Friday, June 29, 2007

This might hurt a little .... because you're a girl

Why can't I get someone to rub my nuts?

Let me explain.

I have to have 3 ultrasounds done in July. At 10 weeks pregnant I'll be released into the care of a regular OBGY but for now the RE's office is keeping a pretty close eye on me via ultrasounds every 2 weeks. Now here's the kicker. They're making me have internal ultrasounds. No nice warm gel for me. No ultrasound wand gently gliding over my belly. No, none of that. I get The Wand.

If you're not intimately acquainted in The Wand then let me describe it for you. The ultrasound tech brings out a giant rubbery looking probe thingy and put a condom (a condom!) over it. They squirt some gel on it and hand it to you. You get to do the inserting yourself so that you'll be more "comfortable". Then the tech grinds the wand around in your abdomen for half an hour while you lay on the table and try not to cry out in pain.

It's standard practice for surrogates to get their ovaries checked during these early ultrasounds. Although it's rare, the meds can occasionally cause ovarian cysts so the ovaries have to monitored. Here's the thing about that. I am a freak of nature. No, I mean it. Seriously. (Have you even heard of anyone else getting a collapsed lung while sitting on the couch watching tv?) One of the freakish things about me is that I have traveling ovaries. Yes, they move. A lot. It was explained to me that every one's move a little bit but since I'm so tall they have a lot more room to move around in. And apparently mine like to sit up really high.

So for half an hour I get to lay there while the tech roots around in my innards trying to find my ovaries. And based on how it feels I think my ovaries are sitting right around my shoulder level. Seriously. It sucks.

So why does this have to be so damned uncomfortable? Why is it that I have to get the warning that my examination will be uncomfortable while a guy who goes to get an ultrasound on his private bits gets warned that he might find the exam pleasurable? Or that he might experience "the natural byproduct of spraying warm lube on my balls and then rubbing them"? Why can't I get that?

Don't get me wrong, I'm not looking to get cheap thrills from my ultrasounds. I just wish someone could come up with a way for it to not feel like some kind of assault. If someone ever figures out how to fix this I will seriously love them forever.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

What was I thinking?

How could I have ever wished that I wasn't a mom? I would miss out on so much! Like Elle trying to master the art of conversation.

Elle: Mama, mama, mama, mama? Mama!
Me: What?
Elle: What? ...... Mama?
Me: Yes, baby?
Elle: Goosey?
Me: Where's Goofy?
Elle: All gone! ..... Mama?
Me? What is it honey?
Elle: Papers?
Me: No, you already had some capers today.
Elle: Papers? Papers?
Me: No more capers.
Elle: Mama? Mama? Mama!
Me: What?
Elle: What? ....... Mama!
Me: Yes Elle?
Elle: (looking very serious and pointing at her nose) Boogies.

And I would miss out on watching Joseph at soccer practice and hearing him yell out things during the game like:

Team! Team! Let's just take a quick break and have some time for hugging!"

"My feet are dangerous weapons!"

"That's my mom over there! Don't kick the ball at her head! She uses it to read to me!"

"I feel light! I feel pretty! I've never felt so alive!"

And at one point he was hit in the crotch with the ball and the coach asked him if he was ok. Joseph, running as fast as he could after the ball yelled back in as loud a voice as I have ever heard him use: "It's ok! It was just my penis!"

How could I have wanted to miss out on all this?

I love this like cake


Elle won't nap and Joseph won't stop whining. Today is one of those very rare "I don't want to be a mom anymore" kind of days.

Monday, June 25, 2007

The kids at the splash pad

Joseph having fun at the splash pad.

Elle attempting to run away from the splash pad and Joseph going to get her.

And yes, I have the two whitest children in the history of the universe.

The perfect wife

Yesterday we were in the car and Elle was putting her toes up by her nose. Joseph was obviously impressed and we had the following conversation:
Joseph: Now that's what I like to see in a girl. The woman I marry will be able to pick her nose with her toes.
Me: *laughs*
Joseph: The second ingredient for a perfect wife is that she has to be a good cook and will make me whatever food I want.
Me: What else does someone need to be a perfect wife?
Joseph: She needs to have a lot of gas.
Me: Gas? Why?
Joseph: You know, (whispers) butt gas.
Me: Oh..... Yes, I see.
Joseph: And she should have a lot of money so that she can buy me a lot of toys. And she should let me do whatever I want, whenever I want. And most important, she should never crab at me.

