Monday, January 24, 2011

Surrogate Meetup

It's not every day that you get to meet a surrogate (we are very rare gems, don't ya know? ;)). You may pass by one at the local grocery store or might sit behind one in a restaurant, but you would never know it unless she was wearing a t-shirt that said "Yes, I'm  pregnant, No it's not mine" or "Proud Surrogate".  So, how does a surrogate like myself meet other local surrogates?

I am a part of a surrogacy related online forum and I reached out to other local surrogates and it turns out there really are other surrogates in my area--who knew!! So...I organized a meet up and we got together this past Sunday for breakfast. It was so nice to meet other ladies who are going through or have gone through this wonderful journey. We all had a great time getting to know one another, chatting about our journeys, and plan to get together now on a regular basis.

You can never have too much support!! I am so thankful that my surrogacy support network keeps growing and growing and growing.... =)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

All Systems Are Ready To Go!

Got the call--i'm medically cleared by my IPs doctor!!!!

Next up: Contracts!! Hopefully--fingers and toes crossed!--contracts will be in place within the next 3 weeks or so. After that we do a mock cycle and then the real thing! Transfer looking more like April if all goes as planned.


Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Getting to Know One Another

Last month I sent this to my IPs, Eleazar and Angie, as a first step in getting to know each other better. It was a fun game and neat to see what their response was.
Here's what we did. I filled out my answers below and sent this to them via email. They copied and paste to a new email, removed my answers, filled out their own answers and then sent it back to me. Fun! 

Three nicknames I go by 
1) Annie
2) Ann
3) Annabelle

Three Jobs I have had in my life
1) Instructional Aide for handicap children
2) Dermatologist Front Office Assistant
3) Executive Assistance for a Cancer Pathology Laboratory

Three Favorite drinks 
1) Ice cold water
2) Iced tea
3) A nice cold beer

Three TV Shows that I watch
1) Greys Anatomy
2) Private Practice
3) Brothers and Sisters

Three things I've wanted to be when I grew up
1) Mommy
2) Labor and Delivery Nurse
3) Grocery Store Checker (haha! I've always been fascinated with the scanner!)
Three favorite foods  
1) Sushi
2) Pizza 
3) Crab legs....Mmmmmm!!!!

Three things I worry about
1) My Children's health and safety
2) Something getting in the way of me becoming a surrogate mother
3) My son's education (It's crazy what they have to learn as a kindergartener these days!)
Three Things that I am looking forward to
1) Becoming a surrogate
2) Watching my children grow
3) Growing old with my husband

Three places that I have visited
1) Jamaica for our honeymoon
2) Hawaii
3) Florida, Walk Disney World


A - Age: 28

B - Birthday: April 21

C - Chore(s) you hate: Laundry, dishes, moping, and cleaning the bathrooms.

D - Dad's Name: James

E - Essential start your day item: Snuggle time with my kids followed by a cup of coffee

F - Favorite holiday:  Christmas!!!

G - Gold or Silver: Either white gold or silver

H - Height: 5'9"

I - Instruments you play(ed): I took piano lessons as a child, but nothing ever became of it. I wish I would have taken lessons seriously. I'd love to learn how to play the guitar.

J - Job title: Wife, Mommy, Gestational Surrogate, Child Care Provider

K - Kid(s): 2 (Aiden 5 1/2yrs, Addison 2 years) 

L - Living arrangements: Cramped but cozy

M - Mom's name: Pamela (Pam)

N - Nicknames: My family and friends call me Annie.

- Overnight hospital stay: Gallbladder surgery in 2009. Stayed in hospital for 2 days...all while having a two week old newborn at home....worst time of my life--it was very hard being away from my new baby. 

P - Pet peeve: Chewing with your mouth open 

Q - Quotes you like: Love conquers all <3 

R - Right or left handed: Right 

S - Siblings: 1 sister and 1 "Sissy" :) (my sister in-law) 

T - Time you wake up: During the week I get up at 7:10am. On the weekends more like 8:30am.

U - Umbrella: I love my over sized umbrella!!

V - Vegetable you dislike: Mushrooms (is that a veggie?) 

W - Ways you run late: Getting caught up with getting the kids and myself ready. 

X - X-rays you've had: The back 

Y - Yummy food you make: Spaghetti casserole 

Z- zodiac: Taurus

Thursday, January 13, 2011

And now we wait....

Wow. What a long day. I was out the door at 10:30am, headed to USC Fertility in Los Angeles, for a 2:00pm appointment. I'm only about 45mins to an hour away...but I didn't want to chance getting lost and be late to my appointment!! USC Fertility is located in the heart of down town Los Angeles. There are high risers on every corner, crazy drivers by the hundreds, and people (of all kinds!) walking the streets like they own the place. Anyhow, I picked up my co-pilot, my dear Nana, and we were off! The plan was to get there early; locate the clinic; continue on to find a nice place to eat lunch and to kill some time; and then arrive early to the clinic to fill out paperwork, settle in and wait to be called back. Well, it didn't take us very long to eat lunch. I think my Nana and I were more paranoid about being out of our element than anything else. I couldn't stop having thoughts of my car getting broken in to or someone mugging us. So, needless to say, lunch was pretty quick. We arrived at USC Fertility at 12:50pm. May I remind you that my appointment wasn't until 2pm!! Oh boy. Haha!! I think the front office staff were still on their lunch break because I had to ring a bell to sign in--I kind'a felt bad, but oh well. Paper work was filled out pretty quickly. Then we sat there. Waiting. I thought maybe because I was early they'd squeeze me in early? No. I didn't get called back until just AFTER 2pm. It didn't seem like a long wait though. I enjoyed spending time with my Nana talking about the surrogacy and enjoying a nice cup of coffee together. USC Fertility is a very nice clinic. The staff were all very warm and welcoming. I felt very comfortable there. We went over my medical history; Breast exam; Blood work; Urinalysis; Pap. They had a hard time checking my lining and my uterus because I had an IUD in place. We all agreed that it would be easier to have it removed today instead of sending me to my gyno to take it out and then back to USC for the ultrasound (and to be honest, I just wanted to move forward with everything already!). Once they removed my IUD they were successful with the ultrasound and pleased with what they saw. Side note: They didn't perform the sterile water thing. " time!", according to the doctor. She continued to say, "Everything looks normal thus far. Now we wait about a week to get the blood and urinalysis results back". Lastly, I was told what happens next--The schedule of the meds--what they are and how they work and that this will all start as soon as contracts are in place. This was all so "surro-real" (as one of my surro-friends said it best =)). I was told to start taking prenatal vitamins and I should hear from them next week with the test results. I left the clinic feeling like I was on top of the world. I felt amazing! This is going to be an incredible journey and I am so honored to be a part of it. During our ride home my Nana asked me, "how was the transfer". I said, "what transfer? What do you mean?". LOL, I don't know where she got the idea, but she thought the transfer was today! Oh Nana, I love you. =)

Driving towards downtown Los Angeles. I felt like such the tourist, haha! Can you tell I hardly get out of Orange County? My girlfriends and I joke that we are "stuck behind the orange curtain". 

We were surrounded by tall buildings. It was a neat sight, and a scary one too. What IF there was an earth quake!?! I cringe at the thought

My Nana and I in the waiting room.

Getting ready for the exam. Dr thought it was so neat how I am documenting this whole journey. She was more than happy to snap a quick picture =)

A jar of unwrapped condoms. I thought it was funny....

TMI but whatever. Can you spot the IUD? Crazy to think that thing was in my cervix for the last two years!

The lighting on this picture is pretty bad sorry, but if you look towards the middle of the picture you can see how much traffic there was going both ways. This is what rush-hour traffic looks like in L.A.. Thank goodness for carpool lanes!! 

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

It's all on me right now

I have my medical screening tomorrow afternoon with Eleazar and Angie's doctor. It's all on me now whether we can move forward or not. Everything lies on the results of this screening. Also, Dr. Paulson, who I will be seeing tomorrow, is a male. I've never had a male doctor examine me "down there" before. I've always worked with woman doctors. So, that is a bit scary too. I am a nervous wreck. I am nervous eating. There goes my diet!! I can't help but to worry about this exam and the results. It will take two weeks to get the results back. A whole two weeks that I sit here, thinking, waiting, and nervous eating!!!! Holy toledo--I pray for this part to be done and over with real soon so that we all can move forward. Positive vibes, please! I sure can use them right about now.

Side note: I heard from another surro friend that during the ultrasound that they'll perform tomorrow, they'll fill up my uterus with sterile water. Thus resulting in that water having to come back out and the feeling of "peeing" yourself. Icky!!!! I'm interested to see how this one pans out, haha!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

The New Year Equals Dieting, Right?

So ok, I admit, I've gained a few too many extra pounds over the holiday season and frankly I need it gone--and fast!!! I'd really, really like to get down to a nice weight before starting injections, which I hear can cause weight gain--Eeek! The thought of (possibly) gaining 10-15 pounds during injections and not yet being prego scares me to death. With both of my kids, I gained 30-40 pounds during pregnancy. Adding 10-15lbs more to that freaks me out. So....i've come up with a plan. I've started the Cabbage Soup Diet two days ago in the hopes to drop 10 pounds fast. 10 pounds is my goal. This "diet" is only recommended to do for 7 days. After the seven days are up, I plan to continue on making healthy food choices to keep my weight down. This Cabbage Soup Diet is just my kick start to get things going. And yes, My Love (Eric-hubby), I will start to exercise (does walking the dog count?)!! ;) Side note: He's been begging me to get back into the gym. I kept saying, "how dare you....", but, I realize it's time. I wanted to start exercising when I was ready, not when someone else was telling me to do it.

I'm proud to say that the scale confirms I've already shed 4 pounds!!! I think that it's all water weight, but either way, I'm stoked! The cabbage soup doesn't taste as bad as a few people complained. I actually enjoy it--it's very soothing for me. Occasionally, to spice it up, i add hot sauce and it brings out a whole new flavor. I've also heard that you can add different seasonings to make different flavors--like Italian, oriental, ect. My next pot I think I will make it more of an oriental flavoring. Mmmm!! My mouth is literally watering at the thought.

So, here goes!! Wish me luck and send positive vibes that this weight just melts right off. Happy New Year, everyone =)

Oh!!!! I totally forgot to mention: My IP's, Eleazar and Angie, had their screenings and lab work done two days ago. Mine is scheduled for next Wednesday. I pray that both our results come back quickly and we can swiftly move forward and start contracts ASAP!! Let's get baby makin' people!