Babies on Board.

Hello, everyone! It has been a very long time since I’ve updated this blog, and for that I apologize. I never wanted to get too busy to share this journey with those of you that have expressed interest, and I did just that. Too much “life-ing” in this house lately. Now that my children have both had a bout of the stomach flu, a sprinkle of ear infections here and there, and the seasonal flu (thanks for nothing, flu shots!), I feel that I can safely take on this project again. In short, thank you for your continued support over social media, in person, and over the phone. I am writing this particular blog with the help of my newly acquired tenants… the TWINS! Yes, I am pregnant with TWINS! I am sure almost all of you know that at this point, but just in case… I am pregnant with TWINS! Can you tell I’m excited? My embryo transfer was successful, and J and M will be expecting boy girl twins by the summer of 2018! I am going to do a considerable amount of backtracking, and dragging you through both past and present parts of my journey thus far. I hope that you will enjoy reading about this experience from my point of view, and I encourage commentary or questions, should you have any.

He held my hand.

 I laid there on an exam table, my heart pounding out of my chest, and reminded myself to breathe. I was finally to the biggest moment of this journey, second only to the birth I was hopeful to experience should this transfer “take.” Around my bedside stood nurses, an embryologist, and of course, Dr. B, the doctor overseeing my embryo transfer. They were like dancers in a ballet performance; flawless beyond measure. For a moment so monumental in terms of our “timeline to baby”, it was relatively anticlimactic. The entire procedure lasted about ten minutes. Upon our arrival to the clinic, I was given a Valium to help with my mental relaxation, which in turn would relax my uterus. I was told to arrive with full bladder, and so in true overachiever fashion, I drank enough water to burst my pregnancy destroyed bladder, and had to empty it twice before the procedure could take place. Dr. B came into my check in room, and briefed us all on the procedure itself, and the condition of the embryos. “The embryo’s are as close to perfect as they can get. I am very hopeful that because of that, we will see success from todays procedure.” Dr. B announced with a smile. “We’ll be finishing up our setup and coming to get you shortly.” he said as he left room.

A few short minutes later, two nurses entered my room and told us they’d be taking us back for the transfer now. J and M both decked out in blue surgical scrubs, trailed happily behind my bed as I was wheeled out of the safety of my check in room, and into the “baby arena” so to speak.  It was dark, but not cold and formidable like I’d imagined it would be. Happy faces of both Dr. B, and the rest of the staff members assisting with the transfer greeted us with warm smiles as my bed was wheeled into place in the back corner of the room. To the right of my bed hanging on the wall, was a TV with the image of both of the embryos proudly displayed upon it. Many if not most of us never see our children in this very early embryonic stage, it was truly incredible.I can’t imagine what J and M were feeling, but I know that for myself, I was awestruck. Warm and fuzzy from my Valium party favor, I tried to listen as instructions and details were explained to me by Dr. B. Two of the nurses removed the middle piece of the bed, my legs were placed into stirrups of sorts, the embryos were loaded into a thin catheter, and before I knew it, the embryologist and Dr. B were inserting the embryos into my uterus. I watched on a small ultrasound machine as the catheter was placed in the perfect spot, and the embryos were deposited safely where they would hopefully thrive for the next nine months.

I felt nothing. No pain, no moment of, “I felt them being placed”, nothing. It was no more uncomfortable than a pelvic exam, (if you can imagine one that takes about 5 times longer than its supposed to), and besides my own voice that said, “you’re in a room with a bunch of people with your vagina on full display…and you are NOT giving birth” I wasn’t ever truly “uncomfortable.” While I have made it all seem rather “emotionless” at this point, I would like to point out, that it was anything but that. About an hour before the transfer, J and M gifted me a beautiful diamond bracelet. Not just any diamond bracelet, but one with two diamonds on either side. Diamonds that J and M said were to represent the “jiggle of two heartbeats, one for each baby.” As the procedure started, I felt J’s hand find mine and grip it tightly. My new diamond bracelet, the reminder of what this was all about, dancing on my wrist between us.  J held tightly to me for the entire procedure as M, who was placed just behind J, smiled on lovingly. I was now reminding myself to at once, breathe, not pee on the table (my bladder was insanely full, AGAIN) and to not cry, because I was completely overcome with love and emotion. I am a firm believer of the saying, “beauty is in the details” and I lay there with a full heart, full bladder, and now, full womb, I knew I’d just seen the depth of how far the beauty of humanity can reach

