Wednesday, August 20, 2008

blogging on the surrogacy rollercoaster

this post is inspired by IVF Land on Surrogacy World, who is just plain inspiring because he is a man blogging about an experience that most men have a hard time finding the words to explain.

if you google surrogacy and then go look at the blog results, you will receive all kinds of information. what will be missing, or at least very limited, is the intended parent's perspective. as i have said before, there are gay parents, surrogates, lawyers and agencies galore, but few anxiously awaiting parents. in no way am i the typical intended mother, if such a person even exists.

our journey to surrogacy did not come with most of the baggage the accompanies so many couples. there were no countless visits to the doctor, and no years of failed transfer after failed transfer. our decision was made because i had to do what was right for my health.

as an adopted child it was not that much of a stretch for me to understand that biology does not make a parent. it was not important to me that my child look like me, share my blood, or come from me in any way. what is important to me is that i get to have the experience of being a mother from day one.

this does not mean that i did not go through the grieving for not being able to do this on my own. i questioned who i was as a woman. got upset that all these people were poking around in my life. got down right angry that others were having children at the drop of a hat. i wish that this was not the process that we had to go through, but i am grateful that we have the choice.

sometimes it is hard for me to talk about these things. i feel that i am supposed to shut up and be grateful that this path is open to me. the biggest thing that i have always felt bad about feeling, let alone saying, is that i hate the fact that i am not going to be able to have a child who i can take home and never have to share with anyone. i would of course never dream of cutting our surrogate out of my child's life, i do have to look at myself in the mirror after all. honestly, i think it is awful that people think that it is acceptable to take the child and run, but some small part of me understands the urge. of course reading Bump Fairy's post about giving D&G to their daddy how could i even begin to think that it would be at all appropriate to cut off our surrogate. she is not going to make any decisions, she will not be their mother, she will just be another person in their life who loves them (and we all need as many of those as we can get).

our child will have a ton of people like that in their lives, the only difference is that this person will have a unique relationship with them. there is of course this small part of me that is jealous of this relationship, i am human after all. fact is though, it is not a relationship my child will ever remember, and one that i am making so much bigger than any surrogate i have ever met would see as their relationship with my family.

the biggest lesson that i have learned through all of this, is that surrogacy is way too dramatized. a couple of cases have gone horribly wrong, and that is tragic, but thousands more create beautiful families. the difference is often simply being honest from the beginning.

i am one of those people who is constantly trying to be perfect and falling short at every turn. to get through this process has taught me that perfect does not exist in this world. of course i still have my dreams about the perfect relationship that i want with my surrogate, dreams of what will make this whole experience perfect. perfection is now defined as going through this highly emotional and trying process and coming out the other side with everyone feeling like it was a good experience and that we all got what we wanted, whatever that may be. for me that is of course a baby, but also that i have treated everyone involved with the utmost respect and have had that respect returned.

some people think that i am insane for putting this out for the world to see. fact is that maybe 20 people a day see this, so that is hardly the world. plus i am not doing this for anyone other than myself and my family. for my family it is a way that they can know what is happening without having to ask. this can be a tough thing to ask about and answers often just lead to more questions. letting them be able to read how i feel about this day to day, gives them a unique insight into what is happening and what i am willing to discuss. i hope that they know it is everything, as long as they are not telling me to give up and get a dog. for myself this is a way to keep myself from going insane through this process. keeping all these feelings inside would probably land me in the loony bin. there are so many huge emotions and they have to go somewhere, and mine are going here.

another really important reason that i am blogging this, is one day i want my child to know just how much they were wanted. it took me going through this ordeal to fully appreciate just how much my parents wanted a child. opening your life and heart up this much is not something you do lightly. it is something that you do because nothing else in the world could hurt you more than never being a parent. i hope that my child will only have to read this to fully understand what that longing feels like. i know that it is not something that can be verbalized, i can only hope that it is something that will come across in writing. in the end i want a record of what now feels like it will last forever, though in reality i know it is something that will last only for a moment. i never want to forget what this process was like. i want every moment to be forever preserved.


IVF Land on Surrogacy World said...

Thank you for the kind words about being inspiring. I will have a post going up tomorrow about why I blog.

If you haven't read my post "How do you feel about the necessity of taking this journey"? you should check it out. It's the post that got me started.


Beautiful Mess said...

You are a beautiful woman. You want a child, but you are concerned for the welfare of others involved. I don't think a lot of people have respect, but not you! You have a lot of it and I am touched by your writing. It's heartfelt and I can't thank you enough for putting it out there.

~Jess said...

Thank you for this post. Many people don't know how to relate or understand a couple's decision to bring a third party into the conception of their child.

My husband and I are beginning our first IUI with donor sperm. Many people will not understand how strongly we desire to be parents: We know this. But our desire to be parents, far outweights the hurt of not being parents.


Kristin said...

I have so much respect for your approach to this whole process. I hope it isn't too long until you are blessed with your baby.

Sassy said...

This is a brilliant post. Thank you for sharing your story.

nh said...

Beautifully explained - well done. Thank you for sharing what so many don't.


eggorchicken said...

What a beautiful post! As someone that desperately hopes to be a gestational surrogate one day I can only hope that I get matched with an IP like you. Truly, you're an amazing woman.
I hope things pan out for you really soon, and that your journey is every bit as amazing as you deserve.

Millie said...

Thank you for your thoughts. There are so few IP's blogging that it good to find yours.
I started a blog for one of the same reasons as you. So someday our child (due 1/10/09 via traditional surrogacy) will have an idea of just how loved and wanted he is.

I love your honesty and look forward to reading more and following your adventure.