Our First Surrogate Interview August 3, 2012
“Sharing sweet snuggles with the wonderful miracle I helped to create for my amazing IP’s!”
Your Name: Angie Pruim
Surro Baby’s Date of Birth: June 14, 2012
Why did you decide to become a surrogate mother?
Two of my role models and close family friends growing up both suffered with infertility, watching them and their heartache made me realize that one day I wanted to fill that gap for other families just like them. They both luckily have beautiful families now thanks to IVF, IUI and adoption.
How did your family/friends/support people react when you told them that you wanted to be a surrogate mother?
Everyone around me has always known that one day I’d help another family come to be, it was just a matter of when. The joy, awe, happiness and support I received from my support network was amazing!
What did you enjoy most about your surrogacy pregnancy?
I will never forget the moment my IP’s heard their sweet babes heart beat for the first time. There was tears and the room was filled with joy! And every midwife visit after that when the midwife got the Doppler out, that same joy filled the room. Their faces would get the biggest grins, it was so heart warming to watch!
Pregnancies are not always smooth sailing, what pregnancy related issues did you experience and how did you cope with them?
From 4 weeks on into my pregnancy I was bombarded with severe morning sickness, to the point that typical anti-nausea drugs didn’t work and I ended up being on an IV and a very strong anti-nausea medication via IV as well. The nausea for me lasted 17 weeks and it was strong, but I had an amazing fiancé who took great care of me and encouraged me to take it easy. I also saw it as a good sign that the baby was growing well! Once the nausea passed my pregnancy was wonderful!
When your surro baby was born, what were your first thoughts, what did you say to the Intended Parents, what was the mood in the L&D room?
My first thoughts at the moment of his birth were WOW!! I couldn’t stop staring at them, they were so happy! IM was crying and they were hugging, it was beautiful! The first thing I said was, what is it?!? (we didn’t know the sex) and IM announced thru tears “IT’S A BOY”, then IF came over and hugged me and told me how thankful and in awe he was for me. The room was bliss, if I could’ve bottled it up I would have!
Having been through your journey, what are your plans now, is there another journey on the horizon, are you going back to school, are you focusing on family?
One day I would love to start another journey, but for now my family is going to have some more babies of our own!
Are there any additional comments you would like to share?
Me and my IP’s tried for a long time, 5 transfers total and that equals up to almost 300 needles and tons of emotional roller coasters, but I will say, I wouldn’t trade a single moment of it. My IP’s are so happy and it was the best gift I could ever given anyone!
Gift Idea for Intended Parents July 31, 2012
Every couple of months there are discussions in some of my groups regarding gifts for intended parents. As surrogates we want to send a special gift to the new parents that touches the heart. Generally this is done when baby is born, and more often than not on the child’s first birthday. While reading through my twitter posts this morning I came across a link posted on Babble.com, by Casi, that has some wonderful craft ideas for your ultrasound photos.
“Have you done anything in the past with those precious first pictures? I am thinking of putting them in a collage frame but I can’t wait to try out some of these fun ideas too. I love the idea of making the black and white photo into a masterpiece!”
I think these would make wonderful gifts for your intended parents. Please check out the full article at Babble.com
Moving forward…but apart July 23, 2012
The match for my second journey has come to an end. I went for beta blood work on Friday to see if we were pregnant, with a less than 1 on the reading, it was conclusive that we were not successful. As we had tried a fresh embryo transfer the month before, and now a failed frozen, it was decided that moving on would be best. I wish the fathers all the best in reaching their dreams. I hope that their next surrogate is a compatible match for them and they are holding their baby in their arms soon.
Where will my journey go from here? I have updated my profile at my consultant’s and will wait for another parent profile to cross her desk that will match with mine. I feel that as it is summer, this is a good time to take a minute for myself. To enjoy my kids before school starts again, and when that match comes in we can shoot for a fall transfer.
I will update my journey as things move forward, but please continue checking in, as I will still be making surrogacy related posts. Have a wonderful Summer everyone!
Pregnancy Weight Gain
Antenatal Appointment Scheduler
IVF Pregnancy Due Date
Getting enough liquid is even more crucial during pregnancy as insufficient water intake can play a role in constipation, extreme fatigue, headaches … even preterm labor.
During pregnancy, your body needs 8 to 12 8-ounce glasses per day and it’s a good idea to get closer to that 12 glasses mark during the summer or if you exercise often. Yes, that means you’ll have to pee even more often (if that even seems possible!), but you’ll be glad you made the effort.
What water does for you and your baby:
*Helps eliminate waste from the body, transports vitamins, minerals and other important nutrients to blood cells and helps those cells absorb those nutrients.
*Keeps you comfortable by helping your body stay cooler and keeping fatigue at bay
*Keeps excessive water retention under control. While some swelling is expected during pregnancy (and often is worse during the summer), staying hydrated helps it from getting worse.
*Helps with dry skin.
Tips to keep cool and stay hydrated:
*Carry a water bottle with you so you can drink small amounts at a time all day long.
*Wear breathable clothing, such as lightweight t-shirts or flowy dresses
*Run your errands in the morning or afternoon. Avoid being outdoors between noon and 3 p.m. if possible to avoid the hottest part of the day.
*Take a cool shower.
*Go for a swim in the pool. Swimming will not only cool you off, but it’s a great exercise during pregnancy and can also relieve muscle and joint soreness.
*Wear a hat while outside and sit in the shade whenever possible.
If you experience any signs of dehydration, such as excessive fatigue, headache, thirst, dark urine or light-headedness, drink some water and contact your doctor if that doesn’t help your symptoms.
