As I’ve been seeing friends and family for the first time after Colette was born I’ve gotten a lot of questions about the whole experience and thought I’d address some of the more frequent questions.
Was it hard giving the baby to her parents (or some version of this)?
Absolutely not! I was so excited for her to join her dads in the outside world. They had waited so long for her and it was such a joy to see them finally holding her. It’s a totally different mindset going into a surrogacy pregnancy as opposed to one where you’re carrying your own child. From the beginning you know this baby is not yours. Of course I cared/care about her and love her, but it’s more like the feeling you would have for a niece or a friend’s baby. I honestly didn’t even really have a desire to hold her when they visited the next day. She was sleeping soundly and I didn’t feel like disturbing her. I did hold her when we took the kids to visit a couple weeks later and enjoyed the newborn cuddles. I have told people that I almost feel bad about how not attached I was/am to her. Don’t get me wrong, I think she’s absolutely adorable and love seeing pictures of her and all her family members, but I don’t wish she were ours…not in the slightest.
What did you do since you weren’t breastfeeding her (or some version of “wasn’t it painful?”)
I had gone back and forth about whether I wanted to pump or not. Luckily for me I know my body pretty well and had a feeling that if I wasn’t pumping every 2 hours that I would dry up pretty quickly. There were a couple uncomfortable days when my milk first came in and the pump was barely getting anything out. Once my body adjusted to the pump I was staying comfortable pumping 3x a day, morning, afternoon, and right before bed. After 2.5 weeks I was able to got to 2x a day and was completely done pumping by about 3.5 weeks. I joined a Facebook group called Human Milk for Human Babies and was able to donate the milk to a family who’s baby isn’t able to tolerate formula. I was very happy that my body responded exactly how I thought it would and I was able to stop pumping before going back to work.
Will you be a surrogate again?
My husband and I talked about this before about a month before my due date. I was surprised that he was pretty much immediately on board with doing it again. I made sure to remind him that in the beginning a lot of the cooking and taking care of the kids falls on him because I feel crappy and am exhausted. I wanted to make sure he was okay with that again. His reply was that while he’s probably not excited about it at the time that it’s really not for that long and he’s okay with doing it again.
That all being said, I’m not in a hurry to jump into it ASAP. Technically you can do a transfer 6 months post birth which would be in February, but there’s no way I’m ready to be pregnant again just yet. I want a summer off and decided that I actually didn’t mind being in my third trimester during the summer so transferring next winter is the best timing for us. I would want to be due a little later than right at the beginning of school as Liv will be starting Kindergarten that fall. Being due the end of September and later would be perfect. However, we all know that things rarely go to plan and that there is no guarantee that the next transfer will stick and we may be looking at multiple transfer attempts. I would just really prefer to be pregnant by mid March since I tend to have morning sickness well past first trimester and I would like to avoid feeling like crap during our summer camping trips. With that timeline in mind and know that it may take longer to match this time because I have a more specific list of wants since I’ve been around the block, I plan on applying with my agency again in June. The ideal would be to have a transfer in January 2020, but we’ll see how it goes.
Overall how was the experience?
It was amazing. I honestly could not have asked for better Intended Parents for my first go ’round. They were phenomenal and have set the bar very high for my next match 🙂 While there were minor hiccups along the way (usually with scheduling monitoring appointments and 1st trimester ultrasounds, we were so lucky that it only took one transfer. We were also lucky in the fact that we had an uncomplicated pregnancy that was really the easiest pregnancy and delivery I’ve had. It will be hard not to hold the next time to the ridiculously high bar this first journey set.
Those are the most asked questions thus far. Most people are hesitant to ask anything too personal at first, but I want to be so open about everything. I want this to become more “normal” and mainstream where most people can say that they’ve known someone who’s done it. That makes it more real and not some “weird/strange” thing that only a friend of a friend of a friend did. There are so many ways to build a family and this way is just as valid and special as any other way.
So if you want to ask a question, but are afraid that it’s over stepping or too personal please ask! Seriously, I’m an open book about it. From the science of it to the emotions or financial aspect…unless you’re coming at me with a rant about why this is wrong I won’t be offended and even then I will try to explain why it’s actually a very beautiful thing when so many people put in so much time and effort to bring a life into the world and create or add to a family.
Here are a couple pictures because OMG she’s cute!
Here she is meeting her great uncle…that smile 😍
with her dad ❤