Thursday, May 31, 2012

Staying connected...

One of the things N and I have been doing to try and stay connected to the pregnancy is sending music to B to listen to for the baby.  Well, this weekend...we bought belly buds for B and we've been recording our voices reading books, singing, etc.  I know supposedly the babies don't actually hear anything until a little later on in the pregnancy...but it's nice to help me feel like we're a part of the whole thing.  (We're reading Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstein books...and I'm singing whatever song I feel like.)

What have any of you done to stay connected?

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Telling people...a few at a time.

Today I went to work and ended up telling three people about the fact that we're expecting...

A colleague came into my office to tell me of another co-worker's sister whose baby was just delivered stillborn.  Very shocking and sad news.  (Keep her in your prayers for any of you out there that do that.)  That conversation ended up going down a path about babies and people we knew that have them...and she asked me if we were planning on having any kids.  At which point I confessed our news.  She was elated for us and even teared up!  It turns out that she'd gone through IVF to get pregnant with her son, so she knew what it was like to have to struggle to get pregnant.  Back to our co-worker's sister though...I can't even imagine going through that.  And in fact, I have a friend that had the same thing happen to her two years ago.   Thankfully now she has a lovely, healthy baby girl.

Next I told my assistants, as I mentioned I would in my previous post.  They took it quite well, but upon revealing that we were having to use a gestational carrier, one of them said...."OMG!  That's so weird!"  I think that she didn't know how to react obviously.  Then she started with the whole, "well at least you don't have to get fat!"  I just gave her a look that said, "Yeah, I would rather do it that way...but at least we have this option." 

What I learn each time when I tell someone is that it's never easy.  I find myself a little shy about telling them just how we're having the baby.  But whatever...

Anyways...would love to hear from some of the other IMs on how you broke the news to your friends, family and co-workers.

Monday, May 28, 2012

We made it to 13 Weeks!!

Let the second trimester begin!! seems to really depend on which baby tracking website you look at as to whether or not we've technically made it to the 2nd trimester.  Parenting Weekly emailed me this morning to congratulate me by saying "Yeah!  You've made it to the Honeymoon Trimester!" but Babycenter is telling me that we don't get to the honeymoon phase until 14 weeks.  Then after some digging around for which one is correct, I found that other sources say 12 weeks.  So with all this conflicting data in mind, I've decided to split the difference and accept the 13 weeks timeframe.  After all, it feels monumental getting to this point and we're looking for milestones people.  MILESTONES!!  :-)

So the big question on many people's mind is when are we going to start telling people.  (The "many people" I'm referring to are the several people that we've already told!!)  It's funny because I suppose we've been close-mouthed about it to some degree, and yet we've also shared the news with some of our closest friends, family and colleagues.  Yesterday, while being out enjoying the sunshine with some mutual friends in Prospect Park, I casually mentioned something about the baby to our friend's wife.  She turned and looked at me...her jaw dropped...and she said, "YOU'RE PREGNANT?!"

*Insert momentary awkward pause here*

I said, "Well, yes and no.  We're almost 13 weeks pregnant via gestational surrogate...but I thought you KNEW ALREADY!" I'd mistakenly assumed that her husband (who is one of N's closest friends) had told her b/c I knew N had told him.  Well, it turns out that he hadn't told her.  And all of our prior chit-chat during the walk in the park that had to do with baby books, etc...she simply thought that I was just interested in learning about babies!  Haha!!  She was very excited for us...which was great.

That was one of the better experiences I've had telling someone that we're expecting via someone else's uterus.  A number of the chats I've had have been much more awkward with that person not really knowing what to say.  Tomorrow I'm going to be telling my two assistants at work so they can mentally begin to prepare themselves for my maternity leave during our busiest time of year -- December!  We're starting the preparations for all of Holiday's workload right now, and so I want them to be fully enmeshed in what's going on b/c they will be bearing the brunt of the workload once I'm gone.   (P.S., I can't wait for 3 months maternity leave!!)

Lastly, but not least...N and I have been thinking a lot about how we're going to handle childcare.  For those of you living in NYC (or thinking about moving here), the cost of daycare is outrageous!  Expect to pay as much in childcare as you do for your outrageous rent each month!  OMG.  I almost died when I started seeing the actual costs start to come in.  Not to mention that many daycares won't even take babies.  So after my 3 months maternity is up, N has decided to stay at home to be on daddy duty.  He's freelance anyways, so he's basically cutting way down on his work.  And if anything really amazing comes up in the process, then we'll hire a nanny/babysitter on an as-needed basis....or call in N's mom who lives 2 hours away.