After the embryos were transferred safely, I was covered back up and wheeled back into my check in room where I had the strict instruction to lay flat for one hour. Dr. B who had obviously just spent some one on one time with my bladder, said to me, “if you get even more uncomfortable, I’ll have the nurse bring you in a bedpan.” He left the room, and took any shred of dignity I had left with him. Just kidding, but really a bedpan? I could hold it the rest of my life before I’d ever do that! J, M, Stephanie (who had accompanied me to Portland), and I all talked with excitement about the procedure, and about the future ahead of us. We spoke of the twins with certainty and positivity, as if we knew they would be “sticking it out.” After and hour of laying still, sharing our good news with family and on social media, and talking about the future, it was time to get dressed and get wheeled over to the hotel we were staying at across the street. Steph followed me into the bathroom where we laughed about my bright red, “Valium face” and marveled at how “full” my bladder really was. I was now in the 48 hour period of bedrest, a moment I looked forward to almost as much as the transfer itself. I had big plans for sleeping, binge watching Netflix, and truly enjoying the silence of not having to be “mom” for the next 48 hours. It was great… until like 4 hours in when I couldn’t nap, couldn’t figure out how to get the netflix to work, and felt my ass going numb from laying in the same spot for too long. “So this is the Good life I have freely referenced, asked for as a gift for Christmas, and sometimes longed for?” I thought to myself. BORING! I would take Moana, Pb&J, and all the diaper changes and laundry in the world over 48 hours of bed rest, EVER AGAIN! Steph and I survived that first day by humor, room service, kit kat bars, and Law and Order SVU. By day two, the irritation of not being able to get up, coupled with extreme cabin fever, left us both on edge.

M came down early in the morning to spend some time with us before his flight back to Seattle left. We chatted about the babies, mostly, and talked tech stuff before he gave us the biggest silver lining of our term in solitary… he got the Chromecast to work on the TV! We could watch Netflix! Oh the possibilities! As M left for the airport, a pajama clad J, arrived to take his place. Maybe you’ve heard the expression, “ride or die” before, maybe not. Either way, J was my A1 from day 1. ( J if you’re reading this, I haven’t forgotten you don’t like condiments) We sat in our jammies in the same spots most of the day watching crappy tv, eating donuts and pizza, and just watching the time pass us by. J left for a few hours to do some work in the mid afternoon, which gave Steph and I time to complete some necessary snap chat tomfoolery, play several games of UNO, and drink hot tea as the rainy Portland afternoon turned to night. I’d never spent this much time away from my kids, and while I knew they were in good hands, I sorely missed the grind of “mom life” that waited for me back in Colorado. As the end of my bed rest period came to a close, Steph, J and I finalized plans for what would be our last meal together the next morning before we all returned home. The next morning, we joined J at the hotel restaurant for breakfast and goodbyes. As long as my last two days seemed to feel, I suddenly couldn’t believe we were already going back home. We said our goodbyes, and as J left for the airport, Steph and I set out to enjoy the only sliver of sunshine we’d see on this trip to Portland.

