After they go home

Saturday November 9th, they left.

Even that sentence hurts to type out.

I knew what was going to happen. I have been down this road before. Almost years prior. It is a strange feeling. Only this time, I was a little more prepared.

This time I teared up after I gave them their journey book I made. A memory of our story. So Baby S will always know her story, before it even began. Everything from e-mails, to celebratory texts, milestones, photos.. it was all in there. Even a letter to the Dad’s and one to baby. ( that they still have yet to open and read)

I cried for a moment.

Because, my journey, was ending. Everything we have worked towards, accomplished, made happen… is ending. It’s the end of our journey. And I was going to start mourning this. Not a loss, but closing this chapter of my life. It’s a big chapter to close. For many reasons.

They were about to embark on the beginning of theirs . I was/am happy for them. To finally have this stage of their life begin, is amazing. I was excited for Baby S to finally go home and meet all those faces who have been awaiting her arrival. So much happiness was waiting for her back home.

But I was being left, weeks after bringing this little girl into the world, a little broken, a little .. well.. a lot hormonal and knowing that the next few weeks are going to be the hardest. I knew my emotions were waiting to consume me.

And though I am ok with this stage, as for me, its expected. The hormone crash. The high you ride after birth, the elevated emotions of happiness after giving a family their baby.. it all comes crashing down.

Its hard to explain. As I am still sorting through these emotions. Some days I am perfectly fine. Other days I step in the shower, the water hits my back and I am in tears for no reason.

” now what?”

” I am no longer a surrogate”

” What is my title now?”

I have entered that weird, awkward, emotional stage.

It is usually accompanied by silence. Home alone. No one to talk to. No one to really understand what its like sitting there, pumping milk that your body produces for a baby that is not here. The scar you are left with that is healing on your body. My own son never left a scar. But both of these journeys have physically left scars on my body. Have changed the way I look at my own body. Have even made me hate my own body. Which is hard to say. But I do learn to love my body again. It takes time. But I do get there.

I feel most people in my life do not know how to approach surrogacy after it is over. So they tend to just avoid me. Which is the hardest thing for me. As i am here coping alone.

I get it. Surrogacy is not super popular. And there is no book on ” how to handle your friend after they give birth to a baby that is not theirs ” . But a ” hey can I come visit” would be so good for my soul. But … silence. This is not a dig at anyone in my world. I am just writing the hard truth. It sucks on so many accounts.

I carried a little person for 9 months. I was aware of their existence inside me. Hanging out with me. Then POOF… I’m alone again. It’s a strange thing to try to explain.

Somedays I have all the drive.

Other days….

Other days I sleep away on the couch.

Gosh my kid the other day, we were shopping and I was looking at a shirt.

” Mom you should buy that “

me “ Yeah, but im not sure what size to get “

My kid ” don’t get the large, your belly will go away”

In that moment, i realized how aware he was of my feelings, my thoughts, everything. He listens. He understands. And he could not have been more supportive and positive in a moment i did not even know i needed it.

I raised him. He can drive me crazy on a good day, And i question my parenting style a million times a day, but in that moment… he reminded me that, I am doing ok. By him.

I am in that hard stage. 3 weeks PP. I go out in public looking … frumpy. Honestly, lol there is no better word. I look like hell most days. I feel like hell most days. My belly is loose as my skin does not know what the fuck to do or where to go. I am just slowly squeezing into hoodies and sweat pants. My leggings will be another few months. I wore alot of work out stuff prior. So everything was size SMALL. and TIGHT. I am not a size small right now. I am not tight. lol I wonder if this is the pregnancy that will offically destroy my body.

And for those who toss the glitter and butterflies : yes i know my body is amazing and it carried babies. Yadda yadda… I don’t want to hear that right now. I want to let my emotions feel my frumpy PP body. I am allowed to go through all the steps to get to my happy place. So toss your glitter somewhere else. 🙂 This lady ain’t buying it. I know my uterus is not even back to its normal size yet. I just need a minute to be in my ” ugh my body” stage.

I am at that wait stage. Feeling ok ( no pain ) but can not work out yet. I just have to ride out the next few weeks. Because my body is still healing on the inside after some major surgery. Also.. still not allowed to do anything but walk on my foot after that fun day of falling down the stiars. #clutz.

I have to re-enter the work life soon too. I am not ready for that yet. Hell my floors have not been moped in WEEKS. gross.. i know. I have been playing catch up on life, and trying to jump ahead on things … like FML Christmas is around the corner. The thought of pulling out all that shit, exhausts me. Yet … it could be good for me. Something to focus on. dive into.

I also have been trying to avoid what the doctor said to me, while I was still open on the table from my C-section.
” no more babies unless for yourself

I am still not sure how to process this.

I am still not sure if she made this comment because of my own health will be at risk… because no one talked about it after. They said my scaring was more from the previous c-section so it took them a bit longer, and they took their time. ( but it was planned and allowed for the time ).

She told me this while I was still open on the table. Not the right time to process a sentence like that. To have the ability to ask questions about the comment. To understand why a comment like that was said. What would be the risks? why is it ok to carry for myself ? Was it a dig at surrogacy? I am not sure if I will ever know these answers. I guess in a years time, I can request a exam and see how things are . How my scaring is, how my uterus is, how everything healed. SO I guess for the next year, I am in limbo. I guess I can not fully process if this was my last journey. Will I complete another one? When do I mourn the fact that this is it for me? I have had 3 pregnancies. 2 ended in C-section. Maybe that is enough.

I guess… I hold some of these feelings a little longer. ( shoves them in my back pocket )

insert :” gee Courtney, I wonder why you cant shake the extra belly flab … AS YOU CURSH A BOX OF GIRL GUIDE COOKIES. ” – That’s happening right now.

I am trying to stop my milk from coming in. I can push it to about 10 hours till my boobs are screaming at me. I only pump for 10 minutes to get that nagging feeling to leave. But i am ready to just be done. I am donating everything I have pumped since Baby S left, but it sucks sitting here pumping… you sit in your own thoughts. Blah.

I must be comping off really whiney. Sorry about that. Again, I warned you the next blog post would be all emotions. Emotions are high. It happens.

But I do have people to thank. Some people have been critical in my journey.

My clients. Past and present. For being so supportive and arranging your life, for the millions of apts I had to attend.

My first set of IPS. Gosh. I could complain to them , celebrate with them , reach out to them when I needed them. Because, they knew how I was feeling. They knew what was coming. They just … understood with out having to say a word. I am so grateful for them.

My husband . For dealing with me. Even on the worst of days. Pregnancy is not always rainbows. Its sickness, pain, complaining, exhaustion, tears.

My friend Jannah. For even though you live no where near me. I can still snap chat you and complain about life. or my lack of life. lol

Crystal. My morning calls is sometimes the only connection to the outside world. Sometimes you are the only person I talk to all day. You are like a round red blow up life saving device you toss into the water… lol Even for a few minutes. It recharges me.

Fellow surrogates. for allowing me to have my ” WTF is this SHIT” moments. When you are just taken back by something happening in your journey, and you need to share it with people who likely have the similar experience … and get it. Sometimes I needed someone to just validate my feelings, or laugh about it with me, because it was so ridiculous. Those who cheered me on, encouraged me, friended me. I am thankful for you all. You are all amazing women for what you do so selfishly.

My son. My son for always caring. For asking me how I am, at least once a day. For opening doors for me, shutting my doors, filling my water bottles, heating my tea, asking me if i need my back rubbed. Asking how the baby is. Telling me I won’t be big forever. lol Just being aware of me being pregnant.

My Doula for being there in 2 big moments of this journey. The one where I had to choose on how this would all play out. And for being there by my side in the operating room. The calm she showers you with, is everything in those big moments. Surgery is scary, and can still be scary in the most magical of moments. Not everyone holds little barf cups while you are strapped to a bed being cut open. 😉

My aunt. For showing up for me after. For taking me home. For driving from out of town to do this. For being there when I had no one else. For always being there.

For my sister. For showing up the day I arrived home. So I was not alone. For leaving work for me. For not letting me sit in silence, by myself.

To our friends Steve & carrie. You made my stay in the hospital stress free. Knowing my son was cared for, and had the BEST TIME EVER, really made things that much easier . Thanks for being the best part of our hockey family . My son adores you , as do we.

To my readers. For actually wanting to read what I write. lol For messaging me telling me you love following my journey, that my feelings are valid when certain things happen, and that you wish us all well. ❤

To the Dad’s.

I have personally thanked you. But it will never be enough. You trusted me with your most precious life. for 9 months you trusted me to do right by you and your baby. To bring her safely into this world. to care for her, even though, she was not mine.

You choose me. You trusted me. That means the world to me. Thank you for allowing me to have a whole day with your daughter before you left. To spend time with her. hold her. talk to her. For sharing your time as a new family with me while you were here. Trusting me to trim her little finger nails. lol I hope our relationship grows over time. I hope to watch her grow, and you both grow as fathers. I hope to hug you all soon.

To Baby S.

You are loved. You are loved in a way that is hard to explain. You are not mine. But a peice of you will always be in my heart. You will now, hold a special place in my heart. Always and forever. There is something special about surrogate babies. Especially those who are born on your birthday ❤