Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Ground Rules

The NY was arrogant enough (which I suppose you can be if you are the NY Times) to write yet another article on surrogacy. The title: (are you ready? It's a good one)....

Building a baby, With Few Ground Rules

So I immediately went to my dictionary just to confirm I wasn't misunderstanding the definition of 'few'. Perhaps there was a hidden meaning that meant we didn't need doctors, lawyers, surrogates, donor sperm, contracts, life insurance policies, debt, and the ten's of thousands of dollars that created it. Perhaps that defined the 'few'.

The most painful part of the article, which features a horrid bitch named Lachelle who took back the 2 children she birthed through a donor sperm & donor egg surrogacy, was that this is occurring in my backyard. Not literally, but almost. Just miles away, the intended parents sat in their empty home much as I am doing now. They had hope, just as I am trying to have now. The walls in their home probably didn't have a single child's fingerprint on them (as the neighbor mentioned to me today how nice it must be to not have children touching my freshly painted walls). Their home was too quiet, the bank accounts too small, and their fears too overwhelming. But, just as I, they proceeded down a path that requires trust when we have no strength left to trust. The bar was set higher and so they jumped higher. They trusted. They spent everything they had and gave every bit of themselves to another one. And that bitch stole their babies.

Somewhere along the path of infertility I've realized that anger doesn't feel quite as bad as sadness. If I'm angry, it can be at somebody instead of sadness which is mine to own. It's too painful to be sad for Amy & Scott, so instead I'm furious at their surrogate. Amy & Scott, I'm sorry you trusted and were deceived. I'm sorry you spent more than you had and are left childless. I'm sorry you're on the TV in so many homes right now because Lachelle went to the media. I'm so sorry.

The few ground rules that the NY times article refers to is the lack of laws that support or defend one's rights in a surrogacy agreement. I agree. It's actual bullshit that such an arrangement is deemed to be illegal in my state but can be done for international couples if you take a jet plane to California. Perhaps they should make an island for all of us infertile couples to live on and we should have a new constitution and a set of Senators that actually work through the summer so they can craft laws that will entitle us to become parents. Until then, we proceed in the only way we can. We turn to sperm and egg donors, surrogates, doctors, accupunture, herbal supplements, and anything that offers even a false promise of making us parents. When the government would like to work more than 6 months out of the year, when judges are willing to enforce the intent of a contract, and when doctors and attorneys can get us pregnant without making us broke, then perhaps we can build a baby with even fewer ground rules.

Monday, December 7, 2009


M and her dh went Christmas shopping this past weekend to a large shopping area near their home. They stopped at an outlet mall that I'm assuming she'd never been to before and she sent me a text sharing her excitement about the selection of baby and maternity stores and that she and I will have to go there next summer. Next summer. I'm sitting in my office as I type this watching the first snow flurries hit the cold Michigan ground. The next time I sit outside on a hot summer night, the next time we unpack the patio furniture, the next time we swim in the neighbor's pool, the next time we light fireworks, the next summer will be the summer we've been waiting for.

Our basement remodel has transitioned from a mess of electrical wiring, insulation, and drywall dust to a space that is about to become livable, comforting, and warm. The paint is going on the walls today and the 'man's bar' is in full construction mode. The bathroom has been tiled and carpet installation is scheduled for December 23rd. It's bizarre the connection that I'm able to make between this project and our baby. My dh has done most of this work himself but we are contracting out some of the specific projects, one of those is the man bar. I'm literally in awe how these men are able to transform the piles of wood into such a beautiful structure. I went downstairs yesterday to check on their project and was struck at the talent that was evident in my basement. I was so thankful for their excellent work and felt compelled to tell them that they weren't just building any bar, but the bar that is in the space that we will rock our baby to sleep, change his diaper, and perhaps even the space where he will learn to walk. This isn't just any bar! I resisted my urge to share those thoughts with them, but continued thinking them still.

Dh has made a single decision thus far in our surrogacy journey and that is: He doesn't want to know the gender of the baby. Yep. I'm not sure if he's forgotten he married a type A, can't remember that I plan everything about 3 years in advance, or simply enjoys the idea of torturing me...but whatever the reason, he's certain he doesn't want to know. I'm actually quickly warming up to the idea of the surprise.