Sunday, September 20, 2009


AKA my birthday! I'm so amused by the date this year. I remember that it was somewhat of a big deal in 1999 too when the date was 9/9/99.

I'm 32 this year. 32. I remember when 32 seemed old but yet it also seems so young. I can tell the demographics at work are changing slightly. I've worked at my present place of employment for 9 years. For most of that time, I was the youngest full-time employee. In the last few years, we've added a few employees who are several years younger. It's not a big deal, but there is a decent-sized gap between me and the next oldest employee too. Sometimes being a member of either the last years of Gen X or the first years of Gen Y is pretty lonely.

But I digress. It's been a pretty quiet birthday, and I don't mind. Not surprisingly, my attitude towards my birthday was different this year. I felt much more serene and perfectly happy to do little celebrating. In the past few years, I felt like my birthday was one of the few things I had and needed to cling to it, counting cards and emails and hoping I would be remembered. This year? Eh...not so much. I still wanted my birthday acknowledged, but I didn't need it to be so. I attribute this change to Daniel obviously. I feel ok. Calm. Happy.

Happy is a weird place for me. I've always been one of those half-empty, cynical people. For the most part, I still am. But overall I feel so full. So calm. Serene and tranquil. I roll my eyes as I type those words because they seem so absurd and cliche. But it is how I feel. I feel grounded. And delighted.

Sometimed I wonder when the warm, fuzzy feelings will abate. I feel infatuated and wonder when that will wear off. I'm not saying I want it to, but I wonder when I will start finding a behavior or stage irritating and feel that I can and must address it for "my child" and not "precious miracle baby."

Eh, a bit heavy topic for tonight! Work has gone well. Everyone has told me how happy they are to see me and glad that I am back. There is a ton to do, so I'm kept busy and that helps. MIL is having a great time with Daniel. She sends us the cutesy emails about his activities every day. It's a great situation, and I'm glad it is working so far.

Daniel might be teething. He is drooling a lot and constantly has his fist in his mouth. He is very chatty! He is still flirting with sleeping through the night. He is grabbing at things and trying to pull himself up. His grins slay me!

Recently I discovered that F placed a new ad on SurroMoms' classifieds forum. I was a little shocked because she had stated over and over that she wasn't going to look for a new couple but would work again with only us and her previous couple. I shouldn't be bothered by it because she is free to do what she wants, but it still feels weird. She is still pumping for us, and I'm not going to ask about the ad. I wish her luck in whatever she pursues, but it sort of feels like what you feel when your ex starts dating someone else lol.

And can I say how exhausted I am? Working and coming home and taking care of D is exhausting. He is an angel, and we are so happy, but it is still exhausting. I've started thousands of blog posts that I've never finished. But it's a wonderful time. I want to post more and hope to do so. I try to go to bed by 11 at the latest and since MIL meets me at work, there is no snoozing for me. And we are usually out of bed and having coffee by 9am most weekends. That is a HUGE change for us, but it is nice too because I feel like we have much more time to get stuff done.

Life is different but wonderful. Fall is our season, and Husband and I are truly looking forward to this one.

-- Post From My iPhone

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Back to Work

I apologize again for the delay in posting. It's just been hard to find the time or energy to post. Daniel is quite a dynamo!

Amazingly and sadly, tomorrow is my first day back at work. I can't believe it has been 12 weeks already. The summer is almost over! September is mere days away! Daniel will be 12 weeks on Tuesday and 3 months on September 2. I've enjoyed these last 12 weeks so much. It's not an option for me to stay home, and in some ways, I feel relief that the choice is made for me. I don't know what I would choose otherwise.

Daniel is great. He is a robust 11 pounds, 14 ounces as of Thursday...a whole 5 pounds, 4 ounces more than he weighed at birth! I think he's about to outgrow many of his 0-3 months outfits. Suddenly it has hit me that my baby boy is getting big!

He is cooing and chatting up a storm. I love it. We talk all day. I sing to him, and it is so rewarding when he gives me a big grin in response. Ohhhhh he is precious!

I don't deal well with change in general, so that's part of my nervousness about tomorrow. In some ways, it feels like the first day of school. I know there have also been a ton of changes at work, and the effort required to reacquaint myself with them and force my brain into work-mode seems exhausting. But I think it will be nice at the same time which of course is part of the problem. Thankfully I am working half days my first week back, so that will help the transition.

Our daycare situation has changed in that my MIL has volunteered to watch Daniel, and we accepted. It was completely unexpected, but she and my step-FIL as well as her parents are super excited about it because they didn't get this much time with their other grandchild and are excited to be able to spend time with D. We're going to pay her, but it still will come out way less than daycare. We were really lucky. I'm not 100% convinced the situation is going to work out due to Husband's grandmother's health problems. My MIL is an only child, and I wonder if she will need to take care of Husband's grandmother, but it is extremely important to Husband's grandmother that D not go to daycare, so we'll play it by ear for now. I had a minor freak out a few weeks ago about D in daycare and worrying about whether the staff would comfort him when he cried (silly I know since we loved the daycare we had selected), so I'm happy for Daniel to be with family for at least a little while.

There has been some drama with my mother over Daniel staying with MIL. Argh. I'm not sure what to make of my mother. She was great when we brought him home (cooking and cleaning non-stop) but over the 4th she read Twilight practically the entire time and then whined about how she hadn't gotten to spend any time with him. She then wanted desperately to come up again, and we settled on a date only for her to decide to reschedule at the last minute. We decided on early August, and they were running late to the point where they didn't arrive until almost 2pm. It was kind of weird considering all I had been hearing was how much she and my stepfather longed to see him again. He was napping when they arrived.

I told her gently about Husband's mom keeping D instead of him going to daycare (and it's kind of absurd that I felt the need to tiptoe around this revelation at all) and while she was supportive of that, she became maudlin. The quantity of alcohol she consumed didn't help. She went outside and cried, later informing us she was having a bit of a pity party. She barely held D, only talking to him and then whining that he wasn't going to know them. I think she went outside to cry a few more times. Keep in mind at this point he was about 9 weeks old...he had barely started to recognize and respond even to Husband at this point. D starts crying late in the afternoon like hungry, sleepy babies do, and we were trying to feed, change and put him to bed. My mother and stepfather followed us everywhere---even into our bedroom where D's Pack N Play is--and tried to help, handing us diapers and just generally getting in the way. It was so annoying that we finally shooed everyone out. My mother proceeded to make a mess in the kitchen cooking (we had originally planned to go out to eat but she decided to bring food). Around 10pm, I absconded to the bedroom where Husband already was keeping guard over the baby. He was furious. We rounded up the cats and locked the door, all 6 of us sleeping in the bedroom because we didn't trust my mother not to try to come in and see Daniel.

Argh. It's a weird situation. I believe my mother loves her grandson, but my stepfather keeps mentioning how she's trying to get used to having a grandson instead of a granddaughter and will have to figure out what to do with him. In April when he said that I didn't pay too much attention because it may have been a one-off comment but he has repeated it several times since then. She doesn't interact with D much though. She doesn't hold him much but instead spends time looking over patterns to make him a christening gown or reading. I can't decide if she truly has a problem with him being a boy or just isn't good with babies. It's hard because she tells me she wishes she were closer and saw him more and that they have my cousin bring over her baby boy (less than 1 month older than D) so they can get their baby fix. I feel like they get their "fix" satisfied to the point where they don't even need to hold D.

The one bright spot is that I have always rather cow-towed to my mother due to her unpredictability, and I wondered if I would be able to stand up to her once D was here, and I was reassured to discover that yes, I could. I went into Mama Bear mode. HE is my priority and HE gives me the strength to stand up to her. I don't want him to have to worry about any of this crap.

