Wednesday, October 29, 2008

A difficult decision

And no, it’s not a post about the merits of chocolate chip vs macadamia nut, although I have given the topic serious deliberation at times in my life …..

Most of you that read on this site know that I have been a surrogate in the past. Three times, in fact. The first time, delivering a baby girl in May of 2002, was an incredible blessing for me. I knew before I was even half way done with the pregnancy that I wanted to do it again. I chronicled that journey here on this site and it was, without a doubt, one of the most amazing experiences of my life.

The second time, in Aug of 2003, I delivered twin boys for another wonderful couple. That experience, also, was a joyful, blessed event for me, even if it did leave me stretch marks on my stretch marks. It always cracks me up when people comment on what a “giving” thing it is for me to do …. When really, the happiness and fulfillment these families give me, by allowing me to share this miracle with them, is almost impossible to put into words. Again, I knew I wanted to repeat my surrogate experience, before I had even delivered the twins, and couldn’t wait to get started on my third journey.

Odd as it might sound, surrogacy is addicting. I mean, what greater adrenaline rush can there be than helping form families by bringing babies into the world? Not everyone can do it … not everyone even remotely WANTS to do it. But for me, those experiences have been second only to the happiness my own children bring me.

Six weeks after the twins were born, Kendrie was diagnosed with leukemia, and all surrogacy plans were put on indefinite hold. I waited a year and half before even considering starting again, and only then with the total and complete blessing of her oncologist. It took seven months, from the time I met my couple, until the day we found out we were expecting. At that point, Kendrie was only a few months from finishing her treatment, and the pregnancy went along smoothly. A 10 pound, 2 ounce, bouncing baby boy was the result in May of 2006. (I mention his weight every chance I get because holy Stromboli, that was one big baby I pushed out of my bagina!!)

And even then, after that delivery, I still didn’t feel …. Done. Finished. Like I was *through* with surrogacy. I was healthy, I had easy pregnancies, and I love it so much, why not do it as many times as I’m able? So I was very excited to start on my fourth surrogacy attempt, a sibling project with the twins’ parents. They had frozen embryos left from when we got pregnant with the boys, and after the high-caliber success of that journey, we just knew we would be pregnant in no time.

We did our legal work, medical testing, psych testing, etc, and were excited for our first transfer last fall. I didn’t really mention on this blog about the fact we had what is called a blighted ovum (a sac that attaches to the uterine wall, but then doesn’t grow anything in it) and subsequent miscarriage. I had never had a miscarriage in my life, and naturally, we were all very sad. It’s a fact of life, however, in the world of artificial reproduction, that not every attempt will work, every time. So we chalked it up to unfortunate statistics, and geared up for round two. Except, well, about then is when we moved to OKC, then the fertility clinic closed down for the holidays last year. So it wasn’t until early this past spring we were able to try again. Much to our delight, the transfer went as planned, the pregnancy tests were positive and the first ultrasound showed a perfect looking sac. Then, to our dismay, another miscarriage a week or so later.

Lots and lots and lots of testing later, it was suggested by the fertility doctor that my couple try their last remaining embryos with a different surrogate. I won’t lie, I was hurt by her recommendation. And baffled. I’ve been a surrogate three times … and carried twins for this very couple …. How could I suddenly be unqualified to be their surrogate??

I consider this couple to be friends, and have seen first-hand what wonderful parents they are. Of course I want it to work for them, and wish them only the best as they follow the doctor’s advice and try again with a new surrogate.

But still …. Ouch.

I talked to my own doctor about whether in his opinion I was a suitable candidate to carry again …. He said I was. I talked to Blaine about whether I wanted to try it again, starting from scratch with a new couple, or if I should take the doctor’s comments to heart and consider myself “unfit”. He said (spineless jelly fish that he is) that whatever I wanted to do was fine. If I want to try again, he knows how much it means to me and he’ll support that. If I don’t want to try again, that it’s ok to stop and be grateful for the three families I’ve been able to help.