We walked through downtown, enjoying every step of our newly acquired physical freedom, and searched for a place to get something for the kids. Naturally, we ended up at Target… you know, because we don’t have 10 of them within 30 minutes of us back home. We marveled like a bunch of simpletons at the experience of our first tri-level Target. We traipsed through the aisles, as if they could ever be unfamiliar, and selected things that just screamed PORTLAND! We got Charlie and Benjamin a Pua and Hei Hei stuffed animal (I told you we missed Moana) and Lucy a my little pony toy. We were real originals. Steph and I did take note of just how well these Portlander-s seemed to wear hats of all varieties, and so of course we found ourselves perusing the hat section (likely the same selection we’d have at home) for our very own Portland hats. We quickly found what we wanted, and proceeded to the checkout where they gave us a PAPER, not PLASTIC bag (they are oddly eco-friendly in the stores out here), and then headed to the downstairs Starbucks to continue our unashamed version of, “basics do Portland.”

Overpriced staple coffees in hand, we began making our way back to the hotel. Distraction and excitement got the best of us along the way, and we found ourselves standing inside of a cute little bake shop. Portland is a lot like Denver before Denver started to suck. If you’ve lived in Denver most of your life, or you are a native like myself, you fully understand what I mean when I say that Denver is a far cry from what it once was. Not just the city limits of Denver itself, but all of Colorado. Portland was like a trip back in time for me… there weren’t fifty Starbucks and McDonald’s all stacked up within the same two-mile stretch. There wasn’t a single familiar restaurant name, or even the sight of a Wal-Mart anywhere to be found. Portland was cool, refined of big box corporations and chains, yet decidedly unpretentious. So there we stood in this mom and pop bake shop, drinking our chain coffees with extra room for guilt, in awe that such a thing was still in existence. We picked out a mini cupcake each, and excitedly went through all of the “local” merchandise they had for sale. I saw two miniature handmade cards that both displayed a sweet image celebrating a new baby, and knew I had to have them for my newly acquired surro-babes. I’d end up keeping the cards in my wallet until well after our first confirmation ultrasound, then I’d write each baby a message inside the card that they would hopefully have forever in a baby book somewhere. For my own children, I had written them each a letter before they were born. I had the thought that after I was gone, they’d always have a piece of my handwriting and my heart with them. I know these babies are not mine, but I will always love them, and so they deserve no less. After our lovely, freeing outing through downtown Portland, we headed back to the hotel, rounded up our things, and got an Uber to the airport. We were ready to be home, and back in the mix of our kids and jobs.

Backtracking.

I figured I’d sucker you in with the story of the transfer before I dragged you through the back story of why my writing has been on hiatus. About two months before the embryo transfer, and one day after the most ridiculously fun, and insanely expensive birthday celebration for Lucy and my nephew Jack, Casey called me early in the afternoon to tell me he’d be home within a few minutes. I was at a birthday party for my friends baby girl at the time, but quickly rounded up the kids to head home to see Casey. As we sat around the table in our party wasted oblivion, I jokingly said to Casey, “are you home early because they finally fired you?” Casey looked up at me, not a smile to be found and said, “actually they did.” It was like falling backwards off of a skyscraper. I hit the ground hard, but it somehow it didn’t kill me. I knew that this was eventual when Casey had taken this job a few months back. Casey followed a good friend on this new adventure, and when his friend was fired almost immediately after Casey had started, I warned him that he would likely be next. The owners of this restaurant have a reputation of hire and fire that they are seemingly quite proud of. Casey and his friend had both separately referenced commentary made by the more volatile of the two owners, in which she had jokingly expressed how necessary it was to fire her staff to keep the restaurant thriving. The reputation I speak of is one that anyone in this industry can freely speak to, but somehow, I hoped it would be different for Casey.

