As I write this, I mark 1 week post birth.
LOTS to reflect on in this time.
Firstly, I refuse to let a couple of hours of “scary stuff” impact what has been an amazing past few years and overshadow what was a simply beautiful and amazing birth experience. I just wont. Looking back, I am in awe of my body, I am so privileged to be able to say that I have carried a child for another couple and I am so glad that we found each other.
I am so grateful for my husband. My absolute rock who has supported me 100% through this process as my advocate, my confidant, my go to guy for release and cuddles. This process is just as much about the surrogates partner as it is the surrogate herself and I can honestly say that I love my husband even more for what we have achieved together on this journey.
The support of family and friends has been unwavering. They have been there when I need them, have given me space if I asked for it and have gone above and beyond to make sure I have everything I need. This includes the ladies from my online “Due In Group”. We were all due in November and they accepted me into the group with open arms, full well knowing that I wouldn’t have a baby at the end of the pregnancy. They were there 24/7 through pregnancy insomnia and to chat about some of the less savoury aspects of pregnancy! Special fellow surrogates (particularly M & E) sympathised with me when needed, laughed with me about some of the absurdities of surrogacy and were so amazing to chat to about the processes, thoughts and feelings about carrying a child for another .
My babies were so awesome too. They knew that mummy had someone else’s baby in her tummy and just accepted that as the norm. I hope I can continue to teach them about doing good for others and be a role model as they grow. But watch out kids, mummy is also BACK! Soon I will be able to run and then you wont be able to get away with everything! lol
The hospital, particularly the midwives were AMAZING! There were no hitches, no complications. Everything was simple, seamless and the support was unwavering. In fact, as I am typing this, S has texted me asking how I am. I cannot fault their care and I hope they realise just how special they made this journey for us.
My IP’s have been amazing in their support as well. Giving me space when I need it, chocolate when I need it! They finally have a baby in their arms and I couldn’t be happier for them. I am getting photos every day and can see him whenever I want which is great. They are settling into parenthood so well and I am so very proud of them. It cant have been easy watching someone else carry your child… The same goes for IM’s parents who have been helping out with the kids and my jobs around the house- they will make spectacular grandparents!!
Things were a little odd when I got home. A bit of “well, what now?” was how I was feeling! I reflected and recovered on Thursday night and Friday and on Saturday, IP’s bought Ethan around for cuddles and for the kids to meet. And oh, they adored him so much! They all wanted their cuddles and kisses. They wanted to look at his feet, hold his hand! They wanted to know this little man who was temporarily living in their mummy for 9 months! They were so gentle with him and it was so heartwarming to see.
Saturday and Sunday bought a touch of the “baby blues”. On Saturday, Ethan started crying and my body just went haywire! I cried, my uterus contracted, my boobs felt funny and I just couldn’t control it! It was a super weird feeling how his cry affected my entire being. Don’t get me wrong though, I did NOT want to keep him! lol I had the tearies on and off over the weekend but had a LOT of people checking in on me, so felt very supported.
In the end, I didn’t need a transfusion but am taking iron tablets instead. Bloods will be checked again in a few weeks to see my levels. Apart from the “moment” on the weekend, I have had no sign of anything happening milk wise with my breasts. I still have to wear tight bras for the next week or so though. The kicker is the tiredness. I can be full of energy one moment and feel like I could sleep for a million years the next. It is so unpredictable! I am really looking forward to building up my energy once more. I am going to take an extra week to recuperate before I go back to work, I think.
My stitches are healing well and my post birth bleeding is doing the usual “slow down then ramp up then slow down” that I remember well from previous pregnancies. My swelling has reduced in my ankles FINALLY! That took a little longer due to the 4L of fluids I needed post birth! I am a tad concerned that 1 week post birth I am down to my pre pregnancy weight though. Its a little too fast. Today i am wearing my “normal” jeans. Thats not right. S is coming over tomorrow so I will chat to her about it.
Ethan is coming over for more tummy mummy cuddles this weekend and I cant wait! The kids will love it too. They have gifts to give him as well.
We went out to the shops yesterday and I was thinking to myself “no one is any the wiser”. Just looking at me, yes I am very pale still, pretty skinny and I am walking slowly but other than that, there are no outward signs that I have given birth. No belly to show I am pregnant any more! It was a weird feeling and one that I already miss. Now don’t get excited reading that! There are ABSOLUTELY NO PLANS for me to have another baby- as a surrogate or as a parent! It just feels weird that after so long, things just sort of stop. Of course, we still have a lot to do. Paperwork for the birth certificate and registration, court documents, legal “stuff” etc. But until then and until I go back to work, I have some jobs to do and will continue to reflect on what has been achieved and of course, enjoy lots of cuddles with this little man- once my passenger- who I love so dearly!
I am now 9 days post birth. Exhaustion is still playing a starring role so S suggested a repeat blood test to see how my levels are. Iron, red and white blood cells are good, so it has all been put down to my body just having gone through a lot and I have been prescribed “rest, food and fluids”. I am a little frustrated that there is no identifiable reason to account for my symptoms but will do what the doctor says and hopefully next week I will start to improve.
The wonderful Kidspot ladies couldn’t wait to post the good news: