Last time I showed you my ankles/feet they were swollen and quite hideous looking. Today they are back to normal, actually they have been for many weeks. This is a very pointless post but I wanted to take another opportunity to remind everyone how excited I am for my cruise (oh, and to show off my pedicure, ha!).
Soon these cute little toes will be nose diving into the sand...
At the end of January my mom invited me to St. Thomas. She explained to me that she won a short trip (about 3 days) but she wasn't exactly sure of the dates. She knew it would be toward the end of February. Of course, I quickly accepted her invite.
I talked to my mom a few times after the invite and got all of the trip details. I applied for and received my passport (yes, I am thirty-five and I didn't have a passport until now). I talked to my daycare families and told them I would be closed for a few days. Lined up people to watch my kids. Check, check and check. All set to go.
Fast forward to this week.................................. my husband calls me over to him. He is sitting on the couch with his computer. I sit down next to him and I think to myself that he is acting a little strange. He smirks at me and starts playing the song "Kokomo" by The Beach Boys. Now I think to myself "who is this whack-o I'm sitting next to". Okay, I didn't really think that because he's a goofball and this behavior is typical. While the song is playing, he opens an email with a flight itinerary. This is where things gets weird and my mind spins 100 miles per hour trying to figure out what is being presented to me. Jeremy shows me the flight itinerary and the dates. Back to my mom for a second, the dates she gave me were: leaving MN on a Sunday and returning Tuesday, a short and sweet v-cay. Back to Jeremy, he says "I thought you were coming back on Tuesday". See, the flight confirmation showed me leaving on a Sunday and returning the following Sunday. I am thinking a hundred million things like "why is my flight info in his email", "why was the info emailed when my mom said she would drop off the info", "my mom rarely uses email", "what's up with these dates, why would my mom give me the wrong dates", "if these dates are real, what am I going to do about my daycare business" and other thoughts I can't think of right now. The hamster in my mind was showing his wheel who was boss, he was working so hard he was about to take flight on his wheel.
I know you're thinking "okay, we get it... move along already".
While I am trying to wrap my mind around all of this Jeremy opens another email. This one I can't understand at all. I see that it is another itinerary but since I am still trying to figure out what the last email was about, there is no way I can comprehend this email. This email has mine and Jeremy's name on it. It also has one of the new daddy's name on it. I quickly tuck away my thoughts about the previous email and start focusing on this one. My immediate thought is "what kind of joke is this". My husband is a storyteller like no other and I wouldn't past him to create a "fake" email/itinerary. I shake my head at that today because really... who would take the time to make such detailed emails.
Alright alright.... I'll get to the point...
I finally understand what is happening. Actually, I think I figured it out a few minutes before I realized I figured it out (does that make any sense at all!?!). I was just thrown off guard and a little overwhelmed.
Roy and Avner contacted my husband (sending thanks to my bff, Carrie) back in December. They told him they wanted to send us on a cruise after the babies were born. This privileged information was not for my ears to hear. To pull this off, Jeremy would need help. He enlisted my mom to help him create a fake trip so I would have a reason to get my passport. Jeremy also contacted most of my daycare families and had that all arranged. He lined up care for our boys (sending thanks to my mother-in-law. I sure am happy she likes my kids).
I wish my reaction to this news could have been recorded for Roy and Avner. I know they would have been amused.
If you made it through this whole post... bless you! I know I could have simply said "Guess what, I am going on a cruise" and "I have the best IPs in the whole wide world".
We set sail soon and I couldn't be more excited!! Yay us!
