Monday, August 31, 2009

Day 1- NICU

And so the story continues...

Thursday August 27th, 2009

0025- We return back to the waiting area outside the OR where our Blaze was born. All of the Doc's are visiting. We take some more pictures of the very happy bunch (see Birthday post). I ask Dr. Soni if I can go and see KT, who is recovering in a small room just off of the OR theatre. I put on a green OR gown and head into recovery while Gerry goes to get J, her husband from the family waiting area. KT is groggy, but all smiles and says she feels okay. I kiss her cheek gently and tell her 'thank you' again. I tell her that it's a boy and he is perfect. She smiles big and it is such a great moment in time. J enters the room and I quietly take leave so he can be with his wife.

Everyone is outside still visiting. We tell Dr. Soni that everyone is singing her praises on their blogs and the SI forum. Clients from all over the world and from many different clinics. She is in shock and jokes to Dr. Yash that, 'I am still the crazy woman you knew from way back.'

0100- Gerry is starved. We head over to the restaurant in the Rogus Hotel, which is very close by Hirananadani hospital, and one of the only ones that is still open at this hour of the night. We go for a bite to eat and regroup from a long, long day. Gerry calls and leaves a message with the consulate that we won't be able to make our Thursday a.m appointment and will be coming the following Thursday, as he was able to arrange earlier in the day. We aren't able to see our Angel until the next morning, so we decide to head back to the hotel to get a good nights sleep and a hearty breakfast to start our day.

0900- We return to the hospital refreshed and raring to go. We immediately head down to the NICU and go in to see our Angel. Gerry is told he is unable to come in and can only visit during visiting hours from 5pm-7pm. This doesn't go over so well. He has only seen baby Blaze for a few minutes the moment he was born. We ask to have assistance with the 'big book' to register Blaze's birth certificate.

This is not an easy task and takes 5 requests from different nurses, doctors and Administration who pass by numerous times. Finally we get it taken care of, all written in Capital letters, you do not fill in the baby's name, and no mistakes!

1000- I head in to visit with Blaze just finishing his morning feeding. He is sleeping soundly and the Sister tells me that he has had a bit of vomiting over the night, but is doing well and tolerating 7-10cc's of feed every 2 hours. They let me hold him and I stare down at him for what seems to be only moments, but later find out that it was 45mins. No wonder my arms were falling asleep. Not to mention the sweat pouring down my back from the heat in the NICU. I am covered with a blue cap, mask and green OR gown. I try and give Blaze kisses through the mask but its just not the same. I talk away to him and tell him that he is our miracle baby, that Daddy is very sad he cannot see him and hold him. I am in awe at his perfect little facial features; round lips, little nose and cute little double chin (just like Papa -my Dad). It is all overwhelming and still surreal to know that this little Angel I hold in my arms is ours forever.

1100- I go back in after a few moments outside with Gerry, feeling his pain and sadness of missing his boy. The Sister feeds Blaze and I stand to the side, getting pointers on holding and burping. She has trouble trying to wake him. He loves to sleep. She tickles his cheeks and says, 'beta, beta, beta' which means son in Hindi. The Sister let me burp him. He let out a big burp and I tell him with a giggle, he is just like his Daddy. He is SO tiny, but not as tiny as the girls that surround him. One baby girl to his right is 1 kg and the other to his left is 1.5 kg. Blaze is a giant compared to these 2 little ones. He is the healthiest baby in the NICU. We change his little diaper and I get to see his cute little butt, back and black curls of hair at the base of his neck. He really is perfect in every way! We swaddle him up and my post partum nursing training from years past, starts to come back to me. I don't want to leave him again. I am savoring every single minute I have with him. Gerry and I head back to the room for a snooze.

1300- I am back just in time for the 1pm feeding. I am getting more comfortable holding Blaze. He suckled great as the Sister feeds him with a syringe and he eats all 10cc's, Great! I tried to help wake him to feed by rubbing his little hand, and he gave me a little grumpy frown. Both the nurse and I giggle at his many funny faces. Daddy sneaks pictures through the tiny window to the door entering the unit.

This time I swaddled him on my own and he started to cry as I left. It broke my heart for the first time. Just the first of many...I am sure.

1500- After his feeding, we head up to visit with Dr. Soni. We haven't been told anything from the nurses and do not know what the Pediatrician's plan is, as Blaze was only supposed to be in the NICU over night. His Daddy is getting very impatient and just wants to be with his son. Dr. Soni is her usual wonderful self and calls Dr. Mehta to get some information. She doesn't have the news we wished for...Dr. Mehta wants Blaze to be eating at least 20cc and vigorously before he will discharge him to our room.

