. I was definitely the most sexy person in the room, just sayin’.

The doc came in and introduced himself and got right to work. I had a breast exam, while my husby was present, a PAP, which my husby DID NOT watch, and then the ever wonderful hysteroscopy. He warned me it would make strange bubbling noises and assured me it was the machine, but oh man, I was unprepared for my ridiculous, uncontrollable, and immature giggling that would accompany the noise. Seriously….I was like a teenage boy laughing at a fart joke. It was ridiculous and embarrassing, but at least it kept me distracted. After I got redressed, we had a short chat with the doctor, basically the same as the nurse, where he reminded us of all the risks and made sure we didn’t have any new questions.

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Still smiling, despite knowing what is about to happen.

Next was a meeting with a psychologist to make sure we really wanted to do this again and to make sure there are no red flags, like serious financial or marital problems, and that there is no risk of us developing an attachment or having trouble giving the baby/babies back at the end of the journey. We have been through this all before, so we were not worried. I took one last PAI test, and that was it.

I received a DELICIOUS box of toffee from my IM as a thank you for medical workup. She is far too kind, and after 3 days with no caffeine (including chocolate!) it was hard not to consume the entire box in one sitting! We are now back in the waiting game and are just awaiting test results, but like I said, we’ve done this before and nothing has changed so we are not worried. We are, however, excited to be moving forward and are beginning to count down the days until transfer!