Here we are... the end of the journey! Hard to believe that in a day and a half baby boy will be here, in his dads' arms!
We've had a really great time since baby's family arrived from France. They flew in on Thursday afternoon, and we all got together for lunch on Saturday. It was really wonderful! Brad & I got to meet their little boys for the first time (we had previously FaceTimed, but this was our first in-person meeting) and they are just adorable. I’ve mentioned it before, but I am so over the moon to be giving them a sibling! Their excitement at seeing my belly was such a special moment for me. I super-zoomed in on this picture to protect their privacy, so it’s a bit fuzzy, but just look at these little hands 😍 Melt my heart.
We also met some other family members that came along; in total there were 8 of them. They were, as I expected, all so great. I’m so excited for them, knowing what a special time this is for their family!! I was a little nervous going into lunch, just knowing there were going to be some all-eyes-on-me moments and I’m just really not so comfortable with that. But they were so warm and caring, there was nothing to be nervous about.
Today I had my last OB appointment, and it was really nice because the dads were able to be there for this one. They got to hear baby’s heartbeat, and we talked about the tentative plan for Wednesday. I should get a call from the hospital tomorrow with all the details, but we’ll have a bright and early arrival time of 5:30 or 6 on Wednesday morning. While I’m really not a morning person, I’m actually happy about this because I won’t be sleeping anyway! Might as well get the show on the road!
In other big news, my kiddos are coming home from Minnesota tonight!! They’ve been there for almost A MONTH. 😳 Yes you read that right, A MONTH. This is by far the longest I’ve ever been away from them, and I miss them like crazy!! This is the first time in this journey that I’ve really felt like I’ve made a sacrifice. The shots, the yucky first trimester, the odd pregnancy symptoms that pop up here and there, the discomforts I know I will be facing in the days ahead - I knew about all of those when I signed up for this, and I have been willing to take all of these things because I honestly can’t wait to give the gift of this sweet baby to his family. But a month is a long time to be away from my kiddos, and I just can’t wait for them to get home.
Now, to be fair, the decision for them to go for a month was partly mine. We sat down with the calendar and mapped out the things they’d be doing, planned how Brad would take them to MN, and then my wonderful mom would bring them back. (She’s going to spend some time here helping with the kids while I recover, how amazing is she?!) So I knew, intellectually, that they would be gone for a month. I didn’t want the fact that I couldn’t travel to hold them back from all of the things that they really wanted to do. We FaceTimed every day, and they were always having a great time, which made it easier for me. I’m so glad they enjoyed themselves and made some great memories!! But my heart is bursting as I wait for them to walk through that door.
One other funny little story. Last week I got a pedicure (since, you know, there’s no way I’m reaching my toes at this point) and the lady was a real Chatty Cathy. She was not deterred by the fact that I had a book (in fact, when she noticed it she said, “what’cha got there, a book?” And then proceeded to keep talking 😂). Well, a string of questions led me to reveal that I am a surrogate (not that I mind telling people, obviously I am happy to share it with you all, but typically it’s easier just to keep that information to myself when it comes to daily interactions) and then she really had a lot of questions. Even when I explained it she clearly wasn’t fully understanding, because she would ask the same question multiple times in different ways. So in case some of you share her confusions, here are some important things to note:
✨ The baby is not mine. The embryo was created using his father’s sperm and the egg from a donor, and this all took place years ago. He has been patiently waiting in a frozen state at the fertility clinic. 😊 He has absolutely no biological relationship to me. 100% their bun, just baking in my oven. (The fact that he’s not mine was especially hard for her to grasp. After we talked about it multiple times, she ended the pedicure by asking me if I thought he’d look like me or like his dad 🤦🏻♀️ I give up.)
✨ The embryo was implanted by a doctor in a sterile operating room. It was a medical procedure.
✨ Like many people, she wondered how this pregnancy is different from my others, and how I haven’t become attached to the baby. “Don’t you want to keep it?” In short... no. I don’t want to keep him because he’s not mine to keep. I entered this process with that mindset and it’s still exactly the same. I’d compare it almost to being an aunt or, if you really strip it down, it’s like babysitting... I care about this little turkey’s well-being, and I want the very best for him. I’ve done everything I can to keep him safe in my care, and in that way I've treated him as if he was my own. But at the end of the day he’s not mine, and what I really look forward to, what I’ve wanted from the beginning when this was just an idea in my heart, is seeing him with his family. I love that our families have grown close, and that we will get to watch him grow up via pictures and calls and visits - I would probably be a little sad if I didn’t know we’d have an ongoing relationship. But instead I feel like we have another family on the other side of the world, and that is such an amazing thing.
Well, time for me to wrap it up. My babies should be here any minute!! Just a final word to say THANK YOU so much to everyone for the love and support throughout this journey. It has meant the world to me. I’ll update soon with how everything goes!!