Dec 30, 2009

2010

Ugh, another year gone by..... But...we have 2010 to look forward too. With 14 embryos, we should be pregnant by the time 2011 comes along right?? Only time will tell. The holidays have been nice overall with a few highlights. We went to a one month celebration for baby Nathanael, we celebrated 5 birthdays at once on a great night out and we got to see our surro friend from Europe live in person, and we got to skype with recent parents of babes born in India. So, we have had lots of good times in December. Oh, and the big deal of shipping our embryos....
Dec 31, New Years eve...who cares. The only good thing about this is it is one day closer to egg transfer! For all of us who struggled thru 2009 we must believe that 2010 is our year!
Happy New Year to you all!

Dec 19, 2009

Plan in Place

We have taken a sigh of relief knowing our embryos are safe. This was the most important step for right now. Of course, things cannot go that easily for us!! Our embryos arrived without the thaw medium so the docs had to order for us, causing a month delay!!! It sucks, but really, whats a month in this big picture. We have learned to not stress..amazing huh! Why stress over the things we cannot control. Its very hard to get to this point in life, but getting the bejeebers kicked out of you over and over kinda makes you toughen up. I need my Mandy to take a page out of our life guide ~ stress over nothing and it all seems better. Take it in stride. For those of us unable to have children the conventional way, this does come a little easier. Mind you, we have so much weighing on the surrogacy path its not easy. Christmas is fast approaching and I hate it. Another year without a child is all it reminds me of. I am hoping next year will be a Christmas to mark in the book of the best ever.

Dec 14, 2009

Embies are ok!!!

Embies have landed and are tucked away in their long term facility of ice. Thanks all for the support!!!

Lost in travel???

Guess what hasn't arrived in Mumbai yet??? And, was supposed to be there December 10th!! No stress!!!

Dec 8, 2009

..shipping embryos........... oh boy!

4 straws, 6 embies have left the building!!! Nerves of steel..not so much. Worried...not so much. We know everyone is looking out for us and double checked everything before the dry shipper was closed. The chances of the embryos being destroyed a second time have to be one in a billion....right???? Can you tell I am trying to be strong and optimistic, yet deep down am worried sick? Friday cannot come quick enough, and the news that everything is ok. Knowing our dumb luck, the shipper will get lost and take 2 weeks 6 days to get to Lilavati...one day to spare. Ok...I have to stop!!!
I am off to Germany tonight for work, so this will be a good distraction. Our embryo implantation should happen the first week of January and we will be with the docs and surrogate live in person for the first beta!! Its all very exciting, just need to get over this shipping hurdle.
Lets all say a collective worldwide prayer for safe arrival of our precious cargo!

Dec 2, 2009

Frozen numbers are in!

Deja vu ...hmm...I have been here before. Anywho..the results are in and we have 14 frozen embryos of which 11 are very good little embies. The leftover three are not so good but on ice just incase. We will be sending 6X8 cell embies to India very soon and are ready and excited to start over. We may even be in India for the beta test results if all goes as planned. Not our embyro, but a visual ...


Nov 29, 2009

Lucky 21



In true chicken fashion I produced plenty of eggs. Egg retrieval went very well and we have 21 eggs. Will get our fertilization report tomorrow. The clinic took great care of us! I had some stubborn follies that gave the doctor a hassle but his experience managed thru the tough membrane. Marks boys had to make two appearances, as they were as stubborn as my follies! Now is time for rest.

Nov 28, 2009

Sunday Retreival

What better to do on a Sunday than egg retreival!! We are set, trigger taken Friday night at 9 pm, Saturday so far has been with a very heavy belly and a low tolerance for a full bladder. Today we met a wonderful couple from the same area as us who have just begun the surrogacy investigation. We sat for a long while and chatted and laughed. It's so nice to meet people who don't take them selves too serious. In this world stuff happens and all we can do is keep moving forward. We all had a nice cup of coffee and visit and hopefully can do so soon again.
Wish us luck for tomorrow! I am sure Marks boys are anxious to be released into the world and my eggs are ready as well. Will know fertilization results probably on Tuesday or Wednesday.
Til next time!

Nov 23, 2009

CD7

Todays scan was great and we look on track to trigger on Thursday or Friday! This is perfect so I can EPU on the weekend and not have to compromise work.... I know, I shouldn't care Rebecca but I do...

Nov 21, 2009

Cycle update

Well we have over 20 follicles! Our donated drugs are doing a great job!! We have been keeping the cycle low key as I have had some ovary troubles that may have cancelled it. Thank goodness, all is going well and we are on CD5. If all goes well, we will be in India late December. I am fortunate that I am chicken like and produce eggs in plenty. As we left the clinic today, we talked about how difficult it must be to have these scans with four or five follies...it must be so heartbreaking and the desperate optimism must take its toll. To all of you in this situation I really do feel for you.
Peeky had his surgery yesterday and the size of the stones was concerning to me. He is only 11 pounds and I think the stone to bladder size ratio was not good. He is recovering well, and a little codeine helps!
Twin girls were born today! Congrats!!!! Looks like all is well with the girls and the whole surrogacy community is excited for this news.
Joy and Kelly are leaving soon and I was dying to tell Dr M this today but didn't...not my place to spoil the news. Safe travels you two!

Nov 11, 2009

Bladder stones and EPU

Long time no post! So much has been going on and time has been flying by! I am looking at EPU before the end of the year and poor evil dog has bladder stones again! Poor Peeky, so many surgeries for his stones. We saw the vet last night and had a few xrays which showed a big cluster of calcium oxalate crystals (stones) smack dab in his bladder. So, next Friday we will have the dreaded surgery. Poor guy, the surgery is not so nice for him. The doc cuts along his dinkie doodle and opens his bladder up to remove the stones. His bladder is put back into his little belly and his dinkie doodle gets stitched back up. Then the fun begins! When he pees after surgery he screams bloody murder...it sounds like I am slicing him up alive. Thankfully Dr T has offered up extra pain meds for him to help him through the recovery period. The other fortunate thing is that we are moving in with Marks parents so they can keep a good eye on him when we return to work on Monday. We move this weekend, sadly. This is not my ideal situation but we needed to do this to allow us to try again with India. Lots happening on the surrogacy front. The amazing couple who hooked us up with a doctor will finally return to India for BABY PICK UP!! We are so thrilled for them and their family! Two couples have been home for just over two months now and all babes are doing well (Nik and Lisa, Rhonda and Gerry). And last week a baby girl was born to Jackie and she looks amazing! All these positives keep us going! Recent announcements of positive pregnancies by Meg and Bob and others on the forum keep the energy positive as well. Our turn will come and we know this. We have one heck of a story leading up to this as most of us do.

Oct 4, 2009

Sold!

We listed out house for sale on Wednesday and it sold on Thursday. We are very happy that it happened so quickly. Why did we sell? Well, we need another shot at India and money does not grow on trees, so the equity in our house, now dollars, will facilitate this. The India journey is not easy and the hiccups along the way can make you want to give up. We have no give up in us, just solutions. Fortunately our doctors are still on board and supportive. We hope to get back to India soon to start all over again. For now we need to start packing!


Sep 10, 2009

How much more???

Well today I got to see the cysts on my ovaries that cancel my cycle. So, no moving forward with plans at this time. It is yet another blow and one that leaves me saddened. For now I will work on the cyst elimation and figure out next steps.
Mark and I have been beaten down pretty badly and this is just another beating to manage. How much more can we handle!

Aug 18, 2009

This and that

The business of it all is in full swing. We have booked a few days off work to travel again to India. I am on the pill to sync my cycle and I have all my meds on hand, ready and waiting. Yesterday my promotion was announced at work and it was fun to watch some of them scramble..wondering what this means! Love it!! I am off to Germany in September for work and will get to catch up with a friend of the surrogacy world. I am so looking forward to this and my promised hug to her is much over do. Mark will meet me in Germany and we will boot off to Mumbai together (if timing and flights allow it), regardless we will both be in Mumbai by Saturday the 19th. Other than this we have been busy around the house trying to do a few projects that were put on hold due to our excitement and anticipation of our first trip to Mumbai. It seems we are so busy and little time to do much. I think it is the way we deal with heartache - keep busy and do it together. As strong as we come across we really do struggle to keep positive. We have had many years of heartaches and I guess our calluses are just a little thicker now. News out of India is mixed these days. Good news is the ducklings are scheduled for a c-section on Thursday so Nik and Lisa have like 36 hours of this life as they know it before these twins are born. A few announcements of positive pregnancies over the last few weeks have been good news as well. Sadly another baby lost the battle and the IP's have accepted this tragic news knowing that the little one was probably just not healthy enough to carry on. Other sad news in our Jojo getting another negative...so disappointing, and I just do not even know what to say. Rhonda and Gerry are leaving late this week to Mumbai in anticipation of their baby's birth! Been a long road but worth it in the end! On my side I have drug angels as you know. Last week Daria was successful in sending me a Lupron kit from the US. I was on pins and needles waiting for it and seeing "customs delay" on the web tracking added to the stress. The package arrived safe and sound, and don't you worry, the Canadian government got their taxes and duties on it. Lastly I see that Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan was detained at Newark airport for no apparent reason...oh lordy.