Fingers crossed tomorrow and the rest of the go smoothly! My hair has been cut and my toes freshly polished :-) Hopefully that helps give me strength.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

An Update...Finally!

I have been trying to post for weeks, but Daniel has been keeping my hands full literally! I have a moment now while he's listening to the mobile in the Pack N Play.

Daniel will be 6 weeks old on Tuesday--hard to believe!--and things are going well! At his one month check-up, he had gained almost 2 pounds and weighed 8 pounds, 5 ounces (birth weight was 6 pounds, 7 ounces). The pediatrician keeps worrying me slightly by saying he should be eating around 5 ounces per feeding at this point, and he's eating around 3.5, but he's growing, so that's the important thing I guess. He is sleeping pretty well at night, going down for a 4-hour stretch and then a few 3-hour stretches. He wants to eat almost every 3 hours on the dot; he's better than any alarm clock at letting us know he's hungry!

He's a pretty laid-back baby, which we enjoy. He has had a few fussy periods, especially in the afternoon, but so far, nothing too bad! He is starting to coo and wiggle a lot. He is smiling, but so far he hasn't really smiled AT us in response. I'm hoping for one any day now!

Happily, the cats pretty much leave him alone. They aren't scared of him at all and will come and sniff him but move when he wiggles.

It's been a great 6 weeks! We switched him to breast milk at around 2 weeks, and he transitioned smoothly. We have enjoyed watching his cheeks firm up, and I think he has his daddy's blue eyes. We've gotten out of the house some. His first non-doctor trip was to the library! He has been to the grocery store, Target, a local bakery, work, and a baby shower.

It took his belly button three full weeks to fall off, and boy, was it stinky!!! I was so glad when it fell off. We had been keeping him in t-shirts to let it air out, so as soon as it fell off, I whisked him into a onesie. He is still wearing newborn sizes, but I suspect that won't last too much longer!

Almost all of our family members have met him, and it's been great seeing how excited they are to hold him and get to know him. My MIL feels pretty excluded from my nephew's life, so she really welcomes the chance to be a grandmother to Daniel. He is staying with her on Monday evening, and she went right out and bought a Pack N Play of her own in preparation. My mother has declared she will have to come up at least once a month.

I think Husband and I have adapted pretty well to have a small baby in the house. Each day certainly is different! I've probably cooked more meals in the past few weeks than I did in the last 6 months while we were putting in the floors LOL. We eat a lot of takeout, never fear! Never a dull moment! I'm already dreading returning to work, but I'm thankful that I still have 6 more weeks.

It's just been amazing and great. He changes each day, and I love noticing the changes.

I'll try to update more frequently from now on! Oh, I also wanted to thank all of you for support over the circumcision judgment. It meant a lot to me that you all support our right to make our own decision for our child the way we see fit. I really, really appreciated it!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Ah, Let the Judgment Begin

I have received two comments recently from anonymous posters not only questioning but openly criticizing us for having Daniel circumcised. When I read the first one, I simply gritted my teeth and deleted it. The second one, however, I feel compelled to leave up and to respond to, especially since there were a few personal attacks involved. It's probably not the best idea; I should probably turn the other cheek and let sleeping dogs lie and all that, but I'm up and reasonably coherent. Of course, I'm sure this post will fall on deaf ears or blind eyes since I doubt the two posters will ever return to read it, but maybe I'll be surprised.

First of all, my husband and I chose to circumcise our son for our own reasons. We researched it and talked to other parents of boys, both those who had and hadn't circumcised theirs. We are well-versed in the arguments for and against; I am confident we made a well-reasoned decision. It was our choice to make, and we made it. Therefore, I'd appreciate no further comments on the matter. If you chose not to circumcise your son and/or believe that it is equivalent to female genital mutilation, that is your prerogative. We do not. I am sure that there are choices you make in your life that I would consider horrific. The circumcision discussion is closed.

Now, as for you, dear Anonymous (how clever of you not to use any sort of identity. How brave of you! Or more truthfully, how cowardly), never question my desire for my son and my happiness, nay, elation and exhilaration to have him with me. At last. After four horrible, dark years. I love him more than I ever knew was possible.

If my post on the hospital experience came off as whiny, that was not the intent. Perhaps you, dear Anonymous, have never been through a surrogacy journey. There are many, many complex emotions involved as well as many hoops to jump through. As an Intended Mother, I had to give up carrying my own child and get over any issues with watching another women carry my child, worrying constantly whether she was taking care of herself (needlessly but that's just how it goes). I had to deal with everyone always asking if the baby was biologically ours before they sighed with relief and sort of gave their blessing to what we were doing. No matter how wonderful your surrogate is and how close the relationship, there is no getting past the fact that one of the seminal events of your life--having a baby--doesn't involve only you and your spouse but includes at least one other person as well. It is stressful.

In order to pursue and navigate our surrogacy journey, Husband and I pretty much had to project manage it. Find out the tests both we and F needed, deal with the attorney, etc. In short, we had to get a lot of ducks in a row. Imagine our distress to get to the hospital and find out that all of the organization and plans we were told we had to make were moot because the hospital apparently didn't know anything. We felt like we did our part. We got our documentation together. We had called people to check and re-check needs and procedures. And then we were still met with confusion.

Honestly, the confusion over our surrogacy situation didn't bother us as much as the other stuff; we're used to confusion about surrogacy after all ;-) What really bothered us was the level of incompetence and overall befuddlement the nurses displayed about seemingly routine matters. F picked the hospital--a large hospital with a nice birthing center--because she had given birth there four times before and recommended it. Even F's husband was commenting on how off the hospital was this time.

It's not about the room we were in. I don't expect luxury from a freaking hospital (though one of the birth center rooms would have been a LOT nicer). I do, however, expect competence from people whose job it is to take care of you and get you what you need. THAT is what seemed to be lacking, and THAT is what made the hospital experience less than optimal.

Maybe this post is for nothing and it likely won't change your impression of me as a whiney brat who chooses to bitch about "trivial" matters instead of somehow proving she loves her new baby. I at least feel better. The bottom line is that you, dear Anonymous, were not in the hospital with us, did not experience the ups and downs of the last 9 months or the last 4 years. You can believe me that the hospital wasn't the greatest experience or you can continue to think that I am whining. Oh well.

If you'd like to continue this conversation, feel free to email me.

I'm off to cuddle my baby and feed him his bottle (oh yeah. I didn't induce lactation either but rest assured that he will be starting breast milk next week once F has a good supply build up. Care to chastise me for my failings there as well?).

I don't mind dissent, but there is a difference between dissent and out-and-out meanness, especially when you haven't walked in my shoes.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Birth Story Cont'd: Post-Partum

The rest of our time at the hospital was mixed and stressful unfortunately. N was right on in her comment to a post before Daniel was born. This hospital delivers tons of babies every day, but I swear there were moments where I wondered if they had ever delivered a baby before. This hospital has a public cord blood center on-site, yet they found our private cord blood collection kit confusing. I hope we were able to get some usable cells, but who knows. It took us forever to be moved from the delivery room to a post-partum room, and when we were, we were moved to the overflow area in the main hospital instead of one of the nice rooms in the birth center. It felt weird and somehow not right wheeling our newborn in his isolette down a long hall, into an elevator, and down another hall.

This wing of the hospital was apparently undergoing construction because almost as soon as we got into the room, we could hear very loud hammering and scraping that at time sounded like the workers would be coming through the ceiling. The nurses apologized profusely, informing us they had no idea construction would be going on when they reopened that floor. Hours later we were finally moved to another room down the hall.

When we explained the surrogacy situation to the nurses, they looked at each other, baffled, and one said, “Oh, We’ve never encountered that situation before. We’ll have to think about how to handle it.” Feeling good and confident at this point! They were obviously confused about whether they needed to address me or F about Daniel’s circumcision and other issues that needed a parent’s signature. One of the nurses commented that even though we were the parents, there might be some legal issues involved that necessitated F signing. F and her husband and Husband and I whipped out our PBOs at that point and told the nurse we had legal documentation. The infuriating thing was that F had delivered her previous surro baby at this hospital 1.5 years ago and I also doubt that we have been the only other case they’ve encountered since then.

The birth certificate lady informed us the state needed another certified copy of our PBO for us to be named parents on the birth certificate (never mind the fact that the hospital had one that they apparently weren’t using since they were clueless). So, instead of getting to spend lots of time with baby boy, Husband had to call the attorney to get another certified copy. He also had to deal with getting the hospital to finish up the cord blood kit procedure, which we had been told would be no big deal.

We left our house so quickly that we didn’t think to grab a few bottles. The hospital provided formula and huge bottle nipples, noting that all babies look like they are choking on them. Um, ok. F was pumping as well, and we wanted to use the colostrum but didn’t have any bottles to put it in. And apparently neither did the hospital. The nurse finally found something that would work, acting like she was doing us a huge favor. Daniel took an ounce of formula early on but refused to take anything else using the large nipples. We tried to feed him the colostrum via a syringe, which didn’t go that well. I wasn’t too concerned about his intake at that point since I had read that newborns actually don’t need much nourishment the first couple of days although that was constantly contradicted by nurses coming in to tell me he needed to eat every 3-4 hours.

When we left, F was in the wheel chair, and the nurse told us that Daniel would have to be wheeled out as well. She was perplexed by what to do since apparently they have only one wheelchair in the entire ginormous hospital; we again heard the now-familiar “I’ll have to figure out how to do this.” She wanted us to take the baby out of his car seat and put him back in the isolette for the trip downstairs, but I refused because he was strapped in and recovering from his circumcision, and I wasn’t going to bother him again. We finally agreed on F holding the car seat on her lap as they wheeled her out.

Amazingly, the only thing that went smoothly was discharge. F had terrified me by telling us that it may take us hours to be discharged, but the hospital was on the ball with that thankfully. I think I would have lost my mind having to sit there any longer.

I don’t want to give the impression that Daniel’s birth was a horrible experience. His birth was wonderful although a bit shocking, fast and terrifying! He was a wonderful baby in the hospital, and I was thankful for my quiet, cooing baby when the baby next door cried all day and all night long (something I could hear clearly all the way on the other side of our room). No, our main irritation was with the hospital and their disorganization.

I have to admit that the whole situation was a bit awkward overall. F was great and never did anything that made me feel weird. It was just that the rooms were small and people were coming in and out and I felt like I had to be “on” 24/7. Husband and I had an important role in this drama since we were the parents of the newborn, but F was the patient. We had no privacy. She had no privacy. The chairs weren’t comfortable. The futon was not ideal for sleeping. I don’t think I went to the bathroom for hours b/c you could hear everything in the room. We were new parents trying to figure out what the hell to do when the baby cried or needed a diaper change, and we had to do it in front of everyone. And never mind the fact that we were feeling a little emotional ourselves since we had just achieved our heart’s desire after 4 long years.

When we first arrived in the post-partum room, the nurses were being unhelpful, F was eating, I was starving and tired, I told Husband that I was about to lose it and I didn’t think I could stay there that night which made me feel awful since that meant leaving my precious newborn in the nursery. I calmed down a bit once I fed the baby, and it was quiet for a while. Then our pediatrician came in and told us that if the baby was doing well, we could be discharged after 24 hours. That then became my goal. If I could get to that, I’d be fine b/c all I wanted to do was go home and be with Husband and Daniel.

The evening went better because we had friends visit. F insisted that she had no problems with any visitors we wanted and to treat the room as our room. F’s parents brought her kids to see the baby later on and finally, everyone, including F’s husband and Husband left around 10:30, and we were alone. Daniel was a bit fussy around midnight and wouldn’t be quieted, and F and I had some nice moments trying to figure out what was going on and her showing me a few tricks. I finally gave in and let the nurse take him to the nursery since all I was doing was watching him, and I was exhausted.

We left the hospital at 1pm on Wednesday, the day after he was born. We felt exhilarated and jubilant as we snapped his car seat in the car and headed home. I kept looking over at my beautiful baby boy, and he makes it all worth it.

Daniel's Birth Story

I'm just now able to organize my thoughts about our birth experience as well as have the opportunity to get my laptop. I can do a lot with my iPhone but typing a detailed birth story is not one of them! I have two long posts about this, and it's rather stream of consciousness (probably due to fatigue!), so please forgive any rambling or lack of coherence :-)

Last Monday F told me she hadn’t felt good most of the day and was having irregular contractions again, but neither of us thought anything of it. I think we both wondered if she would make the induction date and thought it was very possible he might arrive on his own the following weekend. We texted each other Monday night for a while, and I went to bed around 11. She baked a cake. Next thing I know, I was awakened by the phone ringing at 4:11 am Tuesday morning. I didn’t get to it in time, but then my cell phone started ringing. My heart was thumping b/c I knew there were very few reasons for phone calls at 4am. I answered my cell phone, and R, F’s husband, told me that they were on the way to the hospital. Like a moron, I responded, “Really?” (hey, it was 4am) and said that we’d see them there ASAP. I calmly told Husband that F was in labor. We jumped out of bed and got ready.

We didn’t dawdle, but we didn’t exactly set any speed records for getting ready because we both assumed we’d have a few hours of labor before us (F’s previous labor was 6 hours). We were on the road by 5:30 and at the hospital by about 5:45 (Husband did set a few speed records on the interstate).

I think it’s safe to say that neither of us was prepared for what we were about to see and experience. You see, when we arrived, F was already 7-8 cm dilated. She had been at the hospital for only about 15-20 minutes longer than us. F was in obvious pain, and they couldn’t give her an epidural until her labs returned. We called only our moms and tried to make ourselves as inconspicuous as possible because the situation felt awkward and uncomfortable. I’m not squeamish. I knew that labor is a messy, painful business (I’ve seen The Miracle of Life after all), but it was shocking to walk in and find F in active labor and at the height of contraction pain. All along, the only thing she had said she wanted for labor was an epidural. It is awful watching someone in so much pain, knowing that it’s because of you. It was so stressful that at times, I wanted to flee the room and throw up in the bathroom. But I didn’t. I wanted to touch her and reassure her, hand her ice chips if she wanted them, but I didn’t feel comfortable doing so, as if I would be intruding.

F progressed rapidly to 9cm, and the nurse announced that delivery would be soon. They broke her water and discovered that it contained meconium. The doctor told us that she would cut the baby’s cord and try not to agitate him too much so he wouldn’t cry as much and ingest the meconium before she could have him suctioned. F was able to get her epidural and then the doctor started making worried comments about the baby’s heart rate being lower than she’d like. She even mentioned an emergency c-section if things didn’t improve quickly. At that point, I really was ready to throw up because I felt so helpless at the thought that our baby boy was in distress or having a problem and was so scared and terrified.

Finally, F was ready to push, and the doctor told her that a c-section was still a possibility and to push a hard as she could to get him out as quickly as she could. Three pushes later, Daniel made his appearance. It was 6:48 am and F had been in labor for about 3 hours total. He cried a little, the doctor cut the cord, and the nurses suctioned him thoroughly. They then swaddled him and handed him to me. We have a great picture of me holding him at this point with a somewhat awed and befuddled expression on my face LOL.

F was great. Almost immediately after delivery, she was calm and in obvious relief. Labor and delivery had progressed so rapidly that she hadn’t torn or anything. Not 30 minutes later she told me that she hoped we wanted to pursue a sibling project with her in a few years! Amazing! And Daniel’s head hadn’t been compressed and looked beautiful.

