Saturday, June 18, 2011

My thoughts on a future surrogacy

As most of you experience after your first or second surrogacy, one question you get asked most is whether you are going to do another surrogacy again.  Some women know right after delivery that they are up to helping a family again as soon as they can.  There are even some who thought the process was altogether emotionally difficult and are happy with just one. Then, there are women like myself who go back and forth so many times and are not sure whether or not another surrogacy is best for them.  I have outweighed so many pros and cons of being a surrogate mother.  In a way I am so satisfied with my one journey and I not only had one baby, but 3!!  On the other hand, I feel some sort of responsibility to someone out there.  Here I am with this amazing gift and if I already succeeded with one surrogate pregnancy, why should I stop myself from helping someone again if I am physically and emotionally able to?  And I do have to take my family's thoughts and opinions into consideration as well.  They are effected by this just as much as anyone and I would not want to become a burden on anyone again.

After over 9 months of the going back and forth game, I have really learned so much about myself and about my decision thanks to some close friends and family.

After being a surrogate, people you know really start to open up and trust you with their infertility issues.  I had no idea how many people I know personally who are having serious problems with getting pregnant.  It breaks my heart to have to sit here and read or listen to the things they are going through while I am on the other end with this professional uterus that can not only have babies of her own so easily, but also have someone else's babies as well.  I know it isn't my fault, but I just feel so guilty.  Why am I so blessed in this area while others are not?  What did I do to deserve this child bearing ability?  Whatever the reason, I am so glad that I took full advantage of it.

I just got done talking with an old best friend of mine, who has had her fair share of struggles, and it just got me thinking about a lot of things.  I also got some very bad news from a VERY close relative of mine and can not stop thinking about what her future will entail.  The list goes on, but these 2 people really hit me hard.  Not only are they so young and beautiful, but they don't deserve this.  No one does.

So, I think I have made my final decision about the future of my surrogacy.  Since I am technically allowed only 2 more pregnancies (putting me at 4 c-sections, which is pushing it especially since one was a triplet pregnancy), that leaves me with a big decision.  I have decided to have one more of my own, leaving me with 3 children.  I know I have gone back and forth whether I wanted to wait or not for another baby, but I think my hormones have settled down and in the next several months my husband and I are going to try one last time =)  I really want our kids to be close in age and my oldest turns 4 in a few weeks, so we need to get on it (literally!!).  After we have our little miracle, my plan is to help a friend or even family member who really deserves it.  That is the biggest dream of mine; being a surrogate for someone close to me and being able to give them a miracle.  There is no guarantee that someone may need my help, but I am putting it out there and let them know that they will always have me to fall back on.  I couldn't imagine helping a complete stranger knowing that I know several women out there that are struggling and just cannot afford surrogacy like most couples.  Besides, wouldn't it just be an AMAZING story to tell?!?

The other option I would consider, but highly doubt will happen, is if the parents of the triplets decided to have another child.  Could you imagine another set of triplets?!?  I have asked them lots of times and I think they are very happy with their 3 girls, but if the slight chance arises, I would never back down from that opportunity.

I have no idea what may happen in the future, but I am just hoping that God has great plans for me.  I know I need to help someone again and I would get no greater satisfaction then doing it for a loved one.  Let's hope that nature does its thing and it does not have to come to this, but if it doesn't, then I pray I will be able to help.  Love all my girls struggling out there... don't give up because it's worth the fight!!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Another Visit!!

This past Sunday, my hubby and I made a day out of visiting the girls and their parents.  We had the greatest time and my surro triplets are just the cutest things!!!

We got there just in time to get them up from their first nap.  As soon as we walked into the nursery... big smiles!!!  I didn't want to overwhelm them with 2 strange faces, but they warmed up very fast.  I held Eve immediately and all she wanted to do was give me hugs!!  She had a very tight grip onto me =)  After May was all changed, I got to hold her.  Every time I spoke, she would back away from me and give me this very confused look.  Believe it or not, it was like she was familiar with my voice.  Both Eve and May had no problem with me and they loved my company.  Lily was great with me too, but for some reason, she LOVED Cameron (my hubby).  Throughout the entire day, Lily would make her way to him and always made sure he was looking her way.  Too cute (he needs a girl =)

We then went to feed the chunks... they eat soooo much!!!  It is so cute how feeding becomes an assembly line.  They eat all kinds of fruits and veggies and are only down to 3 bottles a day.  Those chunky girls are getting so big that the doctor requested that they get rid of the 4th bottle they were getting.  Go girls!!