Aug 8, 2009

One saying that I hate

"I guess it wasn't meant to be"

If I hear this one more time I will kill, literally kill. Wasn't meant to be cost us a crap load of money. Wasn't meant to be caused a mini emotional break down. Wasn't meant to be shattered us and made us find a new strength somewhere, some how. What happened to us was a one in a million shot! Who can put odds on it then write it off as wasn't meant to be! Who gets to decide this? How do people think it is ok to snuff this off as not meant to be? This saying was said to me yesterday after a long visit with Dr M. Said to me by one of the front desk staff at an infertility clinic! I lost my top for a second but sanity kicked in and I left the office in a good place.
So, I know some of you wonder what is next for us. The quick story is that one couple we know who are expecting in India sent us a note after hearing our tragedy and made us a magnanimous offer worth thousands. This couple had 30k worth of ivf drugs in India and offered them to us to help us get through the next stage with some financial ease. What a gift! Not only have they offered us friendship throughout our journey they have now given us the ability to try again! As well, the wonderful doctors at SI and Dr Pai at Lilavati Hospital all made things so much easier for us to try again. The spirit of all these people and the gifts of friendship cannot be put into words. I am not able to communicate the plenteous heartfelt bonds that we feel with these people. To try again has become easy. To think of trying again feels less daunting knowing that the generosity of people came together to help us. In our worst time we had shoulders to lean on and we are forever grateful. Kudos also go to our RE Dr M here in Toronto who had nothing but sadness for us and what has happened. He was genuine and reached out to figure out what could have gone wrong. We spent some time with one of the lab people and had a discussion about the caps coming off. All said, it was a fluke, an unexplained tragedy, a disaster of huge proportion etc... you get the point. We spoke of our next step and Dr M supports us fully. What a relief! He is an amazingly compassionate doctor who seriously wants us to have a baby! Not many doctors would support what Canadian medicine would consider a half baked plan to fly to India for egg retrieval, yet Dr M is on board! Despite what has happened to us we are not defeated and if all goes well will have our retrieval in India in 6.5 weeks. We are blessed to have Dr M in our lives. So, maybe it IS meant to be.

Aug 2, 2009

Last full day in Mumbai (kind of a ramble)

We are sad that this is our last full day. We have not seen some of the people we wished to connect with...party at the Vits tonight anyone?? Today we plan to venture across the street, now at home this sounds like nothing but here we will need to work our way through 8 lanes of chaotic traffic, people, rickshaws in the hundreds and cars. Its a daunting task and one that we now feel we can take on. We can see the sign across the road of the shop we wish to go to yet it seems so far away.Yesterday we ventured to Andheri West to a department store called Shoppers Stop. It was four floors of clothes, bedding, luggage etc...just like any department store at home. Mark got a great shirt there that says "Mumbai, I love". Also on a mission to find Bidi's for Stan. These little cigarettes have been a challenge to find for us and after an unexpected and pleasant visit from Amit last night, we now know what they are called. Speaking of Amit, we are fortunate to have met him. For any other IP's looking for a place to stay, Amit is your guy!! He is the best of the best and a pleasant person to know. Amit had a cup of Tim's last night and quoted the coffee as "brilliant"! This afternoon we are off to see the doctors and get our meds to take home. We think we have a plan in place for our next visit, but need to discuss with the doctors today. We also have a few gifts for our surrogate and her children that we would like to ensure make their way to her. She was a trooper to take on the task and was very disappointed to hear how things ended. When we saw her at the hospital, she was glowing. She adorned a beautiful white and purple Indian dress and was giggling with the SI care takers. I am sure her nerves were shot after suck a long day and the never ending wait. Even tho things did not work out this time for all of, we are optimistic that next time we will all win. So with the horrible news we have had and the challenges we faced just to get here, we know that India and the people have always and will continue to make this path a little easier. The doctors are saints, the IP's are now life long friends and Amit and Ajit will be ready for us on our next visit. Tonight we will have a few drinks at the hotel ~ Nik will come by and we invite all IP's to stop by the Vits for a visit tonight before we leave. All the best to everyone starting out and expecting babies. We do look forward to getting home yet will miss the reality of the shanty town behind us that is better than any reality TV. This town is amazing and the people are glorious. We have enjoyed their company, even though we have not met them. The children play with kites and the dogs lounge around in the heat and the community they have built is one that we could dream of back home. Ajit and I have practiced some Hindi and I get some laughs when I say the worst word in the Hindi language ~ its amazing that even the most offensive word from a westerners mouth can make an Indian man giggle. We are now off for breakfast at 8 am and at home it is 10:30 pm. I hope the time change going home is not to rough.

Jul 31, 2009

Thank you

Thank you all for your loving words. Yesterday was a rough day and we pretty much stayed at the hotel watching movies and napping. Late last night we met with the doctors to look at next steps. Together we came up with a good plan and we hope to try again soon. This is not the story we had hoped for but heck, none of this story is ideal. Dr Yash mentioned how God tests the strong and Mark commented that he forgot to study for this test! The irony and comedy of my Markie is amazing. For those of you who know us, you know we are not easily defeated. Time does help to heal the wounds and we just need to take each day and continue to love each other and the idea that one day, we will be parents.
Love to you all!!
Kerrie and Mark

Jul 30, 2009

Another knife in our hearts

Sadly we received the devastating news last night that the dreaded caps coming off our vials in shipment ended up being the worst thing ever. Not one of our twelve embryos were there. I imagine they were all on the floor of the tank, destroyed. The doctors were amazingly supportive and equally devastated. We have options still down the road, now though we need time to cope with this disaster as heartbreaking as it is.

Jul 29, 2009

Day 3

Another busy busy day. Today we ventured out with Ajit to see Mumbai/Bombay. We initially had planned to go south but due to a school closing protest in the south we ended up going north. The first stop was Sanjay Gandhi National Park. We drove deep into the forest to see these amazing caves. On route to the caves we saw many monkeys walking in the roads, sitting in trees and even sitting on motorcycle seats! We toured through the caves and they were very cool. Some of our pictures from in the caves have alot of white spheres in them which is typically a sign of spirits/ghosts. I told Ajit this and he thought I was nuts! (see pic below showing the white spheres) We left the park after a big exploration and headed to Andheri for shopping. We went to a store called Paaneri where the salespeople are pushing to make sales. You think going to the Brick is bad, try coming to the shops in Inida. Every sales person instatnly becomes your friend and then spreads out layers and layers of clothes, scarves, saris and tunic. They brag about the quality and the deal they are giving us. Its too funny! After this we went to the beach in Bandra for a coffee. This was really nice and we enjoyed sitting with Ajit outside under an umbrella. Ajit finds Mark quite entertaining as he continually takes pictures and video. After our coffee Mark and I went for a walk along the boardwalk. This was our first experience with the little boys begging for money. We did very well ignoring them. We made our way back to Ajits car and Ajit. This area is an exclusive area where some Bollywood stars live, and apparently Mark looks likes one major star and some women took a second look at him hoping it was their star! In this same area is Lilavati hospital where our embryo transfer will happen on Friday. Close by is the new bridge that takes you to south Mumbai. We should be able to get great pictures tomorrow when we go again with Ajit. Later we made our way to another Asian arts store where I could have spent my salary on the bedding. Again the push for sales was on, but the push came with price negotiating. Mid post we left to have dinner with Carrie Jo and Shawn and Isabella and the doctors. Carrie Jo and Shawn had to leave and we had the greatest pleasure to sit with the doctors for two hours, have drinks and food and chat one on one. To our greatest surprise our embryo transfer is tomorrow, after 4 pm. This is amazing news that came with initial anxiety over our embryos and excitement that this is really happening! Please keep us in your prays tomorrow that our embryos are ok and that they snuggle in for a long stay (9 months preferably)

The spirits and us...


Ajit and Mark man posing


Ajit and Kerrie in Bandra enjoying coffee

Jul 28, 2009

Short update

Today was another exciting day in Mumbai. I woke very late as I did not sleep most of the night, and Mark was up for hours before me. He has adjusted to the time change better than me for sure. We decided to order food into the room for breakfast and have a lazy morning. Shortly after ordering food we got a call from Dr S about out plans for the day which was a pleasant surprise. We arranged to have Ajit the driver pick us up, so we ate our huge breakfast of eggs, cereal, fruit bowl and toast and donuts and coffee...it was a huge amount of food. While we ate Ajit called to tell us he would be here shortly so we hurried up and got ready. Shortly after this we headed with Ajit to Hirandani Hospital. This hospital is located in an exclusive part of Mumbai in Powai Lake area. We went to the ultrasound area to find Dr Yash and Dr Sudhir there with two surrogates and a baby. They were babysitting for Chaya today. We had a chat with them and then Adam and Stephanie came out from the u/s room glowing from the sacn of their baby. They had taken a few screen shots of the 3d ultrasound and they seemed overjoyed. We all went to meet Dr Soni the obgyn who cares for the surrogates. Adam and Stephs surrogate was there and she looked amazing, She is such a tiny woman!! To much surprise after Dr S examined her, they found out she is dilated 2.5 cm and she was admitted to hospital. So we may get to see a new baby any day now! We were then asked if we would like to go to the SI cinic and meet Reshma!! We were surprised for sure, as we did not expect to meet our surrogate today. We took the long trip to the SI clinic..which is probably only long due to the traffic chaos! Once at the clinic we all had a drink together, and shortly after Reshma was brought to meet us in the office. It was overwhelming..what do you say to this woman who will hopefully carry your baby! We told her she is a blessing and asked how she is doing. The waterworks turned on twice for me as I got caught up, overwhelmed. We took a few pics with her and has a quick tour of the SI clinic, said goodbye to Reshma and made our way back to the Vits. For those of you wonderng about the Vits, the hotel is great. It is very clean and Internet is fast!!! The food in the hotel is great as well. When we got back to the hotel, Amit was waiting for us, He so kindly took our CDN money last night and had it all changed to INR. He met us in the lobby with a huge wad of cash, 23200 INR looks like a mafia amount of money. Its the savings we made on moving hotels as well so we cannot complain. We had a quick chat with Amit out side then came back to the room to cool off. We spoke with Carrie Jo and went to have a visit with her and Shawn and baby bella. While we were there they got a call from Dr S about some paperwork so they had to pack up and head out. Carri Jo and Shawn are at their wits end with the required or not required but suddenly needed paperwork for the exit visa for Isabella. They are taking it in stride but have had enough and hope that tomorrow all gets settled and they can leave very early Thursday morning.
We ventured out to eat at an outdoor cafe restaurant...testing the Delhi Belly waters for sure. The place is all vegetarian and we did enjoy it.
Its now 3:19 am here and I am wide awake. I should go back to bed and see if I can rest. Tomorrow we are headed to South Mumbai where the bombings took place last year. We will shop and eat there and probably spend the most of the day there. It takes about 1 hour to get there so back in the car we go!
Here is a pick from Mondays nights dinner

Jul 27, 2009

Hello Mumbai

We are here in Mumbai!!! The flights and transfers were good, no complaints at all. Jet Air was better than the first leg on Air Canada. The team on Jet were very welcoming and helpful and friendly. We were met at the airport by Amit, our travel advisor and new friend. He made sure we were taken to the hotel and gave us the Mumbai 101 lessons before we departed. We got to the Palms and it is beautiful, the pool especially. Unfortunately the walls were covered in Mildew and nothing was very clean. The doctors sent us flowers at the Palms and we felt very welcomed by them. We did take a dip at 1:30 am before the rain started. Today when we got up we had plans to head out with Amit and a couple from Denver to look at service apartments and we ended up at the Vits hotel to see the rental suites, and at this time we decided to make the move to the Vits. It is very clean and central and everyone else just happens to be staying here. It is in the middle of Mumbai chaos. Amit made up a great story to get us out of the Palms and we had to play along. Its an amazing place! We look out our room and see a shanty town, and as sad as this is, it is equally as common. After a great day out we came to Vits to check in and rest a bit. At 7pm the phone rang and it was Amit telling us it was time for dinner. We went downstairs and met three couples, two babies, two doctors and Amit. The food was great and the company was great aswell. Here are two snapshots of typical Mumbai







So now its 11:30 pm and we are going to try to rest. Tomorrow we will spend the afternoon with the doctors who will reach us on the cell phone they gave us this evening.
Will try to update the blog tomorrow.

Jul 24, 2009

Freakin OUT!!

After a year of struggles, challenges and planning we leave in 36 hours!!!! It's all very overwhelming. I would say that I am having a constant internal freak out and Mark the same but calmer. Things are going as they should. Dr's in India ~ as usual have been in contact with us keeping us somewhat sane. We are fortunate to have Dr S and Dr Y helping us as they are very compassionate and always available to answer our questions. With their schedules and demands we know it is difficult for them yet somehow they manage to answer our emails promptly. They are a blessing indeed. Today I sit back and realize the special people who are in our lives and helped us get to the point. We met and worked with an amazing doctor here ~ Dr M supported us fully and was such a pleasure to work with. If I ever (yikes) have to do another IVF cycle I know I am always in good hands with Dr M! Last night our neighbours brought us a red envelope..and in Chinese tradition this is for good luck! I immediately rubbed this envelope all over my body to enhance the good luck. It is so nice to have special neighbours like them who take a moment to care for us. Throughout this journey we have been amazed at the support and interest from friends and family and the good doctors. This is not like changing your hair colour, its way bigger than that! Always when I travel I get a little sad for my fur babies. The cats are ok when we travel, they sleep and eat most of the time and typically cope well without us, but Dr Peeky Gonazales Rodriguez chihuahua from hell does not cope as well. If you have never seen a Chihuahua cry, with actual tears running down his face, it is a site to break your heart. This dog is in love with me and leaving him breaks both of our hearts. When we land in Mumbai we will head straight to the hotel. On Monday we should hook up with the doctors and also some friends from the US who are there because Bella was born last week and they are waiting on their appointment with the consulate for babies passport. We will also meet a few other couples who are either there waiting for baby to be born or are in the same stage as us. Speaking of the hotel, check it out at www.palmshotelmumbai.com
Next post will be live from Mumbai!

Jul 20, 2009

Let the packing begin

We leave in 5 days and are whirling! For the last month I have barely slept with anticipation, similar to a kid at Christmas. Our surrogate is scheduled for a u/s this Thursday to see how she is progressing and if all goes well, our FET will be July 28/30. This is so real now. We are in a constant state of internal chaos. We have waited so long for this to happen and now it is smack dab in front of us. It is very surreal - almost unreal. The weekend was busy getting ready for the upcoming trip and events. We think we have everything we need and can only imagine how the couples going for baby pick up must feel. We are only prepping and packing for us and it feels a bit of a task. The thought of possibly being pregnant in 3 weeks or so is one I can think of, but somehow my body/mind is protecting me big time from truly absorbing this. The human body is truly amazing. When we go into high stress situations the body works in overdrive to protect us. I am having a hard time explaining myself here, but I sure you know what I mean. I guess I can best describe it as shock.
CJ and Shawns little girl was born last week and we are all waiting on updates (hint hint). Chaya and hubbie and son are chilling in Mumbai waiting on all the paperwork to come back home to Canada, and Daria should be resting now after egg retrieval earlier this morning in Mumbai.For those I have missed I apologize, but please know you are all in my thoughts. There is always lots going on in this crazy surrogacy world. Its a blessing for sure to be in the loop of this circle. I also see that the ducks had a baby shower over the weekend and the cake looked amazing!
So, this week will be full of heightened anticipation and wonderment. This journey as you know is not easy, and I do not expect it to get any easier as we get closer. Taking it is stride is all we can do.

Jul 16, 2009

Wordle me this, wordle me that

Inspired by Jojo and curious what would come of wordling my blog here it is..







colour wordle (so much fun!!!)

Jul 12, 2009

When stress reaches it's climax!

On Friday we received the news that our embryos were at Lilavati! Whew, great news right? Well the second set of news was that the caps on 3 of the 4 vials had fallen off during shipping and we did not know the status of the embryos. Can you imagine the shear devastation we felt? When I got this news I did almost physically vomit. This is the worse case scenario (other than the embies thawing on route). Fortunately the wonderful team we have aligned ourselves with have been very busy trying to help us throughout the weekend. We have heard from Canada and India that the best guesses are that there is minimal damage if any but we will not know until we thaw. So, our black cloud reigns supreme yet again. We are now just keeping the faith and staying as positive as possible until we know the true outcome. Have just heard from India that the embryologists feels the embryos are still in good shape and this indeed gives us hope. We blame no one for this as it is just one of those things that happens, and unfortunately to us.
These are the types of days that I wish I was a drinker! Fortunately Mark and I are rational and logical and take time to assess the situation.
Thanks to all the docs for taking care of us over the last 36 hours and working hard to get us answers. Now the rest of you must say a little prayer for us and our precious embryos.

Jul 9, 2009

Yackity yak

We leave in 16 days!! Finally it is here and we are so excited. Despite my legs acting up we are trying to organize ourselves for the visit to I N D I A! I am off to the Naturopath on Saturday for his thoughts and treatment on my leg issue. I also got a script for compression stockings for my clotting issue on the long flights. I am going to ask the naturopath about Malaria and Typhoid. I had dinner with my Pindian friend (I say Pindian as he was born in Pakistan , married an Indian girl and has converted to all things Indian). He mentioned the vaccinations and I of course refuse to vaccinate. You may think I am crazy but I believe my autoimmune issue and many out there are caused/triggered by vaccinations. After years of suffering with autoimmune issues the last thing I need to do is add more toxins to my body. Ok, enough of my vaccine rant. So other than the questions of staying healthy, we are trying to ensure we have all we need. We have copies x 5 of our passports, Visa's and marriage certificate. We have the docs numbers printed off and copies of our legal doc. I am not sure what else we need to take so I am calling out to my surro friends to let me know what we are missing. Our embies should hit Mumbai today or tomorrow, and we just pray that they arrived safely!!!
Today Chaya's baby should have been delivered by c-sec and I am dying to hear the updates!! A set of Twin boys were born earlier this week in India and seem to be doing well despite been born a few weeks early. When we land in Mumbai we will meet with couples who are there anticipating baby arrival. We are thrilled to be part of this (not a huge part but part). Nik and Lisa, Stephanie and spouse and Carrie Jo and Shawn will all be on pins and needles waiting for babies while we finally get started trying to make a baby. Rhonda and Gerry are not far behind and sadly we will not see them in Mumbai at the same time as us. Daria leaves tomorrow for Mumbai and our trips will not overlap...nothing but positive vibes for Daria!!! Ocho should be in the tww and we pray again for a positive. Johnny and Darrens trip overlap with ours and they will be in the same stage as us..thank goodness we will have someone to swap stories with. The monsoon season should make this trip even more fun. We have two travel size umbrellas just in case. My friend Nilesh will come to see us from Hyderabad which is quite far from Mumbai. I am really looking forward to seeing him and hopefully he will bring his little son and wife.
Please email me of post here what you think is a necessity for the trip especially on the surrogacy side. Have a great day!

Jul 7, 2009

D-dimer

I spent the bulk of yesterday in emergency. Since egg retrieval I have not been feeling great and last week I started getting weird stuff happening. My feet go numb and cold and my hands tingle. A few days after this started I got some pretty intense and weird calf pain. The pain has complimentary issues like stinging and zinging in my legs and unusual sensations. Dr M sent me to emerg to have this checked out as he fear DVT - thrombosis - blood clots. He also said if this is found there will be no flying for me in the near future. So of course I went into a PANIC!! Here we are 3 weeks away from going and it could all come to a hault.
So I got myself settled in at hospital and the doctor ordered a D-dimer test and other tests to screen for clotting. After a few hours the results we in an I show no signs of clotting based on the screening results. As this is some relief to me I still have the leg stuff going on. The doctor at emerg felt it could be a side effect of the drugs or a hormonal thing as my body gets back to normal or a viral infection that is causing this weird stuff. The hospital gave me all the test results and I sent these off to Dr M last night for a second opinion, and one that understands my health history.
So today I am off to work and waiting for Dr M to give me his opinion.
Why is nothing easy! Sheesh! I imagine now flying for 19 hours with these legs!! Hopefully this is a temporary thing and will ease off in the next three weeks. Considering I am an autoimmune poster child I am not optimistic that this will go away quickly.



D-dimer tests are ordered, along with other laboratory tests and imaging scans, to help rule out, diagnose, and monitor diseases and conditions that cause hypercoagulability, a tendency to clot inappropriately. One of the most common of these conditions is DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis), which involves clot formation in the deep veins of the body, most frequently in the legs. These clots may grow very large and block blood flow in the legs, causing swelling, pain, and tissue damage. It is possible for a piece of the clot to break off (this broken piece is called an embolus) and travel to other parts of the body, where the clot can cause a PE (Pulmonary embolus or embolism - blood clot in the lungs).

Jun 28, 2009

The Network Grows

When we first came to the idea of going to India we were alone and then we found an online forum with a couple hundred people doing the same thing! Since then we have made so many wonderful online friends. These friendships have become a lifeline to answers and information, and one special connection arranged a doctor for us. I have now had the chance to speak with this special connection and we could have ran up the phone bill for hours! Everyone who knows us knows that this is Joy and she and her hubby were our guardian angels a couple of months ago.
Since this journey had started I have been in touch with many Canadians starting this journey and returning home in the tww. As of late we have a positive from British Columbia and a tww in Thunder Bay and a couple in Calgary gathering information and choosing a clinic. I have made contact as well with a wonderful woman in the UK who hopes to cycle later this summer. So our list of friends grows daily and we are thrilled.
The update on our trip is that we have booked the hotel and were pleasantly surprised to get a call from Amit yesterday that the booking rate was further reduced. Also yesterday I went to the Indian Visa office. As I pulled up to this location I see a line of people who were waiting for the office to open. I figured with this line I would be there about 2 or more hours. Fortunately, I ended up being the second person called as the rest of the people were there for passport services. Within 20 minutes I was on my way home and can return in 10 business day to pick up Visas. I often get scared when things go well. The last 12 years have been full of disappointment so I rarely expect things to go smoothly, and when they do I silently worry that they will fall apart.
Well, I am off to call Thunder Bay and catch up on this recent trip to Mumbai and the 2WW.

Jun 26, 2009

Pro nucleus

Going thru this journey I sure have learned alot! Whether it be from people across the world, or the doctors here in Canada. I met with Dr M on Wednesday and he gave me IVF 101 lessons which lead to the ultimate discussion on embryo quality, our embryo quality. The whole process is amazing to me and I am still in awe of what has been accomplished. So onto our embryos. We have 12 and all are 6 or more cells. The bulk had two pro nucleus and a few have one strong pronuc and one weak. These are the grade B or grade II. All in all we have 4 straws of varied divised embryos ready to make the long trip to Mumbai. I also had the opportunity to meet Core Cryolab and was honored with a facilities tour. This location in Toronto handles cord blood for stem cell preservation and frozen tissues. Greg at Core went through the details of the shippers with me and showed me shippers that were charging, charged and used and a shipper that had just arrived from Australia (anyones????) It was great to see how secure the shipper is and how it is locked/sealed, definitely gave me peace of mind. Our embryos will land in Mumbai two weeks before us and head to Lilavati Hospital upon arrival. Saturday at 8 am I am gonna brave the Indian consulate to drop off our Visa apps. I figure if I cannot hand deliver I will mail on Monday and we should still be in good time for our trip.

Jun 19, 2009

Getting Ready

Flights are booked and we land in Mumbai on July 26 at 11pm! Nothing like seeing the city in the dark. Currently working with Amit in India to get a good hotel rate. Visa apps will be sent in early next week. Payment to SI is in the works. Frozen tank (R2D2) has a quote on shipping and will meet shipper Greg next week face to face. Follow up on embryos next Wednesday with Dr M. Whew, a few things are on tap and then we start to shop. I hate shopping so I dread this. The only part I look forward to are the few gifts I want to take. This weekend will be busy as last weekend I was not in ship shape to do much. I did have b-fast with Nicolle last week and we had a great time yakking it up for a few hours.

Jun 18, 2009

Horribly Sad News

I have had horrible news that one of my surro friends whom I have had the chance to meet in person has lost their pregnancy. The pregnancy has ended at almost 20 weeks and I feel sick. When I heard this news I was crushed. We know going into this nothing is for sure or guaranteed. This does not make this any easier for C&M. I am sure the news has devastated them and the shock is unbelievable. My heart aches for them. I guess it is very personal to me as I have had the chance to spend time with C and know what a wonderful soul she is and how they so wanted and loved this baby. Secondly this is the same stage where we had lost our last baby in 2008 and I know the pain all too well. C&M please know that I cannot stop thinking about you. When you are ready to talk I am here for you. I know you will get through this as you are strong and I can tell you only time will heal this horrible wound.

Jun 13, 2009

Now we start rolling

Thanks for all the kind words and encouragement. The whole thing is quite surreal. This being my first IVF cycle I had no idea what to expect. Today is Saturday and it is the first day I can sit and stand without huge pain. The effects the drugs had on my ankles of all places have finally eased and they no longer burn and feel like they have bugs crawling all over them.
We are 6 weeks minus a day from flying to Mumbai, and boy do we have alot to do in this time. Firstly gotta find a flight and get our Visa apps in. After this we will work on a hotel. In between we need to shop a little and organize babysitting for the cats. Evil dog will go to gramma and grandpa's and probably spend a few days north at their cottage. He gets a great vacation too.
Today we are off to ICICI bank locally to open an account. This should make the money transfers to SI much easier and more visible for us.
Have a great day everyone!

Jun 11, 2009

Frozen numbers are in!

Dr M has just called and he is so kind to call us late into the evening to share the news. We officially have 12 embryos frozen! The number is huge!!!! We are so very thrilled. All the heartaches in the past and the recent IVF cycle have come to a wonderful number of embryos. The support from all of you has truly helped us and we thank you for it.
Off to bed, if I can sleep with this exciting news!!!

Embryo Update

Late yesterday I got an email update from the doctor. Its so confusing:
5 eggs fertilized perfectly normal, 4 looked fertilized normal, 8 did not show evidence of normal fertilization and one did not fertilize. It is a little complicated, when I meet you I will explain details further.
The bottom line, we have good number of dividing embryos. The final number of divising (surviving viable) embryos will be known tomorrow and I am planning on freezing everything that can be frozen. Today we have a total of 9 embryos that divided, few more might

So it looks like we have a 50% fertilization rate and a few slow pokes (8) may catch up before we freeze today! I will have the final numbers later today. I am so lucky to have as many as I do so I feel fortunate. I am still quite aware that I had my retrieval on Monday. I am still very sore and my ovaries are reminding me of the stress I put them through. Before the retrieval the ultrasound showed my ovaries were "kissing"...meaning so ginormous that they were touching. I am anxious to hear our final numbers today. We need to now get busy with Visa applications, flight and hotel bookings and some shopping! Time is now finally ticking very quickly and we are 6 weeks away from going to Mumbai!!!

Addition: Its our wedding anniversary today! Sheesh with all this embryo counting we forgot!!! One year ago we were married on the beach in Bahamas with good friends close by.





Jun 9, 2009

Egg Retreival

After is no picnic!!! But lets start at the beginning. Got to the clinic for 7 am and went to the triage area. Changed into my lovely gown spoke with the nurse. The nurse was wonderful and kind and beacause I was the only EPU I had her full attention. I did the pre-op medical questionnaire and blood pressure then had my iv put in. This is all no biggie. Soon after the nurse too Mark to "provide his sample" and in true super hero fashion he was done in record time. The nice surprise was that Mark was invited to come into the op room to support me. Next the nurse took me to pee and then we were off to the OR. Such a lovely bed awaited me with beautiful stirrups ready to go. Got settled in and then we decided what music to listen too..and at this point music was the last thing I cared about. Next the fun began as the doctor gave me a nice dose of narcotics thru my IV. Ahh..I love being a bubble head, love it. Mark is sitting right beside me looking like a doctor with all his protective gear on. After the speculum is inserted I get cleaned and numbed and then the doctor starts breaking into each follicle as we watch this on the screen. during this the nurses are continually running test tubes of follicle juices to the lab. Because I had so many they had to go back and forth back and forth. The whole process was about 1/2 an hour and the end result was 18 eggs!!!
I feared being awake for this but now an happy I got to see it all. Once I proved I could pee we were allowed to come home. Then the fun began!!! Once the narcotics wore off I was in pure pain. I am swollen from crotch to breast bone! Moving is painful, almost to the point of tears! Not at all what I had expected. Mark calls the doc and they talk about it and recommends rest rest and more rest along with loads of Advil. The Advil has helped take the edge off and this morning the swelling has lessened somewhat. I am up now to have my coffee and see whats going on then I will go back to my heating pad and Advil and work from home, in bed. In a way I am thankful we did this here at home, especially since it was my first time. The comfort of home is amazingly necessary right now. My Marky is a champ and has taken extremely good care of me ~ he made sure I ate, drank and was as comfortable as I could be. He put up with my few outbursts of pain and weathered my storm. He is the best and is one step closer to being the best daddy ever.
Now we wait to hear the fertilization numbers and then book our flight and hotel. Finally we are here, exactly where we are supposed to be.

Jun 6, 2009

Follicles

Well here they are - one view of my follies. This picture was snapped by the doc himself as he seemed to understand OUR camera better than us! Too funny. Doctor feels that we should have 15 embryos to freeze! EPU is on Monday.




And here is me with my last shot taken at the doctors office this morning

...look how impressed I am!!!



Jun 4, 2009

Update

17 follies is the count and 2 more days of drugs. Saturday I will go for more bloods and ultrasound then hopefully take my trigger Saturday night and EPU will be Monday morning. I am feeling quite full and belching like a truck driver! Nurse Joan and I were laughing about the gas effects of the meds this morning. The total bill is climbing and my newly increased Visa limit is maxed ~ but this is what it takes and I will not cry about it. Some surro buddies have flown to India this week to see their growing babies and beautiful surrogates. I am hoping that Mark and I can do this as well but money may be the deterrent sadly. My friend Jojo is onto attempt #2 in the next week and I am praying for a positive. She is a kind and generous soul who deserves the best news. Some other surro friends have recently had negatives and this breaks my heart. Most are in the "what to do next" phase and are financially tapped. I have said it before, the whole process is stressful, full of good news one day and not so good news the next day followed by bad news. All we can do is stick together and get thru it. A new friend in Northern Ontario has found a shipping company for her frozen embies and has shared these details with me. What an amazing group we are looking out for each other!
Will follow up on Saturday with the latest. Until then, stay strong and positive!

Jun 3, 2009

Drugs

I thought it would be fun to share this picture... this is the stimulation protocol I was on and this depicts 11 days of it all.



Tomorrow is scan day and I am very excited to see whats happening with my follies.

Jun 1, 2009

Added stress

On Saturday I had my second stim scan and the news was not good - including the blood test. From the conversation with the doc all I heard was "cancel cycle". I immediately went into panic mode, denial and anger. My estrogen level was not where it was supposed to be, thus my 20 beautiful follies now became maybe 6 on track. Oi vey. so, plan...up the meds and see what happens by Monday. Today is Monday and the plan has worked. 12 follies are now getting bigger and Dr C feels that more may mature by Thursday. Whew...what a relief. The stress of this journey is too much sometimes and the constant let downs from the past haunt me. If you have not been thru this shit (sorry Gege for the cursing) you do not know the horror of it. So, Thursday I go in for another scan which will hopefully lead to the much anticipated trigger shot! This weekend will be one we will always remember...finding out how many embryos fertilized and knowing how good our chances will be. My next post will be Thursday or Friday. Til then please pray my follies grow and mature.

May 28, 2009

Twenty

Twenty follicles. Sounds pretty darned good to me! Doctors were happy as well. Going back Saturday at 8 am for the next scan and hopefully will see that things have progressed.

May 27, 2009

I hate Jon and Kate + 8

I cannot stand this couple. They tried to cash in on being reality TV stars and never thought about the stress on the children and now they cry on TV about how angry and sad they are. GRRR!

I go for my day 5 scan tomorrow to count the follicles and ensure I am responding to the meds ok. The meds have caused some spotting but Dr M says not to worry about this, so I am not worrying. This whole journey is stressful and we need not worry about a little spotting.

On the surrogacy front, we have selected our surrogate. This is an agonizing task. The idea of lining up women to select the so called best...ugh. Well, anyway, it is done and we feel very good about our girl. She apparently cooks the best biryani so we of course hope to be lucky enough to try this and borrow the recipe.

Oh look at the time. Gotta go to work. Will catch up after the scan tomorrow.

May 21, 2009

Cycle Dayz

Today is day 12 of my shots. Due to an unexpected event at work, my EPU will be June 6th. So it all seems to work out well. Today I had my day three blood and ultrasound and there are quite a few follicles from what I understand. The real counts will start next Thursday when I go for my day 5 US and bloods. Ohh I almost forgot to mention that Mark got to have fun in a cup this morning, and did it in record time! Don't ask don't tell ok...but I am not sure how he did it so quickly!! Also picked up a few days of meds (see pic) to get me started. After the day 5 monitoring I will buy more meds if all is going well.

May 15, 2009

Psyche!

Yesterday we met with the psychologists. Her name is Dr Brown and she is delightful woman. The guideline for the appointment was geared at people using a surrogate here in Canada. Discussions about meds, testing, surrogate contact, selective reductions, multiples and aborting for abnormalities. As well as post natal care and handing over of the baby and contact frequency with the surrogate. First of all let me say we were star pupils. The doctor was so pleased that we were very well informed and had thought about all the questions previously. We knew about everything and easily had a conversation. Secondly, we were the first encounter for the doctor of couples using a surrogate in India. Because Dr Brown is a reproductive psychologists she goes to many conferences learning about latest technologies and meds. She raved about the standards of Indian medicine and research. She came across equally as excited as were are to start this journey. We told her many details that she found to be quite admirable about the process in India with SI. At the end of it she asked for us to keep in touch and update her on the steps. The doctor mentioned that we were an easy appointment for her, as many times couples come is and have never even heard of things like selective reduction. All in all the appointment was great! I also mentioned to her about the Chatelaine article and she is anxious to see it. I am building a mini network here of great contacts with the intent of helping other Canadians. I am a big believer in sharing knowledge. If I had not found out so much from all of you I would be lost, so its my goal to spread the word, inform the uninformed and counsel the needed as required. Like all of you the first's of anything can be overwhelming and we are so fortunate to have each other.

May 14, 2009

5 shots closer

I just had my 5th day shot. Unfortunately my belly fat is not finding these thin needles painless now. I guess the effects of the medication is making me a bit sore and the needle now feels like a needle driving into my body. Its not horrible but its also not great. The good news is that I am not having side effects that I am aware of. Ask Mark he may tell you differently. Next step is waiting for my natural cycle to arrive then have day two ultrasound and blood then start the fun meds. Currently I am on a suppression drug which shuts down my system (all driven by the pituitary gland). This medication tells my body not to release an egg. Once I start the new drugs, I will continue on this one and add three more. The three news meds added will encourage my body to produce multiple follicles and to induce the development of multiple eggs. Also added to this is an oral to keep the estrogen production at bay. I have to be very cautious of estrogen induced blood clots so Dr M feels the addition of this oral is ideal. Oh its all so fun (note the sarcasm in this). We have all of you with your wonderful words of support, and are so thankful! Tonight we have an appointment with a psychologist. This is a mandatory step here in Canada. Its more of an interview type assessment to ensure we know what we are getting into and to see if we fully understand the roller coaster ride. Do not take me wrong, but any doctor who has never gone thru what we have should not be counselling me on what I am doing and how I may feel. Been there done that! I could counsel the doctors! I am happy to have the appointment tho as we are so sure of what we are doing and also so unfortunately aware that this is not a sure thing and are fully prepared for this. We look at it this way...we would never have gone to India for a holiday, it just was never on our radar. So, this is a trip of a lifetime full of stress, anticipation, emotion and then the 2WW. Positive or negative pregnancy we will never regret going. We will learn alot being there, see alot and meet wonderful people. Its a win win situation!
Lastly I must comment on the latest publication of Chatelaine magazine. There is an 8 page spread detailing the journey of our infamous Gerry and Rhonda's journey to India. Its a great read, honest and unbiased. These two are somewhat pioneers in this world and lend kind words and helping hands to everyone. Being in Canada the article is particularly special. I hope the article gives someone new hope. I also hope that this mag gets laid in every doctors waiting room and encourages discussion with the doctors. You all know our struggle with doctors here in Canada so hopefully the article bridges discussion and curiosity.

