7 week Ultrasound

Yesterday, I got bad news.  B could not get free to come down to Houston for the ultrasound.   We decided we would attempt to use that video chat via Facebook.  With technology these days, you can be anywhere !    I headed off to the appointment today not quite sure what I expected to see.   Part of me still held out a small piece of hope that the second embryo began to thrive and we would see a heartbeat.   And then another nervous part of me worried that we would no longer see heartbeat for Baby A.   Surrogacy is always such a high and low of emotions, worry, excitement, joy and more.  I should add that currently it is also a mix of nausea and very sore booty!

They called me back for the ultrasound at 10:34.  B told me she should be good for video chat around 10:40.   I took my time getting undressed and ready and then chatted with nurse and let her know I was stalling so that I could get B on the line.  The nurse was great and tried to be as patient as she could.  However, the stress of a busy day and lots of people waiting, meant we had to get started.  She began the scan and Baby A was thriving, a stronger heartbeat had developed went from 95 bpm to 131 bpm.   She then began to explore the other sac.  It did not take long to see that it was empty, what they call vanishing twin or blighted ovum.  To me this means that the embryo did attach to the uterine wall but was not strong enough or healthy enough to keep developing and the cells keep dividing ect.  I was just so delighted and relieved that Baby A was growing and all was well.  Since, I could not get B on the line so I took a video of the ultrasound.  The nurse also noticed a subcrionic bleed on the scan.  This is a pocket of blood in the uterine lining.  They are common with IVF procedures.  Sometimes you end up spotting and bleeding, but then often your body just absorbs it.  They can vary in size and often as precaution, when they are big the doctor will put a women on bed rest or modified bed rest.  With my 2nd surrogacy I was on full bed rest for a week or two.  The nurse left the room to have the doctor review the scan and I got dressed.

As I was trying to send the video to B and get dressed, she called me!  I felt terrible that we had already finished and she missed it.  We talked about the scan and I let her know all the details.  I mentioned to her that Baby A looks fantastic and it is so exciting.  I then told her  about the bleed and gave her a heads up that sometimes it means bed rest.  We agreed to let each other go while we waited for the nurse.  The nurse returned and told me that Dr. Hickman wanted to come scan me and check on the bleed and the empty sac.  So I had to undress again, lol.   I texted B to ask if she wanted to video chat or just be on speaker.  She said speaker was fine.  Hickman decided to put me on modified bed rest, or  no activity and no lifting.  I asked if I could go to work and he said yes.  We will repeat the ultrasound next week to be sure bleed is shrinking.

 

 

6 week Ultrasound

Today is the 6 week ultrasound and the first peak we will have to see if 1 or 2 embryos implanted and are growing.  Madison decided to come along for the big event.  We picked up B from the airport and headed to the clinic.

Dr. Hickman started the ultrasound and just as he was about to say, ” Oh I do see a healthy baby growing, he quickly said wait I mean, I see 2 sacs.”   He started with the first sac which measured 6 weeks 1 day, and you could see the heartbeat flickering!   He turned on sound but the heartbeat is still too faint to fully hear.  He then moved the the second sac.  He looked and looked around.  B said,  ” Is it hiding back up in there, I really do not see anything?”  Dr. Hickman said well, I see it over here, then he said no its over here.   It was a bit confusing.  However, it is common for some to be late implanters and just slower to develop.  He said it is 50% chance of seeing a heartbeat at 6 weeks but at 7 weeks it rises to 80% .    So, we will go back on Thursday for a repeat ultrasound and find out if there is a second one or one very strong baby growing.  A little more suspense to our journey.   We were both delighted to see the cute little flickering heart 🙂    D was not able to come in person, but technology is so cool.  We were able to have him there via Facetime.

Happy Easter!

Woke up early this Easter morning, not to hide Easter eggs , make baskets, or go to church, but to get my blood drawn at Houston  IVF clinic.  Headed out at 6:30am, for what was a scheduled 7:30am lab appointment.   Turns out, when I arrived it was “hopping” there at the clinic on Easter.  I consider this a glorious thing, what a blessed day for couples to be working on growing a family 🙂  However, I did have to wait an hour to be seen.