Casey earned the respect and praises of the staff and owners quickly, getting bonuses based purely on his cool, calm, and collected method of running a kitchen. Our kids were thrilled to have him home every night for dinner and bed, and still be able to enjoy him for two full days off a week. Our “new” life was a far cry different from the 60+ hour work week he worked at his other job, a week so taxing, that the kids often saw him for one hour each day, and got to spend little time with him otherwise. I think jaded is what we were. I knew, and I told him, but we didn’t care enough to see the bigger picture. We were so busy enjoying being a family, soaking up the new abundance of time we’d never had together, that we put off in our minds what would be eventual. Almost immediately after his unfortunate fate was shared with us, I found myself on the phone telling the managers at the restaurant I’d been a waitress at for years, that I would work literally whatever they could give me. My waitress job had purely been “play and grocery money” for us, so loosing Casey’s income was huge blow. I had a 40 hour work week ten minutes after finding out Casey had lost his job, and while I was grateful to have it, my heart broke into a million tiny pieces at the thought of being away from my kids.

Casey and I had decided early on after I gave birth to Lucy that daycare was not something we were interested in. The thought of someone else raising our children while we toiled away at work just to afford the childcare seemed ridiculous. We decided that I would stay home with the kids, waitress very part-time, while Casey worked full-time. If you’re reading this and think in any way that I look down on daycare parents, think again. I was a nanny for a million years before I ever had my own children. I was for a large portion of my life, the third-party raising someone else’s kids. I enjoyed every minute with those other little ones, but I always felt that it was something I could never personally do. We knew money would be tight, but we didn’t care. It is just money after all, memories are not so freely changed as money can be. I hadn’t worked 40 hours since I was about 39 weeks pregnant with Lucy. I knew I’d be exhausted, we often walk a minimum of five miles in any given serving shift, not to mention the lifting, and constant conversation that is also the norm for this job. What I didn’t expect, was the emotional rollercoaster I’d be on as I battled my own demons. I found myself in a parking lot crying to my mom after just accepting the offer of a newly free shift, and telling her, “I can’t even believe I’m crying! There are tons of women who go to work everyday leaving their babies behind, I have a job… what a thing to be sad about!” My mom smoothed out all the wrinkles with ease as she often does, and told me, “you’re doing what you have to do for your family. It won’t be forever, and you’d be lying to yourself if you said you felt any different.”

Armed with my mothers wisdom, and giant cups of iced coffee, I set out every morning leaving behind the only normal my kids and I had ever known. I hugged Lucy five or six times before leaving, kissing away the sadness in her voice when she’d say, “you’re going to work, again?” After my first week of being back full-time, the kids started to adjust, and it became less painful to watch Charlie’s big brown eyes follow my car out of the driveway, longingly, each morning. People would say things like, “why doesn’t Casey just do this job, or that…” like they couldn’t understand that not just any job would work. Casey needed the stability that came with a salary, and the insurance that came with guaranteed hours. I make damn good money waiting tables, always have, and so until he found something that matched or came close to the money I could make, it wasn’t worth it for our family financially. Thankfully, after four weeks, Casey was able to go back to his old job after explaining what had happened where he went, they were thrilled to have him back. Our family image slowly morphed back into what it was a few months prior, though all of us having experienced the greener grass on the other side, felt a void grow and settle in our house once more.

What it means to be “stabbed in the back”

Often times when people hear that I am a surrogate either by my own mouth, or the mouths of others, their first comment is in regards to the financial end of things. “Oh, you must be getting paid TONS to do that, right?” I have said before and will always say again, yes, the money is nice, but it is by no means the sole reason this experience was one I chose for myself. My back f**king hurts. I’m sitting here a few weeks out from having done my last shot, and I can still see about nine million needle pricks where the injections went daily. Considering that I did roughly 120 injections from September 11th-early December, I know that I cannot have unreasonable expectations about when my body will return to what it once was.