Next, it was time to play.  Now that the girls are older (9 months old), they can stay up for longer periods of time.  We got to play for 3 hours!!!  We even took them outside and had a great time watching them roll, chew, laugh, and play. 

After we all put them down for their nap, I couldn't believe how well their parents are at this now.  They make having triplets so easy!! So very happy and proud of this family I helped create. 

I know you want to see some pics, so here are a few... enjoy!!

I bought them each a Juicy summer dress

Me with Eve and May (the identicals)

Little May (I think)

Eve, May, and Lily

Lily is so close to crawling

Possibly May

Lily would roll all the way to Cameron

Impossible to get a pic with them all looking and smiling

Baby Eve (pretty sure!)

Lily, posing for Cameron

Cameron and Lily

Eve, modeling the dress... and then they all started to fight over the 
gift bag!!!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Power of The Blog!!

When I started writing my blog very early on in my surrogate pregnancy, I never knew it would turn out the way it did.  Heck, I didn't even think I would continue writing after the first 2 posts.

My husband overly encouraged me (like he does with a lot of things) to start blogging about my feelings and the process of being a surrogate.  At first when he suggested it, I said "What the hell is a blog?!?"  Of course I kind of had an idea, but I really only thought a certain group of people actually blogged; journalists, scholars, sport reporters, Julia and Julia, etc.  After he set it all up for me, design and everything (that is what I mean by "overly"=), I then asked, "Who is really going to read this?!"  Well, he told me that it didn't matter and that maybe doing this will help someone else out there in the surrogate world...

Boy was he right (and I don't say that very much)!  Not only did I find out that there were hundreds of blogs related to surrogacy, but I also realized that people liked to read mine.  At the beginning of the pregnancy, I was blogging about all of the emotions I was dealing with, most of which were bottled up.  It was a great way to express myself and an even better way for the people around me to get the idea of what I was going through without having to pry it out of me.  At times, it was a little difficult for my IP's to read (it can be a hard reality when faced with the fact that your surrogate is experiencing deep depression).  But, I would have to say, that without my blog, my IP's probably would have been left in the dark most of the time because expressing my feelings face to face was impossible for me to do in my state of mind.

It wasn't until after my pregnancy did I realize that my blog had an effect on other people.  I never looked at it that way; I always saw my blog as a means of reaching out for support and my followers encouraged me every moment that I needed it.  But, it was an amazing feeling once I began guiding others through similar situations; whether it be surrogates, IP's, or family members of someone involved with surrogacy.  It is a much different feeling when you are seeing things from the other side (much easier too =).

People started to reach out to me, and most of the time I never knew they were a follower of my blog.  I think I get contacted every few weeks with someone with a very similar situation, and some have very interesting stories!!  Oh, and most of the surrogates and IP's that contact me all have one big thing in common... triplets!!!  If you haven't experienced this then you really have no idea how hard it is.  Yes, you can read our thoughts and emotions as we are experiencing them, but you honestly can't even imagine what a roller coaster it can be.  I remember back when I found out I was pregnant with triplets.  A retired surrogate who carried triplets reached out to me and answered the questions I had-  At the beginning, I really didn't know what I was in for and I was really in denial (which a lot of women do in the beginning).  She broke it down for me and gave me a reality check that I will never forget.... "Those were the worst days of my life. I wanted nothing more than to just slip into a coma and not wake up until the babies were born.  All joking aside, I really wanted to die."  At first I thought this lady was crazy and very morbid, but hell, that was an understatement!!!  LOL!!

So, lately I feel really encouraged to blog more.  I have lots of advice for the IP's out there dealing with all sorts of situations.  I also have never ending supportive topics for the surrogates.  If any of you have a personal question or comment, my email address is always available and it is my pleasure to help out.  If I were rich, I would travel all over the world and meet with people in need of encouraging and support, but heck, if I were rich I would do A LOT of things =)

And some amazing stats on the views on my blog...

United States      23,238

United Kingdom
New Zealand

Friday, June 3, 2011

9 Months Old and Even Cuter!!

Just had to show off my 3 little miracles!!  They just turned 9 months old.  Wow does time fly by!!  I cannot believe how much they all are starting to look alike (well, duh, they're triplets Ashley!!).  But, I could tell them apart 100% for the first 6 months, and now I am questioning my guesses =)

I am very excited because I get to visit them next Sunday!!!  It has been a few months and I am missing them a bit.  My hubby is so happy he gets to come with me... the last time he saw them was in the delivery room.  So excited!!