Surrogacy

Part 15: New Year, New (and final!) Trimester!

Just as the film started Em said that baby was moving a lot! I put my hand on her stomach and felt the biggest kick! This was the first time I had felt him and was quite a special moment.

Emiliana Hall

S: Christmas and New year went really quickly. It was the first time in years J and I hadn’t been dreading it.

For me it had always been ‘Oh here we go another year down and still no baby’. All I’d see was everyone enjoying time with their children and found it hard to focus on the joy. Parents buying their children Christmas pyjamas was something I never thought I’d get a chance to do. But next year this will be different! We FaceTimed Em on Christmas Day to wish bump a Happy Christmas!

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E: We saw S&J a few times over Christmas and it was nice to just have a quiet one at home with James and our kids. We’ve had such an eventful year and the slowdown time was lovely!

S: Em has recently trained to be a doula with Birth Bliss Academy and the lovely teachers there invited us both to be guests on their podcasts for The Doula Dispensary, so we went along a couple days after Christmas. I felt a bit nervous as to what the questions would be but Siobhan and Kicki put us both at ease and we had a great 90 minutes chatting about all things fertility and surrogacy. It’s probably the first time I’ve spoken about my history in a while so I definitely rambled as it’s quite a long story!!

E: It was great fun being on the podcast with Soph, originally Kicki and Siobhan asked me to join them but I said I couldn’t without Soph as it always feels a bit odd talking about the whole process without her! I would definitely have gotten things in the wrong order too!! So much has happened over the last 5 years! You can listen to the Doula Dispensary podcast episode here on iTunes, it’s also available on all other podcast platforms too.

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S: The following day Em and I took my nieces and her little girl to the cinema to see Frozen 2. Just as the film started Em said that baby was moving a lot! I put my hand on her stomach and felt the biggest kick! This was the first time I had felt him and was quite a special moment. She says he’s usually awake at 5am or late at night so I felt quite lucky that he had kicked me! I think it will he really special when Jack feels him (although it’s quite funny for me and Em watching Jack feel a little uncomfortable touching Em’s tummy!).

E: It was so nice to see Sophs face when baby Smith gave her a big kick, Mollie saw her excitement too which was lovely! I’ve started to feel like a lucky Buddha with my tummy being rubbed haha! I honestly don’t mind though, he’s very precious cargo!

S: Our consultant appointment was quickly approaching on 2nd January so I started to really swot up on my C section homework again. I wanted to be prepared for any questions, although knew it would mainly be Em needing to answer.

E: I had already done a lot of research into c sections before I’d even mentioned to S&J that that’s what I’d like to do, but I also (with the help of Instagram followers) wrote a blog on mind and body prep tips for c sections. I knew the consultant would ask me about my mental and emotional recovery (quite rightly so) and I wanted to be sure I knew what would be needed to help me in that space too.

S: Jack, Em and I went along to the hospital and Jack and I had to have a quick blood test that had been missed earlier in the pregnancy. We all then went in to the consultant. She was a very lovely doctor and seemed fairly sensitive to the situation. As we knew she would, she asked Em why after two home births she wanted to opt for an elective caesarean and talked us all through the risks.

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The doctor also talked us through the rules and regulations regarding both a c section and taking the baby home. Only one of us can be in theatre with Em (due to safety) and the baby can’t leave the hospital until Em does (because she has delivered him). I think both these rules made me feel a little emotional to begin as I had hoped Jack would also be able to experience the birth and although I’m very happy staying in hospital with Em and the baby (it will be an adventure!!) it’s more the fact of that choice being taken out of our hands.

With a c section the hospital stay is generally 1-2 nights, however there can be complications meaning it could be longer. These are both the hospital rules for safety which we have to adhere to, however I do think if the UK wants to start helping and supporting the surrogacy process these are things which need to be addressed alongside the legal side of things which I’ll explain in a later blog.

E: The discussion with the consultant was very friendly and professional in the right balance. The consultant made us all feel very comfortable with the process but asked the right amount of questions to make sure we all knew that a c section is not the easy option, and things will need to be put into place for my recovery. Much more so than a physiological birth. We also talked about what would happen if I went into labour spontaneously before the c section date, and agreed that we would let things progress but head to the birth centre to birth baby there. Theo was quite quick so it makes sense to me to not make things a rush with trying to get to the theatre. If he’s coming, then he’s coming! But having a birth-date helps us all to plan and makes me feel more relaxed about it all. You can read more about this decision here if you’d like to.

S: After our discussion, the consultant agreed to give us a date there and then! We couldn’t believe we were getting one so early but they did say it could change slightly. She also booked us on for 2 more scans at 32 and 36 weeks (as ivf pregnancies are higher risk apparently) which is amazing so we get to see him again soon!

So we have a date!!!!!!!! His birthday and the day our lives will change forever! OMG!!!!!

Up next

Time For a Hospital tour: What to expect & suggested questions to ask

We will always recommend that parents take a tour of their local hospital maternity unit whether they are planning a home birth or have been into the hospital already for other appointments.

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