Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Rollercoaster Ride Since March

Hello, in case there are any of you left out there.... curious as to what has been going on in our journey...

Pardon me while I take out a broom to knock down all the cobwebs around here!!

Ahem... that's better.....

Ok.  Although it has been quiet on the blogfront, it hasn't been quiet in the baby making world... a lot has happened since March!  So... here goes.

In May we started back up again... pills, lupron, blood work, ultrasounds... estrace.. Progesterone (HUGE SHOTS THIS TIME, TWICE A DAY... OUCH!!!)  everything went through with flying colors!  I went into Chicago on June 18th and had a wonderful dinner catching up with M & M... we woke up bright and early and had a 10am transfer on the 19th.  We enjoyed lunch together and I went home to WAIT.... and wait I did... until I started peeing on sticks..
I peed, and I peed, and I peed.... and I kept seeing one line.... Negative.

I tried to stay positive thinking.. it's just too soon... I bought the digital read out one- thinking it was more accurate... I even listened to stories about other GC (Gestational Carriers) whom had negative hpt (home pregnancy tests) up until their beta!  I went in for the beta test on July 1 and unfortunatly it was negative.  I sent my IP's a text expressing my love and apologies... I haven't heard back yet- but I don't blame them at all!!  I feel a little defeated as well.

I was told by the clinic to start bc (birth control pills) once my cycle started... even though they weren't sure whether we were proceeding or stopping..  My cycle literally came two days later... so I started pills again on July 4. 

I received a phone call shortly after, again expressing how important it was to start up those pills... I took that as a good sign and cried a littler (mostly I am thinking due to my major hormone imbalance for abruptly stopping estrogen and progesterone... my poor body doesn't know whether its coming or going) but also I think because of a happy, yet worried mindset.

......... side note, I totally know I am not using proper punctuation in this blogpost... literally just typing as my brain is flowing so don't critique me please ;).......

Ok... where were we... ok TODAY i get all my prospective dates- I start shots again next wednesday go off bc on the 23... ultrasound on the 26th... yada yada yada.... baseline on... and then I hear it.  Transfer date... August 9th.

August 9th..

Of the 365 days of the year it had to be August 9th.


August 9th is our first transfer date... last year.. and YEAR to the day.... two embryos were transferred and one took... giving us a wonderful positive beta.... however, Sept 8 we miscarried at 6 weeks.  This transfer date will have the exact same prospective due date as the first...

A blow.... a sign.... positive or negative who knows... but it has been on my mind and won't leave it.

So.. there you have it.. the rollercoaster ride of a Gestational Carrier... the highs and lows....

I don't regret a single thing... I only pray for God's will... and that this is the one...

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Transparently Raw... went out the window?? ......Failure......

Well...  It's been over a year now!

No, not nice I have updated this... ( I haven't been THAT bad ) since we've been matched with M&M.

Aloof?  I have been rather aloof...  Well here goes nothing.  I will start talking and opening up again because someone out there has got to hear this, needs to hear this....

After failed attempt number...  2.  2 and  a half??  1) miscarriage 2) November meds / transfer suppression not reached  3) Feb/Mar suppression was not reached and then it was!  And then my lining was nice and thick and ready for a transfer and all of a sudden BAM!  Uterine polyps.   Really!?  Was all I could muster...

What did this mean?   Well it meant no transfer the following week... It meant yet another road block... And it meant both myself and M&M had a lot of thinking and decision making to do.

I decided I would have surgery to remove and biopsy and hopefully mend and heal and move on and forward with surrogacy...  With hopes M&M were wanting to as well.  M&M seem on board and...

I had surgery Wednesday.  A little more extensive than I thought it was going to be... I was fully knocked out .. Breathing tube and all...  All I remember is waking up to my hips hurting like a son of a gun. Being up in those stirrups for the surgery and my tongue and throat are very sore from the tube... My stomach region and lady business is fine actually.  I go back Tues April 2 for post op and results... I am praying and believing in good news!

Where do I stand with this... Well it's all quite depressing.  I feel like a huge failure... I know that God is faithful and sovereign but knowing and accepting are two different things.  The urge to be in control and put it on my timeline and all pretty in my box is conflicting with the all powerful, omnipresent, all knowing God.  Please pray for my overall health, patience, peace, and perseverance during this valley....

Please pray for M&M who have already waited so long for their dream of a family to come true...

Thank you to my loyal readers who have asked after me so much...

I am on the mend... Now I need to get the results do I can refocus and get back on track.

Good results mean about two months of normal cycles and then meds again.  So Mar and Apr no meds and May meds June transfer... Give or take!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Long Over Due... the Ups and Downs of Being a Gestational Carrier

Hello, I'm not sure if you remember me?

My name is Chelsea and I am a Gestational Carrier.

Oh you do remember me??  Ok..Great!

SO!  I left off not knowing where or when we would start again...

In November, I began my birth control pills at the end of my October cycle.  We were shooting for a December 4th transfer.  During my pills, BayLeigh got sick and we were at the hospital with her a lot and I ended up being late on three pills (took them the same day.. however, not at the right time).  I started to have some spotting the next week (right before I was supposed to start my lupron shots) and called to let them know before I started the shots.  I began the shots and the spotting subsided.  I went in on the 20th for a baseline ultrasound and was NOT cleared for the transfer.  A follicle had already started to form (a little house for an egg..) in a nutshell my own body started it's cycle and didn't suppress my hormones or eggs and since we aren't using my eggs that's no good.  There's a 5-10% chance of this happening anyway- between the shots and the pills not suppressing enough... it could be an after effect of the miscarriage, a fluke, or due to the late birth control pills.  Anyway, they scheduled me for another ultrasound for yesterday and bloodwork to see if the extra week of lupron helped... and it did not.  So I am a no go for my Dec. 4th transfer.

Ok.. I read the above portion and it sounded very, well.... emotionless?  Not heartfelt?  Truth is.. I haven't been blogging because I've been a tiny bit discouraged.  I would like this SO bad for this wonderful couple and I know M & M want it so bad as well.  I want the most IDEAL variables in the next transfer so yes, I'm ok with it being postponed, but it is still a bit discouraging.  I promise to blog more in the future (after all I promised the raw real story).
So here are my feelings:
I know it's not my fault, but however, anytime you are trying to do something for someone and it's your own body- other surrogates will understand me saying this, I feel like it is my fault sometimes.

Next step?
We are waiting for my December cycle to pass and then starting up again on the pills on the first day of the January cycle making for a possible February transfer.  (Oct/Nov due date time frame)

Now... I have been pretty quiet not only because my own circumstances and journey, but because of some of my fellow surrogate friends' journeys as well.  I have had friends have amazing twin births, singletons, and great experiences, wonderful miracles for their IP's and great relationships form.  However, lately, there has been a lot of tears and heartache among us.  We have had still births, miscarriages, broken ribs from twins, one live twin one still twin, a medical emergency that threatened a surrogate's life and resulting in a radical hysterectomy, negative beta results (failed transfers), absorbed pregnancies... you name it I think I've heard of it.  When it happens to one of us it ripples to us all. It is hard to not get discouraged, so I wanted to make sure before I used this blog as an outlet I was in the right mindset to do so.

I believe in this calling, I believe in what we are doing, and most of all I believe in our amazing God who has blessed us with this ability.  I ask that you pray for the gestational carriers I call my friends, or sisters.  Thank you to all who read this blog and are curious or excited about this journey.  I honestly believe the trials we go through make us stronger and can be used for a greater good.  I was called by a friend who was experiencing the spotting and similar symptoms I had been going through before the miscarriage and able to talk with her and help counsel.  Without that experience I wouldn't have been able to do that.  I have a bigger heart for M & M then I ever could have thought possible.  So, you will hear from me again... sooner rather than later.

As for M & M they are as to be expected, disappointed.  We were hoping for a Christmas wish come true, they have waited so long already!  But- we are taking it one step at a time.. :)  Thanks for the prayers friends!

Until we meet again!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

What's happening in the baby making world...

I know it's been a little while since I posted.. I have felt like I was driving along and came to a sudden unexpected stop... and I've been waiting for my car to be fixed??   Does that make sense???

I'm not going to lie.  I felt/feel:  discouraged, confused, disappointed, etc... (insert word here) pretty much whatever word it is I have felt it.  I felt alone, I felt surrounded... I felt lost.

Now... the future.  This is happening.  I know it is going to happen for M&M and I am researching some natural ways to help out.  I have heard a lot of good things about acupuncture and massage to help in the fertility process and the transfer itself... I am going to bring this up to M&M and the clinic and see where they stand with it.

Timeline?  What do we do differently?

Well I have to wait for my next cycle- (end of October) to start the BC pills again and meds.... M&M were told of a possible mid Nov transfer date... I'm not sure how that works exactly?

Things will be a little different this time.. I will now be doing the progesterone shots instead of inserts... twice a day... big old huge needles (Joe refuses to do it for me.. I supposedly can't do them myself either...)  along with the lupron shots I give myself (smaller needle) I'm a little nervous about those, but whatever I can do... I will do!  Shots are shots... it's all for the greater good.. and right now since my body didn't really like the inserts... anythings better!

Anyway- that's where we are!  We are just in a standstill until the end of the month and then it's full steam ahead though.

Sometimes I catch myself... but then I refocus on the future and not the past.

October is Infant Loss Awareness month.  I am aware!  Are you?

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Why I'm a gestational carrier..

Helps explain a little how some people want and pray and beg for a family so bad... and others throw it away..  I feel for these women...

Monday, September 10, 2012

What type of person would want to do that??

Who am I?

I am the youngest in my family.  I have one sister.  I have hair that is constantly changing color unable to decide what it wants to be.  I forget to pluck my eyebrows.  I am uberly competitive.  It bothers me when people use there, they're, and there incorrectly.  I am an avid animal lover.  I wanted to be a vet but ended up crying more than the owners when putting an animal down, so therefore out the door went my veterinarian career.  I am a Daddy's girl.  I hide my tears and am ashamed of them.  In fact, when my husband or children cry it makes me feel awkward.  I have NO idea why, it's just a natural feeling for me.  I was/am the athlete.  I love almost all sports that I excel in and loathe those that I do not-  example: bowling.  My middle name is Marie for my Great Grandmother.  I miss California (we lived there on/off for 3 years while Joe was in the Marine Corps).  With that, I miss the Marine Corps... the guys used to tease me that I was the SGT Major of the Marine Corps with my wonderful knowledge.  I volunteered a LOT of my time for a wonderful non-profit organization called for almost 5 years.  I do not LOVE kids but I love giving them hope.  I am going on my third year as the Girl Scout Daisy troop leader and first year as the Brownie asst leader.  I was a Girl Scout growing up- until I thought it was uncool... little did I know that I was uncool.  I had the same best friend since 1st grade until probably ... a year and a half ago.  And it makes my heart ache every time I think about how much I miss that friendship.  I am not perfect.  Sometimes I try too hard to be.  I married my high school sweetheart- but again, we are not perfect and did a lot a living before settling down.  I got pregnant too young but fell in love at first sight.  I almost lost BayLeigh- our first born.  I gave birth for the first time with my husband thousands of miles away in Iraq.  I gave birth to our last born, Charley, with my husband thousands of miles away in Afghanistan.  I have two great and awesome friends that I consider my bests even though they are far away.  I miss them fiercely but they have helped shape me into the woman I am today.  I love the sport of swimming.  I become pregnant almost too easily- and therefore my heart aches for those who can not.  I am a child of God.  I come from a "whole" family- a mom and dad who are still married and love each other.  I do not get along with my sister very well (although it's getting there once we both agree to disagree).  I think sometimes I am TOO common sense, there is no grey area and everything is black and white and if everyone else could just see that we would live in a perfect world.  (ha)  I love serving people, I think that's who God made me.  I volunteer.  I can not say No unless it is to my children.  I want to give and allow my children to experience whatever activity they want to in order to figure out where their niche is.  I don't get to see my family as much as I would like to.  I like Bud Light Lime... its delicious.  I eat food... a lot of it, so I'm not a skinny girl and I'm proud of that- I have four daughters and I just turned 28 you do the math.  I am very sarcastic and quick with comebacks.  I need to be more humble.  I am involved in our church.... although I have been on a long break trying to find myself one might say but actually I've just been selfish and lazy.  I read the Bible.  I read a lot of anything and I will reread my favorite book 25 times and learn something new every time.  I am a scanner.  I hate voicemails, in fact if you leave me one chances are I will never listen to it.  I saw you called and I will call you back! My first car was purple (how awesome is that?!)  My first french kiss was in 8th grade to Jamie Farrell.  I turn very pale in the winter, almost translucent... if you shake some glitter on my I may be mistaken for a Cullen family member.  (That was a Twilight reference)  I have NOT read 50 Shades of Gray and I'm ok with that. I love Harry Potter and the Hunger Games.  I grew up on Princess Bride and Adventures in Babysitting (every time I go to Chicago I get so excited about the Diamond Shaped building that Sarah was scaling).  I feel home when my husband is there.  I love candles and bathtubs (tubbys).  I used to think the Gin Blossoms song Hey Jealousy was actually "Hey Chelsea" and my friends and family allowed me to think this until I was oh 20 or so???  I used to think the color magenta was actually pronounced mag net ah and this was until my wedding day...  I can NOT say aluminum without stumbling over that word.  My piercing blue eyes actually give me headaches because they cause me to squint all the time.  I LOVE sunflower seeds.  I got a little addicted to BF3 but I'm better now ;)  I miss my husband when he is away.  I dislike our dog.  I am more a cat person.

I was born able.. able to get pregnant easily... able to give birth and have normal pregnancies and labors.   God blessed me with a family.  My heart aches for those still trying... who have been trying for what seems like forever to them.

God made me uniquely and created me with love.  This is how my IP's baby will be created... uniquely and with love.

I am who I am... God wired me... I am who I am and have nothing to hide.

I had a miscarriage... and now.... God left another little impression on my heart..  one that aches with empathy and love with those who have lost a child as well.  Compassion doesn't even begin to describe how I feel towards those in pain. I am who God made to and shaped me to be with all the experiences that have brushed, bumped, stamped, slid, moved across/through/around/ontop/under me.  With each movement I am forever being etched and chiseled into the Christian Woman/Mother/Daughter/Sister/Wife/Gestational Carrier/Swim Coach/Crave Leader/Girl Scout Leader/Neighbor/Cousin/Fan/Jesusfreak/Crazy Driver.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Heavy Heart..

I write tonight with a heavy heart... but when I began blogging this I agreed to be raw and transparent... well here goes:

I went over a week without any bleeding!!  Which was great news... however, today I woke up with heavy bleeding..  with the bleeding came some small clots (sorry if TMI but if there is anyone out there that has the same issue and is googling it I want to help or share my experience for them) and then some larger ones.  I was feeling fine.  No pain, no cramping, after about 45 minutes of heavy bleeding I called the IVF clinic and asked them what they thought.  They said if the bleeding went away great... but if not go to the ER.

So I made a trip to the Morrison ER.  While I was there I passed more blood... and something that looked pretty suspicious...

I brought all this over to the Sterling ER (because Morrison didn't have an ultrasound technician)  and was admitted and spent the rest of my day in at CGH.  After blood work and ultrasound it was pretty clear that I had miscarriage.  The vaginal exam confirmed it.


[mis-kar-ij; for 1 also mis-kar-ij] 
1.  the expulsion of a fetus before it is viable

2.  failure to attain the just, right, or desired result


[laws, los] 
1. detriment, disadvantage, or deprivation from failure to keep, have, or get: to bear the loss

My heart hurts so much for M & M and their dreams and hopes for this baby.  The only pain I had was during the ultrasound and vaginal exam and being poked and prodded and worked over.  My body is sore and very tired due to the extreme blood loss.  I think the worst part of it is the ER OB room must be located underneath the birthing unit because I could hear a newborn crying the entire time.

I have such mixed feelings and emotions right now.  I wonder what I did wrong... was there something wrong with the baby... maybe this is why I didn't feel pregnant??? or maybe this is why I bled before
??  was there something wrong with me?  How do M & M feel??  I can't imagine what they are going through.  etc...  Joe is gone currently at a school in Des Moines for the military.  So sitting in that room for a good 4 hours bleeding out gave me a lot of time to think about everything I could possibly think of.

Don't feel bad that I was alone during this time- I don't think there is anyone I really wanted at my side during it.  I am the "strong" one.. and not very emotional... in fact I'm sure Joe would agree that he cries more than I.  However, I to be alone today for that small moment of weakness to not have to be strong for anyone for just a short amount of time and grieve.  Grieve for M & M... and this baby... and the life I dreamed for them.

My phone died almost right after being admitted to CGH- so I think that was God's way of making me focus.... also it was a saving grace in a way because I SO badly wanted to call M & M and keep them in the loop but I realized after everything it is not my place to tell them.  I know you all want to know how they are doing-  I do too... I haven't spoke to them yet.  I charged my phone once I left the hospital and called our case worker and let her know what was going on.  She confirmed it was not my place to tell them... and I said that was fine but asked that they be told immediately.  I didn't want to hide ANYTHING from them and wanted them to know as soon as possible.  She sent me a text and let me know once the phone call was made..  I can't imagine what they are going through.  I have been in contact with them and they are concerned for me but seem to be doing ok and looking hopeful into the future.

So what's next???  I don't know... to be honest.  It feels weird not taking any medicine for the first time in..... oh my gosh I don't know how long. I honestly don't know what happens in the case of a miscarriage I hate that word!  It reeks of failure... so instead I use the word loss.   I honestly don't know what happens in the case of a loss...  I know that it is all in M & M's court.  They decide when and if they want to try again, I believe I know them well enough and from the sounds of it they are fully committed to trying again just as I am.  I assume I will have to get my body back into a regular ovulation cycle and resume meds and do a mock cycle and transfer again.

I appreciate your prayers.  I am strong and ok, I especially appreciate your prayers for M & M.. I know that God has a plan for their family and I pray for their comfort.  I know that they will be blessed with a baby and I pray that I can be the one to help them :)