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Betas, Ultrasounds and Tests oh my!

Posted by alittlebit26  , 11 July 2008 - 12:48 PM

Ok, so the pregnancy tests were able to give me the heads up that I was pregnant - :bliss:/> ! Then came the betas. I had the first beta 11dp6dt and it came back at 509 (wow!). Second beta was 14dp6dt and came back at 1383 - ok, doubling, but not too fast. Third beta came back 16dp6dt and it was 2503 - ok, we have slowed down the doubling - slightly worried. Date was given for the ultrasound for the 14th of July. Ugh, too far to wait.. But I can do it. On the night of the 6th I started feeling some cramping, a bit more painful than what I had in the past several weeks. Went into the bathroom to check things out and was terrified to see bright red blood. :cry:/> I had one minor spotting episode about a week and a half earlier, but it was brown blood - old blood that didn't make me worry about anything. This was bright red, new blood. And there was a bit more than spotting going on. Coupled with the cramping I was petrified. Of course I immediately went online and started researching, finding both good and bad things that could be happening. I drank some water, laid down for a bit and tried to just relax. I went into the bathroom every 15 minutes to see if there was still more bleeding. About every other time I went into the bathroom there was new blood. My husband told me to call the doctor. I felt it wasn't going to be worth it. If I was losing this pregnancy there was nothing they could do to stop it and I didn't want to spend the final hours of my 4th of July weekend at the hospital making everyone panic. So I went to bed and hoped it would just go away.

Monday morning (July 7th) I got up to get ready for work - first thing I did was check for new bleeding. There wasn't any. Excellent! At this point, the total amount of blood didn't seem significant enough to mean a miscarriage to me. I got ready for work and headed out once the kids were in daycare. Got to work and the cramping started again. I ran immediately to the bathroom and darn it there was more new blood. Of course, I went back to my desk and decided it was time to call the RE and see what they suggest I do, knowing full well there isn't anything. But maybe they will let me go to the ultrasound earlier to see if something else might be going on. I called and that is exactly what they wanted me to do. I called the hospitals in the area and was able to get an ultrasound appointment for that same day. Phew.

1:00pm comes around and its time to see what's going on. The ultrasound technician is doing her scanning, her picture taking and her note writing. No words are coming out of her mouth. Because I have a retroverted uterus this is never an easy task for an ultrasound tech. An hour goes by and I am almost falling asleep. At one point I notice that she seems to be trying to track a heart rate based on the timing of the clicks on her mouse :hb:/> (I can't see the screen mind you). She tells me she wants to verify that she has gotten enough pictures with another tech. This is common for me… not sure why my uterus is so difficult, but it is. I ask her at this point if there is any information she can give me. All she tells me is that she did find one sac. Ok good - I have one baby in there (no twins, phew). So far so good - didn't lose it. The other technician comes in and starts reviewing the pictures. I hear 5w5d and 6w. Still sounds great to me, I was 5w6d at this point, so right on track. "There is the gestational sac" I hear her say, and "there is the yolk sac" I hear. These are all wonderful sounds to me. She takes an extra couple of pictures and then tells me I can get dressed and they will come back after reviewing the pictures. At this point I am wondering what the heck is causing this awkwardness… I have never had them review the pictures this many times. What are they seeing??

I get dressed and am allowed to empty my bladder (thank god). I am sitting out in the waiting area when the two ladies come back to get me. We need to do one more picture they tell me. So now I am done with being in the dark - I asked what was going on. The doctor on staff wanted them to re-verify the heart rate. Ok, heartbeat noted, excellent - still sounding good. I get back on the table and watch the two ladies taking turns getting the heart rate. This is another 15 minute process.. How hard can this be?? They ask me to wait for just a minute, they are going to get the doctor. I am ready to get up and deck someone at this point, there is too little information being shared. The doctor comes in and watches as the girls verify for the 300th time the heartrate. Ok, so its low he says. Ranging from 75-89. Oh NO! I know that babies are supposed to be up in the mid 100's. This is awful! I feel my face go flush and my heartrate skyrocket. The doctor leaves and the techs just look at me. I get the "I'm sorry"s and the gentle touch on the knee (seeing as I am still on the darn table). I asked, ok, what does this mean?? She told me that my doctor will receive the report in the next day or so and that I should call them to find out exactly what this means.