May 11, 2009

1 down...many more to go

Yesterday (Mothers Day) was day one of my injection cycle. As I prepared to inject myself my hands were shaking and my stomach doing flip flops. I followed the nurse instructions to a tee. Alcohol swabs, needle and vial ready. I wiped the top of the vial with the alcohol swabs, inserted the needle and with drew the exact amount as prescribed of Superfact. I recapped the needle, looked for air bubbles and layed the needle down and had a moment of panic! Who willingly sticks themselves in the abdomen? My god I was freaking out. Mark is changing a receptacle and asked me to hold on while he finished. Oi vey... I had to just do it so I told Mark I cannot wait for you...and he jumped up to lend moral support. I wiped my fat belly with alcohol to prep and let this dry up (only takes seconds) then, deep breath, take the cap off the needle, grab my fat and slide the needle in. Not so bad after all! Fortunately the needle is quite small and a thin gauge. I pressed the plunger and all the med was shot into my fat. Immediately after removing the needle I felt instantly nauseous. I was shaking like a leaf and needed to sit down. Within a few minutes I started to feel normal again and went on about my day. Now its 6:39 am Monday morning and I am getting ready to do my second shot. Only 18-20 days of this nutiness then we find out how many eggs I was able to muster up. Thanks to all the surro girls and IVf friends who lended support and words of wisdom and kindness. It seems to never fail that when we reach out to our surro community we are never let down. The support is worth millions!!
A pleasant surprise yesterday was a long chat on the phone with Fromus from the Surrogacy India support site. She was in town for a whirlwind 24 hours to see her mom for Mothers Day. Her call was just what I needed as the last 14 days have been challenging for me with all the what ifs and some doubts and concerns. After reassuring me of my questions we finally got to talk about her 12 week bundle of joy growing in India. Fortunately her pregnancy is going along without any glitches. A quiet and uneventful pregnancy is what we all want. I am blessed to have Fromus in my life! Her positive qualities are never ending and I love this! We will be in touch regularly as she comes to see her mom.
Ok, I must go and prepare for shot #2. Have a great day where ever you are.

May 8, 2009

Wire and Needles

Spoke with India today and our wire did arrive, 5 days after the transfer. Sucks that I had to spend a month worrying about it, but after one call to India this morning I am relieved. Today is a stressful day for me. I will meet with nurse Tracey to be taught about the i n j e c t i o n s!!! Ugh...I have watched youtube videos about self injecting of the meds and I really am not looking forward to this. I feel all anxious and nervous and freaking out a bit. I know its all gonna be ok, just this is not part of normal life and it has me stressing. Of course this all has to start on Mothers day...what irony!! The day I hate the most is the day I start to inject. Maybe its a foreshadow to something good, maybe its a curse or maybe I am over thinking it. Who knows, but its happening and that is all there is too it. I welcome any comments on what to expect as far as side effects go, physical and emotional. I have read a little bit about side effects but am limiting this research and wold prefer to hear from my surro buddies who I know will be dead honest.

May 1, 2009

Freezing

Finally not the weather, my eggs! We will start our frozen cycle here very soon. After meeting with the doctor we have decided to do a frozen cycle so we can get the ball rolling. I am not looking forward to the needles, the hormones and the cycle monitoring, BUT there is a solid reason why I would put myself thru such hell. Its all very exciting and nerve racking. By the end of may we will have a straw of potential babies. This is just wild to me. The craziness of life may have put us on hold temporarily but we are trying to mitigate this with this frozen cycle. Once May is over, we will truly be anxious. As of today our wire transfer is still lost and I may have to open an investigation with the bank.
To prep for the IVF cycle, I am having 3 treatments with my naturopath. Here are the gory details. An IV is inserted into my vein and then a medical jar is hooked up to this. The IV is put on reverse and my blood starts to release into the jar with fury. Watching my blood flow out into a jar is a bit weird..blood letting is not my cup of tea. The doctors paces and watched the flow ensuring that there are not clots to stop the process. Soon after the pint is 3/4 full of my blood! At this point the doctor starts adding ozone gas to my blood in the jar. And then starts the IV back up again, this time going back into me. This takes about an hour and the doctor continues to add more ozone to my blood. Now why would I do this?? Well, ozone added to the blood and put back into my system start actively cleaning my body. Yeast, parasites and toxins can no longer survive as a result of the ozone. The toxic mucous in my uterus starts to break down and improves my egg production as my fallopian tubes and ovaries get a good spring cleaning as well. My lungs get scrubbed of all the bad things etc... You get the idea. I had one treatment last night, one tonight and one more on Saturday. My ND is so happy to help us. He is a wonderful man who truly cares about his patients and only wants success for them and himself. We are rushing the treatment a bit as he is off to be featured on a UK tv program and my cycle will likely start on the 11th of May.

Apr 29, 2009

Today and getting tagged

Well the visit with the doctor went very well. We were with him for two hours. He took plenty of time to explain the drug cycle..whew..I finally understand it. We also had an ultrasound which showed that everything looks good to go. We were left to make a decision and promised to get back to him by the end of the week. He is so supportive of us going to India - this is not something we are used to. As it turns out the cost of the meds and IVF cycle is not as jinormous as we had anticipated so this was a small surprise. Mark needs to book his first fun in a cup soon (ha ha...I love this torture for him).
Also, my buddy Jojo has tagged me so I have completed the 8 things task. I really have no one to tag so I am leaving that out.

8 things

Jojo tagged me so here we go



8 Things I Am Looking Forward To:

Finally going to India
Taking Lupron and Gonal F shots daily in my fat belly
Getting a positive
Living Happily Ever After
Meeting some or all of my surro friends worldwide
My g/f’s separation settlement so she can have some peace
The birth of all our surro friends babies

8 Things I Did Yesterday:

Finalized our custom blinds order
Watched the little shits play outside and use my car as soccer net
Worked
Went to the P A R K with the dog (can’t say park)
Figured out how my air cleaner works after 8 months
Had a good time chatting with hubby
Had a long soak in the tub
Prepared for visit with Dr today



8 Things I Wish I Could Do:

Win the lottery…just enough to not work
Be more physically fit and less lethargic
Spend money at random and not feel it
Wear stilettos’
Have a baby
Teach ignorant people a few lessons
Sit in the sun
Drink less coffee



8 Shows I Watch:

Y&R of course!
Survivor
Wife Swap
Prison Break (what a ridiculous show – finally coming to an end)
Hells Kitchen – just cuz Mark watches it
What Not to Wear
Ok, this is the worst one…. Rock of Love
8 is difficult, do not watch that much other than the garbage I listed above





8 Favorite Fruits:

Not a big fruit eater…but a good melon is always on top of my list

8 Places I'd Like to Travel:

Jojo said: Wherever my blogger friends live - mostly in Canada and the US
Ahhh…come visit.

Australia
India
South Africa
Anywhere in Europe
California
Dubai
Cairo
Alabama…just have too see what all the talk is really about

Apr 28, 2009

Deja Vu

Yep, we see the new doc tomorrow. Feeling good about this one based on the previous communications. Its a little bit of Deja Vu writing this as my previous posts about doctors have all ended badly. This week we have been reminded that surrogacy is not a sure thing. Two of our surro friends babies have lost the battle to live. This is all too familiar to us. Yet at the same time knocks me back into reality that this is never a sure thing. Just getting a positive doesn't mean the hurdle of pregnancy is over. Based on this weeks events and my medical history I have a few new questions to discuss with the doctor. One issue in our last pregnancy has been replicated in the recent loss of an angel in India and this makes me worry about our chance for success and avoiding a repeat performance. Time has also become another issue with a voluntold promotion at work starting June 1. This new role will kill my availability in the summer months causing a postponement. The job will pay super well so its a blessing to help us with our surrogacy quest - this is the only reason I entertain it. The role is a good role and has loads of opportunity to learn and better my skills, yet the timing sucks. Ah, such dilemmas!!
And finally our wire has not been found..of course not! Why would anything go smoothely. Meeting the bank after the doctor to find our money.

Apr 23, 2009

Morning sickness makes baby smarter!

Sick Kids hospital in Toronto has released a study that babies born to moms who suffer morning sickness tend to be smarter. So, Lisa and Niks twins will be geniuses!

Apr 22, 2009

Chuggin along slowly

Things seemed to have slowed down for us. Our money is somewhere in wire cyber land. Its two weeks today since we sent it...getting a tad worried but far from stressed. Next Wednesday we meet the Dr that Joy connected us with. We are really looking forward to this appointment as all the cards have been laid out and everyone understands. finally!
Mike and Mike have two beautiful girls. Mike A has been in India for a month now and Mike B about 10 days. They are now waiting on DNA tests and airline hassles. It makes me wonder if we ever get going and get a positive how long will our stay be. This also becomes the reality of the expense of this lengthy stay. Thank goodness for a great relationship with the bank and a very large line of credit!!
The support forum had some rocky times last week and it seems to have gotten very quiet as a result. It's unfortunate, but is still out there for info and help. Oh, our lovely Dr S is back in the game in India ~ everyone is very happy with his return.
The basement...is ..almost finished!!! We had the floor installed last week so now we just have to put in the door moldings and baseboards and then its complete! Will post a pic later for Nicolle :)
Lots has been going on with our surro friends. From morning sickness, baby showers and decision makings for round two, everyone is quite active and busy.
So, next week when I see the doctor. I may finally understand the cycle. Man alive I am such a cycle virgin and the whole this confuses me. I am trying to figure out based on my LMP when we would cycle and for the life of me I am not capable of doing this.

Apr 9, 2009

Progress

Wire transfer is done...this means we are enrolled!!! Paperwork is in..this means we are enrolled! What a releif...we are that much closer! It's so great to finally be at this stage. We bought a voltage converter this week and got our pics taken for our Visas, so this means we are actually taking steps to get there. I cannot say enough about how relieved we are to be at this stage finally! Soon we will get our surrogate profiles and timeline and can start booking flights and time off work. If one more person tells me to look at the positive I will blow my lid! I agree finding the positive in any situation is advisable but sheesh..10 months of doctors telling us off makes it hard to look at the positive. Anyway, ranting doesn't really help, I just know my surro friends can relate.

