Making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body. ~Elizabeth Stone

Monday, December 13, 2010


Taryn, one day old

Look at those eyes! She was an hour-ish old here.

Me holding Taryn for the first time. I'd just come back from surgery.

Little K meeting Taryn for the first time, with her grandparents looking on.

Welcome to the world!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Birth Story

K & J met us in the lobby of the hotel at 4:50 am, and neither them or myself slept very well. We drove the few blocks over to the hospital and went up to labor & delivery. J was so excited, he was practically skipping, lol. Got the IV started, and pit started at 5:55 am. My amazing friend/ doula LaDonna got to the hospital around 5:45 am. We all just hung out, talking, laughing.. it was very relaxed. I started contracting once the pit got to level 8, around 7:30 I'd say. I moved around a bit and got on the birthing ball which really helped the pain, unfortunately it seemed to make my contractions nearly stop. I decided to get back into bed and then the contractions really started to set in, and hurt. I asked the nurse where the anesthesiologist was (or "The Epidural Man" as I called him) and she said he was there, and they were going in for a c-section and then he was going home unless I wanted my epidural first. Once home, it would take him 20-30 minutes to get to me once I requested him, and I really didn't wanna let the poor guy get home only to be called right back, so I went ahead and got my epidural. He came just in time too, because I was really starting to hurt! Everyone left the room except LaDonna, who stayed with me and held my hand through the whole thing. It was surprisingly fast, he was a great Epidural Man!

Once the epidural was in, I immediately felt better. I was so tired, since I didn't sleep at all Monday night, and I kept trying to nap but it was so hard to fall asleep. My OB came in and broke my water around 10:30. She thought there was a little bit of meconium but it was very light. They prepped for extra suction just in case. Around noon I was 5cm and 70% effaced, and at 2pm I was 7cm and 90% effaced. I started to get nauseous and got the shakes around this time too. My nurse gave me some zofran in my IV and it passed pretty quickly. My mom got to the hospital around this time & came in and hung out with us. K's mom and dad, J's mom, and Little K were all also there, going back and forth between my room and K & J's room next door. I started to feel some pressure so the nurse checked me again, and I was 8 1/2cm. Baby was still high so they had me sit up more in bed to help her come down. At 3:00 I only had a little bit of an anterior lip left, but she was still high. They let me labor down for about 15 minutes and then called for my OB.

I had LaDonna at my left side, with K just beside her at my head, and J behind her, behind my head. My OB got ready and they broke the bed down and everyone was in position just waiting for a contraction. I felt very weird in that moment, it was like everyone was waiting for me to do something.... and I wasn't doing anything. I got really emotional knowing that everything was coming to an end, but I managed to keep it together. I just couldn't open my eyes and look at anyone or else I knew I'd lose it! I had a contraction and started to push, and I just knew I was doing it wrong. It didn't feel right & I felt like I was about to push my eyeballs out. It took a few pushes for me to get in the groove and remember how to push. I didn't make a sound, and everyone was very quiet except for my OB who would tell me to take a breath & push again, and then give me feedback on how I was doing.

After a few minutes of pushing and feeling like I wasn't getting her anywhere, I got a little frustrated. I finally got focused and gave a few good pushes. I opened my eyes for a second and looked at my OB, who was looking up at K smiling. I started to get a little emotional, and then LaDonna says "she's got hair!!" and I just completely lost it. I don't really know why, I just started bawling, which made K start crying, which started a chain reaction and before you knew it everyone was crying except for J, who thought all of us women were nuts I'm sure! I don't know who it was, but someone asked me why I was crying and I just started laughing and said I had no idea! I think I was just overwhelmed, I knew everything was coming to an end, and the moment I'd been waiting for- and K & J had been waiting for for 9 months was finally about to happen.

I got refocused and pushed a few more times. I knew she was getting close and that made me push harder. Finally my OB said that her head was out, so I stopped and they suctioned her mouth a little bit. I gave one last little push and there she was! The cord was wrapped around her neck once, and my OB took it off and suctioned her mouth a little more, and put her on my chest. She started screaming immediately. I looked up at my IP's and the looks on their faces made every single minute totally worth it! The nurse was cleaning her off a little bit and I looked down at Taryn and she lifted her head back looked up at me with her big beautiful blue eyes. It was such an amazing moment! They clamped the cord and J got to cut it. I wrapped her up in the blanket and handed her to K, and she was just sobbing and smiling. J, with tears streaming down his face, leaned over and put his hand on my head, and kissed my forehead and cheeks, and said 'thank you' over and over again. I reached my hand up and patted his head, and I was crying and laughing at the same time. It was a very surreal moment. Taryn was finally here! She was born at 3:41 pm.

K & J walked over to the warmer with Taryn. I looked down at my OB and she had huge tears rolling down her cheeks. It was then that I looked around the room and saw that every single person in there was crying. My OB, the nurses, LaDonna... all crying! I was watching across the room as they were cleaning Taryn off & weighing her, and she was just screaming her little head off the whole time. She was kicking and punching the air and I had to laugh because it was so funny to see her doing what I'd been feeling her do for the last few months. I kept saying how tiny she was, I was shocked! I really expected her to be bigger. She weighed in at 6 lbs 10 oz, and 20 inches long.

My OB was having trouble delivering the placenta, and could only get it to come out in pieces. It just wouldn't detach, and my OB said we needed to do a D&C. They had an OR ready for me already since I was having my tubes tied immediately after the birth, so she got cleaned up and off we went. I hugged LaDonna & thanked her for being there for me, and off we went to the OR. The procedures were easy, and I actually ended up falling asleep a little while into it. They left my epidural in so I didn't have to go under general anesthesia. It took a little longer than I expected, and I was so ready to get back up to my room & see everyone. I got back up to my room around 6pm, and everyone came back in and I got to hold Taryn for the first time. It was so neat to finally hold her, she was so tiny and cute. She looked just like Little K. I couldn't believe how much dark hair she had, I just knew she'd be bald or have blonde hair like Little K. I looked at her little tiny hands and pulled out one of her little tiny feet. I love baby feet, they're my favorite! Her toes were so tiny, not even as big as Tic Tac's, lol. I felt such a huge feeling of accomplishment. I'd done my job, I'd gotten this little girl into this world safe & sound, and she was healthy. My job was done!

I'm so glad that I decided to be a surrogate. Every single day of morning sickness, heartburn, backaches, rib pain and exhaustion was SO worth it. I'd do it all over again in a heartbeat! I'm so glad that K & J trusted me to carry their daughter, I feel very honored. They have been nothing but amazing. They & their families welcomed my family into their lives & were always so sweet to us. The whole experience was awesome, and I got just as much joy out of it as they did. My life is forever changed because of them, and Baby Taryn.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Close, but no cigar

Well, I really thought that yesterday was going to be the day, but no such luck! I started having contractions on Friday around 5pm, they started out slow but by 7 or 8pm, they were coming every 13-16 minutes. I started getting a little excited, thinking maybe this was it, but 2 hours later they weren't getting any closer. Then they got further apart, every 20-30 minutes. I went to bed and was woken up a few times by contractions, but they were still far apart. I contracted all day yesterday, anywhere from 20 to 45 minutes apart. Finally around 11pm, they stopped. I had one when I got out of bed this morning, but not another one since.

As frustrated as I am, I'm glad I get to enjoy my Sunday without contractions.