I'm not sure it's a wife he's after. I think he's looking for a mom. A new mom with a lot of butt gas. (Not that this pregnancy hasn't given me more than my fair share of that lately!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Normal is the new fat

I used to be an MTV addict. If there was an episode of The Real World on I watched. It didn't matter what season it was from or how many times I had already seen it. I watched it anyway, I was powerless to resist. Then I got a little older and I found myself getting more and more annoyed with the show. By the time the Las Vegas season came I had pretty much tuned out.

But then the evil marketing geniuses at MTV came up with something that drew me back in. The Real World/Road Rules challenges. Something about the challenges just drew me in. I knew it was total trash but I didn't care. I could watch and episode and hate every single person on it but I would still be entertained.

But here's my question. Has the show always been as anti-women as it is now? Or have I just recently noticed this? I would like to think that it wasn't always like this and that it's just gotten bad over time. I would hate to think that at one time I didn't notice that the entire show was pretty much a platform for the "men" on the show to wave their dicks around and make misogynistic comments.

Even the women on the show seem to be taking part in it. They whine about how they need as many men as possible on their team and how the other girls are just dead weight. I have never once seen one of them say anything like "Hey! Girls can do stuff too! We don't have to rely on the boys to carry us through this!"

The most disturbing thing that I've noticed lately on the show though is how damned skinny all the women are. Take Paula:

Now Paula is anorexic but she doesn't really look all that different than most of the other women on her team. Many of them look like they might topple over if a butterfly landed on them particularly hard. What happens when someone on the show is slightly larger? Take Janelle:

Pretty girl right? Yeah. On nearly episode she gets called things like "a whole lotta girl". And god forbid that the woman be an even larger size. Take Anessa:

I can't stand Anessa on the show but I've gotten tired of the constant comments about her weight. On the last episode there was a swimming challenge and one of the other people on the show commented that she was "swimming like there was a cupcake on the other side". Nice. And this kind of stuff is said all the time. Certainly MTV can't control what the people on it's shows say. But they can decide how many of these hurtful and damaging comments that they're going to put in every episode of their shows.

Why all the fat jokes MTV? Is your female audience not insecure enough already? Do you have to comtinue to drill it into their heads that they should not have any curves at all unless they're the surgicaly implanted, saline kind? Screw you MTV. This is one cupcake loving girl that won't be watching you anymore.

Edited - All of the sudden I'm getting a ton of hits for this entry and I can't figure out why. Where are you all coming from?

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Summer school

Joseph had his first day of summer school today. He has stressed about this for the past two months. He was sure that he would hate it and that it would ruin his whole summer. When I went to pick him up today the first words out of his mouth were "I love summer school! I wish it was longer!"

I knew he would like it once it started. Like so many things with Joseph though, just getting him to try something is the hard part. He gets so worried about things that are new and unknow that by the time the new thing happens he's managed to work himself into a little anxiety attack. We have yet to find a good way to deal with this other than just forcing him into things and then not tell him "I told you so!" when it turns out that we were right and he likes them after all. My boy is a riddle wrapped in an enigma wrapped in a pair of shin guards. (10 points for anyone what knows what I'm refering to there.)

Speaking of shin guards, soccer is going well. (Like how I did that?) Joseph is probably the least skilled on his team but I don't even think he notices that. He just loves being out there and playing with his team. It doesn't bother him that he has yet to kick a ball towards the right goal. He's just having fun. The kid burns so much energy when he's out on the field. The entire time he's out there he's running around and windmilling his little arms around and saying things like "Kick the ball to me if you want to win!" and "I'm gonna kick that ball to shreds!". It's fun to watch him have so much fun. He's a cute kid.

