Their Lovin, My Oven

My Journey as a Gestational Surrogate

Gettin’ the Oven Pre-Heated August 31, 2012

Since my last post, I’ve passed a lot of mile markers on the road to our frozen embryo transfer of one or two of M&Ts little totsicles. Every new milestone brings with it a whole new level of excitement. I just can’t get over the fact that I’m going to be blessed with helping another couple complete their family once again – Who gets that lucky?!

 

A few weeks ago I received a GIANT box of fun in the mail. If you had asked me two years ago what I liked to get in the mail, I can guarantee my answer wouldn’t have been a box of medicine, needles, syringes, alcohol wipes and a sharps container LOL But now, as a surrogate, it’s an important day! Check out my goodies! (In the box, sheesh!)

 

Box O Fun!

 

Shortly after the box of fun arrived I FINALLY received my official calendar! For those of you not in the surro world, this calendar dictates what meds I take, either in pill form or injectable form, from now until transfer to give my oven the best chance of being properly preheated and ready to bake an adorable baby (or two.) Once you’ve got an official calendar, you’ve also got an official transfer date!! WE ARE TRANSFERRING ON SEPTEMBER 15th FOLKS!!! Here is our calendar 🙂 And yes, I made it color coordinated so it’s easier to read and remember what to do each day LOL. I’m kinda crazy like that.

 

Time to make M&T parents!! ❤

 

The list of medications for this cycle is significantly different and much more extensive than my protocol with E&M. For that journey, I took birth control pills, doxycycline for 5 days before transfer, Estrogen injections and PIO (progesterone in oil) injections.

 

This time around we are doing the following:

1. Birth Control Pills – Only active pills, no placebo week

2. Lupron injections – A subcutaneous injection into your belly fat (which we know I have plenty of) to suppress the bodies normal hormones involved in ovulation. This ensures that none of my lil eggies make it down where they aren’t supposed to be while we’re trying to get ready for M&Ts lil embie to snuggle in.

3. Prenaplus prenatal vitamin with extra folic acid

4. 1000 mg of calcium per day

5. Folgard – An additional vitamin supplement with folic acid, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12

6. Dexamethasone – A low dose steroid that acts as an anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressant to aid with successful implantation of an IVF transfer

7. Doxycycline – An antibiotic taken as a preventative measure

8. Florajen – A probiotic to help restore the “good” bacteria that can be killed off by being on an antibiotic for an extended period of time (helps to avoid common GI issues associated with antibiotics)

9. E2V (Delestrogen) intramuscular injections – This injection (in my tush 2x per week) will help get my uterine lining aka baby hotel nice and fluffy and all ready for M&Ts totsicle

10. Baby Aspirin – Promotes positive blood flow

11. Lovenox – A blood thinner due to testing positive for both an A & C mutation of the MTHFR genes – Google it LOL.

12. PIO (progesterone in oil) intramuscular injections – This injection (also in my tush but daily vs 2x per week) will help my body produce the progesterone hormone needed to sustain a pregnancy until the placenta takes over hormone production at approximately 10 weeks of pregnancy

 

So yep, it takes quite a lot to make a baby for someone else LOL. Some of these things won’t be easy (like the Lovenox injections) but I am 100000% okay with whatever it takes to have our transfer be a success and to be handing M&T their sweet baby (or two) in May or June of next year. There are only 4 injectable meds so that’s not too bad at all =) Here are the pills I’m taking right now. In the morning, I take: Calcium, Dexamethasone and Doxycycline. In the evening, I take: Another Doxycycline, Folgard, Prenaplus, Calcium, Baby Aspirin and Florajen.

 

My pills (minus the florajen which is in the fridge)

 

Handy Dandy Pill Box

I am doing a Lupron injection of 15 units each morning, which will decrease to 10 units tomorrow. I will also start the E2V injections tomorrow evening. I can totally handle doing the Lupron injections myself – They use a teeny, tiny diabetic type needle and are injected into the belly fat…. However, I will never attempt to do my own E2V injection (or PIO for that matter) since those needles are no joke. They’re gigantic. My Hubby gets a little too excited about getting to stab me in the tush 2x a week and then daily once we start PIO as we get closer to transfer 😉

In just over a week on 9/9, I get to fly up to SF to see M&T and have a visit with Dr. Zouves and the dildo cam for a lining check. I am fully anticipating my lining to be praised for being nice and fat (totally a good thing) because I reacted incredibly well to the E2V injections with my last journey =) Not only do I get to see and spend the day with M&T, they are being absolutely AMAZING and letting my 5 year old come with me!! She loves to look at planes in the sky and is fascinated by them so I am hoping she is as excited in real life as she is in my mind to get to fly there with me LOL. The best part is that she has NO idea! It’s a complete surprise 😀 I can’t wait! Even though my trip on the 9th is super quick (flying up there and back home the same day) in just a matter of days after that (9/14) I will get to head back up to SF and this time I’ll stay a little longer! I will fly up on Friday evening, transfer 1 or 2 of M&Ts sweet totsicles on Saturday and hang out relaxing and letting that sweet lil babe snuggle up until Monday afternoon!

We are getting SO close and each day the excitement builds more and more! It’s baby baking time, folks!

<3, Danielle

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My (not so) Little Girl August 11, 2012

Filed under: Mommyhood — Danielle @ 11:00 pm
Tags: , ,

(Note: This blog is not at all surrogacy related but it’s related to my adorable 5 year old princess so I promise it will still be worth your time!)

