Monday, January 31, 2011

5 weeks left!

It is amazing how fast time flies.  Or maybe it is amazing how time fills up with activities.  Or maybe life just goes by quickly because it is just so darn good. 
Isabella is due in five weeks- well, actually she is due in 4 weeks and 3 days (if my math is right). 
She is growing just like she should.  Her bottom is under the right side of my ribs, and when she pushes, I feel my ribs go "ow" and I have a numb feeling push down on my left leg.  I think she is a little bit diagonal in there, but I am sure she will scoot down in time.  Does that make sense? 
Isabella and me at 34 weeks (I think... it is Jan 22nd)
Everything is wonderful.  My children are healthy.  Isabella is growing like she should.  My husband is moving home in twelve days.  I feel like I am making forward progress at work.  My house, amazingly, is mostly clean.  I have an amazing family.  I am growing a miracle for another amazing family.  What more can I say?

Let me think really hard.... hmm...
I guess I always come back to the same thought.  I am carrying another woman's child.  To me, this is just a normal part of my life.  But when I tell people this, they look at me funny.  I realize somewhere in my mind that this is not "normal" for most people.
I can understand this.
I can understand my friend's husband who thinks it is crazy.
I can understand the child who doesn't understand.
I can understand my sister saying "I could never do that".
I can understand my father not wanting to talk about it.
What I don't understand is the negativity, the judgement, and the rudeness with which so many people view surrogacy.
What I don't understand is the woman with six children telling me she could never "do that to my children".
What I don't understand is the church member who tells me it is wrong, but can't tell me why.
What I don't understand is the childless woman with no sister, no friend, no loved-one who will heal her broken heart.
What I don't understand is people asking, "why don't they just adopt?" (and I think, "well, why didn't YOU just adopt instead of having your own child?)
Surrogacy is a medical miracle.  It is a gift from God. 
Surrogacy is beautiful.  Through surrogacy, I have extended my family to include two more.  I have watched pain turn into joy.  I have watched heartache turn into beauty.  I have seen faith turn into life.  I have seen hope turn into motherhood.
And I have learned- faith, hope, love, compassion, sacrifice, endurance, patience, and humility.
And I hope, somewhere in this journey, I have taught my children something about love.


Monday, January 17, 2011


I rarely remember to read the comments left on my blog until my husband tells me about them, but I just read the comment from my last update, and within minutes this poem by Emily Dickinson started running through my head (yes, I am a geek).

If I Can Stop One Heart From Breaking

If I can stop one heart from breaking
I shall not live in vain
If I can ease one life the aching
or cool one pain

Or help one fainting robin
unto his nest again
I shall not live in vain.

My goal as a teacher, a surrogate, and -most importantly- as a mother is to change for the better just one life in this world.  My fear is that I will fail.  My hope is that I will succeed.  I read this post and know how naive it sounds, but what good would life be if I allowed the cynnicism to cloud my every choice?
This is my dream, my inspiration, and I believe there is so much good in the world that it must be possible for one such as I to do some good work to "pay back" the world for all the blessings I enjoy.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The pineapple and me at 33 weeks

Isabella is doing great!  She is apparently the weight of a pineapple- of course, that is generic and I am sure she is bigger.  She continues to wiggle and move as much as ever- I just feel each and every movement so strong now.  At our appointment last week, my ob asked how things were going.  I said, "well, my legs get tingly, I have to eat tums, I can't bend, and I still have stabbing pains in my sides." 
He said, "you know those are all normal pregnancy symptoms."
I said, "yeah, but you asked ;)"

He reminded my IM that I am a great incubator and there is nothing to worry about. 
I contemplated packing a hospital bag, but why tempt fate?  I am holding out until 34 weeks, and then I will give in and pack.  I definitely don't want to be left without a bag like I was last time.  I also don't want to drive myself to the hospital again either, but we'll see.
I am enjoying this pregnancy so much- I think because it is not twins!  Twins hurt.  Isabella doesn't, usually.  Her favorite times to wake up are at bedtime and 3:00 am.  Jason will wake her up and "play" with her if he can't sleep.  He apparently did this last weekend and I slept right through their playtime!  Her mother has told Jason she will call him when she wakes up at 3, thank you very much for training her to wake up then :)
I dream about Isabella being born very often, I think because I am so ready for her to be born.
I was thinking about her parents.  The last time (and the only time) they had a daughter born, they were unable to enjoy her.  They were faced with her eminent death even as they basked in their newfound parenthood.  I remember how relieved I was when I saw each of my children- their screams, their hair, their toes, their healthy pink skin.  I remember how afraid I was with the twins- that they were too early, that they would not cry.  I remember the relief I felt when L cried, and then her brother.  They were pink, they were breathing, they were whole.
I have never lost a child fresh from the womb.  I have never felt the anguish of loss instead of the miracle of life.  I have only seen the fruit of my labor grow and flourish.  I have never seen one wither and die even as I bleed for my work in bringing them here.

My goal this entire journey has been to give Isabella's parents a LIVING miracle.  Her sister was a miracle, but she was a gift that God wanted back home with him too soon.  For about a month, from 28 weeks to 32 weeks, I had not dreams of her birth, but nightmares of her birth.  I was soo afraid of losing her, so afraid I would fail in bringing her parents their promised gift.  Now, at 33 weeks, I feel safe.  I feel we are in the "clear" and that I will not fail.
I anticipate her birth in a way I never have before.  I want to see her- pink, screaming, chubby, ten-toed, dark-haired, in the arms of her mother.  The moment of my joy will not be the moment when she comes out screaming, but the moment that she is placed in her mother's arms- the moment I see a healthy, whole and perfect child in the arms of love.  Can you imagine the vision of wholeness I will be privvy to?  I cannot wait.

6 weeks, 5 days, and counting...