1700- DADDY GETS TO SEE HIS BOY! It is such an emotional moment. Gerry cries tears of joy at the long awaited moment he can hold his son. He talks to Blaze and kisses him over and over again. It is such a beautiful moment it brings tears to my eyes. But, it is short lived when a mother comes in to breast feed her baby, Gerry is asked to leave. We are not happy. They cater to the 'Mom' only in the NICU. Which is very different from the U.S. What if I wasn't there and he was the only parent? What if he were a gay man and there was no 'Mom' involved? What then??? The frustration builds for both of us. We JUST want our son with us. We talk with Dr. Soni again as the nurses tell us Gerry can only come in to the NICU for a few moments during the 2 hour visiting period and then he must leave once Blaze's feeding is done. Why a 2 hour visiting hour then? Dr. Soni calls down to the NICU and tells them to allow Gerry back in to see his son for the remaining time he missed when he got kicked out. She is frustrated too. We understand it is a different culture and a different country but it is so hard when such deep emotions are involved. No one can tell us the same information, it always changes, you get a different answer to the same question. The rules change by the hour. But, the good news is that Dr. Mehta will be rounding @ 1030 pm and will meet with us after examining Blaze. So...again we head back up to our lonely room all alone.

2230- Dr. Mehta arrives as scheduled, but tells us he wants to see how Blaze does tomorrow. Still no Discharge. We are both very, very sad. What turned into just one night of observation is not what we had originally planned for. I try to keep positive telling Gerry this is just a few days of Blaze's life, and we have the rest of it to spend with him. That the Doctors are just being cautious and we don't want to do anything prematurely and end up with a sick little guy. It doesn't make it any easier for us though when all the other hospital staff Pediatrician's come out and say, 'Oh, your little guy is doing great! Still no discharge?' We both decided our stay at the hotel did us good and since we have just an empty hospital room with a very uncomfortable couch we would head back to the VITS hotel for the night and arrive bright and early to anticipate a Friday discharge. Fingers crossed...

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Happy Birthday Blaze!

Wednesday August 26th, 2009

0200 - KT is still in the hospital. She has been transferred from a regular ward room on the 5th floor to a Labor and Delivery room on the 2nd floor earlier in the day. Dr. Soni had Cerviprime Gel applied to her cervix to help with dilatation.

0915 - Update from Dr. Soni to Dr.. Yash. Contractions have started but not as she anticipated. KT is only 1cm dilated. A Pitocin drip is started. We are officially in labor!!! We head off from our hotel room to the SI clinic to pick up the Docs.

1215 - 2cm dilated. Pitocin drip on hold. Contractions 15 mins. apart. So we manage to get some lunch with the entire SI staff before heading to the hospital to check into our room. Gerry is very anxious and requests Dr. Yash call Dr. Soni again to see if we have time for lunch. Dr. Soni just laughs and tells her, 'Only 5 mins. have passed! I will notify you if there is a change. Tell Gerry he will be the first to know.'

1430 - We all arrive at Hiranandani hospital. Dr. Yash, Dr. Sudhir and the expected parents. We check-in to the hospital at the admitting desk and with the help of Dr. Sudhir it only takes a couple of minutes. We go up to our room, #415 (just a single room as we didn't feel we needed the suite and wanted to save $$ where we could).

We drop our bags off and head down to the second floor 'Labor and Delivery' to visit with KT. J, her awesome husband is with her. He hasn't left her side for 2 days. What a guy!

He tells us he missed the labour of his 2 boys and so,'there is NO way he is going to miss this.' KT is still on the NST(non-stress test) machine and she smiles to see us. We can hear the baby's heartbeat and I sit and touch her belly and feel the contractions.

KT is such a trooper. The baby's heart rate slightly decreases as she has a contraction and she just grimaces not making a sound. I stroke her forehead and arm and tell her how strong she is, and that 'I would probably be waking the whole hospital with my screams.' KT gets a giggle out of that.

2100 - We head back down to visit with KT after the Docs leave. We had gone back up to the room and both taken a bit of a nap, since we are sure that we are in for a LONG night.

Dr. Soni is in to check on KT and gives us a detailed update. KT has not progressed past 2cm even though the Pitocin drip was restarted. Her contractions are regular and each time the heart rate of the baby slightly decreases but labor is not advancing. KT is in pain. We have 2 options Dr. Soni explains; Stop the drip and wait it out and see if she progresses, or do a c-section and get the baby out. We both tell Dr. Soni we trust in her 110% and she is the boss, whatever she feels is best for both KT and the baby, we are on board. She says that even if we wait it out, KT may not progress and she is in SO much pain already. With the babies size and heart rate lowering slightly with each contraction we don't want to wait and then run into an emergency and have to rush her in for a c-section, which at this point is where she suspects it may end up. Let's not put either of them at risk. At this point a c-section is probably for the best. 'Let's just get the baby out and both the baby and KT will be just fine,' she says. Dr. Soni first asks, if we are 'okay with that?' Of course we agree. She then turns and explains it all to KT and J in Hindi and they both agree, 'yes, let's do a c-section.' We were all in agreement and it was nice to know we all felt the same way. Dr. Soni had already called and told Dr. Yash the options so everyone had been well informed. After Dr. Soni leaves the room, KT looks up at me, smiles and says, 'Soon you will have your baby.' What a heartfelt moment for me, Gerry and I were worried about her procedure and all she could think about was us. Gerry and I each gave her a kiss on the forehead and stepped out so the Sisters (nurses) could prep her for OR. As we waited, Gerry had tears in his eyes saying, I hope it won't be painful for her. 'I worry about what KT is going through.' I tried to console him, telling him that the procedure in itself she wouldn't feel at all, but there would be some pain while she recovers. She has J and all the care givers at the SI clinic to care for her, so we know she will be in wonderful and caring hands. Not long after, KT was wheeled by and we gave her a last hug and smile as we headed down to the waiting area outside of the operating theater.