The thing is, I still don’t feel done. I truly believe in my heart that I have the physical and emotional capacity to help another family with their miracle. And after three successful journeys, I certainly don’t want to end on such a negative note. But, it’s time to be realistic, as well.

I doubt everyone realizes the work that goes into being a surrogate. It’s not just that you decide to do it, have a few doctor’s appointment, and BAM! Nine months later a baby pops out.

It’s months and months and potentially even more months of legal contracts and medical testing and practice runs and scheduling issues before you even get to transfer. I would say on average, it’s six months to a year of “prep” work to get there. Then, every time a transfer is unsuccessful, it’s another two or three months before you can try again. Every miscarriage can add several months. And of course, don’t forget the nine months of actual pregnancy. It’s a very exciting, very thrilling, very frustrating period of hurry up and wait. Wait to find the perfect couple, wait on the lawyers, wait to get your appointments, wait to take your tests, wait to get test results, wait to get approval, wait to get your meds, wait to see if everyone is responding to meds properly, wait to see how the egg retrieval goes, wait to see if the embryos thaw properly, wait to see if you’re pregnant, wait to see if the pregnancy sticks ….. And when it works … when everything little piece of the puzzle finally fits together and the stars and planets align and CLICK, a baby is the end result ---- and you get to be present when the baby is handed to his parents for the very first time, and they look at his beautiful face, and then look over and thank you for helping make it happen ---- it’s one of the most magical things on earth.

See why I would want to do it over and over and over?

The thing is, though, that entire time … through all that waiting …. You are at the mercy of someone else’s schedule. The doctors, the clinics, your couple, the egg donors, your own body, etc. Sometimes you have to drop everything and be free to travel; sometimes you are not ALLOWED to travel. You are not allowed to leave the country at all, and not allowed to leave the state in the third trimester. Since we have a cruise planned for next summer, I knew I would have to wait until after that trip before I could try and get pregnant again.

But I had decided that yes, I did want to try again. I just couldn’t shake the feeling of how much I want to be a part of one more miracle. I’m capable … I’m willing …. I’m RIGHT HERE, let’s have another baby for someone!

Then earlier this month I went to Outdoor School with Kellen. That’s something I couldn’t have done if I’d been pregnant … too physical. And I commented to one of the teachers, who has a son the same age as Kellen and a daughter the same age as Kendrie, that in only two more years we’ll get to come back to Outdoor School with our girls. And she reminded me that before that, our boys will take a trip to Florida with the school next year, and we can go as chaperones. And my first thought was, “Ohhhh, fun!” And my second thought was, “Oh, wait, what if I’m pregnant and can’t leave the state?”

So I came home from Outdoor School and sat down with a calendar. And planned out every potential overnight trip or family vacation or school trip for the next three years, that could NOT be done pregnant.

With my first couple, it was eighteen months, start to finish, from the time I first met them until I delivered. My second surrogate journey happened at the speed of lightning, but still, it was almost a year from start to finish. My third journey was again, eighteen months. Since there is no promise that things will run according to schedule, and no guarantee that you will get pregnant on the first attempt, you have to be honest about your time table and what you can and cannot do.

And I was a little stunned, and a lot discouraged, to realize there is no block of time for me in the next three years where I can make it happen, without giving up something with my family. Postponing a vacation, or NOT going on a school trip as a chaperone.

I’ve missed a lot through the years, as a surrogate. I’ve missed baseball games and soccer games and holiday parties at school and birthday parties. And I didn’t mind …. When my kids were younger, those activities happened often enough that missing one or two wasn’t the end of the world. I missed getting to be with Blaine when he got radiation in Seattle because of a surrogacy … both when I was pregnant and not allowed to leave the state of Georgia, and after I delivered, when an epidural headache had me flat on my back and unable to board an airplane. And certainly, Blaine is a big boy and he survived without me. But still.