I started the injections with a relatively painless, small gauge, thin (and trust me that MATTERS) injectable called, “Lupron.” Lupron is responsible for putting the body into a menopause like state, by way of suppressing my ovaries. I have laughed at my mother and coworkers when I watch them fan themselves, out of nowhere, like they’re in the middle of the Sahara Desert. I can tell all of you after having gone through this, that I will NEVER laugh again. Ever. The shit isn’t funny. I didn’t feel much in terms of side effects from the Lupron, except that I was F-ing HOT! It would come over me like a wave… imagine the scene in that god awful movie with Hilary Swank, “The Core”, I think it’s called? Anyway, they send one member of their vessel out on a death mission to fix their rig, consequently, he dies from exposure to the EXTREME heat radiating from the core of the earth. This friends, is what Lupron is capable of. Unlike our friend in “The Core” who met his untimely demise, I came, I saw, I drank a shitload of ice water. The Lupron was truly the least of my concern, knowing this, I never took it for granted.. even if I was HOT!

Next we introduced delestrogen. A viscous liquid, that came with two sets of needles, one purely for extracting it from the vile. Delestrogen did not feel great, and almost immediately made my injection sites sore. It really is akin to pushing cement into your back… slow, steady, and a pain in the ass. Shortly to follow the delestrogen, came progesterone. Progesterone is the black sheep of the family, allow me to explain. Progesterone comes in as this mildly thick liquid, not as thick as delestrogen, and goes in relatively smoothly. Progesterone wears a nice suit and tie, but is a slime ball underneath it all. The family member everyone loves to hate, if you will. I did everything I was supposed to do… I massaged the area afterward, lived on a heating pad every single night, and rotated sites and sides. God bless Stephanie, for she had the unfortunate fate of doing ALL of my intramuscular injections. ALL OF THEM. The pain in my lower back became so extreme, that I couldn’t wear anything except workout gear. I hate jeans, so I relished in this necessary need for comfort, but looking like a slob everyday got old fast. I developed knots from the progesterone that were so prominent, that I felt them with literally every step I took. Remind me again that the money alone makes this worth it, and I will throat punch you.

The veins in my arms had started to rebel too; blood draws that used to go quickly took multiple stabs, then took FOREVER to fill the necessary requirements for hormone level testing. My body was so sick of being a pin cushion, that I would literally dance away from Steph every night the minute I heard the needle be uncapped. Fortunately, and due in no small part to the fact that we both lack experience in playing nurse, Steph brushed a nerve on my left side doing an injection one night, and for the next month I remained GRATEFULLY numb. If you’re cringing, don’t be… remember when I said beauty was in the details? There you have it. I know that was a very in-depth venting session about needles, but I am trying to paint a picture for you. The next not so lovely medication we introduced was more progesterone… three times a day, by way of vaginal suppository. I think it is a normal human reaction to make a disgusted face and feel sick to ones stomach upon hearing the word, “suppository.” The suppositories were not painful in the slightest, but they were disgusting for a variety of reasons you can think of on your own. As a mother of two, I don’t remember what it’s like to go to the bathroom alone, let alone not have a comment made about going to the bathroom, while I’m in the bathroom. People with small children, get at me. “Mom, why is pee different colors?” “Mom, why does pee sound different?” You get it. Well, imagine the horror on my bathroom guests face when I introduced suppositories into the mix. “Um, MOM… What is THAT THING?” Lucy asked me this question literally every time she saw me “setting it up” the first week. Lucy was reassured when I told her it was medicine for the babies in my tummy, but still looked at me with a side eye every time. The suppositories were so unpleasant, that I’d of gladly increased my liquid injection of progesterone to avoid them. I counted down the days until I got my pregnancy confirmation, a day I was hopeful would bring a change to my medications calendar.

