Grooooooooow babies!!

How 2 men + 2 women - sex + science = 2 babies!!

This is the funny, heart-warming, tearful, inspiring, and shocking truth about my journey to have a child.

How a man, another man, a woman, another woman, a couple lawyers, a few doctors, a psychologist, a couple social workers and some agencies make a baby.

Friday, October 21, 2011


I'm not someone who really is into astrology. Years ago someone made my astrological chart. It was the really detailed kind of chart based not only on my birthday, but the time and the location of where I was born. I thought it was about 50% accurate and 50% totally off base.

My weekly emails about the pregnancy gave me a fun website to try. It tells you how parents and kids relate based on their signs. Do I really believe it? No. But it's fun to see what it says. Check out the link below to see your relationship with your child.

The twins' due date is April 11th or 12th (we've heard both) and twins usually come about 2-3 weeks early so I can pretty safely assume they'll be Aries. The website says this:

Your fun-loving spontaneity is the perfect foil for your Aries child's brash, independent spirit. You'll never tire of watching him meet, greet, and challenge the world in his inimitably courageous way. You both love bouncing from one attraction to the next, so getting out of the house is a must -- think bright, noisy places filled with lots of different people and diversions, like amusement parks, fairs, and other family fun centers.

On the rare occasion that you're home together, you can still let your little Aries explore at his own fast pace. With your energy, you should have no trouble keeping up! But you should pay attention, because this little one may be prone to burns and accidents. In general, some grounded energy is in order here, and you may need to rely on someone more levelheaded and practical to keep you two on a schedule.

Great. "Prone to burns and accidents." Like I didn't have enough to worry about already!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

The Nicest Email

Yesterday was a crazy day at work. My co-worker was absent so I was pulling double duty and it was a busy day. By noon I was already exhausted and there was no end in sight. I still had plenty of running around to do.

About 3:00 pm I got the nicest email from my surrogate that just made me happy. She replied that she liked the doctor we just met and was OK staying with him which was good to hear since we needed to decide on a doctor, like, two weeks ago. That's one more thing off my to-do list.

The next part of her email made me relax so much more about this whole process. It gave me such insight into what "Chloe" was thinking. Here are the couple of lines from that email...

"Yeah, Im excited. This process- the spawning of life- is so cool to me. Seeing them move around so much is also exciting and very reassuring, especially since I cant feel them yet. I know you thank me all the time for doing this for you, but I thank you for allowing me to do this for you. Its like the longest, coolest, most important babysitting gig ever!!!"

I think I'll be calmer now knowing that she is so excited for me. It's sometimes hard for me to understand how a woman can do this for a stranger, but I'm glad that she is happy with her decision to be a surrogate and happy to work with me. The other surrogate blogs I have read have helped me see the emotions involved from their side too and I'm glad to know my surrogate feels similarly. Chloe also has a sense of humor about what's happening. Here's something else she said...

"I just got my "Your Pregnancy:15 weeks" email from BabyCenter and they said around this time the babies should be 2 1/2 ounces. These babies are 4oz already! I'm not scared yet, but geez. That's almost double. Well at least we know they arent malnourished."

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Baby's Beautiful Bladder

On Monday Derek and I went to the new doctor we picked with our surrogate. I liked him. More importantly, we got to see the babies again on an ultrasound. The technician was good and gave us information about what she was seeing. We saw a brain. Can you believe it? A freakin' brain including clearly delineated hemispheres! I was amazed. We also saw spines, arms, heads, fingers, legs, a stomach and a "beautiful bladder" according to the technician. In about 14 years, when the baby has become a typical, surly teenager, I think I might have to bring up what a beautiful bladder he/she had in front of his/her friends. ;-)

The big question was the genetic testing. I could go into all the pros and cons, but I won't. I'm a very (and I mean very) indecisive person. But I also make a decision and never look back. I'm 99% sure that I'm not going to do the genetic screening or testing for a bunch of reasons. There's still the 1% of me that wants to do it, but I'm hoping that will go away in time. It's also Derek's preference to not do the testing. It's nice going through this with someone. Although there are things that I will have to compromise having added an unexpected (and very welcomed) partner in all this , it's nice to have someone there to help make some tough decisions.

The other nice thing that happened was that "Chloe" said that she was scared of doing an amniocentesis. The contract is a little vague about whether or not I could compel her to undersgo the procedure. Regardless of what the legal is, I'm thrilled that she felt comfortable enough to voice her feelings to me. I don't know if other IPs feel this way, but I'm always trying to make sure Chloe feels appreciated and treated as a person, not an object in the contract. I think we're doing OK together. She was willing to rearrange her schedule a little to make sure Derek and I could make it to the ultrasound appointments and at the end of the appointment she gave me a hug. It's the little things like that that make me feel good about her taking care of my children. It makes me feel she is invested in me just as I am invested in her.

My blog has been kind of deep for a while so I've been looking to make a fun entry. I have been searching the web for a site with surrogacy cartoons and jokes and haven't found many. If anyone does find some jokes feel free to send them my way or write a comment with the link. For now, I just have one cute story from the "America's Funniest Surrogate Stories Contest"...

"I have been on Lupron for a week now, and it is my 4th time around, so my kids are used to seeing me inject myself. Well, the other morning, my son was being incredibly slow getting ready for school, and just ignoring everything I was saying to him. So I started yelling at him. He got to school late and upset, and I am yelling at him to hurry up and get to class. Just before he walked into the room, of course I gave him a hug and said I loved him. He looked at me like I was some sort of alien. His teacher asked to speak to me after school concerning something he had said. He told his teacher that I was sticking needles in me, and that I was acting funny again....oh my!! I envisioned CPS coming to my house to arrest this lunatic woman on drugs. I explained to his teacher, and we both had a good laugh, but for a brief second, I was worried!!!!"