And, as my kids get older, I see these opportunities to be an active part of their lives coming along, and I don’t want to miss out. I want to take them out of the country on a cruise … I want to take them RV’ing to the Grand Canyon …. I want to take them to see Niagara Falls … I want to be able to go to Florida with Kellen, and Outdoor School with Kendrie, and wherever Brayden winds up going as well. I want to be able to do all those things without planning it around a very-temporary and precarious pregnancy calendar, that potentially can stretch out for a year … or year and a half … or even two years or more, depending on how things go.

Blaine’s cancer coming back again has reminded me that I need to be fully present for my kids. Chasing after toddlers while pregnant --- although tiring --- is doable. Chasing after pre-teens, when you want to go with them places, and travel --- is not as doable. Nobody is guaranteed tomorrow, and blah-blah-sappy-sappy-stuff about making the most of today. Me being pregnant -- getting pregnant – recovering from being pregnant – wasn’t that big of a deal when they were little and **I** was the boss of their schedules. But they are older now, and if I have to choose ……COULD I make it work? Probably. Could I make it work and be fully present in everything I want? Realistically, no. I think, unless I am willing to give up something with my family, that it’s time to let go of my dream of being a surrogate again.

Even if my heart breaks a little bit every time I imagine never doing it again.

53 comments:

Pam D said...

I think you are a very giving woman with a HUGE heart. And, as you know so well, time is short, and a lot of times, you don't get chances for "do-overs" in life. Your family is the here and now.. and you are their heart. Their very BIG (albeit occasionally sarcastic) heart. And when it comes time to look back, the time you spend with them and memories you build together are what will REALLY matter as your legacy. Good call, Kristie.

Hennifer said...

I can only begin to imagine how difficult of a decision this is for you. please be gentle with yourself! You have a huge heart and have brought a lot of joy into yours, your surrogate's and my daily life.

Just keep living!

Becca said...

No advice, only admiration. You are a great mother and a great surrogate mother. Sometimes, I really want to give that gift, then I realize I might be too selfish.
If you decide not to surrogate again, could you possibly volunteer at an agency or something? Be involved in some other way?

Sandie said...

You're making the right choice, even though it's hard. People think that it gets easier as the kids get older but I think it's the opposite. They need you even more and sometimes in a more demanding capacity.

Could you be some sort of mentor to others who are thinking of becoming a surrogate or to a family who might want one? Write about your experiences? I see a book deal....

karen said...

Kristie, You are a amzaing woman. You have given to 3 families and although you would love to help more, you are making a choice to be there for your family. I can understand how your heart may ache but think of how it will be filled with joy being able to go and do things with your kids.

Denise said...

Kristie - You are one of the most amazing people I have run across in life! I know you must be sad, and a little let down, but, I think you made a good decision. No matter what you do, I know that God will bless your decision. I know being a mom of a 13 yr old, the time is slipping away quickly and I cherish every opportunity to spend quality time with her.

Thanks for sharing your HUGE heart with us.

Thanks for sharing such a great gift with those 3 families. I know they will be forever indebted to you for giving them a child.

Keep your chin up, we are behind you!

Denise

Ryley said...

Gosh.. what a hard desicion. I have actually been talking to my husband about the possibilty of doing suragacy in the future. This pregnancy has been a BREEZE! and I love it.. I feel like I could be pregnant forever and be just fine. I would love to give to others the way you have, to experiance that joy. (even though I know it can come with moments of heartbreak)


What if you became involved with helping people who are surragates or want to become them. Are there any organizations you could work for in your area that might give you that same sense of accomplishment and joy without being the one to go through it? You should look into it.

You know we're always here to support you.. (even though we really can't do much!!) :)

Jenny said...

Hey there....while I'm sad that it seems that the curtain is going down on your surrogacy career, please know that you are receiving a big fat standing ovation as it descends. And it's loud. And it's from people you know and people you don't know. This is the kind of decision that they don't tell you about when you are a kid because if they did? Who'd ever want to be a grown up. I'm proud of you and wish you and your family MUCH fun over the coming years.

The Running Girl said...

What a big decision for you to have to make. I understand the "wanting to be there for your kids and be able to travel with them". And those opportunities do come up more as they get older. There were two trips from school I could have taken Madison on this year (one to NY and the other to the Grand Canyon). You have given a lot of yourself in the past. Maybe it's time for yourself now.

Anonymous said...

Wow, what a heartwrenching decision. I wish for you that things that perhaps are influencing your decision were different (Blaine's cancer, etc.) You have certainly left your mark on several grateful families.

Amy said...

I am sorry to hear you will be hanging it up. But you need to follow your heart, and it seems your heart is telling you it's time.

Your story really inspired me as I was reading it those months ago and I really would love to do this it. But I imagine having problem pregnancies (I have an incompetent cervix and have to have a cerclage with all pregnancies) would make me a crappy candidate. Which bums me out. I would love to help someone else experience motherhood.

Mom on the Run said...

Have you thought about starting a surrogacy blog? You could transfer all your surrogacy posts to the new blog. You have a story to tell.

Momto4 said...

Kristie-
I can "kind of" relate to how you feel. I have four children of my own and the thought of never being pregnant again, never picking out a new name, never cuddling that sweet baby at 2 am, can bring me to tears! Until, I think of all the benefits now. My kids are 12, 10, 8, 5 and things are easier (no stroller, diapers, diaper bag) and harder (homework!, attitudes etc). So I am bound and determine to enjoy the kids now, because my mom says "before I know it, they will be grown and gone!"
It's hard to believe that I have been following your blog (Kendrie's caringbridge) since May 06 - because you were getting close to delivery when I discovered your blog.

Kristina
OHIO

Dianna in Louisiana said...

What a woman you are Kristie, what a woman..... no matter what, you are making the right decision for you and your family.

Marti said...

Wow - I am floored, not surprised. I come to your blog because of your humor with everyday situations as well as the reality that life throws at us. I am sure it was tough decision.

Anonymous said...

This post brought me to tears!! I have 4 children (28, 27, 22 & 19) and I absolutely loved being pregnant!! There is no greater feeling in the world than to know that you have worked so closely with God to bring another human being into the world! Whatever your decision is I know that our Lord is saying "Well done my good and faithful servant, thanks for all your help". Enjoy your babies now, cause you can't get these days back. Until you have grandkids, that is :)!!

Anonymous said...

Sorry I didn't sign my name in the above Anonymous post:(
~Debbie~
Hoover, Alabama

Anonymous said...

What a tough decision. I can't begin to imagine the weight of that decision. Even though you have given to three families it must be hard to choose to accept the end of surrogacy. You're a great mom and wife. What a blessing you are to so many.

Tam

Anonymous said...

Wow, I bet that was a hard thing to post. Always remember the joy you have passed on. I know its hard when you have to set priorities, but you made the right call I think.

Postcard Cindy

Anonymous said...

I am sure this is a difficult decision. How awesome you could bring so much happines. I do believe you don't want to miss your kids cuz trust me as a mother of a 25 y/0 it goes by toooo fast.
I agree with your decision and how lucky your kids are to have you as their mother...
Marjie

Stephanie from Portland said...

Kristi,
you have given three people THEIR dreams. You are an amazingly giving, unselfish, decent human being who gave these couples the greatest gift one person can give to another. I admire you and your courage. There is a reason for everything that happens in this world. I know your path is leading you in a different direction right now, but enjoy the journey and see where it leads you!

Anonymous said...

Such a hard decision! I imagine you must feel that the family with the twins is "your" family and it must be extremely hard to envision them having this experience with someone other than you. That's how I feel when one of "my" families adopts a second baby and it's not a baby that I cared for.

It's not quite the same, but I think that when my last foster baby leaves and I'm done, it will be the saddest day of my life. I wonder if that's how you feel. If so, I'm sad for you.

Dixie

Erin said...

My sister is going through a surrogacy journey right now. I love reading your posts about the journey & am saddened that you don't really see it happening in the future. You are a wonderful mother & I'm sure Kellen,Kendrie, and Brayden will LOVE having you on all their special trips!! Sounds like the next few years will be busy & fun!!

