Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Happy Birthday

Happy birthday to my best friend, J. She's 30 today and we started her birthday celebration last Saturday and it'll run through the 7th of Oct. That's just how we do it.

We are at 36 weeks today and the baby weighs about 6 lbs. Next week, we'll be full term!! Of course, that doesn't really mean anything in terms of arrival but it does mean she'd be nice and healthy. :)

As our journey draws to a close, I begin to ponder some things. How long before I fit into my pre-pregnancy clothes? Who will I blame the baby weight on when there's no baby around to show for it? Okay, I never said they were important things. :) But seriously folks, I do wonder what it'll all be like. I've had dreams (both daydreams and night dreams) of what I think it'll be like. I've imagined my IPs' faces and the amount of emotion that would be in the room. I've played it all out but I find that reality contains so much more than the imagination allows and I think it's going to be 10 times whatever I've imagined it'll be.

I'm fortunate to have IPs that want me to be in the picture even after the journey. To be honest, I think that it's their right to decide whether there is contact after or not. I do think both parties should try and stick to whatever they mutually agreed upon when matching, but too often, the surrogate falls into a black hole and the IPs are never heard from again. This is heartbreaking for the surrogate as it's often unexpected. My IPs have expressed a desire for me to be Aunt Carmela. I like that. I think it's pretty neat that they'll keep the door to their world open for me. It's not because I want some ownership or entitlement to the baby. Just like I want no ownership or entitlement to my other friends' children (remember, I have 3 of my own) but I will wonder what she'll grow to be like. I think that curiosity is natural. So, again, I count my blessings to be able to stay apart of this family in some form.

Okay baby L, mom and dad are busy packing and mom's just waiting on the call from me to tell her you're on your way!! :)

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Born to Be Wild

Head out on the highway, looking for adventure...or maybe just a hospital. We are officially 34 weeks pregnant. While we still have roughly 6 weeks to go, singleton babies are considered term at 37 weeks. It's like the light setting on the toaster though and if the baby popped out now, you'd want to put her back in for another cycle so she gets all nice and evenly baked so we're really shooting for that 40 week mark. :) I have learned that babies can be unpredictable though so with the early window of our 37 week approaching quickly, I thought it best to work out our game plan for getting to the hospital.

Originally, my friend was going to be taking me but life has too many pulls on her right now and she really needs to be available for about 10 other things, so we moved on to plan B. Plan B involves my friends A and J. A is a dear friend of many years and she lives a few blocks down from me. Our kids go to the same school and our boys are super friends. J is a mutual friend of ours, introduced to me by A (thank you!) and is a fellow surrogate and hopeful doula/midwife. What a perfect team, right? So, the plan is when I start to see signs of impending labor, I shoot A&J a text and see which is available. J wants to be along for the ride regardless, so we might just make it a party on the way up. Did I mention the hospital's an hour away? I'm not one of those super quick laborers though, so I'm not worrying about delivering in the car.

I am a wee bit apprehensive about contractions in the car, but given the fact that I've scarfed down a #1 combo from Chick-fil-a between contractions with my son in the hospital parking lot, I think I can handle it. (I know, you're not supposed to eat before you go in, but seriously, CFA had been closed for months and I really wanted some!!) I did not puke, thankyouverymuch.

E&J will, of course, meet us at the hospital when it's time and they are 3 hours away. So, anything that MIGHT be labor-like will prompt a call to them to be on guard (not to be confused with en garde).

In the unlikely event that A&J are simply unavailable, my husband will be driving me. It might seem odd to some that he's not coming with me. One, it's not his baby and I've got this labor thing down so he usually just sits and plays games or hogs the TV anyway. Two, my oldest is in school and our two youngest are across the street with our sitter during the day. I'd rather not interrupt their lives if I can help it and it's so much easier on my husband and the kids if we keep routine at home while mom's away for a couple of days. Three, E&J will be the MVPs there and this day is really about them, but I know E will be there, holding my hand and keeping ice chips within reach as she is so very nurturing and caring. This is just one thing that makes her a good mom. Four, DH is pretty busy at work and it's better than he not miss as he only has a little vacation time and we're going on a super fun cruise in April. Since he works for a school district, his vacation starts over in June. :) I'd rather have him sipping pina coladas by me than eating hospital food while I sleep. :) Plus, our kids will do better with just one of us away. Thankfully, I have a few Houston buddies that will keep me company as well. My best friend has even promised me sushi.