I feel fortunate that I was able to spend time with the guys and babies for the last month. This is by default due to paperwork but whatever, I'll take it. I know, by reading other blogs, that this isn't always the case. I recently read a blog that brought tears to my eyes because her IPs (intended parents) have not been communicating with her. I don't know if it was part of their agreement or if something else happened but either way, how sad. I remember discussing communication and contact with the guys during our phone interview a little over one year ago. They asked if it was important to me. Being naive about that part, I assumed that most IPs weren't interested in growing a relationship with their surrogate. Foolish, right? So my reply was something like "In my perfect world, I would love to stay in contact after the birth but it wouldn't be expected". I remember thinking how easy it is to lose contact with friends that live in the same state as me, how realistic is it to keep in contact with someone on the other side of the world. The answer to that is: where there's a will there's a way. I hope there is always a will.
When I learned the date the guys would be leaving, I broke down. I was having an emotional week anyway so the tears didn't surprise me. Of course, I knew this was coming eventually. I teased that in my imaginary world they weren't leaving, ever. In my very real world, I knew they were going home. Also, in my very real world, goodbyes just suck!
Jeremy and I went to dinner with the new family Friday evening before they left. I knew when the visit was over we would say our goodbyes. Secretly, I think they wanted our last visit to be in public so I didn't chain myself to their luggage (I totally would have!). The dinner was great and it was wonderful spending this time with them. We said our final goodbyes and went our separate ways. I stayed busy the entire weekend but they were pretty much on my mind nonstop. It was sad to see them go but I am doing fine. Honestly, I am.
It's sweet that I have such great people in my life. I have a soft heart - if you haven't realized that by now- and there was concern from some family and friends. Thank you to those who checked on me through phones calls, texts, emails and Facebook.
It's a bizarre thing. I entered into this surrogacy adventure in the hopes of helping someone and changing their lives for the better. I did what I intended to do. The only thing I didn't realize was how much impact this would have on my life. There is a very slim chance I would have met Roy and Avner if it wasn't for the surrogacy and what a pity that would have been. I'll steal a line from the song "Glad you came" by The Wanted: "my universe will never be the same. I am glad you came" into my life (disclaimer: I am just stealing that line, the actual song is irrelevant).
I am officially parked in Hormone Ally. It's Friday and I haven't had a cry-free day yet this week. I know this sounds completely dramatic. On a normal day I don't even come close to being a drama queen so this is a bit unusual for me. The hormones will eventually balance out and all will be fine.
The good, the bad and the ugly are bringing tears to my eyes this week. For instance, the bad... learning the date the guys and babies are leaving, the ugly... dealing with tantrums and fighting children.
This post is more about the good, though. So starting smiling already, okay? A few nights ago, I was on my way to pick up my daughter from church. I was listening to a radio show hosted by a woman named Delilah. She plays sappy songs for listeners who write or call into the show with whatever happy or sad issues they have going on in their life. This particular part of the show a woman called in and wanted to dedicate a song to the birth parents of her new son. That in itself is purpose for a song dedication but the tears came to me as Delilah got more of the story from the woman.
The woman was on her way to an appointment when she noticed a pregnant woman sitting on the curb with a cardboard sign that read something about being homeless and in need of food. The woman said this broke her heart so she invited the pregnant woman to lunch. How amazing is that? It takes major heart and soul to invite a stranger to lunch. She is a truly selfless person. As they sat for lunch they talked. The woman learned that the 30-something year old pregnant woman was married. She was also a heroin addict. She knew she couldn't keep the baby and her husband was not physically able to care for a baby. The selfless woman gave the pregnant woman the name and phone number of a friend who happened to be a social worker. Not with any intent of adopting the baby but just to help this woman. Six days later the selfless woman received a call from her social worker friend. The pregnant woman wanted this angel of a person to adopt her baby boy. And that is just what happened.
I am sharing this because it shows how one awesome gesture (taking someone to lunch) changed the lives of numerous people. This child will forever be a gift to this family. His mother knew she couldn't provide for him and her selfless act was to give him to someone that could. Really it's a touching story.
The song Delilah chose to play was "You'll be in my heart" by Phil Collins. I have heard this song hundreds of times. It's a great song. Have a listen here:
To Roy, Avner and the babies: we will be many miles apart but please know you will always be in my heart! I love you all!