Beth said...

Nothing to add in the way of advice. Just here to say what a wonderful wonderful lady you are. Wow.

Karen - Mommy to four sweeties said...

You are a wonderful giving person. I think you made the right decision too even though it makes you sad.
There will be more opportunities to give in other ways.
Have fun with your kids. You all deserve it!

jadine said...

Jenny S. said exactly what I feel. Standing ovation, girlfriend, for what you've accomplished. But I completely understand the bitter-sweetness of such a decision. I know you've thought about this six-ways-to-Sunday (whatever that means), and that if it was possible, you'd do it. You're right to prioritize, but it sucks when one choice eliminates another. Even when you're right. Which you are. Right. And you're amazing, too. So there.

Eloise said...

What a difficult decision for you to make. I have a feeling, though, that the last time would tug at your heartstrings no matter how many times you were a surrogate.

I admire you so much for being a surrogate, but I also have tremendous respect for the approach you take to being a wife and mother. I think you're making the best decision for your family right now.

Anonymous said...

Wow, Kristie, you are a darling person and I would love to have u for a best friend, but - let me be honest here -- your hubby needs you, and your children need you. This is YOUR time with YOUR family. ENJOY and be selfish.

love ya

Jackietex said...

I just got back a few hours ago after spending two and a half days at a camp with our school's 5th and 6th graders. Much of that time we were outside, adults watching, as the kids learned about leadership and teamwork. It was great! But definitely not for the pregnant. Not that it matters, and I understand it was a difficult decision, but I think you made the right choice.

Natalie said...

No advice here either, Kristie. Just proud to call you my friend.

DeborahB said...

Obviously I know exactly how you feel. It truly is addicting. It is a huge commitment of time, physically and emotionally. We've done an amazing thing (x3!!) and we should be able to move on from here. I know we're moms & wives, and that is the most important thing we've done with our lives, but for so long my identity was being a surrogate. But having my TT kind of sealed the deal, that I was officially retired. Still feels weird, that I'm missing out by not carrying again. But unless J&J are completely whack, I'm pretty sure they don't want babies 5&6! And my first couple never asked if I'd carry a sibling for W&J. I'm WAY TOO OLD to start over, unfortunately. So it is what it is. I'm retired. Now what?

Stephanie D. said...

Kristie-

What a poignant post. I feel your pain and I've never even been a surrogate. However, I do know that as a mom, our children come first AND as a mom who recently sent her oldest off to college... I am SO thankful that I didn't miss a moment of his teen-age years, trips, games, etc. The time flies by so fast and I miss all the fun "we" had in HS already. You are making a sacrifice (again) for your family and giving up a dream of your own, but I promise you - you will never regret it AND your sweet children will be all the better for it. I am proud of you for making such a grown-up decision. Dang, it's hard sometimes to be an adult huh? :)

Hang in there. All of us out here in cyberspace, love you and are proud of you!

~Stephanie

Mamasita said...

I can think of nothing to say that already hasn't been said here.

You are truly an inspiration.

I know it must be hard to make that decision, but I, too, feel that you did what was best for your family.

Have you thought about being an egg donor?

Jeanette in GA said...

I know how dear to your heart surrogacy is, but I also know how much you love your own children. You have done so much for other families...now is your time to do all the crazy, wonderful FUN things with your own. Because you only get so many camping trips and soccer games....then they grow up.

Marci said...

Kristie,
I think although all the pain you are feeling and all the special moments you are fulfilling for yourself you have made a very difficult yet wise decision. I do know from first hand experience with losing my father, MIL and FIL there is no guarantee for tomorrow..You never know what your future holds. My mom wasnt expecting to lose my father and be a single parent to 4 kids(even though I was 25). It was tough. I think life is always in SUPER FAST mode and sometimes we need to stop and look at what is right in front of us to treasure. You know I love you and support you in anything though..and of course will pray for you.....I am hear if you need to yell, scream, vent or share bom boms over the phone...Love, Marci

Missy said...

My husband and I have gone around and around with the decision to not have more children (we have three, 10, 8, & 6). I loved being pregnant, loved the baby-ness... and I even gave some thought to the surrogacy thing, simply because it seems like the most wonderful gift to give anyone, and I'm really quite good at being pregnant... But I digress.

The decision for us NOT to have another (or anyone else's) was really based on the fact that my kids are getting older, and there is so much that is really neat, really great about that - and I want to be able to do EVERYTHING with them that I can, in the years I have left with them at home. So, I really feel like I understand your post, your feelings. It's a hard choice, absolutely.

Go with your gut (and I vote chocolate chip). :) You're an amazing mom, wife, person.

Anonymous said...

I don't think this is something anyone can answer for you but you. But since you asked, I'm willing to toss my opinion in the ring, for what it's worth. You have been blessed beyond measure with Kendrie's success and redemption from leukemia. You have two other children who, all three of them together, obviously light up your world. You have a husband who has been there and supported you through everything and who is having his own struggles but thankfully continues to do well. (God bless him....we don't hear near enough about him, but he's on my heart.)

So my thoughts (see how I resisted using the word "advice"???) are this..... Live the life you have. Celebrate every moment with those whose lives you have fought for in so many ways. Be thankful for the chapter of your life that allowed others to celebrate the lives of children of their own, thanks to your unselfish gift. Remember how hard much you wanted children and a husband? Don't let a single moment pass you by.

I don't think I'll sign this one.

Hannah said...

No problem!! I am partial to Canons...you never have to miss out. They do everything a Nikon does. ;)


Thanks for stopping by my blog.

Alice said...

For everything there is a season...I know you won't let the sadness of this season's passing override the joy of the new season that is coming.

Best wishes as you go through this transition.

lizinsumner said...

Kristie - I'm sorry. I can see in your post how difficult your decision was....but, I think you made the correct one. I think the memories and the happiness that you will find in all of the things that you listed involving your family will, in the end, out-weigh those that you would find in more surrogacy attempts. Besides, kiddo - maybe your poor little body could use the rest, you know?? You need to take care of you, too.....well, it's just my opinion, and it's not worth much...just wanted you to know that I'm "with" you.....(p.s. - now I feel guilty for not taking time off from work and going up to the UofW hospital and holding Blaine's hand when he was here - however, he would've probably thought me entirely NUTS!!!!!! if I had)!

jean said...

Holy cow, that was a lot of thoughts back & forth in one post! I can see why you are torn. I know that whatever road life takes you down, you will embrace it & make the most out of it. A friend once told me, "if I can't help provide for a need, I just pray that someone else will come along to take my place." Someone else can take your place as a surrogate, but no one can take your place with Blaine, Brayden, Kellen, and Kendrie. I like someone else's comment of maybe moving into a new phase of surrogacy as a mentor/encourager - or who knows what other need might be out there that you can fill in the surrogacy world w/o being pregnant?

Regina and Madie said...

Hey Kristie!
I just wanted to remind you that I had Madie when I was 42!!!
Keep that little thought in your mind. Who knows, you might be in better shape in three years than you are right now!
Always remember, anything is possible!
Lots of hugs and love!....gina

Lisa said...

Have a hug. That's all. Love and prayers.

leeanne said...

I have always been so impressed with you for your being a surrogate. I could never do that. Not because I dont want to, but because I know I am too selfish to. Anyway, I agree with Sandie....the older your kids get the more they need you and the more you need to be involved in their day to day lives, as a mentor and role model. Heaven knows they are bombarded with tough decisions and all sorts of temptations, and if you can be there as opposed to being absent, it is the route to go. Enjoy these years with them. Sadly, they do go by much too quickly.

Tammy said...

3 miracles for 3 deserving family's your a hero in my eyes! I see your point, and it will be ok. Your babies are'nt getting any younger for sure. I can't see you missing out on anything else in their lives. Hugs from Fort Worth! (P.S. my last baby was 10.5, and no I did'nt have a section either!)