I left the hospital completely down and prepared for a miscarriage to come shortly. I start wondering how the heck I am going to break this terrible news to my IPs. IM is on vacation and IF is home on his own working over time for his own company. They are currently over the moon knowing a baby is on its way and this is going to crush them. I am so upset, I completely forget that I have not eaten lunch and proceed to complete my work day on empty.

I posted my dilemma on the AAS board in hopes that there is a positive outcome that might still happen and that I won't have to tell my IPs that their hopes are about to be put on hold for a while. There were no surviving embryos from the fresh transfer that we just did, so they would have to decide if going through that all over again (from France) would be worth it. This just wasn't seeming like a happy ending. I read all the responses to my posting and find that there is still hope. The heart may have just started beating and will increase as the days go on. I see light!

The next day I get the phone call (first thing in the morning thankfully) from the REs office. Dr. M does acknowledge that the heartrate was a bit low, but ( in my head I am thinking there's a but I can't believe it!!) he also acknowledges that the ultrasound was really early and the heartrate is always low that early. I am dancing on air hearing this. Here I was thinking that this result was a guaranteed loss and yet I still have hope. They told me to get another ultrasound the following week to follow up. So now its just a wait and hope that the little ones heart rate jumps up to a wondering 120 or better!! I was able to get the appointment for the 15th at 11:00am. So now its just on to the waiting again. The cramping and bleeding ended that same day and now I just feel pregnant. Slightly ill (though nothing to complain about), tired, larger chest (excellent perk!!!) and minorly expanding middle - pudge I call it. Oh I hope this works out well… I can't stand to break their hearts. :crossfingers:/> :pray:/>

Update - been a long time

Posted by alittlebit26  , 24 June 2008 - 06:21 AM

Since December (last entry) there has been a whole lot going on, but it took a whole lot of time to get there. We finally signed all contracts in late January. I went through all the testing and was given the green light for a mock cycle. The mock cycle was in April. The results of the first ultrasound said that my lining was only a 6.something - not good enough. They upped my meds to every other day (ouch) and redid an ultrasound a few weeks later. The lining came back at a 7.0 - right where I needed it to be - though it took a bit of work to get the ultrasound tech to get there. She originally came back with a 5.something! I told her she was wrong and I wanted someone else to check. Fortunately someone else came in and he got the 7.0 - phew. Apparently because I have a retroverted uterus it makes ultrasounds nearly impossible for anyone to get good readings on my body. Now that Dr. M was good with the mock cycle, we moved on to the real deal! More drugs and more tests... to find that my lining mid way through was on the thin side again - wth?? He upped my drugs even more and did another ultrasound two days later - we were good to go again. I finally get the call on June 8th that they are going to do the egg retrieval on the 10th - woooooo hoooooo we are moving now! I was hoping for a 3 day transfer, but since everything looked SOOOO good they postponed it until 5 days. I get down to the clinic for the 5 day transfer only to find out that they are again postponing the transfer one more day. What?? Now I start to worry because that means the embryos have slowed their growth and aren't doing what they are supposed to do anymore. Nail biting time. Finally day of transfer comes. Dr. M is not available to do the transfer, so a substitute comes in. He tells us we are transferring two embryos - which makes me a little uneasy again because earlier the quality was so good they were only going to transfer one - now its two. Ugh. Transfer went really well - rather anticlimactic for all the waiting the IPs have had. I went back to the hotel to "relax". I got a call from the nurse that I have been dealing with - ironically who wasn't available for the transfer either - only to find out that the embryos WERE still excellent quality and that the substitute doctor chose to not read the notes that Dr. M had left about only transferring one! AHHHHHHHHHHH! So now there is a good chance we are going to have two. That actually made me feel better knowing that the embryos weren't doing poorly and that the chances were good that this was going to work. I started POAS on Friday 4dp6dt and got a :bfn:/> . Ok, maybe a little early - but many had seen the golden positive by this time. I tried again 5dp6dt and still got a :bfn:/>. Ugh. I was so bummed all day on Saturday feeling like this whole transfer was a failure. What made it worse was knowing that none - NONE - of the other 7 embryos that had been doing so well made it one more day for freezing. If this didn't work I don't know what the next step would be. :pullhair:/>

