I just needed a little time away…. To be honest, I am still struggling a bit with the negative test we got. This isn’t something that is spoken about in great detail from a surrogates perspective, so I wanted to share how I am feeling so that surrogates can get an idea of what it MIGHT be like, as well as IP’s.
I have never had a MC, or struggled to conceive. This “new world” of IVF took me completely by surprise. The medication, tests, scans, visits etc were so much more than I anticipated. It exhausted me mentally and physically. But it was worth it- we were going to make a baby.
When hubby and I conceived our first bubba, we were pregnant first month. Actually, we were pregnant the only time we had sex in my fertile period! Then with the twins, it took us 2 months and we were pregnant in the third. With two babies. When we got a negative, we just said “oh well, next month”. We never knew in those 2 months beforehand whether we had
made an embryo and it didn’t stick or whether nothing happened at all. We will never know. This made us naïve, I think.
But it was those experiences that lead me to being a surrogate…
When you get an embryo transferred, it is as much a mental thing as a physical thing. You are so aware of your body and are looking for and possibly reading into signs that may or may not be there. You want to give hope to yourself and your IP’s that it has worked because there is so much invested in it- emotionally, physically, financially. But on the other hand you don’t want to give them false hope- lord knows they have had enough of that already. So you retreat a little. “Am I pregnant, Am I not?”. It fucks with your brain. IP’s don’t know how to act- do they ask how you are? They don’t want to know good news or bad! YOU don’t know how to act! This is foreign territory. There is no right or wrong but you are treading on eggshells for yourself and your IP’s. In front of everyone else you need to live your life and act the same way because they don’t know. They cant know yet. This HUGE thing that you are doing you have to keep to yourselves because you don’t want more pressure than you are already putting on yourself.
Then there is this little embie. A living thing that has been put inside of you. You are aware of it and your mind is drawn to it every waking minute. Its not like having sex and then having the 2ww. Something that has the potential to be a life- to become a baby- has been put inside you. The difference in feelings between trying to fall pregnant naturally and IVF is so massive, I never realised.
Then you get a negative.
You KNOW that something living was in you. You KNOW that it could have become a baby. You KNOW that this not only affects you, but your partner and your IP’s.
There is sadness, guilt, disappointment, emotion and a hole left in you.
What do you say to IP’s? What do they say to you? They have been through the same thing over and over again. But this time its different. Their surrogate provided them with renewed hope. You withdraw from each other. You need the contact but you also need space. You read into things that aren’t there but need to remind yourself of the bigger picture- you will go again and you will make a baby together. This is where I am at, at the moment. My headspace is still jumbled but I am looking forward to Christmas and then what the new year holds in terms of another transfer.
IP’s are still struggling but I am giving them what space they need. We have never been more than 2 weeks without seeing each other but that’s okay. We will celebrate Christmas together next week and have a real chat and reflection and look towards what comes next.
I don’t think there is a “right or wrong” way to act in this situation. Its uniqueness means that for some, a negative first time around may not be as big a deal as for others. That’s completely okay. You just need to identify whatever you are feeling and know that its normal in the surrogacy world.