Holli said...

wow what a post. I can't speak for everyone but you really make people think.

Sara said...

As the mother of 16 year old twins, it IS a busy time and you WON'T want to miss a minute of it! It goes by SO quickly and they need us just as much as teens as they did when they were little...if not more.

As teens, they are approaching that time when they WILL leave home and I know you would hate yourself if you missed even a minute of that time in their lives. I know I try to be involved as much as I can be...as I'm allowed to be! =)

You've done so much for so many - I'm sure you will find a way to touch even more people if you do decide that surrogacy is not the right fit for your family right now.

You're an inspiration!

Jen said...

Kristie, I think your decision makes good sense. I'm in my first surrogacy now and while I can imagine doing it again in the short term, I can't imagine doing it when I'm older and the kids are older. Right now I have one who just got out of diapers, so I'm still in "crank 'em out" mode. Certainly I can't imagine doing it if my husband were fighting cancer, the process requires too much of him (and he's a wuss). Think of all of those ridiculously early in the morning baseline b/w and u/s appointments, the BCP crankiness, the Lupron headaches, the months of injections and calendars and getting huge boxes of meds and syringes delivered. The roller coaster of hurry up and wait...it's a lot to ask of yourself and your family. You've done a miraculous thing for three families...enjoy the joys of big kids and look forward to the next phase of fun and excitement with them!

Anonymous said...

You obviously have a heart of gold. Of course you would be nostalgic for something that has been such a huge part and blessing in your life. Be careful what you wish for though...two years ago I was feeling sad about saying good bye to my baby days. I even cried to my OB. In my head, I knew those days were over, but I couldn't convince my heart. (At the time I had 4 children...ages ranging from 11-6...and I was like a whirling dervish every day with school, hw, soccer, bball, dance...you know! I knew that I could NEVER manage another baby) I am sure you can guess the out come...today we have a beautiful 8 month old baby girl. She was a surprise to be sure...(I had eventually come to terms with no more babies)...we actually call her our bonus baby, "the baby we didn't know we needed, until she arrived"! And yes, I am still a whirling dervish...I guess God figured I would be a crazy person with or without this wonderful baby! You never know what is around the corner...sometimes it is not up to us! (We plan, God laughs!)
Be gentle with yourself...you have given a gift most of us never will...for that you should be proud.
Meg
Milford, CT

Miscellaneous From Missy said...

Sigh. It's hard to give up something like that, even if it's for something else just as great. I know. I've had to decided between chocolate chip and macadamia before. No fun!

toad4mimi said...

For a long time, I felt that I was being called to be a foster parent. I knew that we, as a family, had a lot to offer a child even if it was only temporary. When I talked to my husband about it, he had a different point of view.

He felt that we could not detract in any way from our own kids' childhood simply based on the fact that we wanted to help someone else. Although he agreed that the cause was noble and admirable, our first obligation will always be to our kids. He felt it was unfair to alter what we could give to our own children because of fostering.

That was a turning point for me. We have since decided that fostering may happen in the future, once our kids are grown and gone from our home. But then, who knows -- grandkids will eventually come along, Lord willing.

In the mean time, I volunteer with an organization that provides the needs of the children in our community.

Fostering isn't even close to surrogacy, but I understand the issue of having to consider your family and children. I hope you find peace with whatever decision you make.

JenX67 said...

*crying* what a vessel you have been - to give life and motherhood to someone else. like i said, *crying. here. now.*

Patty House, Jasonville, IN said...

I think you are making the right choice too. And I understand how to got to that point. I'll tell ya what...I would quit work today if I wouldn't lose my house. (not exactly the same thing, but kinda sorta close lol). I feel like I'm missing so much even though I work a 4 days on, 4 days off shift and do get to spend a lot of time with them...

You have a heart the size of Texas (or should I say Oklahoma?). You have brought so much joy to 3 families. And educated a lot of internet peoples...me included!

And I agree with Jenny...you are getting a big 'ol standing ovation!!