Today marks 11 weeks gestation for my little passenger and judging by my constant nausea and daily visits to stick my head in a porcelain bowl, I think he/she is having a growth spurt! Cant believe we are coming to the end of our first trimester.
Then comes the old chestnut. When to make it public? Part of me wants to shout it from the rooftops now but the other part of me is cautious. This pregnancy is a little different, after all! We plan to tell close family and friends in person (some already know). That way they have a chance to ask any questions they have face to face. For the rest of the people that will find out, part of me wants to get in first to tell the real story. With a protruding bump, it will be obvious that something is going on and the last thing I want is for people to make assumptions that this bub is mine/ours and get our kids expectations up that they will be expecting a brother or sister. Of course, we have already told our eldest and she does know that it is IP’s bubba but I don’t want her to get confused. There are also our IP’s to think about, so of course, nothing will be done without taking them into consideration. If it becomes obvious that I need to say something and IP’s still want to keep it quiet then there will be no mention of them when I do so. I will just say that its “for wonderful friends of ours who would like to remain anonymous at this stage”.
Chatting to other surrogates, they seem to think that “getting in first” and being detailed and pre-answering questions that people may want to ask is a good idea. That way if they make an announcement (say on social media), it will push things towards a more positive spin and hopefully avoid any negative comments. Questions/statements I might consider pre-answering in any announcement would be:
“I thought it was illegal in Australia”
My answer: Surrogacy in Australia has been legal for a while now. Different states have different laws regarding who you can be a surrogate for and the process you have to go through to be approved. Victoria has some of the most stringent laws and we went through 6 months of counselling, legals and a government approval panel before given approval.
“How much are you getting paid?”
My answer: In Australia, surrogacy is altruistic, meaning no money can change hands. A surrogate cannot be paid or given elaborate gifts. Nor can she be out of pocket, so all “reasonable” pregnancy costs must be covered by her IP’s.
“What happens if you want to keep the baby?”
My answer: I already know I wont. We have completed our family and if I wanted a baby of my own again, I would have one. This child is our IP’s biological child with no genetic link to me. I am simply babysitting him/her in my tummy until he/she can go back to his/her rightful parents.
“I don’t think I could do something like that”
My answer: That’s fine! There is nothing wrong with that. Everyone has different personal feelings on the topic and I would never, ever judge someone for saying they wouldn’t want to be a surrogate. Just like I wouldn’t expect someone to judge me for a decision I have made that doesn’t affect them. There are other things that other people might do that I couldn’t. Like eat grasshoppers for example! If you want to do it, fine! No judgement here even though I would never do it myself.
(obviously it would be a long announcement…)
I would also throw it open for any questions that people might have. They are curious by nature and I am sure there will be something asked that we haven’t considered!
If anyone has anything negative to say, I will have plenty of people who will come to my defence!
Enough about that and more about baby according to Kidspot:
“Ok, heave a sigh of relief. You’ve made it to week 11 and baby is now less at risk of developing any congenital abnormalities or being affected by any drugs or infections. At this stage, baby can yawn, suck and swallow (though not as well as he will do once she’s actually born and has evacuated that comfy little womb home she’s made).
Beneath those fused eyelids, baby’s eyes are developing irises which will later protect his precious vision from too much light. Baby could be spending his days sucking, wrinkling his forehead and turning his head as he moves around his your uterus – but you won’t feel it yet. He’s probably between 4.5 and 7cm big and by the end of this week can actually have doubled in size.
Downy hair starts to grow on the baby’s skin. Some babies will lose the body hair before they are born, while others may enter the world with patches of hair still on their shoulders and other parts of their body. Fingernails are also starting to sprout.
Baby is now approximately the size of a plum, and his head will still be taking up the greatest proportion of his body. He possibly has a newly acquired swallow reflex, and the beginnings of a sense of smell, which when combined with their maturing taste buds, will provide your baby with their first experiences of taste and smell inside you.”