Not a fan of water? I’m usually not either, but there are other ways to get the hydration you need!
*Sparking or flavored water
*Fruit or vegetable juice (diluted with water to cut down on the calorie and sugar intake)
*Water-rich fruits and vegetables, such as watermelon, grapes or celery
*Limit intake of soda and caffeine as these can actually make dehydration worse
Sources: American Pregnancy Association, What to Expect
Most pregnant women should be able to play some sports at some level throughout most of their pregnancy. Your doctor may advise you to avoid playing sports if you have a pregnancy-related medical condition like pre-eclampsia, or if you are carrying a high-risk pregnancy such as multiple fetuses. It is important to avoid getting overheated during pregnancy.
Pregnancy is a natural condition, not an illness. Unless you have complications, it should be possible to enjoy your sport at some level throughout most of your pregnancy.
Factors to consider
Before you decide whether to continue playing your chosen sport throughout pregnancy, consider the following factors:
Your health and the risk status of your pregnancy
Your stage of pregnancy
The type of sport you play
The degree of exertion required during play
The risk of overheating during play
The risk of injury during play.
You should discuss these issues with your doctor before you decide.
Your health and the risk status of your pregnancy
In some cases your doctor may advise you to avoid playing sports if you have a pregnancy-related medical condition like pre-eclampsia, or if you are carrying a high-risk pregnancy such as multiple fetuses. You may be asked to try low-impact exercises, such as walking or swimming, as alternatives.
Stage of pregnancy
Generally, the baby is cushioned in the amniotic sac. However, a hard blow to your belly could damage the placenta and affect the baby’s blood and oxygen supply. During the first trimester, the baby is small enough to be protected by your pelvic bones. As your pregnancy progresses, the growing baby is no longer shielded by your pelvis, which puts it at direct risk if you fall or heavily contact another player.
Changes during pregnancy
There are many changes during pregnancy that may affect your sporting performance:
Increase in body weight – as your body shape changes, the centre of gravity moves forward increasing the curvature of your spine. This makes rapid changes in direction difficult. The increase in body size can also make some activities uncomfortable (for example jogging), particularly in the last trimester.
Loosening of all ligaments – during pregnancy your joints will gradually loosen up ready for the birth. This creates an increased risk of injury. Take care with contact sports and any sport that involves jumping and frequent changes of direction.
Increase in resting heart rate – pregnancy increases your resting heart rate, so pre-pregnancy heart rate targets are not reliable. If you are a healthy pregnant sportsperson, your can monitor the intensity of exercise by your exertion symptoms. You should stop when you are tired; don’t exercise until you’re exhausted.
Decrease in blood pressure – as the placenta grows, you develop more blood vessels. This causes your blood pressure to drop. From about the fourth month, try to avoid rapid changes of position. This includes changing from lying to standing and vice versa. This will help to avoid dizzy spells. Never stop suddenly,because it takes your heart longer to adjust and a sudden stop in movement may make you feel dizzy or faint. After the fourth month, avoid any leg exercises while lying on your back, because the weight of the fetus can reduce the return of blood to your heart.
Type of sport
Whether or not it is safe for you to participate in sport during your pregnancy depends a lot on the type of sport you play. General recommendations include:
Non-contact sport – this is any sport that doesn’t involve the possibility of contact with another player, such as swimming, walking and jogging. In most cases, it is safe for pregnant women to play non-contact sports during the entire pregnancy, as long as they consult closely with their doctor and don’t over-exert themselves.
Minimal contact sports – this is sport that involves minimal contact, such as racquet sports and netball. These sports are considered safe during the first trimester (first three months) with the possibility of continuing into the second trimester depending on the circumstances (ie the level of competition, fitness of the mother and state of the pregnancy). Consult closely with your doctor if you wish to continue playing into your second trimester.
Contact and collision sports – contact and collision sports, such as soccer and basketball, are considered safe only in the first trimester.
Lifting and straining – exercises that involve straining, such as lifting heavy weights, are also potentially dangerous (particularly in the later stages of pregnancy) and are not recommended.
Sports to avoid altogether
Some sports or activities should be avoided during pregnancy. They include:
The risk of overheating during play
It is important to avoid getting overheated during pregnancy. Avoid exercising in hot or humid weather and in areas with poor ventilation. General suggestions include:
Don’t play sports on hot or humid days.
Avoid playing sports when you are ill or have a fever.
Make sure you drink plenty of water before, during and after sport.
Wear lightweight clothing.
Interchange with other players as often as possible so you get plenty of rest breaks.
The risk of injury during play
When you are pregnant, the changes going on in your body can make you more likely to injure yourself. For example:
Hormones such as relaxin soften ligaments, which increases your risk of joint injuries.
The extra weight places additional strain on joints and muscles.
Your growing belly affects your balance by pushing your centre of gravity forward.
See your doctor immediately
If you experience any of the following symptoms during or after exercise, you should stop and contact your doctor immediately:
High heart rate
Dizziness or faintness
Bleeding or amniotic fluid leakage
Shortness of breath
Back or pelvic pain
Decreased fetal movements
Severe and rapid swelling of your face, hands or ankles.
Any illness or pregnancy complication should be fully assessed and discussed before you start or continue an exercise program.
Things to remember
Pregnancy is a natural condition rather than an illness. Unless you have complications, it should be possible to enjoy your sport at some level throughout most of your pregnancy.
It is important to discuss the issues with your doctor and sporting organization before you make a decision.
If you have a medical condition such as pre-eclampsia, or if you are carrying a high-risk pregnancy such as multiple fetuses, your doctor may advise you to avoid playing sports altogether.