Grace’s Journey Part 2

The first week in November marked the date of the embryo transfer. Leading up to the transfer date, my friends and intended parents did all they could to “increase the odds” of a successful transfer, by having me get acupuncture, as well as massage.

The first week in November marked the date of the embryo transfer. Leading up to the transfer date, my friends and intended parents did all they could to “increase the odds” of a successful transfer, by having me get acupuncture, as well as massage.

Prior to this process, I had never had acupuncture done. When we met with the acupuncturist (who was also a “M.D.”) he told the intended parents and me that he does a lot of fertility treatments, and would do a session on me right before the transfer, and then come back after the transfer and do another. He believed that by adding acupuncture, it increased the chances of the embryo taking up to 10 percent.

While I didn’t see any research which supported his beliefs, my mom and I had a conversation in which she told me that if I was going to be a surrogate, I had to be “all in.” I had to be willing to consider everything which may increase the percentage of the chance the embryo takes, both traditional and non-traditional. I needed to consider their requests and try to put myself in their shoes. Not being a surrogate for my friends was never an option for me, so that meant I was “all in.” If they had requested I stand on my head for the first hour after transfer, I probably would have done it to try to reassure them and alleviate their concerns.

After my acupuncture the day of transfer, I walked down the hall to the doctor’s office. The transfer itself was quick and painless. I was told the embryo was placed perfectly, and now we just had to wait and see. I would know 12 days after the transfer date if it was successful. That 12 days had to be the longest of my life!

The intended parents intentionally didn’t tell me how many viable embryos they have, because they didn’t want me to be stressed about the procedure or worried what would happen if the embryo didn’t take. But of course, I did stress about it. I probably would have regardless if they had 100 embryos frozen and ready for transfer. I wanted SO much for this procedure to be successful! I wanted to know that my friends were one step closer to their journey of becoming parents.

After transfer, I was told to go home and rest for three days. I wasn’t restricted to bedrest, but I was told that I needed to sit down as much as possible, I couldn’t lift anything over 10 pounds, I needed to be off my feet. The extent of activity they wanted me to do was taking a shower in the morning, then sitting on the couch. I was fortunate in that my friend stayed with me those three days. We watched movies, read magazines, knit, and talked. She got me water throughout the day, got me food when I was hungry, and basically made sure I stuck to doctor’s orders. It was a good thing she was there, as she held me accountable. At first I thought to myself there would be no harm in driving my children to school, and I would be sitting – but then I remembered my mom’s conversation with me about being “all in.” “All in” meant I had to follow instructions to the “T” and not try to finagle things to appease my independence. Instead, I had to ask for help in getting the kids to school, in getting water throughout the day, and in having food brought to me instead of getting up and making myself something to eat.

After 12 days, I went back to the lab for more blood work and to anxiously wait for the doctor’s office to call. Longest day in history, for myself, the intended parents, and my office! By 1:30 that afternoon I received the call – I am pregnant! I will get additional blood work next week to check my hormone levels, and they will schedule to see me in early December for an ultrasound and to check progress. I don’t know if it’s fully sunk in for any of us yet, but I hope that my friends went out and celebrated – they are going to be parents!

Kimberly Surratt served for eight years on the executive council and has been the vice chair and then chair of the State Bar of Nevada Family Law Section. In addition, she is the President-Elect of the Nevada Justice Association and the chair of the domestic lobbying committee. She has lobbied with the Nevada Justice Association since 2004.

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