Ok, so I POAS 6dp6dt. I watched the test for a good minute and it was still stark white. :cry:/> :evilhpt:/> My husband asks me a little while later if I took the test and I told him I had and that I hadn't gone back to look at it again. I went in to the bathroom and turned on the light. :sunny:/> OMG - do I see the hint of another line on there???? I ran (ok, walked the 5 feet) to my husband and said "Do you see something on this???". He said he saw a line. :woofreakinhoo:/> It was positive!! This worked, I can't believe it, this worked! I took another test the next morning and the next and still both positive. What a relief. I can now tell the IPs that we are pregnant! :ohyeah:/> :onebaby:/> :wub:/> Because they live in France I wasn't able to get in touch with them before they went to bed - missed them by a minute. (We talk on the computer because they don't speak English). So I put together an E-Card that has an adorable pregnant belly and baby slideshow with a saying on the bottom that says "I hope you enjoy the next 9 months because that is all its going to take for you to finally have your baby! We're pregnant!". I can't wait to get their reactions. The beta isn't until Friday, but with the lines getting darker, and the second line showing up instantly now, I feel confident that it will be a positive beta. :banana:/> :banana:/> :banana:/> :banana:/> :banana:/> :banana:/>

Contracts where are you?

Posted by alittlebit26  , 28 December 2007 - 09:25 PM

So I met with my IPs on November 30th and we immediately determined that this was a go. We have been in constant contact, though it isn't very easy since they only speak French and I only speak English. But we use Instant Messenger and Email and free online translators. Because we are going through an agency we are not supposed to talk about money and/or legal aspects of this whole process, which, to be honest, is the whole reason I wanted to go through an agency. However, because of this, I have no idea where the contract stands. I understand it might take some time for B and D to get through the whole contract because they have to have the contract interpreted and then re-interpreted back to English if they make any changes, but its been about a month and I don't even have a copy to look at.

I am not sure what the typical wait period is for the contract initial stage, but I feel like this is longer than normal. Especially considering the fact that B and D are under the impression that we will be going to transfer by April, which includes a mock cycle prior to.

Ugh - I didn't realize that this hurry up and wait stuff applied to things other than the Army. Each stage takes so long to get through, but at the same time, we have been in this whole process for 7 months now and it feels like just last week I was making the phone call. We would be almost ready to deliver if this were the pregnancy. Its going to fly by once we get there and that is the part I am afraid of most of all.

We finally met and its a go!

Posted by alittlebit26  , 02 December 2007 - 03:38 PM

After a long time coming, we finally met with our IPs this past Friday. I was a nervous wreck all day. I couldn't eat anything because it made me feel sick, but then I started feeling sick because I hadn't eaten... it was not a good circle. We arrived early and didn't know what to do with ourselves so we just walked around trying to forget that we were cold, and that we were about to meet some really important people in our lives. We finally got to the point when it was time to head to the meeting area and my phone rings. Its the coordinator who wants to know if we could head in early to do a small interview for a journalist who wants to do a documentary on surrogacy for French TV - which will be aired on TV in France and in Germany. As if my nerves weren't rattle enough! So not only do I need to worry about what I say to the IPs but I have to worry about it being documented permanently on film!