107 & 117

I won’t ever be able to forget what my kids first heart rates were at their confirmation ultrasounds. Lucy’s was 156, and Charlie’s was 180. On the morning of November 13th, Baby A’s heart sang to us a melody with a pitch of 117, while baby B followed at a beautiful 107. Everything you read on Dr. Google tells you that seeing a heartbeat, let alone HEARING a heartbeat at six weeks is NOT something you should expect. I was six weeks and three days pregnant when I heard their hearts beat; something they’d only just become capable of doing. M was in town on business, and fortunately, had time to break away for this very special appointment. Tears ran down my face as the ultrasound tech pointed out the little flicker on the screen telling us they had, “good strong heartbeats.” M’s smile was huge, which of course made the tears just stream down my cheeks. We transferred two babies on October 18th, and here we were seeing the results of all of the hard work we’d committed to.  One baby would’ve been considered a success, but both babies surviving… well that’s a modern-day miracle.

A week after my embryo transfer, I experienced SLIGHT bleeding. Bleeding in pregnancy is always a red flag to anyone expecting, but especially in my case. I immediately emailed my IVF coordinator, K, and inquired with desperation, about my new symptoms. K wrote me back immediately, telling me that spotting and bleeding are EXTREMELY common with IVF patients, and that as long as it remained mild, it wasn’t a big deal. To me, it felt like the grateful feeling you have after three or more uninterrupted hours of sleep with a newborn. I felt reassured, but I also felt the situation could still be untrustworthy. I was out shopping with Casey, but I knew when I got home that I’d be taking the pregnancy tests I shouldn’t have bought two weeks ago. We got home, and I raced to the bathroom, leaving him to figure it out with the kids. I made deals with myself, with god and the universe, I’d do whatever I had to do to uphold my end of the deal, just PLEASE let this test be positive! The test is what could be referred to in the surrogacy world as a, “squinter.” You could see a FAINT positive line, but that was all I needed. I then of course went to the store like every rational female in my situation would do, and bought a variety pregnancy tests.

The digital read out that announced, “Pregnant” on it brought me to my knees. I was elated, and so, so, so grateful. I didn’t tell J and M about the bleeding. I didn’t want to be an alarmist, and I had experienced something similar in my pregnancy with Charlie. I eventually told M after the confirmation ultrasound that this had happened, and he didn’t seem at all upset with me for guarding that detail. I knew what I felt in my heart when it happened with my baby, and I knew how big of a blow it was to me now that I was facing the potential of having to put someone else through this limbo. Love is strange. In the grand scheme of things, I didn’t know J and M all that well, but the quantity mattered not one bit. The quality was there. I loved them. I loved these babies. I wanted this as bad as they did, not for me, but for them. I texted them a very vague, “I know we have to wait till Friday to confirm it, but…” and I waited. It took approximately 4 seconds for a cluster of letters to appear on my phone followed by question marks. I sent the picture of the digital test, and immediately responses of pure joy filled my screen. I was reluctant to tell them I’d tested at all, let alone that it was because the future felt uncertain, but they were THRILLED! The next few days waiting for that first blood draw to confirm the HCG hormone were KILLER. I had three blood draws before they’d schedule my ultrasound, and each time the numbers rose higher, and higher, so did our collective happiness. In J’s words, I was, “kicking HCG ass!”

Pass the tums.

I had a two-week window of what now seems like a crybaby, over dramatization of what morning sickness really is when I was pregnant with Charlie. If you asked me then, it was hell. Well folks, the twins got wind of that and raised me one. I consistently felt like crap from about 3:00pm- bedtime every. single. day. from week 7-11. I couldn’t eat dinner, ever. I couldn’t do much of anything except drink tons of water and be a saltine factory. I didn’t always throw up, but the constant looming threat was there. I will tell you that I will never eat cinnamon toast crunch again, that I am afraid each time I get in a car and I am not the driver, and anytime I get hungry, I start looking for a trash can. All things that made me miserably sick. The hungry thing was the worst. If I woke up before my kids, like I often do, I had about two minutes TOPS, to stuff a ghastly amount of carbs into my mouth before I would become a human Vesuvius.  My mom took me to a doctor’s appointment, then directly after we were to spend a great day shopping and spending time with Lucy, she pulled over in a parking lot while I puked my guts out merely because I was the passenger in the car, not the driver. Lucy has only been scathed by that last example. Every time I announce I’m hungry, my very resourceful three-year old is fountain of suggestions for things I could and SHOULD eat so I don’t, “get puke all over someone’s parking spot, again!” I took the kids out one afternoon for lunch and a zoo trip that never happened, and ended up thanking a stranger as she plastered her body into my children, up against my car, while I got sick. All because I waited maybe five minutes over my Vesuvius limits.