2130 - Dr. Soni and her team pass by and she says with a big smile,'Give me 30 mins. and you will have your baby.' WOW THIS IS REALLY HAPPENING! The Anesthesiologist comes out and tells us what she will be doing. Again Gerry asks her about KT and the Doctor assures him she will be just fine. Just a few more minutes pass and Dr. Yash rushes by to get in for the delivery. She promised us before we arrived in Mumbai, that she would go in and give us every detail of our Angel's birth. Pictures and all:

Thanks for his first pictures Dr. Yash

We wait, Gerry peaks his head into the room where the nurses station is to see if he hears any baby cries.

Time ticks by, 30 minutes... 45 minutes... Now I am getting antsy. I start to pace the halls.

A nervous mother. What is taking so long? Is everything okay? Is KT alright? Is our baby okay?

Just then Dr. Sudhir comes rushing through the doors, 'I didn't miss it, did I?' We both laugh as he breaks the tension. He tells us how he was at the clinic getting his last dose of IV antibiotics with the nurse (since he is still feeling under the weather) when Dr. Yash called him. He pulled the IV lines off and told the nurse, 'I will finish later! I must go!'

The moment is perfect, everyone is there. We continue to wait. Now we see the Medical Residents and Doctors and various other people pass by, they are all tight lipped but smile as they pass, and we know that we are just seconds away from the big moment.

2222 - (I wonder if the number '2' will be his lucky number?) Dr. Soni rounds the corner at the nursing station as we peek through the little window. Our moment has arrived. She comes through the door, 'CONGRATULATIONS, you have a healthy baby boy!' I look at Gerry and say, 'You have your boy.' We look down at our Angel in Dr. Soni's arms. The tears begin to flow. He is perfect in every way. Big blue/grey eyes stare back at us. He is quiet and curious.

Dr. Yash and Dr. Sudhir are all smiles, and snap photos as Dr. Soni places Blaze into our arms.

The happy Indian God Parents

Gerry talks to him and he immediately turns his head to the sound of Gerry's voice. He is Daddy's boy! I look up and say (much to their surprise) Congratulations Indian God Mother and Father to Dr. Yash and Dr. Sudhir. They smile and say, 'we wouldn't have it any other way', and neither would we.

It was a moment etched in our minds forever.

Dr. Soni, Gerry and Dr.Yash

And now me too

2235 - (I kinda lost track of time at this point) The Resident Pediatrician takes Blaze to the NICU. Dr. Soni says, he is fine, but we want to observe him over night, he is still slightly early at 37 weeks so lets not take any precautions. The umbilical cord was very thick and it was wrapped around his neck once. 'Its a good thing we went ahead and did that c-section. She would have needed it anyway.' I think what my Mom will say, as she still to this day, tells me stories of my birth with the umbilical cord around my neck 3 times. We both follow Blaze to the NICU. We go in for a few minutes to see him before we go up to our room. We just beam and say to each other as tears stream down our faces, "Look at what we have done. We are so very blessed. Our perfect little Angel has arrived."

And this is only just the beginning.... (we promise more pics of handsome little Blaze)

Where to start ???

I am going to try and split this up, so to capture a day in the life of new Mommy and Daddy and Blaze's amazing adventures in Mumbai. Sorry it has been so long since we updated. Yes, we have had internet connection here at the hotel, but we have been a very busy bunch and finally today we have decided its a family day here at the VITS and Mommy needs to work on the blog.

But first some very important photos that many of you have been waiting for (patiently, I might add) just to tide you over:

Our beautiful little Angel


Daddy and his little man


Flirting with Dr. Yash

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

INTRODUCING TO THE WORLD....

With much love and overwhelming happiness we are very proud to introduce:

BLAZE XENNON

Xennon (pronounced Zee-nun, meaning from a foreign or far away land)

He arrived into this world at 10:22 pm India Standard Time on August 26, 2009 weighing 5.9 lbs. He is absolutely perfect in every imaginable way. KT and baby are healthy and well.


With tears of joy the first time holding our Angel.



