My way to Fatherhood… and other stuff

Posts tagged ‘Surrogacy’

Kindergarten – Here we come!

You know, when you have kids, that’s when you really understand how fast time flies! It seems that not so long ago Noa and Maya were just newborns, and now, all of a sudden, tomorrow is their first day of kindergarten! No more staying at home. New routine! And a few free hours on Fridays for daddy and daddy!

Yes. I’m extremely excited. And worried. And scared. And proud. And hopeful. And so many other adjectives :) These two have become so big already! They know exactly what they want, and can express it easily, even though they still do not *really* talk.

On Friday we actually had an introductory session with all other kids and parents. One hour at the kindergarten to get to know the place. When we got in, Maya quite easily took off to play with toys and explore the new space. Noa on the other hand was a bit more reserved and took her time. At first she wanted to remain close to us and insisted one of us goes wherever she goes. But eventually she also found herself interested enough with what was going on that she just went alone.

It was interesting to see how they were not stuck together, and each of them explored on her own. They did interact as well – when Noa saw Maya at the table playing with the blue dough she joined. But most of the time they were in separate parts of the room. Except of course when they found out where the fruit are…

So tomorrow is a big day. I’ll try to get some sleep now, and hope to update soon with how it all goes!


sleep

Days 14-18

Nov. 6-10

We’re not alone here anymore. 2 new couples arrived this week.

First, Izik and Eyal arrived. Their twins were born a bit early and they are now in N.I.C.U. Finally we had more people to play ping-pong with, to share a table at dinner and breakfast… It’s nice.

Yesterday, Orly and Ronen arrived. We’ve met them before at Alon’s appartment when Alon and Doron briefed us about India.

So now we have a table for 6.

We’re still working, and still waiting. Unfortunately, my computer died last weekend. We tried to fix it but it seems that the motherboard is dead and and the IBM lab is on the other side of Mumbai…

Yesterday we finished week 36. This is very exciting, and this means the delivery can be any day now. We’re counting on tomorrow since it will be a cool date (11.11). Friday will also be nice (12.11.1o) but whenever they arrive will be good! :)

In the meantime we’re watching TV and I’m already addicted to MasterChef Australia :) there are also a lot of reruns of Friends, and Modern Family which we always like to watch. They have so many reruns here… Only today they shower Catwoman TWICE! and every day there are 3 reruns of every show… You can’t miss it :)

Anyhow, sorry for not writing as often as usual but the fact that nothing much is going on combined with the fact that my comp died makes it difficult. You’ll forgive me I hope…

Kisses and good night. And please don’t call us after 20:30 IL time! (last night we got a call at 1:22am and were sure it’s time to go to the hospital…)

 

They are showing Aladdin on Saturday, so I just felt like it :)

Mumbai – Days 4-6

Day 4 – Wednesday, Oct. 27

We started the day with breakfast downstairs, and as usual I did not eat much. Then we went back to the room to work. Now, with your permission I’ll stop writing this, because as you probably understood by now, we work every day, Sunday to Thursday… So I’ll just tell you the rest :)

In the evening we took a tuk-tuk to Hiranandani, a nicer area with malls, restaurants etc. We read that there should be a Mothercare store there and wanted to check it out. We also wanted to change money. When we arrived, we saw a change place, but turns out we need a passport to change money, and also they do not change after 6pm. So we went on.

Now, what are the chances that a doctor (or was she just an assistant?) from the hospital we visited 2 days ago would see me in the street and recognize me?! So Akanksha saw me and called me. It was very funny. We talked for a little while, and then we went to look for the MotherCare store that we heard was in the area. Turns out the store closed and moved to a different location. So we went back to the mall and had coffee at Costa. And also a muffin…

StreetShowStreet show in Powai

Day 5 – Thursday, Oct. 28

Doron urged us to go check out the Hiranandani Hospital where the dilivery should take place. We went there to see the place. At first I had the feeling like we were sneaking around, but when we got to second floor where the labor rooms are we met a nurse that was happy to show us where the N.I.C.U. was. In the N.I.C.U. we met another nurse who explained a bit and was very patient and informative. We learned that we might need to stay a few nights at the hospital after the birth just to see the babies are all right. We went up and looked at some rooms, and I must say it was kind of relieving to realize that we’ll be there and there will be nurses outside our door to help if anything goes wrong…
From there we went back to Hiranandani, changed money, got Ronen a cover for the BlackBerry and bought water.
Oh! And back at the hotel we watched Smallville, and Lois finally made Clark tell her his secret! Yay! :)

TukTuk
Tuktuk ride

Day 6 – Friday, Oct. 29

TGIF! Today was an exciting day. We went to see Neeta – our surrogate for the first time, and do a sonography. We met Rajesh (Doron’s driver) at 10:30 and went to Minakshi’s clinic (she’s the doctor taking care of Neeta). We met Minakshi at her office and heard a bit about Neeta and the pregnancy. We then met Neeta and went to another clinic to do the sonography. Neeta was very shy and did not communicate much (regardless the fact that she doesn’t speak English…).
The sonography was very exciting. We got to see the ultrasound of the babies, and realized they were there, right in front of us, with their little hearts beating. One of them was swallowing water and it was so cute! We were told that it’s best if we waited at least another week or two, and that this will be a C-section.
After the test we dropped Neeta off at Minakshi’s again, and went to the mall (what is there for us to do on Friday if not hang out at the mall :) ). It was very boring and after a while we went back to the hotel. We went down to the pool for a little while, and then watched a movie in the room.
One thing I forgot to mention is that we have a game room in the hotel, where there’s a a snooker table and a ping-pong table. We’ve been playing ping-pong almost every day since we arrived, and it is very fun! So after dinner we went to play again, and one of the hotel guys – Madhukar – was there watching us. At some point I offered him to play instead of me and he was happy to join the game against Ronen. Turns out he’s a very good player, but Ronen gave a good fight.
Then, like good Israelis we complained again about the noise the AC was making, and they transferred us to room 708 which is a bit bigger, so it’s nice.
To finish the day we went to the bar at the next door Ramada hotel (5 stars). The bar was empty, but we had a nice Fisher King beer and watched a tv shows featuring 2 bimbos travelling in Thailand.
And now it’s time to say good night…