I didn’t cry. I almost did though. I felt so relieved and happy, and he was so beautiful. The nurse gave him a bath (which he hated) and told me he scored an 8 & 9 on his Apgar tests, which relieved me greatly.

I still can't get over how fast the birth happened. I don't think it went the way the four of us intended or thought it would go. I think we all thought we would ease into labor instead of being close to delivering almost immediately. I also still haven't gotten over my worry and fear for Daniel when his heart rate was low. They gave F oxygen during delivery and pronounced Daniel to be perfect, but you better believe I spent some time Googling "fetal distress" and future outcomes. Guess I better get used to worrying about him? I did it when he was in utero, and I guess it will only get worse!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


Just a quick post that Daniel James Gordon H. made his appearance at 6:48 am yesterday morning. He's 6 pounds 7 ounces and 20 inches long. He's adorable! F is doing well after a sudden and quick 3-hour labor. I think she pushed for about 2 minutes and he was out!

I'll post a fuller birth story later. There were some scary moments, but everyone is doing well. I've changed three diapers and elicited two burps :-) Daddy is in love :-)

We are hoping to go home today if the pediatrician lets us. I'm ready to take him home and start settling in.

Soooo glad my tiny peanut is here!

-- Post From My iPhone

Friday, May 29, 2009

Eviction Date Set

I wish I had more interesting news like we were in L&D at our Raleigh hospital. Alas, I do not. Our appointment today was uneventful and kind of disappointing :-( We have made no further progress in regards to dilation. I think the doctor may have said that F's cervix was ready even though she remained at only 3cm, but other than that, nothing was going on. We now have an induction date set: June 9. Thankfully, this practice will schedule inductions as soon as two days past the due date (I feared we might have to wait until 42 weeks!). After working through the customary confusion over our due date (the OB has consistently wanted to put us at June 8 despite the RE and every calculator putting as at June 3), the doctor said we could be induced June 8. F really likes this doctor, and she isn't on call until June 9, so we all agreed that June 9 would be ok. Hey, it's only one more day at this point.

You would think that having a firm eviction date would put my mind at ease, but it doesn't. Actually, I'm kind of pissed. I expected this baby to be here this week. And now we might have to wait another full week and two whole weekends???? Ughhhhhhh. I know it's ridiculous for me to feel this way, but when I got back to work, I stomped my foot like an irate toddler. I WANT MY BABY. And it doesn't help that F is THRILLED about getting this doctor on June 9 and how convenient it would be for her to deliver then. She said she was going to stop any efforts (like walking, etc.) to get him to come sooner. That pisses me off as well. Frankly, I don't care how convenient it is for her. I just want our baby here with us.

Husband and I are just tired. We've waited almost 4 years for this baby, and we are ready for him to get here. Our journey with F has been mostly extremely smooth and great, but frankly, we're tired of having so many people in the mix. We just want to have our baby, get him home with us and lock the door. We are introverts, and all of this has just gotten to be a little much. Obviously I am a little stressed as well. I've tried not to post about my petty irritations with F--we are very different people and that's ok--in the scheme of things, it doesn't really matter. She is still a wonderful person and it's been an easy journey, but frankly, we can't wait for it to be over.

I know that an eviction date means nothing. Our baby could decide to come tomorrow or early next week (and I kind of hope he will). And yes, it does help me to know that at the very latest, he will be here June 9 or June 10. I'm just impatient. I've never been a very patient person or handled delays well. So this delay combined with the general stress of having a baby has really gotten to me.

It's also complicated by a little family drama. I love my mother. I do. But she drives me crazy a lot of the time. She treats my house like it's her house. She tends to take over. She makes many situations about her. Basically, she stresses me out. I know she wants to come up here at the first sign of labor like my aunts did with my cousins, but it's obviously not a typical situation. I thought we had agreed that she and my stepfather would drive the two hours to see him once he was born or during labor and then go home and then return once we were discharged to spend a few days with us. Well now they are asking about getting a spare key to our house and just hanging out while we are in the hospital. Is it wrong of me to hate that idea? First of all, they don't know Raleigh, so does that mean they will come hang out in the hospital room while F and I are there? Like all day? Ok, I'm already sharing F's room post-delivery...and these aren't huge rooms, so it's a nightmare to think about my mother hanging out ALL DAY while I'm trying to figure out my new baby. The other scenario, the two of them staying in our house while we're at the hospital, doesn't thrill me either. I want to know that when I leave this house--messy or clean--to go to the hospital for our baby is how I will return. I shake at the thought of them locking our cats up accidentally in various rooms and Husband having to deal with them by himself for two days. Plus, my stepfather hates just sitting around, so heaven knows what projects Husband will have to prevent. Is it just me or does that sound like a nightmare waiting to happen?

Ideally, I'd love it if people would leave us alone for a week after the baby comes to start to learn him and his needs and bond. I know that won't happen (I'm an only child), so at the very least, I want a few quiet days in the hospital and then I'll be ready for my mother and the onslaught of visitors.

Ack. I really am going to try to enjoy this weekend. I promise. I bought flowers today to plant in my flower garden, and I dream of taking the baby out to enjoy them later in the summer.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Suspended Animation

Still here. Still no baby. Baby boy is showing us that he has a mind of his own. F has been pg 4 other times, and each of those times she has never gone past 39 weeks. Until now. Yesterday was 39 weeks. Today is (obviously) 39w1d. And Baby Boy is apparently happy as a clam, moving and squirming but making no move to emerge. I feel a mixture of pride and irritation that our baby is the one to break the cycle; at the same time I fear what that might indicate about his personality and will :-)

It's a weird feeling because I don't know what to do with myself. When I left work on Friday, I left feeling good about where I stood in regards to any outstanding tasks. I had finished all the major stuff. We had a busy weekend putting the house in order and by Monday, we were very pleased with our progress. Baby things washed and put away. Clothes back in our closet. Flooring tools put away. We looked at each other and said, "We're ready!"

When I left work on Friday, I felt myself disengaging from the office. I knew that even if I were at work this week, it would likely be for only a short time, so I returned to work on Tuesday feeling calm and detached. Unfortunately, as the week has progressed, I've somewhat lost those feelings of detachment and calmness. Will he ever come out? Will they make us wait 3 more weeks before inducing us? And F feels great! She has a lot of energy and even thinks her appetite has increased.

It's a little frustrating because I know I need to think of these unexpected extra days as a gift and treasure them. Read. Eat good food. Cuddle with Husband and kitties. Try to sleep. But instead I'm an anxious, stressed mess who just wants the next day to come b/c Baby Boy might make his appearance. Oddly, it feels a lot like it did between cycles when all we did was wait for the next appointment or chance.

I know I'm whining. He will come out eventually, I know that. Our next doctor's appointment is tomorrow, and she could easily tell us she wants to get the show on the road. It's just interesting to me that I'm back to waiting impatiently. At this point, I've decided I'm going to plan on planting flowers on Saturday because I really don't think he'll be here by then!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Twiddling our thumbs

I wish I had something exciting to report, but I don't. Still no baby. After Wednesday's excitement, things have been pretty quiet. On one hand, I'm glad because the scare earlier in the week served as a very effective paradigm shift, and I've rushed to finish up a few outstanding tasks, pack bags, etc. On the other, we are SO ready to meet him! I wonder if it will be another week or so?

We reached a major milestone today: Husband put the last bit of caulk on the floor in the closet, meaning that after six months, the flooring project has finally ended. I am in disbelief lol. I had a good day straightening up, washing baby things and generally trying to make order out of chaos. It is a long weekend for us, so while I'd love for the baby to come, I'd like a few quiet days as well. I haven't been sleeping well and keep waking up around 3am. If I return to work on Tuesday due to no baby, I tell myself that I am starting to mentally detach because I've finished the big stuff.

-- Post From My iPhone

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Back Home

It looks like he won't be coming tonight. It wasn't a false alarm per se. F is dilated to 3 and contracting. The doctor sent us to the hospital for monitoring, but no additional progress had been made after about 3 hours, so they sent us home.

I'm ok with that. Now I have one more night to get my ass in gear and pack my and the baby's bag. I'm interpreting it as our baby boy giving us a heads up that he will be here soon!

-- Post From My iPhone

38 Weeks ... and Baby?

Today is 38 weeks, and I thought it would be nothing more than the day I made a big star on my calendar and kept my phone with me obsessively. It has turned out to be a much more interesting day. F texted me this morning and told me that she was having some contractions that were stronger than Braxton Hicks but weren't coming consistently; she would call me if they did. I somewhat calmly called Husband and told him to make sure that he had the carseat with him today.

I kept a death grip on my phone all day,and F called me at 3 to tell me that the nurse wanted her to come to the OB's office at 4:30. While the contractions still aren't regular, she is having 4-6 an hour and they are strong. She's feeling a lot of pressure and just hot all over.

Needless to say, I am (calmly, quietly) freaking out. There has been a surreal element to our journey all along, and this morning I had convinced myself that the baby wouldn't arrive until next week. Or heck, maybe he would defy us all and be late. My bag isn't packed. I have baby things in the dryer. House is still somewhat of a wreck.

But at the same time, I am ready. Maybe today is an auspicious day.

I'll keep you posted! Who knows, maybe I'll be home watching tv later on LOL.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

37 Weeks

Happy Saturday to you all! The baby isn't here yet, but I feel like we are on call any time after next Wednesday when we'll be 38 weeks.

We're on the way to our second shower and I'm beginning to feel a little more prepared, especially since the floors are done, we have a nursery and we are no longer sleeping in the living room.

I'll be back with a longer post and pics later!

-- Post From My iPhone

Sunday, May 3, 2009

In Search of Zen-Like Calm

Today we are 35w4d. Oh, and according to the doc at our appointment on Friday, F has lost the mucus plug and is 1cm dilated. Gulp. F and the doctor are both calm and not worried or concerned, and I know these are just signs that we are moving towards labor, but Husband and I are a little freaked out :-) Sounds like we definitely will have a baby soon!

This week I feel like someone hauled me up onto a train that is moving quickly towards its final destination. All I can do is hold on, ride and accept that it is in motion and that I have neither the option of getting off nor slowing it down.

Are we ready? Hell no. Will we be? We'll be cutting it close, but I think so. Or at least close enough. The nursery and the master bedroom are freshly painted. The floors are done. He needs only to install the baseboards. He'll do the nursery first which means once we are done, I'll finally be able to arrange the furniture and start decorating.

I turned in my final project for class on Friday and am officially done. I feel like a huge weight has been lifted off my back, and now I can focus on finishing up the backup plan for work as well as some outsanding tasks I plan to finish as well as turning my focus to all-baby, all-the-time! I look back over that last 4 months and truly wonder where all the time went. I can't believe it is May. I can't believe that it is possible we will have a baby in about 20 days. I never anticipated how busy this year would become. Note to self: next time you go through something like this, don't take a class. It's great that I now have only 9 semester hours left in my graduate program, but I truly don't feel like I gave my best effort this semester. That's ok. It was likely good enough.

I've started to feel a little panicky about finishing up things at work, and I've decided to regroup and take control. I need to spell things out for my direct reports. I think "keep it simple" will be my mantra. My staff needs a lot of guidance, a bit more guidance than I expected, and I want to make sure things go smoothly while I'm gone. Many people express dismay about what will happen while I'm out, which feels good, but at the same time, it makes me worry. I've also had some work drama recently with one of my direct reports. He is causing me some headaches due to his feeling entitled to rewards despite not having produced much. But I need to regroup and refocus my efforts and just spell it out for him.

We have our first shower next weekend. Five friends are hosting it, and it's a book shower apparently. I say apparently because I never received an invitation and wouldn't even know what time it was being held if F hadn't told me. It's been hard to get hold of the planners. I'm a little anxious about this shower because 3 of our 4 sets of parents will be there. My mother will be there, Husband's mother, stepfather and grandmother will be there, and my father and stepmother will be there. They all will get along fine, but I'm still nervous about the dynamics. Also, F will be there. I got the impression that she wanted to come to a shower, and Husband and I decided this one would be the best one since she wouldnt' have to travel too far. F is feeling a little anxious and has reassured me a thousand times that she wants to make sure the attention is on me and Husband and not her. I really, really appreciate that and I'm also worried about how she will be treated. I don't think she will be treated badly or anything--part of the reason I invited her was because my friend K and other family members really want to meet her and honor her. I just worry that some people will ignore her out of confusion over how to talk to her or treat her. F gets anxious very easily, and I don't want her to be stressed. Her mom is coming with her, and part of the reason I agreed to inviting my mom was because she has met her and at least it will be another familiar face. I'm sure everything will be fine, but there are just several factors that make me anxious. Hopefully I'll be able to post a week from now about how wonderful the shower was and how silly I was to worry.

After a few delays, our PBO is almost complete. It will be presented to the judge on Monday or Tuesday and then we will be officially the parents of our baby boy! Next week is also a big week because we have the tour of the birthing center on Tuesday and our baby care class on Wednesday. I remember signing up for that class in late January and I cannot believe it it time to take it.

We attended the 1st birthday party for our friends K and G's little girl last night. She looked adorable and again, I can't believe that she is 1 already. We gave her books. For my friends' daughters, I get them an age-appropriate book and Anne of Green Gables to grow into since it is one of my favorite books. I was touched because our friends' families were very interested and excited about our impending arrival and peppered us with questions throughout. It's silly, but it still pleasantly surprises me that people are interested in and care for our situation. Hard to believe that this time next year we might be planning a first birthday party of our own.

After our shower next week, we have two more showers the following weekend. I fully expect the baby to come around Memorial Day. Should I go ahead and buy a few basic supplies just in case he comes earlier? I'm feeling a little unprepared.

Sorry for the rambling post. For the first time in months, I don't have school work to do, and I treated myself by cleaning both bathrooms LOL. I'd say I'm nesting, but the bathrooms really needed it. I've also had some benadryl due to allergies, so I feel a little out of it ;-)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Home Stretch

Our appointment during week 33 went well. F continues to measure perfectly. We had a good time at lunch afterwards. I wish Husband and I could have stayed longer, but we had to return to work. I was able to stay a little bit longer and F tried so hard to get the baby to move for me. He, of course, would not oblige but was active an hour later thanks to a piece of cheesecake LOL. We tried again to feel him move last week and he again played hard to get. F feels so bad, but I keep telling her that in the scheme of things, I'd rather him be born healthy than feel him kick.

We reached 34 weeks last Wednesday. F stunned me on Friday when she told me that she thinks she is starting to lose the mucus plug. F remains confident that she still had about 4 more weeks, but I started googling "losing mucus plug" frantically. I've started to fear that we will go into labor in the next two weeks. I have absolutely no reason to feel that way other than nothing this year has gone according to plan. Hopefully I will be wrong!

The work on the house has progressed nicely. Husband has pretty much only detail work (baseboards) to finish in our room and the nursery. We had painters come out on Saturday and paint both rooms, and they lion great! The plan is to move back into our bedroom (because we are still in the living room) next weekend and be able to start decorating the nursery soon. It has been a wild few months, and I won't be sorry to see it come to an end.

The conference in Orlando went well. I was ridiculously nervous about my presentation, but it was well received AND I heard some say it was one of the best of the conference. Nice!