His little head turned to stare, eyes wide open at Gerry at the sound of his voice. Priceless moment.

We are very tired and going to try to get a few hours of sleep, but will give all of the details very soon. Special thank you to all the staff at Hiranandani Hospital, KT and hubby J (who never left her side), and the fabulous SI team. Huge thanks to all of you for your kind and loving words and who patiently waited for the long anticipated arrival of our little Angel.

Stay tuned...

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

And the baby is....

STILL IN HIDING....

I suppose he/she is enjoying the warmth and comfort in KT's belly and knows we are here so, Why the rush???

We are dying with anticipation to see his/her little face and hold him/her in our arms.


Today we headed to the hospital with bags in tow, ready to check in for the night. We met up with Dr. Soni in between her rounds and she said that 'she didn't want to rush things.' We are in complete agreement with her and told her that we trust her fully and knows that she knows what is best and will hold on, although we are very anxious! She laughed at Gerry's nervousness and said, I know Rhonda will keep you calm.

So, we went up to visit with KT for a while. We spent over an hour with her and her hubby 'J'. She sat crossed-leg on the bed and barely looked pregnant. J's English is quite good and we were able to have a great conversation with them both. We smiled and laughed and reminisced over pictures of our last visit and shared pictures of the nursery. J said the boys wanted to know when Auntie and Uncle were coming back? We told him to pass along that we have Power Ranger goodies for them both. I held KT's hand and told her I would see her tomorrow prior to delivery and she grabbed my hand tight and smiled. It was such a wonderful bonding moment. We chatted about their new home that they would buy with the money they will receive at the end of it all, which would be any day, as her commitment would soon be over. We even managed to smuggle a few snacks in for KT from the little store in the hospital, as she is not a big fan of the hospital food. She giggled when we handed her the bag. She told us this pregnancy has been very good and very similar to that of her two boys. We are so thankful she has been so healthy. We couldn't have hand picked a better surrogate for us ourselves. She is an Angel and J is just as wonderful. They are so humble and appreciative. They thanked us over and over for this opportunity and we immediately returned that 'no' they are both the ones to thank endlessly for what they are doing for us.

This morning at breakfast was so nice. All of the staff members were coming up and asking us about 'the baby.' One of the chefs who we hadn't seen since our last visit in April, approached Gerry and said, 'hello sir, you are back. It has been 4 months since I last saw you. How is your baby?' We were shocked that he remembered us from our last visit and it was so heartfelt to know that all these people are so genuinely interested. As we left they all wished us 'Congratulations in advance.' And lots of prayers and good thoughts.

So it looks like tomorrow (Wednesday here in India, but it might still be Tuesday back in the US and Canada) is the BIG day for now. We are to arrive at the hospital ready to check in around 12 noon and Dr. Soni promised she should have more news at that time. In the event that our Angel decides to make his/her grand entrance over night, she said she will call Dr. Yash right away to inform us, and thankfully we have Agit, one of the SI drivers ready at a moments notice, and he lives only a few minutes away from our hotel, WHEW!!

So for now we wait.....

Monday, August 24, 2009

Mommy and Daddy Are Here

WE FELT OUR ANGEL KICK!!!

We arrived at the hospital Monday morning just when KT was having her NST (no stress test) done. She was laying in her bed in a room that she is sharing with one other woman and her small child. As the machine let us hear the heartbeat and it printed out a strip, all was calm. As soon as Gerry and I each placed our hands on her belly, the heartbeat elevated and the kicking started, AMAZING!! It was as if our little Angel knew we were there. Our baby is in the proper head down position and ready to come on out. It was amazing to feel her tummy and our baby. KT was full of smiles and is feeling SO great, 'just bored to tears' with all of the forced bed rest. Poor thing, she is such a trooper, and we told her over and over how wonderful it was to see her and how excited we are about the birth. We will see her Tuesday afternoon, hopefully just prior to the birth of our angel.

We stopped at the Haiku grocery store in Hiranandani and got a few snacks. They have most everything that is needed once the baby arrives. We personally bought everything in the US, and brought it with us as we wanted to take no chances on not being able to find just what we needed, but if we run out of anything we know just where to go.

This morning we packed our baby's and Mommy's bags for the hospital. I kinda felt like a pregnant lady preparing my bag for the delivery room. It was really exciting. We had to pick out a cute first outfit and lots of goodies for a couple days stay. Gerry also got to pack his Diaper Dude Camo baby bag, stuffing it full of all of the essentials for our soon to be many outings in Mumbai with our little one, including the very important Thursday morning trip to the US consulate.

Dr. Yash received a phone call from Dr. Soni while we were at the hospital visiting KT. She was at home celebrating with her own Ganpati for the Ganesha Festival and asked if we were all coming over for lunch. We arrived and were welcomed with open arms. Dr. Soni served us personally with a tali of all homemade veg cuisine (made personally by her). It was so delicious. Gerry even enjoyed seconds. Her family and many of her staff and co-workers from Hiranandani were there as part of the celebration. It was so wonderful to experience such an authentic Indian custom and an honor to be invited to join them.