Happy days

I spoke to both of the guys yesterday and they are just thrilled. They're really, really happy. Each of them thanked me about a dozen times. I felt funny saying "You're welcome!" in a situation like this so I just thanked them in return for letting me be a part in this. They both kept asking if there was anything they could do or if there was anything I needed. I told them that unless they could give me a few extra hours of sleep at night there really wasn't much I thought I needed. Anyway, we're all very happy and excited and it's good to be official.

My meds change a little bit now. My medication for this week will be:
7 giant prenatal vitamins
7 shots of progesterone (No longer in an oil base!)
3 shots of delestrogen
14 progesterone vaginal suppositories
7 estrace pills

My butt is so sore and lumpy and black and blue. Thank goodness that some of the meds will end on July 16th and the rest on July 30th. There's an end in sight! It's all good.

Monday, June 18, 2007

It's official

The blood test confirmed what I already knew. I am pregnant. Really, really pregnant. I was told that a beta number of over 100 meant that you were pregnant. And no, I have no idea what a beta is and what it's measuring. What I do know is that my number was 261. So yeah, I would say that I'm pregnant. I can't wait to tell the dads the good news!

Friday, June 15, 2007

It feels like burning

Holy crap. I think I hit a nerve when I gave myself my shot last night. In the past 24 hours I've gone from "Hey, that's a little sore" to "Holy mother of god! My leg is on fire! It burns! It burns! Will nothing release me from this hellish torment?"

Ok, I exaggerate. A little. But it's seriously killing me. Everything from my lower back to my toes aches and burns. It's slightly better when I'm sitting but laying down and standing both hurt like hell. Now I'm all nervous about my shot tonight. I don't want to damage both legs like this. Just having the one sore leg has turned me into a huge baby.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Shhhhhhh! It's a secret!

The guys don't know yet. They don't want to know anything until the official blood test on the 17th. I wanted to know though. Or rather, I wanted to be sure because I already had my suspicions.

Of course it's still early and any one of 8 billion different things could happen. For now though I'm just going to enjoy the feeling of seeing that second line. (BTW, how much does that pregnancy test look like something that would be sold at Claire's?)

*Edited to add - I just realized how weird this really is. "Hey everyone! Come look at this thing I peed on!"

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Small town parade champions

For the past three years Joseph has been in out town's little annual kiddie parade. Thanks to my parent's mad float building skills and Joseph's natural charm he won every parade he was in. This year Elle was on the float too. Their theme was Down on the Farm. I had to miss it because I was in LA for the transfer but after seeing thise pictures I'm not at all suprised that they won. These are some darn cute kids.

Before the parade. (How skinny is my boy?)
Before the parade
Practicing in the parking lot.
Getting ready for the parade

During the parade.
The parade

The proud winners.
The big winners

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Summer soccer

In a hour I am going to take Joseph to his first session of summer soccer. He's really looking forward to it. Normally I would be too because I know how much he enjoys it and how good it is for him. Today though? Not so much. Today all I want to do is lay on the couch and nap, only waking every so often to notice how nauseous I am.

I'm not talking "I have an upset stomach" nauseous. I'm talking "I don't think I'll ever eat again and I can't believe that I've ever eaten before and that box of Reeses Peanut Butter Cup Bars mix that seemed like such a great idea a couple of days ago at the grocery store now makes me gag every time I see it in the kitchen and the only thing that sounds good to me is that jar of Bleu Cheese dressing in the fridge" nauseous. And that's all I'm going to say about that.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Men are strange

It's past 10 at night and Jesse is in the basement using the loudest paint sprayer in the entire history of the world. When he sprays it, it sounds like there's a fire alarm going off in your ear. I told him that he needs to a) do this when the kids aren't trying to sleep and b) use some kind of ear protection. He seems upset by my suggestions. Why? Does he want crabby, sleep-deprived kids and hearing problems? Or is he just bound and determined to get that basement painted in the least effecient way possible? (His last plan involved a plastic cup of paint and a watercolor brush.)

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Let's not jinx this

I really hope I'm pregnant. Then at least the way I'm feeling right now will be all worth it. I'm crabby and sooooo tired. I don't want to be feeling this crappy for nothing.

For the next few days (until my blood test on the 17th anyway) I'm not going to talk about the surrogacy or the pregnancy. I don't want to jinx things. In fact, I try not to even think about it. Most of the time I do ok except for when I go to the bathroom and I find myself thinking "Please oh please don't let me be flushing one of those little buggers away."

It's a funny thing. Because I am so rabidly por-choice I really don't consider embryos as being alive. I think of them as having potential life. But knowing how very, very much these little ones are wanted has made me feel very protective of the embryos. For their dad's sakes I really hope I'm able to hang on to (at least) one of them.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Stick babies, stick

The transfer went really well. I've been back in my hotel room for several hours now relaxing, watching movies, reading blogs and discovering the pure joy of a bagle with lox, cream cheese and capers.

But I digress. The point is that the transfer went well. They transfered two embryos that they told me were "excellent". I got a picture of them to give my IFs since they couldn't be there. As I was leaving the Drs office J called to see how it all went and if there was anything I needed. I told him just to think good thoughts and keep his fingers crossed that at least one of these little buggers decides to stick around.

Funny story about the transfer. I laid down on the table and assumed the position. The doctor sits down in front of me and says "What in the heck is going on in there?"

"Oh my god" I though. "This man has seen countless lady parts in his career and yet there's something about mine that shocks him?!?" I looked at the nurse. The nurse looked at me. She looked down at my lady bits. I look down at my lady bits. The doctor looks up and my and the nurse staring at my private parts and laughs. He explains that he was actually asking the nurse why it was taking so long to bring the embyos in. Needless to say, I was relieved that I didn't have something like a tiny circus in my girly place.

The transfer itself took less than 2 minutes and felt a lot like a pap smear. Not exactly painless but it was over quickly. In fact, the worst part about the whole thing was having to lay at an angle (feet in the air, head down low) for an hour after the transfer. On the plus side though, there was a mirror in the room and I couldn't help but notice that laying at that angle made my boobs look fantastic. (Note to self - Figure out a way to get into that position more often.)

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Can you come tuck me in?

What in the hell is turn down service? Is that when someone comes to your room and ..... what? Turns down the covers of your bed for you? Is that for real? Why is this a service that hotels offer? How lazy do you have to be to request something like this? Is there a person who's entire job is just to fold back comforters for spoiled lazy fucks who can't get their own beds ready at night? If you request this service, will the person stay and tuck you in? Is it possible that I'm missing out on some big part of this whole thing? Maybe "turn down service" is a discreet way of saying that the hotel will send a hooker to your room if you ask them to. Maybe not but I can tell you that that makes a whole lot more sense so me than the idea that you can actually have someone come into your room and fold your blanket back for you.

I'm here!

I'm in LA. The flight out here was pretty rough but I got here and and that's all that matters. All I have to do now until 7:45 tomorrow is relax and enjoy this very nice hotel.

Seriously, this place is super nice. I felt like such a hillbilly walking in. The place is huge and it's not totally clear where you need to go to check in. After I wandered around for a while blinding everyone in the lobby with my "Minnesota tan" legs I figured it out. I noticed as soon as I was checking in that everyone who works here is so nice. I mean, I kmow it's their job and all but the level of courtesy is kind of amazing. As I was headed to the elevator I had to fight off about 14 people trying to help me carry my two tiny bags. When I was walking down the hall to my room I passed a hotel main who darn near curtsied as I passed. I wanted to say "Stop it! You're dealing with someone who once walked into a Motel 6 and thought "Hey, this place is pretty nice!"

My transfer is set for tommorow at 7:45. I have to get there with a full bladder but that's about my only job. The procedure itself takes about 2 minutes but then I have to lay flat for an hour. After that I'll come back to the hotel for bedrest until I leave on Friday.

The only bad news is that while J had planned to be here for the transfer he just won't be able to. He had to leave today because of somehting going on back home. I know he felt bad about it so I'll give him and B a call tomorrow to let them know how it went. They're really sweet guys. They had a beautiful flower arrangment sent to my room here at the hotel. It had a note on it that said "Thinking of you. Thank you so much!" I'm so excited for this transfer tomorrow and I'm really keeping my fingers crossed that it works out for the guys.