I am starting to feel really impatient for the baby's birth. He needs to bake a little while longer, but at the same time I am SO impatient for his arrival. I want him here with us. I found out last week that a woman with whom we cycled at our clinic had her twins 3 weeks ago at 31 weeks. The babies are doing very well, but I ask you to keep them in your prayers and/or thoughts. I also ask you to keep my coworker K in your thoughts. She is pg with IVF twins and has been on bedrest thanks to a subchoreonic hematoma. She's 18 weeks this week and worried about her babies and stressed about her job.

I had a little bit of anxiety on my way back from Florida last Wednesday when I thought of how much there was still left to do at work. I find myself entering a sort of shut-down state, though. I still plan to get stuff done, but I am starting to detach. I am so tired and feel myself accepting that work will have to muddle on without me. I want to feel confident that my staff will know what to to, but honestly, I'm running out of time and am tired. I have been working on my final project for school all weekend, and I am so looking forward to turning it in on Friday. I truly don't care about whatever grade I get. I don't mean to sound whiney, but I am ready to veg and read, relax and get ready for the baby. My energy is starting to peter out.

In a rare move for me, I decided to take Friday off. We have our next doctor's appointment that day, and I also plan to work in my flower garden. I'm really looking forward to it!

-- Post From My iPhone

Monday, April 13, 2009

Still Here!

I promise I haven't disappeared. Things just stay so busy. Everything is going well on the baby front. We will be 33 weeks on Wednesday (OMG!). We have our next appointment then as well, and we are going to take F and her husband out for lunch afterwards. I feel guilty because we haven't gotten to do much socializing with them since we've been so busy with work and the never-ending floor project, but it's nice that I can keep up with her via email, texting and Facebook.

In house news, the floors in the nursery are done and all Husband needs to do now is put the baseboards on and paint. On Saturday we put together the crib. Wow. We have a crib in our house. I've been doing fairly well on the panic/anxiety front, but I did feel some panic after we put the crib together. It's mostly superstitious panic/anxiety I think, but it's still a shock to know we have a crib. And it's put together. The rest of the furniture will hopefully arrive this weekend.

I'm leaving for Orlando on Saturday for a conference. This is the same conference I attended last year at which I won the Unsung Hero award. A lot has changed in a year. This time I'm returning as a session presenter. I've never presented at a conference before! A coworker and I submitted a presentation topic on using Web 2.0 in your organization, and they accepted it. Due to budgetary constraints, my coworker can't go, so I'm presenting by myself. I'm a little nervous and feel a little unprepared. I'm also a little nervous about flying there and back. I know everything will be fine, but oh I'll feel better once I'm back in NC. On the bright side, my house is in such chaos right now due to the floors that I am looking forward to a few days away from home in a nice hotel room. The major work has shifted to our bedroom, and Husband and I (and the cats) are sleeping in the living room. It's not too bad since the tv is right there, but I'm starting to feel a little claustrophobic. Happily, this level of chaos means the flooring project is almost at an end.

I'll post more later in the week, but I wanted to check in before too many more days went by.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

The Big 3-0

Thirty weeks as of last Wednesday! I have so many emotions: elation, panic, wonder, and excitement to name a few. Reaching 30 weeks feels like a huge milestone. He could be here in as little as 8-9 weeks! Crap! Yay!

It seems like we finally got our asses in gear and accomplished some tasks this week too. Unfortunately, that sense of accomplishment does NOT include the baby's room. We settled on a daycare yesterday and feel really good about the decision. It's 10 minutes away from both of our offices, so we can visit at lunch. It is fresh, clean, bright and roomy, which is great since we saw other daycares that looked shabby and small despite costing a lot. I feared the babies would be stepped on; they were truly that crowded. And the price is good too.

We also ordered the nursery furniture. The crib was the only piece in stock and will arrive in about 2 weeks. The dresser is back-ordered but should be available in mid-April. The nightstand won't arrive for 14 weeks. We don't have time to customize the fabric/wood for a glider (14 weeks), but fortunately, the sales lady pointed out a new floor model of a pricey chair and said
she could cut us a deal to move it. I was happy to get that chair! It is quite roomy and cushy. It is possible the baby's room might not be truly finished before he arrives, but the crib and glider are probably the two most important pieces to have.

F is doing well. She says the baby is so constantly active that she begins to worry if she doesn't feel him. She thinks he may have turned head-down in the last few days. And the heartburn has returned with a vengeance.

There has been a tiny bit of drama on Facebook recently. I joked that maternity leave would seem like a vacation from work, and I received some responses from friends expressing wonder at the idea of maternity leave being vacation. Most were tongue-in-cheek.

F hates it when people try to scare me with newborn stories, so she posted that she wished they would stop trying to scare me and that in her opinion, the hard phase is when they become mobile. Well, my cousin replied that she had to nurse her babies every 2 hours for 30 minutes at a time for 6-8 weeks and it was exhausting even though she loved it.

F took exception to my cousin's post and felt the need to defend me. I thought that was sweet. I ended up posting again to the thread about how i'm not naive and am prepared and even looking forward to the baby crying, sleeping, pooing, etc.

F and I talked about it on Tuesday. She felt bad about being snarky when she realized the problem poster was my cousin. I told her not to worry about it, and I meant it. My cousin is a bit of a know-it all and believes her way is the best and only way.

I was a little bothered by the whole situation, though, but not for the reasons you might think. I feel like what bothered me in those posts was a sense-real or not--that everyone thinks I really am disconnected from the process of having a baby. That I have NO idea what it will be like to have a newborn in the house and the sheer life upheaval in my near future. Maybe I'm being over-sensitive, but I feel like the mommy hazing is more about saying that I didn't walk through the same fires they did and haven't "earned" my mommyhood, that I am somehow not part of the club because I am not carrying the baby. I'm not an idiot! I've read and talked to others with children about what it will be like. I'm prepared for there to be difficult, hard, even awful days. I resent the implication that we are stumbling into this with no idea of what is coming. That is insulting to Husband and I and what we have been through to get here.

And then I take a step back and realize that maybe I am being over-sensitive and that mommy hazing is normal-apparently it is fun to scare the mother-to-be with baby tales. Maybe this teasing is an indication I am part of the club.

Our next doctor appointment is Tuesday! It should be a routine appointment. Husband will finish the floors in the baby's room tomorrow. Yay! Much house chaos is coming in the next few weeks as the attention turns to putting hardwoods in our bedroom. It is stuff like that that makes me look forward to sitting on the couch, rocking my baby.

I've been thinking a lot about our first few days home with the baby and who will be with us. More to come on that this week.

-- Post From My iPhone

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Chubby Cheeks, A Smile and Rumination

We had our monthly doctor's appointment on Tuesday, and it went well. F passed the one-hour GTT, and everything with the baby was great. We paid (happily) for another 3-D ultrasound, and the baby teased us for a while by keeping his fist and the cord in front of his face, but near the end, he finally cooperated and smiled for us! He was adorable. He has the chubbiest cheeks, and I think he has my chin and Husband's ears and lips. I have no idea where he gets those cheeks, though. He weighs almost 3 pounds and is 15 inches--quite a change from our last ultrasound in January when he was not quite a pound! We now transition to appointments every two weeks. I still can't believe how quickly time is passing. He will be here before we know it.

It feels weird to post such happy tidings when others have experienced some devastating occurrences lately. I'm thinking of surrogate buddies Duck and Niki and their miscarriages and Tabi's negative cycle with her surrogate. I'm also thinking of my coworker K and how she finally became pg with twins via IVF and began bleeding right before her 13 week screening last week, only to discover that she has a subchorionic hematoma and is now on bed rest at least until Wednesday. I ran into her at work as she was on her way to HR to fill out FMLA paperwork, and I was terrified b/c she was so pale and drawn. Her OB, in the helpful way all doctors have, told her that the hematoma was "normal but not common."

I'm so used to being on the unfortunate side of statistics myself that is still surprises me that we are where we are. My heart hurts for all of them. I wish there were some rhyme or reason WHY things turn out the way they do, but one thing I've learned from the past 3.5 years is that there is NO rhyme or reason. You can't promise to be a better person or list your stellar qualities. You can't do penance. Bad things happen to good people and good things happen to bad, undeserving people. It sucks, and I wish it didn't work that way. I know that anything I have to say to Duck, Tabi or Niki would sound trite considering where I am. I just feel awful for them; they truly deserve success and happiness. We enter into surrogacy thinking it's going to be our magic bullet, and it is awful when it proves not to be--at least not the first time. The only poor advice I have to offer is to urge them not to give up, to please try again.

Oh, my friend J who became pg with her second child on her first cycle of Clomid again...she had her ultrasound on Tuesday, and it turns out she is pg with ONE baby. I cannot tell you how happy that makes me. I do not begrudge anyone their twins, but I still miss our twin. I felt like I could embrace her easily-achieved second pregnancy somewhat due to our circumstances, but if she had been pg with twins after 50mg of Clomid, I don't know how I would have reacted. Sad but true.

Hope everyone has a good weekend!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Third Trimester?!?!

I could have easily titled this post "irritation" or "frustration", but I instead decided to go with something positive. Amazingly, tomorrow we will be 28 weeks which, according to most sources, puts us in the third trimester! I'm still trying to wrap my head around that. Already? The truly frightening thing is that I'm planning based on 38 weeks because F usually doesn't make it to 40, and that is 10 weeks away from tomorrow! Eek! We are so far from being ready. We are so very NOT ready. I did register though it's a work in progress. Husband finally finished the hardwoods in the first room, capitulated and had my stepfather up to help last week and now the baby's room is halfway done. We are so behind schedule though. We haven't ordered furniture or anything. Neither of us can remember being this busy before and both decided to take this Friday off in order to get some stuff done. I need to work on some work and school stuff as well as sleep. He needs to work on floors. Together we need to work on taxes (we normally do those the first weekend in February) and baby furniture. To top it all off, my car needs $1200 in repairs, and we have been going back and forth today about whether we should bite the bullet and get something new(er). It's 11 years old and has 133k miles. It's also paid off. My big fear is that these repairs are the tip of the iceberg, but I think we just decided to repair the car and try to make it to the end of the year. Not that we want another car payment right now, but it was honestly a decision of convenience. We cannot handle making one more decision right now.

I don't mean to sound whiny. Overall, everything is great! I think we are both so freaking overwhelmed with life right now. F is doing well and sent belly pics last week; she looks awesome and told me that the baby has grown a ton b/c she is now huffing and puffing after climbing steps. We'll see her next Tuesday at our last monthly appointment and next ultrasound. I feel bad b/c we have been so busy that we haven't gotten to see her and her family very much lately.

Friends. Hmmm. I have a long overdue update on that topic. During the holidays, I kinda confronted friend K about how we feel left out and forgotten since we haven't heard from them. Friend K is the one with the almost-one-year-old, so I told her I understood that her life had changed, but that we just felt kind of forgotten. I also told her that I understood the hypocrisy of our wanting friends now but pushing people away when they were pg. This conversation stemmed from the fact that she had asked me if I had seen the previews for The Unborn, and I very tactfully told her I couldn't see that movie due to our vanishing twin. She wrote back an extremely contrite email, saying that she had realized her mistake and felt awful about it. I appreciated that. So, I emailed, K called me, we chatted, and since January, we have gotten together several times. We went to her house for dinner and then a couple of weeks ago she took me to Babies R Us to give me a mother's perspective on what I needed, and she also offered to throw me a baby shower. She is still a bit flaky, but I feel like we are repairing that relationship.

I also had a chat with friend J. To catch you up: J is married to another J who was Husband's best friend in high school, and Husband was best man at their wedding. J and I started down the IF path together when she got pg on her first cycle of clomid and I discovered that I had half a uterus and a hopelessly damaged tube. Anyway, that's been a rocky relationship. J and I met for lunch in late January, and the issue of our husbands came up. It turns out that her husband does harbor some bad feelings towards Husband. He resents that we took it personally that they "had a kid" as well as feeling like Husband pushed him away instead of letting him in to help. I was intrigued by her explanation because Husband went out of his way to ask about J and the baby whenever he talked to his friend and I guess Husband was supposed to let J know that he wanted his help? J couldn't have picked up the phone and called or emailed? Husband was supposed to do all the work? We had noticed weirdness on Husband's friend's part once they succeeded that we chalked up to survivor's guilt. It feels like the situation is at a stand-still. Husband isn't going to call his friend; his friend isn't going to call Husband. Frankly, I'm not going to force Husband to call his friend because honestly, why should we have to make all the effort? At least J and I can still email and whatnot. It was good to know, though.

Which now brings me to the irritation/annoyance part.

Irritation #1. J told me that she was on Clomid b/c they decided to go for baby #2. I was flattered she told me b/c she hadn't told anyone. Well, I emailed her last week to find out the outcome b/c the last time she and I talked, she had been convinced it didn't work, but I believed she was testing too early. I was right. Turns out that she is pg again from her FIRST Clomid cycle. Argh. Her pregnancy has stirred up a lot of feelings that I thought were buried. I'm a little down about it. It is sort of because I've been "lapped" but more because I'm worried how we will have baby #2 or if we will be able to. Unlike J, I can't pop a prescription for Clomid and have all my troubles solved. Our baby has come very dear. We have five frozen embies, and I hope, hope, hope we will be able to try surrogacy again--or even try with my poor uterus--but I wonder how we will afford it. I had told Husband last night that I wanted us to be ready to pursue something by the baby's first birthday. And it's hard not to feel a little resentful when we find out today it will cost $2500 to pursue the pre-birth-order paperwork and also pay $1200 in car repairs. I guess I just wish it were as easy for us. On the other hand, I'm actually kind of excited (deep down) about having a friend with an infant close in age. One of my big fears was that our friends would have moved on from the baby stage, and we would still be alone, so I'm excited about the possibilities for getting our babies together for playdates. I'm trying really hard to focus on that instead of my bitterness.

Irritation #2. My mother-in-law. Husband called her today to apologize for not returning her call yesterday, and she starts bitching about how she feels left out and that she wants to be part of the partying surrounding the baby. Ummm...what party? Husband and I are ridiculously busy. I put in 11-hour days every day last week. We're in meetings constantly. And on the weekend, Husband is working on the floors and until about 2 weeks ago, I had something to do every weekend. And MIL feels like copping the "I know your busy but why can't you spare some time for me" attitude? She actually said that she wants to join in the fun surrounding the baby. Um, what fun? I haven't had any fun yet. The first trimester was spent trying not to throw up from anxiety. The second trimester passed in a blur, and now the third is making me panic b/c we are so not ready. Where was she when we were looking for people to share our pain the last 3.5 years? So now she's ready to share in the happiness? JHC. We don't need this stress right now. Husband read her the riot act. I feel a little bad b/c I know she is excited, but it's not like we sit at home all day. She's retired. Must be nice! I wish I led half the life she thinks we do.

Which brings me to the topic of showers. It turns out that I might have 3 showers. I am amazed. My coworkers are throwing me a fabulous off-site shower in May. K stepped up, and she is supposed to be planning one with friend E. My mother wants to throw me one in my hometown that has morphed from a small affair at her house to a church fellowship hall function. I'm not sure how I feel about that, but we'll work it out. I don't know if any of you feel this way, but I feel really weird being the center of attention! I feel weird providing info for a shower. I'm glad (thrilled) to have them, but I just feel unworthy somehow. Does anyone else feel that way? I sort of felt like that when I was wedding planning.