2:30 rolls around ( our designated time ) and the IPs have called to say they are stuck in traffic - ugh! I am just sitting around waiting and then I hear the door to the office open - my heart began to pound - this was it. They come walking around the corner and I couldn't do anything but beam at them. These people whose pictures I have poured over for weeks have just come walking straight into my life and into my heart. They are French and do not speak much English at all so they brought an interpretor with them. The interpretor was parking the car and so we all had to just sit and stare at each other while we waited. I could see the joy all over their faces that they were here at this point. I think that is the point that my husband finally got why I am doing this.

The guided meeting went well - the counselor asked all the necessary questions and we all answered as we had in the past just now it was documented formally in the group. We were finally released to our own small meeting and we opted to go to a cafe to have some coffee and just talk. We had a really good time - it was entertaining trying to decipher what we were all saying (even though we had the interpretor there). They must have told me 100 times how happy they were to be here. They brought gifts for my children who are going to fall in love with this couple just because of that. We had already determined that this in fact, was most definitely the couple that we wanted to work with. So now we move on to the fun stuff - finally! I can't wait to start talking to them and seeing them and going through this whole process with them. I am in love with these IPs and I can't imagine doing this for someone else!

:hb:/> :hb:/> :hb:/> :hb:/>

Just need the date to meet

Posted by alittlebit26  , 13 November 2007 - 10:52 PM

So I finally gave in and contacted the counselor about the couple not having gotten back to me yet. It just so happened that on that very day she had received word that the couple DEFINITELY wanted to work with me! The catch, of course, is that they didn't want to meet me until transfer day - because they live out of country - which the agency will not let them do. So now I have to wait to find out when they will be willing to come to the states to have a meeting and confirm that we get along well and can work together on this wonderful journey. We have been very slow with this whole process and I suppose this waiting is just the next stage. I still need to go through the contract phase and the mock cycle and then finally into the transfer stage which will hopefully only be the one time! I am so excited to finally know (I hope) who it is that I will be helping! I can't wait to finally meet them face to face.

Yea!!

:bliss:/> :bliss:/> :bliss:/>

The 2ww can't be as painful as this wait

Posted by alittlebit26  , 01 November 2007 - 08:50 PM

So it's been over a week since I gave notice to the counselor that I wanted to work with a couple. I am sure they must have received my profile by now. Why haven't I heard anything??? :pullhair:/> I know a week isn't really that long, but it feels like a lifetime. If this couple now decides that they don't want to work with me I am back to the drawing board. At least in the 2ww I know exactly how many days I have to wait to learn anything. At this point I have no clue how long until I know something. It also doesn't help that my DH just had his final interview at a new job and is waiting to hear anything from them on whether or not they liked him enough to hire him. So we have two big news items that we are waiting to hear something ANYTHING about. This is so stressful! :pullhair:/>


Ok, venting all done. Time for relaxation and stretching so I can actually get some sleep.

Do they want me???

Posted by alittlebit26  , 22 October 2007 - 08:08 PM

I finally decided on a couple that I would like to work with. I notified the counselor that I had made my decision, but I haven't heard anything back from her yet. I had to send an email because it was late Sunday night that I finally made the decision and didn't want to risk having her answer her cell phone on her day off. I am hoping the couple receives my profile and decides that they would like to work with me too! I am so excited but now I am VERY nervous. What if this couple doesn't like me? and my family? My husband liked the profile of this couple very much as well which is a difficult feat. He is very picky when it comes to people who have impacts on his families lives. My brother and his wife just announced that they are expecting their third child ... how strange it will be to be pregnant at the same time but not with our child. More and more I see my brother in law and his family and my husband's cousin and his wife with their new babies and I realize that I most definitely am all done with that phase of my life and that being pregnant without the worries of midnight feedings and travelling with a newborn will be the perfect situation for me! I can't wait!

:banana:/> :banana:/> :banana:/>

Profiles Received

Posted by alittlebit26  , 06 October 2007 - 11:34 AM

I got a wonderful package that included profiles of some wonderful couples that need my help to have a baby early last week! I was so excited to see a package with CSP as the return address, I dropped everything else I was doing, even the conversation I was having and rushed in the house to sit down and read. I read through them all, I had DH read through them all the next day and then I read through them again. We compared opinions and thoughts and decided that we "liked" the same couple the best but we wanted to see another group of profiles just to make sure. I don't want to rush into it now after having taken my time this whole journey and have it not work out for both my family and the IPs. So I made the phone call to the counselor and asked that they send us some more profiles that they think might be a good match for us and explained all the reasons why. So now we wait again - though I was told that I should receive another package next week. Once I receive that package it will likely be a decision making result and will have to wait and see what the couple decides. :pullhair:/> I feel like I am in the military again with the hurry up and wait routines. But this is far more worth it than anything in the military ever was. Hopefully my next post will be that I have found a potential match!!!

:bliss:/> :bliss:/> :bliss:/>

Now we wait...

Posted by alittlebit26  , 29 September 2007 - 08:18 AM

I finally had all my doctor's appointments and the lab work done and sent off to CSP. They must have received the results by now, but as of Tuesday when I called, they were still waiting. My DH didn't actually send his off until Wednesday so his won't come in until next week, but his aren't as important in the moving forward portion. I also sent in all my paperwork and my profile etc which they received on Thursday. Everything seemed to be in order and ready to move on to the actual matching phase until....

I got a phone call on my way to a wedding on Friday night. They didn't agree with something that was on my papework I sent in and I had to explain why I had chosen what I had chosen. The person I talked to had to discuss it with the director and get back to me. She didn't call me back until I was already at the wedding and didn't tell me what they had determined on the voice mail so now I have to wait until Monday to call her back and see what the end result is. Ugh...

My mother in law is one of the few people that know about this journey and she decided to discuss it with me a bit at the wedding. I don't think anyone else knew what she was talking about but if they did, its only a short matter of time before we make it public anyways. We didn't want to share anything until we were matched with a couple because who knows what can happen until that point and we don't want to have to explain to our large family that we "changed our minds" or whatever.

Onto the weekend and then on Monday will hopefully have an answer to the discussion on Friday and moving on to the matching phase....finally!!

:insane:/>

Medical Exam - for screening at least

Posted by alittlebit26  , 16 September 2007 - 08:56 AM

I finally have my doctor's appointment scheduled for next Wednesday. That (I think) should be the last step before finally getting to select a set of IPs and hopefully become matched. The paperwork that came with all the medical kit stuff I need to bring to the doctor says that the screening is only good for 6 months, so that means its likely I will be matched in that time. I am hoping for much faster than that but its the first time I actually have a timeline for things to be moving. I keep reading about all these women who are now in the two week wait and I can't imagine it is TOO much worse than the incredible waiting I have already been doing. Though I really dont know since neither of my children were planned ahead of time so it was never a wait and see with them... they just were.

Its hard for me to feel like I am part of this surrogacy world since I have no news to share with any part just yet. I don't have any contracts going, I am not matched, I don't have any tentative transfer date, nor any meds happening. I am taking folic acid but that's nothing unusual for any woman to be taking.

My DH seems to feel happier about this whole process than he did in the beginning. I think having taken my time going through everything is allowing him the time to become adjusted to the whole idea. In fact, I think he has now warmed up quite well to the prospect of having my pregnant body back :blush:/> without the stress of coming sleepless nights and crying baby(ies). :onebaby:/>

I am very excited about the whole thing and am enjoying every minute rather than rushing through it. Who knows if I will ever do this again... no one ever knows for sure how this will affect my life and my family. I just hope its all for the better.