I drove home, and once again did my best to keep myself occupied and pass the time.  I even cleaned the house.  Yes, my husband usually cleans, but he was out playing golf. He will come home to a nice surprise.   As I am messing around the  house, I get a very early call back from the clinic at 10:30am.  The nurse had great news to share.  My hcg level is 869, a very strong number as it more then doubled from the first level on Friday of 305.

B told me she would be in church from 11-2pm today, so if the clinic calls I need to text her.  I sent a text as fast I could, to see if she could actually talk, it was not 11am yet.  She did not respond, so I figured she must already be at church or busy with the twins.  I left her a text with the exciting news.  She texted back with smilies!  We also schedule the first ultrasound for April 8th @ 1pm.  D&B will be 6 weeks pregnant at that point, which is the normal protocol to have the scan done.  This is going to be a long wait, to find out if their family will grow by 1 or 2 🙂

 

It’s Good Friday!

Not only is today Good Friday, but it is also BETA day!   I woke up early and took the hour drive for my 7:30am blood draw.  The BETA will give a reading of my hcg level or the amount of pregnancy hormone the body is producing.    Basically, this is an official pregnancy test and we are all anxious to hear the results.  Unfortunately,  it will be several hours of waiting on the lab 😦

My daughter wanted to go see the new Divergent movie, so we all went to see it.  I figured it sure would be a good way to pass the time and keep me occupied.  The clinic usually calls with lab results between 1-3pm.  To my surprise while waiting in line to by movie tickets my phone rings and it is only 11:30am.   I looked at the phone and it was the clinic!!

I am excited to say B&D are pregnant!  The BETA was 305 a nice strong number since they are just looking for it to be around 100.  I will repeat the BETA on Sunday which is also EASTER 🙂   They do an additional test to make sure the number doubles in 2 days.   That only leads to more waiting and anxiousness to find out if there is 1 or 2 babies snuggled in there .

 

 

 

Embryo Transfer 3/16/2016

Time for the next phase of this adventure.  Today, we had the embryo transfer.  My husband, Andrew and I started out the day with an early morning run.  I wanted to make sure to get one final run in before taking the next week off of physical activity.  After we got home, I made some breakfast for my kids and then got ready to get the rest of a big done started.   Andrew and I drove to the airport to pick up B from the airport at 9am.  She had to travel here from Dallas alone as D was working.   We headed of to The Egg and I for a tasty breakfast.

After we sat down at the table, the waiter brought over the daily special menu.  As read the items it could have only been a divine intervention as I read “Pineapple Pancakes”!  It has been said that pineapples help in the process of embryos “sticking”.   Of course I had to order those pineapple pancakes.  It was also a  blessing because it sure helped make the decision on  what to order very easy.  Othewise, I wanted to order like everything on the menu!

We finished eating and headed over to the clinic for our 11am appointment .   The nurse came by to let us know that both embryos survived the thaw and both were top graded 4BB.   This was great news.  If one or both did not survive the thaw they would have need to thaw 1 or 2 more.   I took my valium and we entered the transfer room.  In the blink of an eye 2 strong embryos are now snuggled in my uterus and the waiting game begins to see that they stick!

What a joy it was to share some great laughs and talks with B today.   As we dropped her back off at the airport I just felt the need to give he the 2 biggest hugs ever and told her I  will be taking good care of her babies 🙂

IMG_0162

Moving On Up

Yesterday, I had an appointment at the IVF clinic to check my lining and get lab work.  My daughter, Madison, had to come with me because the appointment was at 7:30am.  The nurse came to the waiting area to call me back and Madison just followed me.  I didn’t think anything about it at the time.  Then, after we got the room, the light went off and I remembered I have to have a wand ultrasound.  I knew Madison could not see anything as I do have a sheet on me, but might be more then Madison would want to be in the room for.  As we waited I explained the situation to my girl.  I told her they use a wand to see my lining and make sure my body would be ready to transfer the embryos.