But all-in-all, things are going well. 28 weeks tomorrow. We are getting close!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

25 Weeks

I apologize for being a blog slacker. Work has been so crazy. Every day I intend to write a long post, but it just hasn't happened. Then I come home and instead of getting my laptop, I read or surf on my iPhone. I feel a little off my routine lately.

I have a lot I want to post about, but for now I want to assure you that everything is ok! We are 25 weeks today, and everything is going well (knock on wood). We had our monthly OB appointment yesterday, and we finally got to hear the baby's heartbeat with the Doppler. It was also our first appointment without an ultrasound LOL! We have booked a 3D ultrasound at the next appointment, so we won't have to wait long to get our visual fix.

Work on the floors continues. Husband thinks he might finish the first room and progress into the baby's room this weekend. Fingers crossed.

Most of all I am shocked at the possibility of having a baby as early as 13 weeks from now. Wow. That seems like no time at all. I have started to read baby books (nothing really constructive I'm afraid), but we have so much to do. I consider myself a fairly anal person, but one thing about expecting via surrogacy is the slight disconnection from the life change about to happen. I need to visit daycares, interview pediatricians, register, etc. Somehow we managed to allow ourselves to put off these steps as long as possible and now we have a lot of work to do.

I have noticed lately that we seem to have turned a corner in our thinking so that (most) pregnant people and storylines don't bother us like they used to. I am not sure how I feel about that. On the one hand, it is nice to be able to enjoy baby things and consider yourself a part of it. On the other hand, it makes me feel weird to focus on baby things. Things feel the same yet very different at the same time.

-- Post From My iPhone

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Husband and I are obsessed. I am obsessed with baby bedding; he is obsessed with the floors. I have not been able to find bedding I like, and Husband is that rare male (at least in my world) who has an opinion on furnishings, beddings, china, clothes, etc. He has disliked every bedding set I've sent him. He found a set that he really likes. I like it ok. It's cute and isn't too stereotypically boyish. I was not completely sold on it because I was hoping to do a room that was meaningful to us and couldn't figure out how baby forest creatures were meaningful to us. However, I've accepted that neither the bedding nor the fabric I want exists right now, so we've compromised on the set he likes and we will personalize the room with pictures from some of our travels.

He has decided that he wants to make his own baseboards now. No white baseboards for him! He told me yesterday that he wanted to get some wood and mill it himself for the baseboards. OMG. Are you KIDDING me? We compromised on that as well and now he will use floorboards, which will look great with a little tweaking. And all it costs me is a visit from my mother and stepfather to help out LOL. He's made a lot of progress on the first room and hopes to have it finished next week. I'm just a tad concerned because we have two more rooms to do, one of which is the baby's room. I'm really proud of him for tackling this job but I'm trying to find that sweet spot between his perfectionism and my desire for the project to be done :-)

We're 22 weeks today. F felt the baby move for the first time on the outside, which was exciting to hear. She says he has hiccups quite a bit too. I had been thinking that we have 18 weeks to go, but she told me last week that since she never goes to 40 weeks, it's more like 16-17 weeks. Gulp! That's not far at all.

I have come out to work about the baby. It's been a little weird for me b/c my instinct is to run and hide, but I keep reminding myself that I need to make plans. I can't just disappear for 12 weeks with no notice. Everyone's reactions have been great, though. I was really worried about it b/c I know my coworkers and how weird they can be at times. So far, all the reactions have been overwhelmingly positive. A coworker explained it to me this way: "we love you and therefore we are simply just excited and happy for you." It's a good reminder for me to try to think better of people. Maybe they go home and say, "OMG. That is SO weird" but they haven't said it to me.

I also talked to HR yesterday and was happy to discover that they will allow me to use 6 weeks of sick leave, and I have enough vacation and bonus leave to make up the other 6 weeks, so I can take 12 weeks paid. I feel a bit guilty because almost none of my friends and family have been able to take more than 8 weeks paid or unpaid. It's a shameful commentary on the maternity leave policy is in this country. When I start feeling guilty, though, I remind myself that I've made a lot of sacrifices for this baby and that being able to have 12 paid weeks off is nice.

We've called the lawyer to start the PBO process, so hopefully that ball is rolling. I can't believe that it's time to start thinking about that. F told me that the pregnancy would fly by, but I didn't really believe her. It has though.

I've noticed that I've turned a corner in my thinking about the baby. I'm excited. I'm researching. I'm making plans. But I'm still knocking on wood and feeling panicky when I talk about it too much (I actually just deleted a sentence that I had written b/c I felt I might be jinxing things). But it's nice to finally be able to enjoy it a bit.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Clytemnestra or Ptolemy?

Many years ago, Husband and I started thinking of baby names and decided that we would come up with the most ridiculous names we could think of and try to convince our family that is what we are naming our children. For a girl, we decided on Clytemnestra (Agammemnon's queen) and for a boy, we decided on Ptolemy (because I have a thing for silent letters). I can't keep a secret, so the family was soon clued in that those were fake names. However, we still joke about the names.

Today was our big u/s, and we found out whether we will have a Clytemnestra or a Ptolemy. More importantly, the baby looks great, was wiggling and moving like crazy and was measuring as it should. The baby now weighs 12 ounces. A can of Coke! At first the baby was a little shy, and I was worried that the gender would remain a mystery. However, the baby eventually cooperated. We are having...

A Ptolemy!!!

A boy! I can't believe it! Husband and I are still in shock. F thought we were having a girl b/c she was dreaming about girls. I had thought for the past few weeks that we were having a girl, but today I woke up pretty certain it was going to be a boy. That means we are having the 4th boy in 8 months on my mother's side LOL. I can't wait. I don't know anything about little boys, but that's ok. I had breakfast with a good friend on Saturday and met her 6-month-old baby boy. As I held him, my heart melted. He was adorable, and I knew that a baby boy would be a good thing. I am in TROUBLE! LOL

In other news, work has been quite busy. I had my first management issue to resolve last week, and my two direct reports are going to keep me on my toes. But it will be good. A lot of work but good.

And what's up with this sudden snow expected in NC tomorrow? I checked the weather this morning, hoping to find out when I might see a snow shower and was stunned to see we are under a winter storm watch and might get a few inches of snow! I'm always leery of these sudden storms b/c 9 years ago, we ended up with a very unexpected 21 inches. I hope it does snow!

Crap! I've got so much to do, but all I want to do is look at baby stuff LOL.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

2009 Is Off to a Good Start!

I apologize for any typos. I am posting from my iPhone (love, love, love it!!!!).

It has been an interesting week. Monday was my first day back at work since Dec. 19 and I returned knowing that some big organizational changes were going to happen. I had been told that the impact on me would be positive, but change is change and can still be scary.

I met with the bosses yesterday, and I'm now a manager! I am over our web sites and applications and have 2 people reporting to me. I'm still in shock but thrilled. I think this is a very positive change and will solve some huge problems I was having with another group. I'm sad not to formally be a part of my old group any longer, but we are in the same functional area and will still need to work closely, so in some ways not much has changed.

My new position led to me telling my new boss and one of my direct reports about the baby and surrogacy. It was the first time I had shared the info with coworkers I wasn't close to, so it was a good exercise. Thankfully the news was well received. I am not completely sure my direct report understands, so we'll see what happens.

Yesterday was a good day for another reason: F called to tell me she received the results of the quad screen and everything was normal! That is such a huge relief. I am ready to tell everyone, but I'm trying to wait until our u/s on the 19th. I don't know. I might cave next week. I think that and then the cautious side of me screams. Ugh. How do I get over this caution? At the very least I can say that I am more at ease than I have been. F has also been feeling more movement, including 3 jabs on Sunday.

I have some friend news, but the iPhone isn't super conducive to long posts, so I'll save that for another post.

Can't believe tomorrow is Thursday already.

-- Post From My iPhone