I know that the posts are becoming quite technical, but as you know, we’re basically sitting here waiting…

And I’ll leave you with this… Just for fun :)

Lists

So Doron has a site where you can get general info on the Surrogacy process, general rates, options etc. (you can check the site in the links on the side – Tammuz). One of the links there is “Pregnancies & Births”. As an expecting father I have this habit of checking this page every now and then ad see where we are in the list of expecting parents… So it was a while ago when I last checked and I suddenly remembered it this week and checked the site. Guess what? We’re in the head of the list! (#1977):

Of course this will not be December as we’re having twins, but the original date was Dec 7th.

Our flight is in less than 36 hours! You can imagine how crazy everything is now… We’ve been collecting clothes and equipment from friends, buying stuff, getting ready. The last days were packed with endless laundries, painting the nursery, chasing after missing stuff from the endless lists (clothes, ointments, bottles, pacifiers, sterilizer, diapers, baby food and so on…).

Our amazing travel agent Gil also arranged that we’ll have extra 8 kilos per person on our way to India, so we don’t have to worry when we pack, and we are able to take more stuff (maybe even stuff for ourselves!) :)

One more day of organizations, and then we’re off to Mumbai. Once there we’ll only have to wait for the birth, nothing else we can do there… Unless of course you count working, meeting our surrogate mother Neeta, organizing the hotel room to suit 2 babies etc. And of course once there I’ll have more time to update (or am I kidding myself?!) :)

If at first you don’t succeed…

In March 2008 we met Doron from the agency to hear about the surrogacy plans he offers. At the time he offered 3 options:

  1. West – using an American egg donor and an American surrogate.
  2. East – using an Indian egg donor and an Indian surrogate.
  3. East-West – using an American egg donor, creating embryos, and flying them to India to use an Indian surrogate.

The costs were pretty high and we wanted to find a cheaper way of doing this, so we suggested using Israeli donors, flying them to India where they will donate the eggs, and using an Indian surrogate.

I will not bore you with the several girls we screened, wanted to send to India, some had a change of heart at the last minute, some were not suitable, and some went and donated (it’s funny to call it “donation” considering the high cost they are charging… Not that I do not appreciate their efforts and sacrifice). The number of eggs harvested was very low and we were unsuccessful with the retrieval of the embryos. No pregnancy yet.

After several months we decided it’s time to go back to the East-West program. Maybe we’ll have better luck there. However, our chain of bad luck did not end there… Our first donation in the US was again unsuccessful since the donor forgot to take a shot and the clinic were unable to harvest the eggs. And so we kept on trying. The next cycle we got eggs and the clinic created embryos. They were flown to India and there they tried returning the embryos to a surrogate. Here also we experienced some disappointments.

In the beginning of September 2009 Doron called and said that he got the Beta test results (hCG) which indicated we are finally pregnant! We were soooooo happy. We told our families and were very excited. Unfortunately this did not last long… The next Beta test showed a drop in the Beta levels and that meant that the pregnancy was terminated. The disappointment was huge and very painful. I was on the verge of breaking and started being skeptic regarding Doron’s ability to make us parents.

But we had to collect the shattered pieces of ourselves and go on trying…

A quick recap

If we go a few years back, there we were – 2 young men, in our mid/late 20’s – and we know that we want to expand our family sometime soon.

we started thinking of ways this will be possible. The main options were:

  1. Adoption
  2. Shared parenthood (having a baby with another woman and having a shared custody)
  3. Surrogacy

We considered each of the methods. Each had its pros and cons. At first we tried to find a partner for shared parenthood. We contacted an organization that helps people find partners for this cause, but they were very cold and made it clear that the mother has most of the rights, and that the other father (not the biological one) is not considered a father. It was a very mean thing to say. I mean if we decided to do this, the child will have more parents loving him/her. wouldn’t that be great? Also all women we talked to about this had the same point of view, so we decided to drop this.

After much thought we reached the decision that it’s good that we dropped the shared parenthood since going forward with this would mean bringing a child to the world to a kind of divorced family from day 1. Having 2 houses, seeing the fathers only 2 days a week (3 if we’re lucky)… So we turned to think about surrogacy.

Surrogacy had its own cons as well, but we’ve decided this is the best way for us to extend our family. And still it took some time till we started our process. It actually also took some luck as well. At first we tried organizing it ourselves. We heard about friends also trying this process and went to hear from them what it requires. There was another couple that came to hear, and we became friends for a while. This second couple told us about a friend of theirs who started an agency for helping people with the surrogacy process and organizing everything for them. It sounded interesting and so we decided to go and listen what he has to say.

BTW, if at the beginning of the post we were mid/late 20’s, here we’re already early 30’s… How time flies…

%d bloggers like this: