Their Lovin, My Oven

My Journey as a Gestational Surrogate

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! Nope, it’s my Belly! November 27, 2011

Here are my weekly pictures of the ever growing Bambino Hotel πŸ™‚

(Sorry I can’t get them to be more than one on each line.. I’m not tech savvy enough LOL)

Halloween Pumpkins for D&G

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Home Stretch

That’s right – We’re in the home stretch! In 22 days or less, E&Ms precious angels will be evicted from my Bambino Hotel. We’re 35 weeks & 2 days along.. We’ve hit so many milestones and passed so many goals. Each day that I can keep these precious boys baking for their Daddies is a miracle. I am still being seen by the perinatologist every 2 weeks and now have a Non-Stress Test (NST) 2x per week to check on the boys. The NSTs monitor the boys heartrates and movement along with my contractions for anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour to make sure that they are still tolerating their stay at the hotel well πŸ™‚ So far they have all been great. TONS of movement, beautiful heartrates and only a few contractions here and there.

My cervix is still “long and strong.” While your cervix shortening doesn’t always mean labor is imminent, it’s a great tool to keep track of progress and having a long measurement is always a good sign. I’m continually amazed at how good my body has been to me and these precious little boys. With a twin pregnancy, especially an identical mono/di one, there are so many risks and possibilities for things to go wrong. We spent the first few months worried about twin-to-twin transfusion. Once we were out of the woods for that, we had to worry about complications like gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, shortening cervix, etc. And yet, God has looked out for the boys and I and we have avoided all of the possible complications. No bed rest, no preterm labor, no early contractions, no premature rupture of membranes (water breaking,) etc. All we need now is to “keep on trucking” along until at least 37 weeks. That is my personal goal and not too shabby of one with twins πŸ™‚

The boys both weighed 4lbs, 14oz at my last appointment so their combined weight has officially surpassed my chubbiest child (8lbs, 4oz.) If you do the math there is 8lbs, 28oz (or 9lbs, 12oz) of baby in the Bambino Hotel! It’s amazing to me that they still have room to do flips. And yes, I have proof that they can still do flips LOL. For the last 3 appointments, the babies have both been head down and I was SO excited. Two head down babies means my chances for a vaginal delivery are huge. At my last NST though, one of the darling angels has decided to turn semi-sideways again. I knew something had happened because the night before, my stomach looked like rolling mountains LOL. I have asked him, politely I promise, to please get his head back down by his brothers where it belongs haha. If you don’t mind sending them your head down vibes, I would greatly appreciate it!

As for me? I’m hanging in there. I am FINALLY on maternity leave. I wanted to “stick it out” as long as possible but working 40 hours a week plus being a full time Mommy and baby baker was getting exhausting. No point in pushing it, it’s not like I get an award for each week that I work LOL. I finished my last day of work until after the birth of these precious babies at 34 weeks along. Personally, I’m proud of myself. I have gained about 30 pounds and am still feeling good for the most part. I won’t lie and say that I’m not tired – I am. But, every day is well worth it to me. Each day that I stay pregnant is one day closer to creating a family for two people that are so amazing. Esteban & Michele fly in from Italy on TUESDAY and we CANNOT wait to see them. I’m so excited for them to watch their boys in action inside my belly LOL.

I’m going to dedicate another post to belly pics since I haven’t posted on since 28 weeks. Enjoy πŸ™‚

 

Until next time – Lots of love from Danielle & the Bambinos πŸ™‚

 

 

Thankful

My poor, neglected blog is in desperate need of an update – Ask and you shall receive πŸ™‚ I’m going to dedicate this post to the spirit of Thanksgiving first though. Yes, I realize I’m late.. Better late than never, right?

This year I have so many things to be thankful for. I’m truly blessed and couldn’t ask for more. Here goes…

I am thankful for:

  • My Life. Yes, I know that’s pretty broad, but it’s true.
  • My husband. He is the most supportive man and I am so lucky. He’s helped me through so many events this year.. Starting this surrogacy journey and everything involved, surviving the loss of my Papa, raising our kids and so much more. He’s been the shoulder I could cry on, the strong body I could lean against when I couldn’t stand on my own, the ears to listen to my endless rambling and the love of my life.
  • Our beautiful daughters. God has truly blessed me with the most amazing children. They are the light of our lives and have this uncanny ability to brighten days, hug away fears, kiss away sorrow and make it all okay. They are growing up so fast and never cease to amaze me with everything they are. I’m so honored to be their Mommy.
  • My family. This year wasn’t easy for us but we banded together and are making it through, one day at a time.
  • My friends. They might as well be family – I couldn’t ask for more. You know who you are. You’ve let me vent endless times, shared the ups and downs of life, supported me unconditionally through this amazing journey and never asked for anything in return.
  • My surrosisters. I’ve “met” so many amazing women who I can ask a million questions and always get an answer. You’ve supported me, allowed me to support you, and formed a bond unlike any other. I am so thankful for my Sassy Sisters and the girls over at AAS.
  • My IFs. Esteban & Michele, you’re amazing. I hope you know how blessed and honored I feel to be the one you are allowing to take care of your precious angels until they are ready to go home. You could have picked just about anyone – Any girl would be SO lucky to have you as IFs – But, you picked me. You’ve allowed me to become part of your family and embraced my family as your own. You might be in a different country but you haven’t let that stop you from being involved in your sons lives on a daily basis. You are always concerned not just for their health, but for mine as well. And you don’t have to be – But you are. You are going to be the most amazing Daddies. Davide & Gabriel are so lucky. I can’t wait for the moment when you get to meet them for the first time. Thank you for letting me play a small part in that πŸ™‚
  • My surrogate agency, Fertility Miracles. The ladies there are amazing. I’ve heard horror stories about agencies that are either completely for the IPs and are terrible to their surrogates, or the other way around. Not this one. They genuinely care about IPs and surrogates. My coordinator Elena has been there every step of the way. She came to the embryo transfer with me, came to a baby shower for Esteban & Michele, checks in on me several times a week, helps E&M prepare for the arrival of their sons and is just an amazing person. I can’t imagine not having the support system that I do.
  • My blog readers. Yep, you. I don’t know who all of you are (feel free to comment and say hello!) but thank you. Thank you for taking the time to read about this amazing journey. Thank you for sharing in our excitement.

I hope that everyone had an amazing Thanksgiving however you spent it. ❀

 

Evictions & BumpFairy Goodness November 1, 2011

Happy November 1st everyone!!! I cannot believe how quickly this year (and this surrogacy journey/pregnancy) is flying by! It seems like only yesterday we were meeting E & M for the first time and here we are, just over 6 weeks away from them meeting their precious angels!!

Let’s start with the bambino updates because we know that’s why we’re all here LOL. We are officially 31 weeks, 4 days along. At my last appt at 30 weeks, 6 days both Gabriel & Davide were measuring perfect with how far along we are. Gabriel weighed 3lbs, 10oz and Davide was right behind him at 3lbs, 7oz. That’s right folks, I’m carrying around the equivalent of a FULL TERM SINGLETON. I have a total of 7lbs, 1oz of baby in my Bambino Hotel! There are babies born full term that weigh less than that! Not my babies of course (They were 7lbs, 10oz & 8lbs, 4oz LOL) but some people’s babies! Craziness! That definitely explains why I feel like I’m full term pregnant. It’s been hard to swallow that even though I have just over 6 weeks left, I really have to slow down otherwise I pay for it. My back hurts, my feet swell, getting comfortable at night has become impossible, I have to get up an average of 5 times in an 8 hour period to go potty LOL – Bottom line though? This is all so incredibly worth it and I wouldn’t change a moment. I know that at the end of all the back aches and bathroom trips are two beautiful little boys and an even more beautiful family. Seeing E & M hold their babies is going to be the best moment – I can’t even describe how excited I am for them. ❀

I will continue seeing the perinatologist every 2 weeks for the month of November and then depending on how things are going, she will most likely move to weekly appointments. With an identical mono/di twin pregnancy, the doctors prefer that you not be pregnant too far past 38 weeks. We have set an eviction date for D&G! Yep, they’re being KICKED OUT of this womb on Monday DECEMBER 19th (38 weeks, 3 days) if they haven’t made their appearance already!! That’s only 48 days from now! Holy Moly! I have had a long talk with them and we all agree that they are not coming until at least December 9th. On that day, I will be 37 weeks along which is considered full term for twins. Any day December 9th and on they are more than welcome to show their adorable little faces. Their Daddies will be flying in to CA on November 29th so that we can spend some time together before delivery and so they can get all set up to welcome their boys into the world. I’m SO excited to see them but have NO desire for them to have to come earlier *Ahem Davide & Gabriel, I hope you’re listening! Don’t even try to come into this world before December 9th! We have a deal! LOL* I also found out that if both little darlings cooperate and turn head down, we can attempt a vaginal delivery!! Gabriel has always been head down (thank you, Gabriel!) but Davide is a “mover & shaker” and he flips around A LOT. So, everyone send him head down vibes if you don’t mind. Birthing two 6ish pound babies would be a piece of cake since my little chunkers weighed much more than that haha.

For Halloween, I decided to take full advantage of being a hugely pregnant, proud surrogate so I borrowed the amazing Sabrina’sΒ  name (bumpfairy.wordpress.com)Β and dressed up likeΒ a BumpFairy. My costume was a hit with pretty much everyone and I’m pretty sure it was the world’s most comfy Halloween costume EVER. πŸ™‚ Here’s a pic (I apologize for the quality, it’s a cell phone pic LOL.)

BumpFairy – Like the tooth fairy, only fatter πŸ˜‰

I hope everyone had a great Halloween! We’re definitely looking forward to Thanksgiving and what the next month has in store for our family.

Β 
Until next time, Lots of love from Danielle & the Bambinos ❀