Finally got things going

Posted by alittlebit26  , 30 August 2007 - 08:24 PM

I called the counselor Monday to see what was going on since I hadn't heard anything in three weeks. Apparently the man who grades/scores the psych eval exams had a death in the family and likely was the cause of the delay in receiving the scores. But, since she didn't anticipate any problems in the results she went ahead and gave CSP the green light to send me my welcome packet and to get in touch with the medical coordinator. I got a phone call from the medical coordinator yesterday (Wednesday) and was told I needed to schedule an appointment with my doctor to get a mini-physical and my blood work done. My DH will also have to get some bloodwork/urine samples. I called both my family doctor and my OB and neither could get me in until September 19th at the earliest. So, I have to sit back and wait wait wait... but at least I know its coming and am not sitting by the phone waiting for it to ring telling me I can finally start doing something.

I wrote up my own profile the other day while on lunch break. I am waiting for my husband to proof it before I send it along to have CSP tell me what to change. I don't really have anything to compare it to so its hard to say if I was too long winded, not enough information, or all the wrong information. I wish I had other profiles to read to see what the other surrogates put in theirs. As long as I have someone at the agency read it, they can at least tell me what's fluff and what's missing. Yea! On to the next step.

The most exciting part is that the counselor said she was going to start putting together the profiles of some couples that would match well with us!! That really means its starting to get things moving along. There is a chance that by the time winter is over I could be wearing pants that don't have a waist line! How often do women get excited about being fat!!

Wooo hooo!!!

:banana:/>

Psych Eval done - Next...

Posted by alittlebit26  , 12 August 2007 - 04:10 PM

It only took me three weeks to finally get the time and "child freedom" to sit and take the 3 psych evaluation tests that were given to me back on the 18th of July. I sent them out on Monday the 6th and likely won't hear anything until at least next week if not later. Even though I seem to be taking my sweet time with this whole thing, inside I am just bursting with excitement and am axiously awaiting the next steps. My final course for my Master's Degree finished last week and my grade came out this weekend - I passed! No more school for me ever without it being chosen, not required. So excited. :woofreakinhoo:/> So now I can focus on this next journey and not have anything else distracting me. Can't wait!!

:bouncy:/> :bouncy:/>

Finally had the initial meeting w/agency

Posted by alittlebit26  , 26 July 2007 - 06:47 AM

So DH and I finally got to meet with the agency's counselor for the initial welcome to the program meeting. There was nothing really unexpected that was discussed, nor was there anything I didn't already know learned. It was a fun day for DH and I to get to spend time together without the kids - even if it was travelling all day. So next step... psych evals the paper way. I have to take this series of "tests" that will score my liklihood of being a psycho. I would have had them all done by now if I didn't need a nonfamily member to sign off on one of them that I (as myself) took it. That one might take me a week or so to get the opportunity to sneak away from Motherhood and sit somewhere for a few hours on my own. But we have made it this far and things are going to start moving! I can't wait!

Should have made appointment sooner...

Posted by alittlebit26  , 01 July 2007 - 06:36 PM

I made the appointment to meet with the counselor at "the agency" on the 18th of July in order to ensure things didn't go too quickly, giving my husband the time to adjust to each stage of my first surrogacy. But man, this is taking forever. I read all the discussions on AAS and I haven't even gotten through the first stage yet, never mind the 2WW, and I am getting impatient (in a good way). I am very excited about all of this, and I just can't wait to get this process started. 17 days until just the meeting...

Introduction

Posted by alittlebit26  , 24 June 2007 - 12:11 PM

I have been considering becoming a surrogate for a very long time ... more than 10 years. But I knew I wasn't going to attempt it until I was done having my own children so that if something were to go wrong I would not have any regrets or any harsh feelings towards myself for not having waited. I am still in the very early stages with an agency. I am going on the 18th of July to meet with the agency for the first time. I am very excited. Can't say the same about my husband, but he is very supportive of this journey I wish to make. Until the 18th all I can do is read and read and search the internet. I have requested a mentor but haven't heard anything as of yet. I hope someone does respond so that I can have someone to really talk to about all of this. I don't know anyone else that has gone through this in any part, so its hard to relay the feelings I have and get the answers I want. I can't wait to get started!!

:bliss:/>
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