Tuesday we spent the day at the SI clinic visiting with the entire SI team and me, playing nurse to Dr. Sudhir who is still feeling ill. Poor thing, he so wants to be a part of the action but is so exhausted. It was so nice to meet all the newest team members and some familiar ones as well. They were so welcoming saying it was 'so nice to finally meet us, as they have heard so much about us.' We even had a surprise visit from Amit (SI lawyer) who sat and caught up with us. He talked about what a momentous birth this is for him and SI as we were his very first contract signing and he has been a part of our journey from day one. He joked about how we should write a book. It was a bustling day at the clinic, but we tried to keep Dr. Sudhir in some sort of quarantine and spent a lot of time in the back room chatting and laughing with him and helping to administer his medications. It felt good to be his personal nurse for the day.


SI legal team

Gerry and Amit (SI lawyer)

We stayed till dusk and headed back to the hotel and enjoyed all the celebrations in the streets on the way. We arrived at our hotel in perfect time to see a big Ganpati passing by complete with all of the the dancers and band. We stayed to take pictures and video and were immediately spotted and grabbed to join in the fun. Gerry stayed back to take pics and I got drenched in pink/red powder and danced with the girls for a few minutes. It was quite funny and a moment we will not forget. The band stayed right in front of the hotel for quite a while showing their musical skills to us foreigners. We felt very touched to be included in their celebration.

We received a quick update from home that Frankie is doing well and has already become attached to Lauren. What a relief it was to know she is in good hands and hopefully she doesn't miss us as much as we do her.

Tomorrow is the BIG DAY. We should hear from Dr. Yash in the morning after Dr.Soni snips KT's stitch to let us know what time we need to head over to the hospital. We are packed and ready to go at a moments notice. In our p.j's if need be! Nothing is going to stop us from being there the moment our baby is born.

Thanks to everyone for the many emails and numerous comments here on our blog and on Facebook. We feel the excitement in everyone like you are right here beside us experiencing it every step of the way.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

WE ARE HOME...

That is exactly how we felt when our plane landed and we departed the airport in Mumbai. We are in the city and country that we consider our second home. Our child will always know where they came from and all the amazing culture and people India has to offer.

We had two relatively uneventful legs of our flight from Phoenix to Newark and then Newark to Mumbai. There were weather delays in Newark so we were told that our flight would be about 40 minutes late departing Phoenix, but no sooner did they announce that, then they announced that we were boarding. In Newark, the weather had created some backups and all of the different airlines were juggling for a parking space. We originally had to walk a considerable distance upon landing to our departure gate and would have to rush, but wouldn't you know it, the new gate we parked at was only 3 gates away. I guess out of bad situations, sometimes come unexpected good results.

The 14 hour flight to Mumbai didn't seem so long this time. Both of us were exhausted from being up late the night before doing some final packing and trying to get all of the suitcases within weight limits (we started with 3 suitcases overweight and 1 bag over sized). We each were able get some rest and even watch a few movies. The Mumbai airport is incredible. It has changed so much from our very first visit over a year and a half ago. Construction seems to be all completed and it is now bright, clean, organized and very welcoming. With the H1N1 flu, all passengers are required to fill out a screening form on the plane and then upon entering the airport, you need to hand the form to one of the numerous awaiting masked men and women. They stamp your form and you are off. A word to those landing the only struggle is that the baggage belt signs are at the far end of the belt and small and hard to see, however they announce the belt that you pick your bags up on the plane and then again when you enter the airport. A definite bonus is that the carts are free (the U.S needs to learn a thing or too). We were just a little panicked when all but one bag (the one with most of the baby gear) was MIA for a short time. But finally Gerry gave me the 'thumbs up' sign from afar that all was well. From our arranging and rearranging each bag we managed in the end to have only ONE over sized bag, costing us an extra $50.00, which we thought wasn't too bad, since we were in fact packing for 3.

Dr. Yash and Amit were all smiles awaiting our arrival. Big hugs were all around.


Amit had arranged for two people from the VITS hotel to bring our luggage back to the hotel, while we rode along with Dr. Yash and caught up on all the latest news. The wonderful Amit, had taken care of of our hotel booking for the next few nights here at the VITS which includes high speed wireless internet (so this post is thank you to Amit) and also an incredible breakfast. We were sad to have missed Dr. Sudhir as he has never missed one of our arrivals at the airport, but understood has he has been feeling sick and we know we will see him soon enough as we have a lot of time to visit over the next 24 days here in Mumbai.

We visited with both Dr. Yash and Amit before heading off to bed. Dr. Yash has a busy day today with egg pick ups and transfers. The most wonderful news we received is that KT is resting and feeling well and the baby is doing just fine. KT even called Dr. Yash earlier in the evening all excited, asking if we had arrived yet. She is an absolute doll and we cannot wait to give her a ton of hugs very soon.

We started our day up early...still can't sleep with the anticipation of the days to come. We laid in bed wide awake, talking about all of the excitement and nervousness we are feeling. We even reminisced about our very first visit to Mumbai since we were in the very same room. We went down for our awesome VITS buffet breakfast. All the ladies and gentleman greeted us with big smiles and were happy to see us again so soon. Everyone came over to our table to say 'hello'. It just seems so fitting to be here at the VITS hotel again where our journey all began.

What a spread!

Cereal bar

bacon, sausage, ham, etc.

Just like the sign says.


Fresh fruit every morning

We are back again same time as last year for the start of the Ganesh Festival. Dr. Yash said that even though she doesn't know, she thinks we will have a boy, because the Ganesha is a male God and it is symbolic. We love the God Ganesha (the God of new beginnings) and have 3 of them at home including one which hangs above the entrance to the nursery. It just seems natural that our little Angel will be born during this celebration. It looks as though if all stays status quo with KT and baby, we will finally be parents as of Tuesday. The stars must be aligning for this long awaited gift as a Tuesday birth in the Indian culture is considered auspicious (of good omen, promising success). This child has all the right stuff in their favor.

Only a few days left to vote and the majority believe its a 'boy,' just like Dr. Yash. We just hope and pray for a healthy child. Gerry secretly wishes for a boy, since he has 2 grown daughters, but we have 2 names picked out and are ready and happy as can be. Boy or girl, whatever the sex of our Angel we are already blessed beyond words.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

This is the last time________(fill in the blank)!

This seems to be the start of most of our sentences lately, ended by..... without a baby. It is SO much fun to think about how drastically our lives will change. I stopped for a moment over the weekend just to enjoy the peace and quiet of our empty house.

We have been in constant contact with the Docs, just in case KT goes into labor. She has been resting lots at the clinic and being taken great care of. She is anxiously awaiting our arrival in Mumbai.

Yesterday, I truly learned how I think it feels to be an impending mother. My cell phone rang at work and it was the Docs. They NEVER call my cell phone. I immediately began to panic and a million worse case scenarios ran through my mind. I tried to call Gerry and he was on a call at the fire department and couldn't answer his phone. I started sending message after message after message to the Docs, and finally got a response. It was only a short while, but it truly felt like hours with my stressed state. KT was at the hospital and had a scan. It showed her amniotic fluid was low and so they did a nonstress test (NST) on our baby. All was normal. Thank goodness!!! Dr. Soni decided as a precaution and KT being 37 weeks along, that she would admit KT to the hospital for closer observation. A NST will be done everyday, until delivery and hopefully KT and baby will remain healthy and can possibly wait for Gerry and I's arrival. We know she is in great hands and if at any point KT or the baby are in any danger they will go ahead with delivery. We wouldn't want to compromise either of them. OH the stress of being so far away and a mother-to-be. We are litterly days away from the big moment and I truly cannot believe it has arrived. God, help me to be patient and take many, many deep breaths (right Dr. S?) over the next few days.

We have completed our last minute shopping for gifts and a few odd additional baby things. We are packed and ready to go.

There is ONLY one thing that I am so very sad about. That is leaving my Frankie girl. She has been doing better (touch wood), but I still worry about her constantly. The great news is that our wonderful neighbours who usually take care of her, have their granddaughter Lauren staying with them and she is going to house/Frankie sit for us. Now, that doesn't mean I won't miss my whitey dog like CRAZY! ( I can't wait to see how she will react being a big sister) I am thinking she will be very protective of our newest family member.

Gerry has already been in contact with the US consulate to make our appointment. They definitely help our men in uniform as we have an appointment this coming Thursday and will have our little one's passport the following Tuesday morning. We are going to be heading out with Amit (our SI friend and old friend from the VITS) to look at a few places to stay. We still have the VITS as a back up, but Gerry wanted to 'try something new.' maybe the Sahara Star.

I am finding it harder and harder to sleep. My mind is going a thousand miles a minute with last minute preparation and 'what if's' and excitement of the coming weeks.

We had a great weekend visiting new and old friends. We even got to FINALLY meet up with Jax our surrogate friend who was in town visiting for a few days. Her little one is due with SI in November and so we had lots to chit chat about. It was nice to do this outside of Mumbai for a change.

We both said our good-bye's today at work and we were showered with hugs and sentiments of love. It was a wonderful feeling to have so much support.

I suppose as the title of the post states, this will also be our last post till we arrive in Mumbai late Saturday night. Fingers crossed and legs crossed (that one is for KT) for safe and uneventful flights. WE CAN'T WAIT!!!!! See you in Mumbai.....

Gerry came across this quote quite some time ago when we were doing our research into surrogacy in India, and I believe it explains why someone half a world away would carry another persons child that they don't even know.

