Whew! What a long few weeks it has been – both mentally and physically. I am now almost 10 weeks pregnant with one sweet surro-baby who, to be honest, has been sucking the energy from me for the last several weeks. I remember this part from my own pregnancy as well – the feeling of being utterly and completely exhausted and can’t even think of staying awake much longer. Oh, did I mention that happens at 9am when all you’ve done so far for the day is get up and take a shower? Yeah, I’m there. Let’s not forget the fun episodes of overwhelming nausea and the complete aversion to chicken I’ve been having. Last but not least, I am in my last week of medications – one injection at night and two estrogen patches every other day that I feel have certainly contributed to my hormonal “lapses in judgment” (or complete irrationality as my husband might say).
I’m very careful not to complain about these symptoms, however. While unpleasant, I also remember that in infertility I would have paid money to be tied to my porcelain stool due to morning sickness or would have gladly accepted overwhelming fatigue if it meant it was because I was growing a baby inside of me. Although the child I am carrying is not my own, I still feel blessed to have these symptoms because it continues to remind me of the miracle I’m a part of. Do I like to gag at even the thought of chicken? No. Do I like to go from 0 to 60 in 2 seconds flat because there are no pickles in my fridge? No (but I really wanted pickles!). Is it completely worth it every time I hear the baby’s heart beat and see how much it’s grown in such a short time? Absolutely. Pregnancy is hard and often times, not very pleasant. Some women loathe it and some love it. I just happened to love it. The point is that just being pregnant is a miracle. When you understand all of the pieces that have to be so perfectly in sync for a baby to come to be, I’m honestly surprised the miracle happens as often as it does!
The further along I get in this pregnancy, the more I am realizing how different it is from my pregnancy with my daughter. I feel 1000 times more paranoid and anxious about the uncertain first trimester hurdles and feel like the days are just crawling by to get to week 13 so I can breathe a little easier. I’m only 10 weeks along but it feels like I should at least be 25. I attribute this to the fact that I’m not spending countless hours doing things I would be doing if it were my own that would distract me – like spending entire afternoons creating a baby board on Pinterest or signing up for every imaginable pregnancy email list to get day by day updates of baby.
This brings me to my next point – the advantages of being a surrogate:
First and foremost, you get to help build a family. Enough said.
That weekly check list of to do’s you get in those baby related emails (start looking for pediatrician, discuss child care concerns, think of possible names, etc.) - send it on to the parents, my friend, because that is not on the Surrogate To Do list!
You don’t have to worry about picking out a name, because let’s face it, that can get ugly between partners.
You get to shop for those super cute and tiny baby clothes but don’t have to worry about peeling off every… single…tag (and there’s never just one) and washing them.
You get to educate others on surrogacy and ConceiveAbilities when they ask about your pregnancy and then find out it’s not yours. The conversation rarely ends at “Thanks, but it’s not mine!”
You get to see people become really uncomfortable when you tell them you’re pregnant but it isn’t your husband’s (or spouse’s), until you decide it’s time to also tell them it’s not yours either (I’m not sure that one will ever get old)!
But in all seriousness, the advantage of it all is being able to witness firsthand the building of a family. I find myself just as excited, if not more in some ways, about this pregnancy as I was in my own; but it’s excitement for the fathers, not myself. I think a lot has to do with the fact that the fathers and my husband and I have a really good relationship and make the time to talk often and check in as much as possible. It really is a team effort.
Until next time my friends. Now where can a girl get some pickles and ice cream?!
All Things Conceivable is a blog dedicated to sharing the knowledge and expert opinions of the dedicated team at ConceiveAbilities, a Chicago-based egg donation and surrogacy agency.