 

On May 25, 2007 my life was changed forever. At 9:01pm my beautiful oldest daughter was born. The amount of love I instantaneously felt was overwhelming… She was just breathtaking. A gift from God. And on Thursday, August 9, 2012, my sweet (not so) little girl opened up a new, amazing chapter in her book. I don’t know how it’s possible that she is old enough, or big enough, or that I’m ready enough – But, Thursday, she started Kindergarten.

 

My first born, my oldest princess has gone from this amazing little newborn:

 

Just days old….

 

To this BEAUTIFUL little girl, ready to take on the world ❤

 

Her Great Grandma made this BEAUTIFUL dress for my BEAUTIFUL girl ❤

 

I managed to only cry a little…. And anxiously awaited the moment when I could go pick her up. She is loving school already and I couldn’t be more proud of her. Mommy loves you more than you’ll ever know baby – Here’s to you and the amazing future I know is in store for you! <3<3<3

 

Love my Girl ❤

 

 

Pssst… I have a secret August 4, 2012

Okay, I lied, it’s not really a secret…. Well, it won’t be once you read a little further in this post 😉

 

I’M OFF AND RUNNING ON MY

SECOND JOURNEY

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

 

I know, I know, I’m a horrible person for keeping SO quiet lately, but I wanted to make sure everything was going to fall into place before going “Worldwide Web Official.”

 

I will be carrying a precious baby (or two) for an amazing set of IPs that live in Northern California. M (my IM) is in school full time studying Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture and T (my IF) is a online game guru. They are both AMAZING people and I’ve been blessed to have built a wonderfully close relationship with M through a surrogacy forum that we’re both members on throughout the last year. She was a wonderful support during my pregnancy with the twins and I am SO very blessed to be able to help them on their quest to have a sweet little angel in 2013! They were previously working with a wonderful surro, C, who I am also good friends with but unfortunately due to a DQ-Alpha incompatibility, they can no longer work together. (Google it, it’s crazy rare and too complicated for me to try and explain.) Though they can no longer work together, we’re so lucky that C is our biggest cheerleader and we’re all in this journey together 🙂

 

So, let me fill you in on what’s been happening lately… After an agonizing 2WW (before transfer, what the heck?!) for my DQ-Alpha “#s” to come back, we got the ball rolling on getting me approved through M&Ts RE, Dr. Zouves. I had a few visits with the vampires to have several blood tests run and gathered all my medical records, etc. We also got in contact with our respective attorneys to get the ball rolling on contracts. Yesterday (Friday) my DH and our girls took me to LAX bright and early so I could fly to San Francisco. After a few delays due to weather, I finally landed safe and sound. Getting to meet M in person was AMAZING after feeling like we already had this super close relationship online. Shortly after I arrived (and met their two adorable kitties) the three of us headed to Dr. Zouves’ for my official medical screening. They took my blood pressure, height and weight and then I had a consult with the Dr. He asked me the usual questions about my pregnancies (Had I ever had any blood pressure problems? Gestational diabetes? Preterm labor? Etc) and then we got down to business. M&T came back and we started the exam with a lovely visit from the weenie wand… Dr Zouves said I would be an excellent candidate for being an ED since I had 15 little eggies hanging out in each ovary resting peacefully. He got a good look at my uterus (which had “accomplished so much” — his words, not mine LOL) and then explained how the SHG would work. It was the first time I had ever had one so it was definitely interesting but not at all uncomfortable or painful. He said my “experienced” cervix looked wonderful for having recently carried and delivered twins. After several measurements and checking the flow of the saline, he said everything looks GREAT and he can’t wait to work with me!! YAY!!!

 

We went back to one of the cycle nurses offices and got down to business. We already had our final draft of the contract ready to go so the three of us signed it (DH had signed before I flew out) and gave them the copy so they were good to go on that. There was a little snafu with the format that my lab results were in (they’re a little picky) but I’m going to get that all fixed on Monday and then we will turn the “mock” calendar into an official one!!!!! Since I should be able to get the records on Monday in the proper format, we don’t anticipate any changes. As of right now, I am set to start Lupron injections on August 19th (the day after my birthday) and then we will go from there! I will fly back to SF for a lining check on September 9th and transfer of M&Ts sweet little totsicle is tentatively set for September 15th!

 

After the appointment, M&T treated me to a delicious lunch (of things I had never tried, I was so brave!) and then an even more delicious dinner! I had been dieting pretty heavily in the last two weeks so it was just what I needed! M & I even enjoyed an adult beverage 😉 We went back to their gorgeous condo and talked the night away before turning in. This morning we got to hang out longer than expected due to another flight delay and it was truly wonderful to just get to know them better, talk about things to come and enjoy each others company. (I won’t lie, it was REALLY nice and quiet in their condo since I am so used to the chaos of my two princesses LOL. They kept apologizing for the quiet and I was like no, no, it’s wonderful trust me hahaha.)

 

The three of us are SO very excited and I am SO lucky to have this amazing second journey happening! M&T are just truly wonderful and I really feel blessed to have a great relationship with them already. <3<3<3

 

So, no more secrets – This baby oven is getting warmed back up and all ready to bake another precious baby for two AMAZING people! ❤

Until Next Time… Danielle