Watson the wonder dog (look what a good boy he is!) and I flew home from Kentucky recently. After three weeks away it’s great to be home but sad to not be with family especially this little babe in the photo, my new niece Audrey and her sister Stella.
Over the holiday a plethora of fun things blossomed into this squeely baby of a new year.
Early January our sweet surrogate went to Chicago to get her uterus checked out, blood work drawn and get an overall medical clearance. The day of the exam she called very excited and said, “The doctor says my uterus is a TEN!” (out of 10 of course).
The day before she and I were joking around and I asked her to ask the clinic for a wallet sized print of her uterus I could put in my wallet. She actually got one! The wild thing is that her lovely uterus on this image looks like a perfect little heart! After a happy dance or five we made an action plan to start operation Legal Move. Which means poking the lawyers into hurrying up the process so we can do the embryo transfer ASAP.
One unexpected and awesome thing about our surrogate is her level of excitedness and eagerness to get things moving. After I sent an email to the lawyer, the fertility clinic and the agency we got word back that we could do our embryo transfer February 22nd!! I could not breathe when we got this news. I was in the kitchen of my sister-in-law’s house and I just kind of turned circles and fumbled with what to do next. February!! That would mean an October birth!! PERFECT!! I called Brett and told him the good news. I think he was stunned.
Our surrogate and I were chatting (which we do now almost every day) and talking about how many YAY moments this process has. YAY we made our match, YAY we really like each other, YAY her uterus looks awesome, YAY the lawyers are cooperating! That’s a lot of YAY! It’s kinda fun!
We were clicking along getting super excited, I was texting relatives to see who wanted to travel to the transfer with me. Then I got a call. Our surrogate said the fertility clinic just called her and her blood work showed her thyroid levels were high (TSH to be exact). They said they would not medically clear her until her TSH was down by half.
The freak-out part of me was… well… freaked out: OH MY GOD WE CAN’T WORK WITH THIS WOMAN I ABSOLUTELY ADORE!! WE HAVE TO START OVER!! WAAAAA!!! Luckily I took some deep breaths and decided not to over react. (Remember if you will the perfect match we started with over a year ago who went to her OB and had to have an emergent hysterectomy- crushing.) Also remember I am super well-versed at “it may be a huge deal or it may be nothing.” After she and I did some research we found it’s really not a big deal. The most reassuring thing is she has ZERO symptoms of high or low thyroid. So we’re working on it, meaning she is working on it. We (she) is taking the perfect approach of least invasive to more invasive and starting with some very gentle changes. She will get retested end of this month and she will go see an OB the 1st of February for a pre-conception appointment and, if needed, can discuss more aggressive measures at that point. No big deal. Right now we are planning on a March transfer, which would be an early December birth.
However I am trying SUPER HARD to not be married to that date. In reality it could take a few months to get the thyroid issue sorted out to the clinic’s satisfaction, I must be patient or I will go nuts. Lucky for me I am patient and it is not bugging me, yes, I would like a few gold stars for that! Admittedly though a big part of my patience is my trust in our surrogate, I trust her body, I trust her decisions, meditating on this trust provides quite a lot of peace.
All peace and patience aside, here is where I am a little nuts, and please tell me if you think I’m being nuts. If I can help it I’d rather not have a Christmas baby. All my friends with mid to late December birthdays are super annoyed by it. I could just say whatever and we could celebrate a half birthday. But then there’s winter in small town Wisconsin to think about getting in and out of. Part of me thinks all of this is dumb and we should just transfer as soon as we can transfer, then part of me thinks if we can’t do March 18th for some reason maybe we wait until June or July. Am I crazy? I mean if you could pick your kids birth month, would you? What I don’t want is to wait for this reason and then end up having the first transfer not take and we have to wait several months for the next one anyway. I don’t know.
Regarding one or two embryos, still up in the air. I am waiting to talk with the embryologist about the genetic testing and quality of our embryos, which as I understand will happen on the day before transfer. So it really may be a game time decision.
I have to say, after being Auntie Nanny Nurse Kate for two weeks, two newborns would be SUPER HARD!
The past two weeks I was with my brother and sister-in-law, their 4 yr old and newborn and two dogs! WOW it was a lot of work, however it made me feel really REALLY ready for motherhood. My new niece is a grump (yes that little angel in the photo), I mean grumpy little grumpfest! She’s got some kind of gut/reflux/gas issue that causes her obvious pain which in turn means it takes several hours to feed her. Despite all her grumping it was still super hard to leave her. I really enjoyed snuggling, comforting, changing, bathing, burping and all the things. Now mind you, my sister-in-law was cleaning and doing all the life administration. I spent A LOT of time sitting in an overstuffed chair snuggling this baby and watching cartoons with her sister. I know it will be different when I have to do baby care and all the life admin as well. It felt incredibly comforting to love a grumpy crying baby that was not even mine. I kept thinking, one grumpy baby would be doable but TWO grumpy babies would be miserable. Grumpy babies need WAY more time to do just about everything. At this point I’m leaning to transferring one embryo which is still at a higher risk of twins than normal. If we have two grumpy babies we’ll deal and love the snot right out of them!
Another unexpected awesomeness of our surrogate is she’s helping us find ways to use the space of our little 850sq ft house better. She is an architectural designer and has already sent me to plans for Brett’s room that I would have NEVER thought about! She feels like my partner in this adventure in so many magical ways! Brett is for sure my partner, let’s not be weird, but our surrogate is shedding light in places I never knew were dark! The only bad thing? She’s not next door! She and I are the type that would be having coffee most mornings, sharing silly ideas and serious ones and just sharing space. It would be really fun to have her closer.
She told her family and her kids recently! She and her husband were waiting until they knew she would be medically cleared. Over my time in Kentucky I met her dad via facetime and all her kids! This process is such a trip but in the best way possible, I think of all the people coming into our lives with arms wide open and it makes me smile. Her family of course was overwhelmingly positive and supportive!
Get this. When we go to Chicago for the transfer we are going to do some kind of energy work/aroma therapy/magical unicorn blessing thing after transfer. I’ve been emailing people in Chicago and having fun with their reactions which are of course overwhelmingly positive and heartfelt, I adore the woo-woo healing arts community! And I mean, with all the science and coldness in this process we have to balance it out a bit with a little woo-woo!
Stay tuned for the next moment of YAY!