Apr 7, 2009

Changes

We were not included in the email distribution but have come to find out that SI has had an internal shake up, losing one of the doctors. This seems to have sent alot of us IP's into a frenzy or panic. Thankfully we have been contacted by the clinic director and all seems to be ok for us. Next steps..need receiver address for money wire, do wire transfer, hopefully get surrogate profiles, book time off work, get Indian visa, book flights and hotel, feel good about surrogate choice which should be made by now. So, just a few things to do in the near future! This weekend in Easter and its another holiday without a child. Its very hard to take these holidays even tho we have a life plan in place. I dream of the day when a holiday will be looked forward to or even enjoyed. Not that a child is the only thing that can do this, but after all we have been through its kinda worn us down. On more positive notes our surro friends are all chugging along and so far the news out of India is good. Like any pregnancy the 9 months is stressful with the blood work results and ultrasound reports. We are fortunate to have this thing called the Internet - where we can get questions responded to, opinions voiced and create bonds with people of the same challenges. Imagine going through this alone and in the dark? Winter is here again..don't understand the weather and how we can be 19Celsius one day and now -12Celsius with a light dusting of snow! I think David Susuki would call it global warming.

Mar 27, 2009

Eggs...

Apparently I have a great egg reserve! Who knew. Yesterday was eventful for us. I was up at 4:40am to make the drive to the new doctors office. I had my day three blood work to check my hormones. This is a huge step for us...we have been begging doctors for such a long time for this simple test. I had the blood test at around 7:15 am and at 1:19 pm the results were in my email inbox along with a lovely note from the doctor. In the evening we went to FONE support group where my ND gave a lecture on a natural approach to infertility and what causes it. Now I understand what egg reserve means. I had no idea we are born with millions of eggs and by the time we reach puberty this number drops to less than 400,000. So at my delayed age things are ok, and what a relief. Next steps are in motion. Mark and I are making some decisions about these next steps and know that early next week we will be enrolled into the SI program and finally get to see our surrogate profiles. It is so very real now! Thanks to everyone for supporting us through this so far. You have all meant the world to us. Your words mean more than you could ever know.
Also we got our Ganesh this week...gorgeous and vibrant and waiting for the perfect frame. The Mikes sent a very nice note with it personalized to Mark and I from them. And then....poof...a baby is born!!! Little Rose is born on March 24th. Rose is the daughter of Mike who created and sent us Ganesh. Rose is amazing and the news out of India is that she is doing well. Mike A should now be in India holding onto this angel. Mike B is recovering from back surgery and is unable to be there at the moment. I hope Mike B's bub can stay put til he gets there, and if not Mike A will have double trouble. We are all awaiting pics from Mike of this little blessing.

Mar 24, 2009

We have a doctor!

My last post on Saturday caused my surrofriends to take notice. Many emails and private messages came our way. One particular note included the name of a doctor and that he had been contacted on my behalf. Thinking that we would hear something later this week, we were thrilled to have an option. All we need is one. Well, thanks to Joy, yesterday proved to be the best day yet. I was able to track down this doctor and send my medical records to him and within a few hours he had read them and responsed to set up a meeting last night. So at 9pm my phone rang and my legs turned to jelly. Could this be it??? The doctor spent one full hour talking to me about the treatment and next steps and how he can help us get to India. It was surreal! To have a doctor acknowledge India in our conversation, not just once but many times. He fully understands what we want to do and he agrees that this is the best option for us to start a family. His words "I am here to help you get to India", "It is my pleasure to help you start a family through surrogacy in India". I am over the moon, yet the little alien inside me says "don't get your hopes up yet". Linking with this doctor was all made possible by a wonderful couple from Minnesota. Can you imagine the generosity and selflessness of other people? I knew there were great people in this world, and I have been fortunate enough to be in contact with them. Thank you Joy. Your name really represents what you have given us...joy.

Mar 22, 2009

Infertile people are the kindest!

It is a crass title I know. It's so true tho. We are a group banned together, thru thick and thin and always have kind and supportive words. After many doctors have closed their doors in our face when we mention surrogacy, never mind India, our surro buddies put on their collective thinking caps. My email and pm box are full of offers to help, suggestions of doctors and the list goes on an on. A special note to Joy... we are praying that all goes well today and you get a positive in two weeks. Joy, your help on the night before your egg retrieval is the most selfless act. I am overwhelmed reading your notes to us and am so thankful that you reached out to me hours before your own procedure. Please know that you are eternally in our thoughts along with my Canadian maple syrup loving couple (they know who they are and why they will always get a special mention). Tonight we feel some optimism. Tomorrow is a new day with new opportunities. All the best to all that read this and thank you for your ongoing support.

Mar 21, 2009

Another one bites the dust

Another doctor bites the dust. We are officially plagued with a black cloud. Turns out Canada isn't quite as liberal as many think. The doctors fear losing their licence when all I am asking for is a voluntary blood test and ultrasound and birth control pills. Apparently this request is "unusual" for our Canadian doctors. This is the day where I wish they were crooked and paid off easily. Well not really, I am not for corruption but feeling desperate and lost leads to these kind of thoughts. What are our next steps? Where do we go now. I guess a day or two of surrogacy opt out is what we need to regroup and figure it out. On top of all of this I am still sick, worse today than I was 4 days ago. Dammit! Leaving on a high note, we met Fromus from the surrogacy support group who was in town to see her mom. To meet her was incredible, to hear her story and challenges also incredible. She is a fantastic person all round, and her 6 week old growing seedlet has no idea how lucky he or she is to have this mommy.

Mar 17, 2009

Plan C starts

Saturday we start plan C. It very exciting and Mark I will be a united front and take charge dammit. Getting sick of waiting around wasting time. Great news of two sets of twins and one singleton born to three couples over the last few days and on March 1. I have met so many people going through the same journey and I have such a hard time keeping track of all the names, and now they have little ones with names I will also have a hard time to remember. It is just wonderful to see so much going on and it inspires us and keeps us positive. Another great note is that one of the forum members from the forum is coming to Mississauga this week so we plan to meet up. She is newly pregnant in India with the same doctors we will use. We have a lot to talk about! I am just so excited to meet her. It looks like we will be in India late May early June and so far know of two other couples who will be there at the same time Anita and Amber. And lastly if I see one more news report on Octomom I am gonna explode. Shes obviously not stable and finally got the fame she so desperately wanted. The doctor who helped her with this should lose his liscence. Ok, enuff said.

Mar 13, 2009

Getting Ganesh!

I am getting a limited edition Ganesh from Mike or Mike ...well one of the Mikes. I cannot wait for it to arrive. We plan to list our house for sale in the next few weeks so I am hoping good ole Ganesh brings us luck. No pressure MIKE! I need to find a beautiful frame for it but will wait til it arrives to make the best choice. Funny thing is that I have no blue in my house but something in the blue Ganesh made me have to have it.

Mar 10, 2009

Just catching up

So the Aussies are pregnant and awaiting their third beta results (basically pregnancy testing). It is all very exciting to see these great successes! Last week was quiet for us. I continued to be sick and had some wonderful news from Australia myself. I am not going to share my news, but trust me it was a light in our dark tunnel and we are overwhelmed with the compassionate exchange of words last week from our Aussie friends. I am going to go to the doctor this week to see if we can line up the needed screening tests for SI and then get our paperwork submitted. I guess I am hesitant to go do this as I expect another disaster.
The basement is so close.....so close. Half a day of sanding then prime and paint!!! Almost everything has this stage completed except for the stair well. Its an awkward angle and seems to be a bit more work. Been a very long road down there. Now we can start shopping for flooring..this is the end of the beginning. Thank god!!

Mar 5, 2009

Without funds

I get up this morning and go to online banking..gotta pay those bills. What do I see...overnight activity of $1500.00! Of course I call Mark and ask him if this was him and of course he says no. I call the bank and my convenience card has been compromised and is now locked down. I cannot access funds until the bank decides the activity was fraudulant. Oh great! Of course the first thing I think about is how will I get my Timmies on the way to work and run to check to see if I have enough change to get it. Whew...disater averted...I have $2.79 in my purse and my daily bill at Tim Hortons is $2.60. For my international friends, Tim Hortons is the Canadian equivalent to say Starbucks. But, unlike Starbucks, Tim's does not charge $5.00 for a coffee.

Mar 4, 2009

Guess what

We are without a doctor again. It all very understandable yet disappointing and infuriating. So plan A and B have not worked and now we move onto the top secret plan C. Plan C is gonna work, it has too. If plan C does not work then plan D is not an option as plan D means quitting.
Yesterday one of my fave radio personalities went on a rant about IVF and how doing IVF interferes with nature and all these people (like us) should just go adopt. Oh he made me mad! Mark heard it as well and when I mentioned it he said he was really hoping I did not hear this radio segment. So I could write a letter stating my anger and intelligently detailing the opposite side of the story, or I could boycott the station...but, really, its just the way most people think and because they have never experienced it they are truly ignorant. I took a moment to think of CarrieJo and her experiences with ignorance and how if we ever get going to India and have a positive how will I deal with the opposing opinions. Life is full of learning's and lessons for sure.

Mar 2, 2009

Time out....

We had a turbulant week last week. It looks like we have hit another block in the road (I sound like a broken record!!). Quite frankly I am fed up of this...It seems everyone who says they can help us ends up prolonging the process. My good Dr S in India has done all he can to help ...thanks Dr S! Now, we are just waiting...if its meant to be than it will...if not, its horrible but such is life. I am taking a time out from the process. We need to figure out where we turn next and what we can do. I now have a bronchitis like infection and I think the stress of last week brought this on. This is my bodies way of saying ENOUGH! I am saddend that my east coast friend got a negative pregnancy today. My heart breaks for her and her husband. Two other friends in Austrailia waits by the phone for their calls...I hope they get a positive..fingers crossed JJ and Amani!
Ciao for now

Feb 24, 2009

How does everyone make it happen?