Sunday, October 16, 2011

The First 100 Days

I've been looking at the numbers on my baby counter at the top of the page and saw that we just passed 100 days. That's a lot. (For those of you privy to that joke, I hope you laughed a little.)

There are 179 days to go. Although in my world I always take off about 20 days since twins come about 3 weeks early. So we're down to about 160ish days. Some days that seems so far away. Some days it seems like I have no time at all before the babies get here. Today I watched a Tivo'd episode of "Parenthood" in which one character gave birth. I just cried as I thought, "I want these babies to be here now!!!" So today is a day when they can't here here fast enough.

This past week I completed my will as part of my requirements with the surrogate contract. Tomorrow or some time this week I'll be starting the paperwork to petition for parental rights. It's good to feel like I'm getting things crossed off my to-do list. Tomorrow we meet with a new doctor who should be qualified to deal with twins and surrogacy. Hopefully Derek and Chloe and I will all like him and his practice. We need to pick our doctor soon. Plus we get an ultrasound tomorrow so I'm excited to see Baby A and Baby B again. I hope they wave at us.

Since I'm feeling more relaxed about this whole process, I'll introduce you to Baby A and Baby B. Here are there first pictures.

August 17th, 2011

August 25th, 2011

September 6th, 2011 Baby A

September 6th, 2011 Baby B

Monday, October 10, 2011

Medical and Legal Blah Blah Blah -- The Most Boring Posting to Date I Believe

There's always something new, right? The first trimester is done, but now there is genetic testing, finding out the sex (which I'm hoping not to do), delivery options, fear of the twins coming early, buying things for the nursery, baby proofing the home, finding a new home that accommodates everyone, etc., etc., etc. And this is before they even come! Lord knows how stressed out I'll be when I have to take them to their first day of school, put them on the bus to sleep away camp or let them get drivers licenses! I don't know how parents do it.

But you all would be proud of me. I'm accepting things as they come along. We had a little bit of a problem last week. Because my surrogate had spotting a couple weeks ago and ran to the doctor to get checked out we got off the normal check up schedule. Plus, her doctor wasn't the right doctor for a twin pregnancy so we had to find a new doctor and a new hospital for delivery. All of that made getting routine testing go off track. Now we're at week 13 and a half and, long story short, through a series of unfortunate events we are not able to do the nuchal translucency test (which is done on twins) because we waited too long.

At first I stressed out about this. After some time I realized that
1. The test only tells you the chance of a problem, it doesn't actually diagnose a problem.
2. There are a lot of false positives and false negatives so the test isn't very accurate.
3. Considering my history and age and the egg donor's history and age there is a very low chance of a problem.
4. Would knowing even make a difference to me? I'm not sure.

So we missed the window of opportunity for this test and there's nothing I can do. Derek and I have been talking about the miracles technology can do but also the curse of knowing too much. Sometimes it's best to just let nature take its course. We'll be able to do a blood test in another week or two and get mostly the same information.

Meanwhile, I have to start my application for parentage. I thought I was mostly done with the legal mumbo-jumbo, but no. My lawyer is going to make forms for the doctor to keep on file which basically say that I am the father and the birth certificate will say "gestational surrogate" where the mother is usually listed. I get copies and my surrogate gets copies too in case she delivers in an unplanned location and we need legal proof that the babies aren't hers. Illinois has some of the best laws protecting the parents (so my lawyer says) but it still is a pain to go through more legal stuff and it costs another $500. I've also been told that in IL we can do a second parent adoption even if the second parent is the same sex. Or, more likely, Derek and I will do a civil union. The laws are pretty murky, though, because everything is still new. I also have to have a will made in a few days as part of the agreement. I stumped my lawyer a little bit as he tried to find language to describe my relationship with Derek which is basically a husband and father to the kids without the legal rights...yet. If the stupid politicians would just grant equal rights to everyone these documents would be so much easier! But that's a posting for another blog.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Strange But True

Before I write today's entry I just wanted to say to everyone that I appreciate you listening to my fears about this process and letting me get out my little neurotic outburst. After hearing from surrogates telling me how seriously they take their role and hearing from parents that they got their nails done and ate chocolate every day instead of broccoli and wound up with good, healthy kids I'm feeling much calmer now. As I think I've said once or twice before, I do like and trust my surrogate. I'm not saying my fears won't pop up again, but it's good to know with venting and support I can calm down.

I will say, too, that a couple weeks ago my surrogate had some spotting. She ran to the doctor to get checked out and then emailed me to say that she didn't want to scare me so she waited until she was examined by a doctor and everything was OK. I'm sure some people would have wanted to know right away, but since I am the worrier that I am it's probably best she handled it and told me later. That made me grateful that she was concerned enough to feel something was wrong and wanted to have a doctor see if everything was OK.

Plus, according to the baby calendar, we are starting the second trimester today. That is exciting and it's allowing me to get more excited about the process.

After I write a "heavy" entry I like to write something fun. So today's entry is all about the weird world of births.

1. One woman gave birth to twins who were each in a separate uterus. The statistics in the article don't really add up. It says there have only been about 100 cases worldwide but it affects one in every 2,000 women and one in every 5 million births. I know that there have been more than 500,000,000 births considering we currently have 6-7 billion people on Earth now. Maybe a statistician can explain what I'm missing. Well, whatever the numbers really are, it's kinda cool.

2. This next one is a story of a woman who gave birth to two sets of twins. Each time one was black and one was white. How amazing is genetics?!?! It's so rare there are no statistics on how often it happens.

3. Finally, we have a bunch of different stories that you just have to read 'em to believe 'em. I won't summarize them. Just click on the link. You'll enjoy them like I did.