So I learned. Peanut butter crackers and cliff bars, folks. If I ate breakfast between 5:30-7:00am, then the twins would require replenishment no later than 9:00am. I used to not be a big lunch eater, but damnit, I was now! Once I figured them out, life was good. It had it’s moments, but just like with newborns, we must embrace the demands in order to live in harmony. I remember looking at my mom after that sick in the parking lot episode and telling her, “I need a burger, fries, and a gallon of water and sprite, STAT.” I thought hell had no fury like the appetite of a nursing mom, but I was wrong. I now sit in fear of what my life, and appetite, will be like when Surrogate Dairy Farms opens for business in June of 2018. Can. You. IMAGINE?!

Can you keep a secret? Neither can my belly.

I knew I was pregnant with a baby boy when I was about 13 weeks along with Charlie. They say you show more quickly with your second, but only a Casey Hoffman created baby boy (those that don’t know, Casey is 6’8) would make a belly pop out like that, that quickly. I wasn’t wrong, either. The twins had other plans, too. I was about nine weeks along with them when I realized, “I can’t breathe in these pants!” a realization that had me panic-stricken, as I’d donated ALL of my maternity clothes from before, and thus, had NOTHING. Except a ridiculous idea that I could hold out till twelve weeks before I’d succumb to a maternity wardrobe. Ha. Ha. Ha. I took a picture of my belly, and I told J and M, “I know it’s early, but it is STARTING!” Elation of course, a growing waistline in this case is cause for celebration. I was also EXTREMELY swollen from injections, but really, my body was a very proud twin vessel. I came out of the bathroom one morning and said to Steph, “is it just me or…?” to which her eyes got huge, and she blurted out, “it GREW overnight!!!” Steph is always honest, hate her.

I slowly started filling my reserved empty drawer with maternity clothes, and indulging all of Lucy’s requests to know more about the babies. I was finally feeling great again, and my feelings of being a pregnant goddess began to take their place once more. My hair was shiny, healthy, and long. My face clear of any imperfections and just a glow with baby bliss. And… I should mention, because Steph will give me hell if I omit this detail, but my boobs were other worldly fantastic. I made her confirm their greatness often, mostly because I knew soon I’d be a deflated version (in every aspect) of my former glory. A shell of a person that requires pity compliments such as, “are those new yoga pants? They look not see through yet!” Pregnancy has always agreed with me, and that’s why I love it so much. Pregnancy has been the greatest feeling of beauty, both externally and internally I have ever experienced. Feeling a baby move within you is miraculous every time. The beauty of those first few flutters is breath-taking. Please, check back in a few months when the twins have made a boxing ring of my womb.

For now, I leave you here. I am happy, healthy, and thriving. Their twins are happy, healthy, and thriving. Their dads are happy, healthy, and soon if not yet, will be in the tailspin of looming new parenthood. While I remain grateful for my body and the ability to do this, I wanted to share with you all the “less glamourous” side of things like I did above. Surrogacy certainly isn’t for everyone, and there are times when even I felt the weight of my decisions press down on me. I often get asked if I would do it again, and the answer is complex. Of course I’d do it again, but I would need an adequate amount of time to forget what IVF is like before I’d ever be able to commit to this journey again. Similar to birth… if most of us could readily conjur up the memory of labor pain, then I’m certain there would be far more only children in this world. From where I’m standing now, life is beautiful. Thank you for your support, love, prayers, and blessings. I will write again soon, as I am full of babies and details these days.

 

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