We keep hitting road blocks. After 7 months I am starting to feel overwhelmed with the challenges. I see my surro buddies get going in two months or even less. I am still working on the doctor and after yesterdays visit I was ready to throw in the towel. The doctor is still willing to help us he just needs all the details and in detail and detailed even further. I totally understand his reasoning behind this but we are looking at 4-5 more months before we board the plane to India. I never thought this would take a year!

Feb 19, 2009

My theory on life

Finally my previous RE released my file (records). It took 2.5 months...and I swear he did this on purpose!! Of course I spent hours reading through it...sadly its not a good story and we were able to read about out last loss. Its the one year anniversary of this loss and after reading thru the file we found out our last loss was a baby girl. At the time I couldn't deal with the details and almost blocked out any information after the loss. Also, at the time the doctors had said that my ability to carry to term may be gender related and that they would follow up with me after the post mortem study. The doctors never did follow up and I now know that the gender issue is not one to consider as the first loss was a boy at 33 weeks and the second loss was a girl at 20 weeks. If anything this has cemented our plan of surrogacy. So onward we push... couples who suffer from multiple losses or infertility know that you take time to get over the hard bits then try to move forward. Its a choice we have to make... choose door #1 - the dark path of hopelessness and depression or choose door #2 - the amazing ability to somehow move forward and look at options. I have always said that how we manage life especially after or during difficult times is truly up to us. Life is full of choices...so make the best ones you can and try not to hurt too many people along the way.

Just a quick follow up - the boys in Boston are 9 weeks away from their expected due dates. Arizona are 9 weeks preggers, the TLC's are newly pregnant with twins. The Aussie crew are all in the midst of conception this week. The boys in Sweden are working on the ultrasounds after some great beta #'s . TandR are due in 5.5 months, CarrieJo has 23 weeks to go and the list goes on and on.... India is doing wonderful things for this world.

Feb 17, 2009

February is almost over!

Time is flying with no definite plans. The Aussies leave within these next 24 hours for India and all have had great news from their egg donors who landed safely a few days back. The follicle count combined hits 30 as far as I can count, so I am sure we will see some positive pregnancies out of this group! Next week FONE is meeting - this is the support group run by our Nicolle. Next week I am also in to see Horacio. There seems to be a communication issue (well in my eyes). India said I need test a,b and c and Horacio needs to get these going. We have opened our ICICI account to transfer money to India so Horacio lets get rolling!! This long weekend was full of very hard work in the basement, but the end result is that two coats of primer are now on the walls. We figure 3 more weeks until we are DONE down there.

Interested in the Family support group - talk about Dr's, adoption, surrogacy, the law and make new acquaintances..... see addy here to find Nicolle who hosts these nights out of the greatness of her heart www.nkplaw.ca

Jan 29, 2009

Atheism hits Toronto



I am not a fan of dicussing religion, but this is quite interesting.
The picture is of the recent advertising on buses here in Toronto. I guess it's provoking quite a bit of discussion locally.
I do beleive everyone should have a voice, even if its not what we want to hear.
Everyday I get up and make my coffee and check the blogs and forum. Its a slight obsession but one that keeps me smiling and learning. Its amazing to me that I can put a silly post up about the weather and people from the furthest points on the map read and comment. I really hope that all of our blogs turn from IP's to expecting P's to waiting rooms P's and then finally just Parents blogs. The whole surrogacy thing consumes us going through it and without all these people going through it with us we would be lost and lonely. My friends here are happy for us but I am sure they don't want to talk about it as much as we do so having our e-friends is wonderful. I am very inspired by my Aussie friends who have come together to form an advocacy group, here is the link to their very newly created website http://www.australiaindiasurrogacyadvocates.org/Welcome.html
Prompting this website is that the Australian government is looking at changing laws on commercial surrogacy making it illegal.

Jan 28, 2009

Too much snow!



For my international friends dealing with the heat, have a look at what today brought us here in Canada...'

Jan 26, 2009

It's Official!

We can now submit our enrollment papers to India!!!! We had a wonderful visit with the new RE today and he is on board and willing to work with India. What a relief (almost like a good pee when you have been waiting for a long time, but better). Mark and I are kinda in shock that its REAL now. I guess we are still waiting for something to go wrong....
Funny thing is that the doctor looks exactly like my girlfriends brother, and Mark and I were both pre-occupied with this. Weird how nervous situations make you act or think strangely. So, we will call the doctor Horcaio now (this is the name on my g/f's brother). Horacio's office feels very spa like and is very calming. That has nothing to do with anything, I just wanted to write Horacio. Anywho, we have quite a few surrogacy friends leaving in days for India. We wish them all the best of luck and hope that every egg sticks and everyone gets a positive pregnancy! We just need to figure out how to ease Mandy's nerves! Mandy, I am counting on you being my leaning post when I get close to my time. You'll be an ole pro by then! A quick Happity B-day to Frankie! 13 years and looking beautiful.
Ciao for now.

Jan 25, 2009

Looking forward to Monday???

Yes, surprisingly I am. We are really anxious to see the new Dr. Fingers toes eyes crossed that all goes well with him and we are one step closer. I have all the paperwork for India ready, just need the docs sign off on it and away it will go. I hope Mark and I can move tomorrow - we are both so sore and stiff from a marathon of hours in the basement this weekend. Just 2 more sheets of drywall to hang and some duct work then we start to sand. The day we start sanding really is the beginning of the end. Mark is off to the airport driving two strange senior citizen Chinese people as a favour to our neighbor. I cant wait for him to get home and tell me about this trip.

Jan 21, 2009

Dum de dum de dum...

Boy does time not fly. The days are long, and all the east coast people can attest to how cold the days are lately ..see:


Double click on the picture to see just how cold it is here!

Jan 19, 2009

One more week

Til we see the new doctor. These waits are so long and the time goes so slow. Stupid minus 20 celcius weather is not helping either. My friends in Australia and Arizona have the best weather..I am so jealous. Speaking of Arizona, huge congrats to one of the forum founders who finally have their dreams come true with a positive pregnancy in India. Three positives at SI in 2009 so far! We hope to be in the number very soon. Our American friends are struggling with DNA testing issues and it really makes me wonder what is in store for us. Once I get all my paperwork into Dr Sudhir and Dr Yash I can then bombard them with questions. Well, back to work I go...sadly the lottery did not choose us to win.

Jan 12, 2009

Our 2WW

Well, its 2 weeks until we see the new Dr. Not the same 2WW as many are going through, but its just as important to us. Fingers crossed the new doctor is on our side and helps us get rolling. The old doc was on our side, just does not want to communicate with India so we had to move on considering we are ummm...going to India! As I sit here eating my homemade curry I feel anxious and excited to get this rolling. There is a cricket game in Mumbai Feb 21 which features people like Mark and I versus the India doctors. Too bad we won't be there to witness this mess :)

Jan 9, 2009

2009

On January 26, 2009, we enter the year of the busybody dictator Ox. Curious to a fault, nosy and meddlesome, Earth Oxen think they know best, and they often do. In general, these folks consider themselves superior to other people. They not only think they are better; they believe they were born to lead others, to teach the poor things how to live, and sometimes even to push them around like pawns on the chessboard of life. What we have here is a very nature-oriented, earth-bound, power-mad megalomaniac whose nose for locating flies in life's various ointments is practically infallible.

This is not to say we didn't need such a stringent ruler to come along in 2009. We did. All of us are suffering. Some of us have too much and are stumbling over excess and wading through our own glut. Many more of us have nothing. The world financial market, such as we knew it, is over. Change and upheaval are in the very air we breathe. Religious fanaticism seems to have more power among certain young people than either rock music or computer games could ever have inspired. People are slaughtering other people in the name of a god figure. Other people are dropping bombs on peoples' houses and churches and hospitals and weddings in the name of an increasing energy need to fuel more pollution. Our food sources are being poisoned in the name of efficacy.

Let's face it. Things were getting out of hand.

Now, along comes the Earth Ox to get us back in line, to make order out of all the chaos we have ourselves wreaked on the world. But what kind of Ox is an Earth Ox?

Well, a more self-possessed type of Ox doesn't exist. The Earth Ox is autonomous and ruthless. The Earth Ox may occasionally appear to cower in the face of something overwhelming. And, deep down, he may really be afraid. But he won't display fear. He will display audacity instead. Many sense his fear. As a result, they do not always feel obliged to take the Ox's haughty posturing very seriously. It is tempting (but unwise) to thumb one's nose at a bossy Earth Ox. These people mean business! Most times, it's "their way or the highway". The Earth Ox's shrewd punitive measures for shirkers are legendary - even shocking!

Earth born Oxen believe that their true goal is to achieve perfection. They never quail at the idea of intense hard work, are terminally organized and cannot so much as a glimmer of spontaneity. The life and soul of the party, this creature is not. The Earth Ox leads. He or she is in charge. Hence they are never really part of any group.

During Earth Ox years, the accent is on obedience and hard work. That gigantic stone which hurtled crazily back down the mountain last year must be replaced up there atop the mountain by the end of 2009. And who gets to roll up his or her sleeves and push and shove and sweat and slave till that rock is back on top? We do of course.