After that ends, I'm looking into a nanny-share.  A friend of ours who we were out with yesterday was telling us about their situation.  It sounds GREAT.  Basically the parents split the cost of the nanny...making it more comparable to traditional daycare...but with the flexibility of a nanny.  It really does make me wish though that my family lived close by.  Growing up I always had family taking care of me when I was small and my mom was working.  It would be so awesome to have our child grow up staying with aunts/cousins/etc.  Oh well...maybe if we ever move to another state.   :-\

Okay, enough for today.  I'm breathing a big sigh of relief that we've made it to the Honeymoon Trimester.  And I just thank god for our fortune that even though we chose to do a Single Embryo Transfer, we managed to get pregnant on our first try.  We really do feel blessed and so thankful.  To all the other moms out there still trying or in-progress, know that I'm holding you all in my thoughts and prayers.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

You may be as small as a peach, but you look like a baby to me!

B sent us an ultrasound pic of the little nugget today after her doctor's appt!  She is now 12 weeks and 3 days along.  Can you even believe how nicely posed this cute little bean is?!  It's like she's hamming it up for the camera like her daddy always does!  Meanwhile note, we still don't actually know if it's a boy or girl but I've been getting strong girl vibes so I've been internally referring to her as a girl. We're actually flying down to visit B on July 16th to find out the gender in person!  That will be at the 20 week mark, so hopefully we'll get really great ultrasound pics then!  I cannot wait!!!!

In the meantime, the baby's heartbeat was strong today.  I forgot to write down the actual bpm, but the doctor said it was good.  And they administered a quad screen for Downs, Spina Bifida, etc.  We haven't gotten the results yet.  Not sure when those come in.  Realizing as I type this that I need to follow up!  :-)

Anyways...just can't get over that sweet little face!

Monday, May 21, 2012

12 weeks and a quick update!

OMG.  We're 12 weeks pregnant today!  It doesn't seem real.  That's definitely the hardest part of this surrogacy process.  The "feeling real" part.  Life here in NYC is carrying on as normal while our baby is busy growing to be the size of a peach over in MS.

My mom came to visit this past weekend, and that really helped me to start feeling the baby vibes.  She gave me space planing advice on how to rearrange the furniture to include a nursery.  I've been doing lots of research on "small space nurseries" and it's laughable the photos and advice that comes up.  It's clear that the rest of America doesn't truly understand small spaces in the same way as New Yorkers.  I was about to sacrifice our "living room" area to become the nursery, but she convinced me that our very large walk-in closet (with a window) was a better option and would allow us to keep the living room for another two years.  Of course, mom is right!  So we're going to be re-configuring the clothing situation and turning half that space into the baby's room.  But we've actually decided to hold off on that for the first few months and have the baby's crib right in our room.  We've been thinking about the DaVinci Mini Rocking Crib as the crib for us.  It's got lots of great reviews from other small-space parents, and is one of the better looking mini-cribs out there.  (Let me interject by saying there are SO few options on mini-cribs.  I'm surprised.  It made me want to go into nursery furniture design to come up with some cuter options!!)

Anyways....that's where we've been.  Also been thinking about names a lot to help pass the time.  I've been having fun looking at all the names being searched on  We've got a ton of names picked out, but we can't really pick out just one that we like the best.  There are a ton that make us laugh though.  Who names their child "Wolf"?

Well, I'd best finish getting ready for work.  Have a great day!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Sisters of a Tribe

Once upon a time, there was a little girl who dreamed of having a sister.  Just one...or maybe, if she was lucky...two.

She wanted someone to share clothes with.
And tell stories to.
And laugh with.
And dream of boys with.

But she had no sister.  It was sometimes lonely.

And as she grew up, she began to realize she was...

She wasn't like the other girls she knew.  They kissed boys.  Shaved their legs.  Got their period.

And she felt even more...alone.   And she told no one how she felt.  Or what her secret was.  Because she was afraid she'd be laughed at and rejected.

She grew older.  Stayed silent.  Told no one her secret.

