Thursday, July 30, 2009

18 1/2 weeks- we are home!

It has been an intense 3 1/2 weeks. I left home on July 3rd and returned on July 29th. I went from Salt Lake City, to Lake Tahoe, to Pacific Grove, to San Diego, to Houston, and home again. It feels so good to be in my house, in my chair typing, in my car driving, or in the grocery store just buying groceries!
The kids and I had fun and wore ourselves out. Both Triston and Katie ended up with swimmer's ear leading to ear infections on the trip. All three of the kids got too much sun. Braden learned to swim. We walked on the beach. We saw dearly loved friends and family, and met the newest members of our world (twin cousins, an niece, and a best friend's baby).
The surrogacy is going really well. At the end of week 17, I felt one episode of absolutely fabulous movement from one of the twins. I was so excited that they were finally moving enough to feel on the outside! Well, that was apparently a one time deal. Since then, it is back to subtle movements from within. I feel great and just eat, sleep, eat, sleep, repeat. I am sleeping about 10 hours a night and eating about 6 times a day. I feel no sickness anymore! I do get muscle aches in my belly and have to lay down sometimes to take the pressure off.
The really fun news is that my belly has tripled in size in the last two weeks. I went from barely showing when I left on vacation, to very visibly pregnant when I got home. Clothes I took on my trip quit fitting midtrip- oops!
I had a box of maternity clothes waiting when I got home though, so now I have clothes that fit!
I am really, really, really looking forward to this Sunday, and especially Monday. My IPs (The twins' parents) and their soon-to-be big brother are coming to visit on Sunday and stay in town for the ultrasound on Monday. I am looking forward to them being able to see where we live, meet the family, and - most importantly- meet the kids. I have talked to the children about them and have tried to make them seem very real so the kids will understand where the babies are going. They have talked on the webcam, but not in person. I feel that it is so important for my kids to know who these children belong to. I think it will help with closure when the babies are born, and with the understanding that we are helping create a family. I often tell them that we are making "N" a big brother. My children, although they think they don't, love each other so much and think everyone should have a brother or sister. So, I am so excited for this.
And, on Monday... the BIG ultrasound! We will get to look at all the little organs and body parts of the babies to make sure they are developing properly. We will get to see how they are arranging themselves in there and watch them move. We will also get to- if they cooperate- see if we have boys/girls/boy and girl playing in my tummy. I just can't wait to see them. Mostly, I can't wait to watch their parents see them. That is the moment I am waiting for.
There are many dangers to pregnancy, there are so many life changes that must be made to properly care for these babies in utero, and there are so many things that would be easier to do. However, with each day of this pregnancy, with each call to their parents, with each movement I feel, with each moment of this journey, I feel a surety that this is exactly what I should be doing, when I should be doing it. I know that prayers are answered, and I know that this surrogacy, for my family and the family waiting for these children, is an answer to prayer.
I have been told what a wonderful gift I am giving, how selfless I am, and many other undeserved compliments. But I have found this to be one of the most humbling experiences of my life. I am awed by the miracle of life, and incredibly blessed to be participating in the creation of it.

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