For now I'm going to go take a long, hot shower and enjoy being in the bathroom as long as I want without anyone knocking on the door and telling me they need to poop. Jesse. I'm also going to go and pack up all the fancy shmancy toiletries from the bathroom so that they'll give me more stuff tomorrow.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Wacky Canadians

I will not laugh at other people's expense. I will not laugh at other people's expense. I will not laugh at other people's expense. I will not laugh at other people's expense. I will not laugh at other people's expense. I will not laugh at other people's expense. I will not laugh at other people's expense. I will not laugh at other people's expense. I will not ......ah, screw it.

My vagina makes glitter, what's your super power?

I do not like my new shots. The injection sites are sore as a son of a gun. They make me crabby and give me a huge headache. I'm an emotional wreck right now. I just found out that the hormone in this shot is the same as the one in the birth control pills that made me so nuts. Yipee!

This week I will have to take:
7 giant prenatal vitamins
7 intramuscular injections of progesterone
2 intramuscular injections of delestrogen
5 progesterone vaginal supposatories
1 partridge in a pear tree

Funny thing about the supposatories that I have to take. They say that one of the side effects is a "silvery discharge". Soon I shall have the lovliest, shiniest female parts in all the land.

Bitter much?

Confidential to a dodged bullet:
Suck it bitch, I never liked you either.

10 things to consider when buying toys for children with special needs

I came across this list somewhere and thought it was pretty helful so I wanted to share it.

  1. Multi-sensory appeal - Does the toy respond with lights, sounds or movement to engage the child? Are there contrasting colors? Does it have a scent? Is there texture?
  2. Method of activation - Will the toy provide a challenge without frustration? What is the force required to activate? What are the number and complexity of steps required to activate?
  3. Places the toy will be used - Will the toy be easy to store? Is there space in the home? Can the toy be used in a variety of positions such as side-lying or on a wheelchair tray?
  4. Opportunities for success - Can play be open ended with no definite right or wrong way? Is it adaptable to the child's individual style, ability and pace?
  5. Current popularity - Is it a toy that will help the child with disabilities feel like "any other kid"? Does it tie in with other activities like books and art sets that promote other forms of play?
  6. Self-expression - Does the toy allow for creativity, uniqueness and making choices? Will it give the child experience with a variety of media?
  7. Adjustability - Does it have adjustable height, sound volume, speed and level of difficulty?
  8. Child's individual abilities - Does the toy provide activities that reflect both developmental and chronological ages? Does it refect the child's interest and age.
  9. Safety and durability - Does the toy fit with the child's size and strength? Does it have moisture resistance? Are the toy and it's parts sized appropriatly? Can it be washed and cleaned?
  10. Potential for interaction - Will the child be an active participant during use? Will the toy encourage social engagment with others?

Saturday, June 02, 2007


Everyone has something that they're really good at. A talent. My talent just happens to be building up my uterine lining. I got the following phone call yesterday:
Nurse at RE's office: We got the results of your ultrascan and your lining is 11 something something something medical jargon.
Me: Um..... Is that good?
Nurse: (chuckles) Yeah, we like surrogates to be an 8 before transfer so 11 is fantastic.
Me: Oh, good! (At this point I was doing my best to be calm but if anyone had looked in my windows at that exact moment they would have seen my quietly but furiously "raising the roof".)
Nurse: Yes, it all looks good. We'll be seeing you on the 7th.

Yep, I pretty much rock. I also got some other good news yesterday. I will be able to fly out of my local airport and not make the 2 hour drive to the Minneapolis airport like I had to do the last 2 times I flew out to LA. After my quick flight to Minneapolis I'll have a direct to LA. That will be nice. I don't mind flying but I hate layovers and connections.

When I am in LA I'll be staying at the senic Beverly Hilton located in senic Beverly Hills on senic Wilshire Blvd. Lets just hope that Paris is out of town and I don't come home with a senic case of the clap.