"There is a social dimension to their service, an empathy with the childless in a society that views reproduction as a sacred obligation and believes good deeds performed in this life are rewarded in the next one."


Your Baby at 37 weeks:

Huge news this week: You're carrying a full-term baby! If KT were to go into labor today, all systems would be a go. Woohoo! Even though you can't wait for the little bambino to quite literally rear his head, keep in mind that your bun benefits from every day in the oven.

Other ticker-tape-worthy developments:


Baby's growth slows down dramatically this week, which is great news for your birth canal. His bones are still soft and pliable and will solidify after he's born. More great news for KT's birth canal.

So if he's all cooked and ready to go, what the heck is he still doing in there?! He's busy practicing for "life on the outside," working on his breathing, sucking, sleeping, gazing and peeing abilities. The only thing he can't practice yet is his ability to scream at the top of his lungs when he's hungry—but he'll do plenty of that in a few weeks.

At this point babies vary in size, but the average length is between 19 and 20 inches and most babies weigh approximately 6 pounds. About the size of an average largemouth bass.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Book em' Danno~!!!!

Flights are booked! We got an incredible deal with Continental, the best price ever of our 4 trips to Mumbai. Gerry being a Veteran really came in handy and it saved us about $1200.00, and we got the bulkhead with bassinet for the return trip already reserved. My hubby ROCKS! We are planning on trying to use our vacation club membership (which also saves us a ton of cash) and stay at our second home...The VITS hotel. Apparently it has also become a second home for some of the staff of SI. I think we started something?!

Yesterday was my Dad's 70th birthday. My brothers and sister planned a surprise party for him in Niagara Falls and everyone traveled from far and wide for the big event. Unfortunately us, being SO close to the birth of our little one, we couldn't make it. Thankfully we will be able to celebrate in person in just a few months when they come for their six month stint to Arizona. My Dad is such an amazing man. He has been a huge support to me over the years. Always believing in me, supporting me and giving me unconditional love. I am the baby of the family and very much a 'Daddies Girl.' My father worked 45 years to support his family. Never missing a day of work (difficult when its your own business I suppose), working in all the outdoor elements Canada has to offer, 12 hours a day, 5 days a week. None of us wanted for anything. We have SO many spectacular childhood memories, of ski-dooing, vacations, boating, etc. He raised 4 wonderful children and we all have learned to appreciate and excel in our chosen careers, because of his wonderful example he set.

Daddy's Girl,1972

Gerry has grown to love my parents like there were his own. Last year we had a medical scare with my father and it really hit home. All of us kids realized how lucky we are to have him in our life and I for one never take one day with him for granted. That is why Gerry and I try and spend SO much time with my Mom and Dad when they are here in Arizona. Life is much too short to not spend time with the ones you love. You can never get that time back. Gerry sadly lost his father suddenly 13 years ago. I unfortunately never had the honor to meet this great man. But, I know we would have hit it off with his love of fishing and the outdoors. My Dad and Gerry have become much more close since their snow-birding adventures and it is wonderful to see that Gerry is able to have that relationship with him as I know it means the world to Gerry.

So, to my Daddy, I love you more then you will ever know, I am blessed to have had you as a positive and constant support in my life for so many years and I am so excited for you to meet your newest grandchild very, very soon.

We spoke with the Docs the other night and got an updated belly shot of KT who is at the clinic resting till Birth Day! We can't wait to see her and give her a huge hug. Last night I had the pleasure of seeing KT in all her glory on Skype with the Doctors. Her smile was as big as day, as I am sure was mine. She looks incredible and says she feels great and 'Yes, the little one is kicking up a storm.' I hope we get there in time to feel it first hand. Thanks again Docs, it was GREAT to see you both too!

35 week baby belly

We are leaving on the morning of the 21st and will arrive on the evening of the 22nd. We have booked our trip till Sept. 14th to allow us enough time to take care of the necessary paperwork and take as much in of India as we can for our last visit for a while. As of now KT's cervical stitch will be cut on or around the 18th and we are hoping for delivery on or about August 24th.

I got to share some of our journey today with the girls at work. With starting a new job, many of them had no idea what we have been doing up till now. They were surprised and so supportive and blown away at our story. I even shared our magazine article with a few of them and one girl, became so emotional she had to compose herself before returning me the magazine. It was very humbling. Makes me realize how lucky we are to be where we are despite the struggles and pain we have endured. Tomorrow will mark one week till we are jet-setting once again! WOOO HOOO!

Your Baby at 36 weeks:

Your baby continues to put on weight at about ½ pound each week. This layer of fat will help your baby regulate his body temperature after leaving its climate-controlled womb. In fact, your baby will be 15 percent fat at birth (and KT ... well that's another story). Even in the womb, your baby can listen, feel, touch and see. The only thing separating him from living in the outside world is a little thing called the birth canal.

Other highlights this week:


His gums are firm with ridges that look somewhat like teeth, though his actual pearly whites won't start breaking through until he's between three months and a year old. Your baby has definite patterns of sleep and wakefulness—opening his eyes while awake and closing them while sleeping. Your baby will become alert and turn his head toward light and sound just as a newborn would—except when you put on that Celine Dion CD. Then the baby puts his hands up, turns away and gurgles, "Oh no you didn't!" Your baby is now around 18½ inches long and nearly 6 pounds—just about as big as a breadbox!

Monday, August 10, 2009

A Parents Weekend in Arizona.

It was a parents weekend all around. Saturday my dear friend and Mommy-to-be Danielle was in town visiting from Texas. Dani is 21 weeks along and we decided before we ran out of time with our little one coming any day, we would spend a Girls ONLY day together. We went and had pedicures, then a great lunch and finally some baby shopping. It was such a nice time. We laughed and reminisced and caught up on all the latest and greatest news of family, friends and work. It felt great to see one of my best girlfriends again and have some bonding time.

Mommies-to-be

Spa fun with Dani

Sunday was a continuation Parent's Day. Gerry and I met up with Chantelle and Cyndi and our new blog friends Bobby and Greg. Funny enough last week I had been shopping at a store just around the corner from home, picking up some stuff to take to India when I looked over and saw 'Those two Daddies' and baby Sabrina. I immediately recognized them from their blog which I had happened upon through Cyndi and Chantelle's blog. What a small world! I went over and said 'hi' and we chatted about our experiences with new baby and baby to be and realized we lived very close to each other. What GREAT guys! We decided to all meet up. What a group we were...two gay men who adopted, two gay women who used a sperm donor and Gerry and I doing surrogacy in India. We all have different stories, but were brought together by our love for family and the dream to have children of our own. It was such a fun time. Each of us learning from each other and talking of our stories and feelings and fears and hopes and dreams. Not to mention adorable and attention stealer Miss Sabrina G. Okay, now I think all babies are cute, but this little girl, well she seriously could be in commercials. When she smiles she lights up the room. Her Daddies are so proud of her and rightly so, she is a beautiful, sweet little girl. We agreed we would definitely do it again soon and this time we will be with one added addition to the group, our little angel, and then not long after that in December, one more, a baby boy.



Momma Cyndi getting her fill...isn't she a natural?


This is surreal! We are waiting and wondering and anxious and excited and, and, and...

I am sure we are driving the Doc nuts with our phone calls and 'just checking in' requests. Good thing they like us so much. We just love to hear their voices and get the latest news on our wonderful KT. She continues to do great. She even finally told the Docs what we can get her. 'A fleece blanket with leopard print to keep her warm this winter.' DONE! That was an easy one and we are so happy to be able to give her this small gift. We have been doing last minute shopping, which of course means last minute packing. We seriously need to STOP!!! Its just way too much fun and this being our 4th trip to India, we feel like old pro's in the gift departement. Although I must say we came up with some very special ones this time. It will be our last trip for quite a while (well maybe not that long!) and we just feel it is so important to show our appreciation and love for ALL the wonderful people who have made our greatest dream come true. KT and her family, Dr. Yashodhara, Dr. Sudhir, Dr. Soni and so many, many more over the last 1.5 years of our journey. Our small tokens of appreciation are not even compariable to the gift they have given us and there is no way we could ever repay them, but we hope they know that each and every one of them will be forever in our gratitude. We have grown to love and become like family to both Dr. Yash and Dr. Sudhir and we can't wait to see them again in just a couple of weeks. I am sure this good-bye will be so much harder as it will be one for much longer, but not for good! They are both such amazing people and we are truly blessed to have them a part of our lives now and forever.

So its just a few more days and we should have some definite news on when we will need to arrive in India for the birth of our precious angel. We are so thrilled that he/she has stayed put for such a long time now. We will be hopefully be meeting them in less than 2.5 weeks if all goes well. We couldn't be happier or more excited!

Your Baby at 35 weeks:

This week the final touches are being added to your mini-masterpiece and most of his development is going to packing on the pounds. While baby's movements may be becoming less jerky, he may do his final somersault in the womb soon—to put himself into the head-down position for birth.

Other fascinating facts:

Your little Karate Kid can't quite pack the punch he used to due to the limited space inside the womb these days. You're likely to feel more wiggles, stretches and rolls than kicks and jabs. The extra layer of fat your baby is adding will create those cute dimples on your baby's elbows and knees. His liver has begun processing his waste products, so you know which organ to thank when he has his first blowout up the back of his onesie.

Baby's nails are growing so long they may curl over the tips of his tiny fingers and toes before he sees a pair of clippers. He'll be in serious need of a mani-pedi once he's born.

Your baby is now about 5½ pounds and over 18 inches long—about the size of one of those price-club sheet cakes.