But one day, she realized that being alone was a choice she'd made.

A self-imposed prison.

And come to find out... her sisters had been there all along.  Waiting to meet her...and they understood exactly how she felt.  They were sisters of the same tribe.

Meeting other women struggling with infertility and going through the journey of surrogacy has been so wonderful.  But one of the reasons I particularly wanted to start this blog was because I didn't see any other stories out there of a woman with AIS going through a similar journey.  And so I wanted to put my story out a message in a bottle.  In case it someday reached the shores of someone who needed to read it and feel like they weren't alone.

Writing this blog and going through this process has not only opened so many doors in my heart...but opened up lines of communication as well.  And I can't thank my new sister enough for helping me find my tribe.

Eden, you are the best.  :-)

And to anyone else looking for their tribe, I encourage you to reach out.  You don't have to go it alone anymore.  

Saturday, May 5, 2012

First official nursery purchase

We've purchased our first official nursery item.  I completely fell in love with this glider that I found on Craigslist, and the former mom was so nice.  She hated to see it go, but was glad that it was "going to a good home."  Awwww...well, our little bean is going to really appreciate getting rocked in this bad boy.  And little bean's mom is totally going to appreciate that it's not an eyesore.  Plus, it was super cheap to boot!!  (I LOVE a good bargain!!)  Happiness all around...

Checklist for an obsessive Intended Mom in her first trimester...

I thought I'd prepare a few things on my upcoming to-do list.
  1. Call my doctor about inducing lactation.  Since I'm on HRT, will I need to reduce my medication?  Is it safe for the baby for me to breastfeed even if I'm able?  
  2. Find a local Intended Moms for support.  This task seems a bit harder than I would have thought.
  3. Start researching daycare options.  In NYC you have to get on a super long waiting list for daycare.  May as well start now b/c one day we'll need it much to my dismay.
  4. Look for a baby book.  After all, I want a place to record all those personal thoughts to our baby that I won't necessarily say here.
What else is there?  First time mommy over here that has no idea which direction to head next.  :-)

Thursday, May 3, 2012

9 weeks 4 days ultrasound + random ramblings...

B had another ultrasound today and our little bean has gotten so big since last time!!  He/She is starting to look a lot more like a little baby!  You can see a head, arms and legs!!  Heart rate was 170!  More than last time...maybe the faster heart rate is because he/she is growing so fast!!

Seriously can't believe how much bigger she/he seems!

(Obviously I am going to need to come up with a name for the baby other than referring to it as she/he.)  Hmm...I'll put some thought into that and figure out what to call it.  (And yes, other than "it" too...!!)

In other news, I've started making some beginner nursery plans!!  I's early and I really shouldn't b/c we're still in our first trimester, BUT I have so much time to kill!!  Waiting is haaaaaaard!  (Insert my whiney teenager voice here.  Haha!)  So I've been looking at various furniture and trying to figure out how we're going to create a nursery in our tiny space.  And one of the things I know that I'm going to need is a rocker/glider.  Our friend has really enjoyed hers with her 10 month old, but the thing is I hate the way most of them look.  So I figured, "Hey I live in New York City.  Surely someone has a great looking rocker or glider for sale."  And sure enough, I found the prettiest wicker glider yesterday afternoon.  We're going by to pick it up tomorrow.  So exciting!  Here's a pic.  It's going to look so cute in our future nursery.  (And until then, it will reside in the corner of our bedroom.)

I can't wait to see it in person.  I've been doing more than little daydreaming about cute nursery decor.  Maybe because the decorating and space planning is the part that comes easy to me...and is what I find fun.  I'm kind of stressed about whether or not I am going to try and induce lactation though.  Tonya already started and is having awesome results!!  (Congrats girl!)  But it kind of makes me feel freaked out even more.  Mainly because I'm going to need to discuss with the doctor about having to reduce my current hormone replacement regimen, which messes with my moods and energy and blah blah blah.  I dunno.  Just mainly it makes me realize how little I know about parenting and how much I have to learn...

But I'm up for the task, and will just have to put some mental energy into something besides cute crib bedding this weekend and think about practical stuff like whether or not I want to induce.  Oh and this whole method of how to do that.  Hmm...

Anyways, for now I'm just so grateful and thrilled that our little baby is growing bigger each day!  I cannot wait to meet the little bean in person!!