The doctor came in and luckily the exam was extremely quicker then normal.  He said, “well done,  lining looks perfect”.   After he left the room, Madison said “mom, that was a man, a man just examined you?  Oh my, goodness that is weird.  What would dad think?”   I was in stitches and could not stop giggling.  I told her it was completely normal to have male doctors and that it is not a big deal.  When I decided to become a surrogate, I had no idea just how much I would learn but even my husband and children about infertility, the reproductive system, hormones, pregnancy and more.

Later in the day, my nurse called me with results from the lab work.   My levels were above the required numbers and the doctor was pleased.  The nurse then asked if I would be able to move the transfer up, if the couple wanted to.  I said “you bet, I was ready the day we started this adventure!”  The intended mom texted me soon after, to say that the transfer would be on Wednesday , March 16th at 11:30am instead of Friday.  This was exciting news, 2 less days to wait and 2 days closer for the the couple to have some siblings for Brooks and Elise.

Unfortunately, the intended dad D, has work commitments and will not be at the embryo transfer in just 6 more days.  Mom, B, will be here and I just can’t wait to see her and give her a hug as I know she is nervous and yet so happy!

 

Now that is what you call a Valentines Gift!

I got an awesome delivery on Saturday, to make for an special valentines surprise.  I opened the box to find what every women and her husband want….HORMONES!  Yes, I will be putting these pills and injections to good use over the next month.  Happy Valentines Day to my intended couple D and B.

20160213_103339

Transfer Cycle Time!

Well we have moved ahead and finished up some more steps, in this hurry up and wait, hurry up and wait journey of surrogacy.

  1. First clinic appointment and clearance
  2. Mock Cycle
  3. Legal Contracts
  4. Transfer Cycle Calendar

Yes, you read number 4 correct.  We are ready to go, the official transfer cycle calendar was sent a few days ago.  Looks like I start injections and other hormones on Feb. 17th and the tentative frozen embryo transfer is March 18th!   That works out well, as I will be off for spring break.   Oh B and D, get ready for some more December babies 🙂

At the Starting Line!

I had my first clinic appointment today.   This was the first time, I have worried that I might actually fail the test. I will soon be 37, it has been 4 years since a pregnancy and I had a c-section with the last delivery.  All these factors could play a role in not qualifying to carry for the couple.

At the clinic this morning, I had a physical exam, which included a hysterscopy or using a scope to check the condition of my uterus.  I also gave some blood to check hormone levels.  Turns out, I passed and I was able to get started on the mock cycle today.  For the mock cycle, I wear estrogen patches on my abdomen for 2 weeks.  This will thicken my uterus lining.  On January 21st, I will go in for labs and to measure the lining.  If all things measure correctly, we will proceed to the real transfer cycle!

After the appointment, I headed up to Dallas to attend my track coaching clinic.  Since, B and D live near Dallas we made plans to meet for Dinner. Pretty cool that the first appointment landed on the same day I was going to see the family too!

I am overflowing with joy, to be helping them again.  We had a fun little dinner.  They are so special to me and I am thankful God planned this out for all of us.  The 4 yr old twins were shy tonight and so sleepy, but it was adorable to see them leaning and laying on B and falling asleep.

Decisions??

A few weeks ago, my husband came into the kitchen while I was cooking.  He looked at me and said, “Who am I to say no to something that makes you happy.  If you want to help D and B, then I am totally on board.”  I asked if he was sure, if he was worried or had objections.  He said, no.  I told him I really want to help them, however there a few set backs for me that have me nervous, such as c-section, family needs, and well, what if my body is not up for it?   Now that Andrew is ready, I continued to pray for the next 2 days.

On Dec. 9th, I made up my mind.  I came up with a creative way to tell B and D.  Dec. 10th is the twins birthday.

I called B and I wished the twins Happy Birthday.  I then told her I have a special gift for the family….I wanted to carry siblings for them 🙂

And away we go on a Sibling Journey!

Newer entries » · « Older entries