1. Find a surrogate! (February 2017)
Brandi and I met each other on a Facebook page called Intending Parents/Surrogate Meet Up on February 10th. I posted a picture with this caption, “This little girl needs her brother or sister. Is anyone in MN willing to help?” Brandi responded, “I’m in Mn…”
We spoke for several weeks, had our families meet in person several times, and made sure we agreed on all core areas before we officially declared it a MATCH in April. We live only 35 minutes apart.
The picture I posted on the Facebook site
Below is the first time we met in person – the ultimate blind date!
We get together every couple months! The sweetest part? Her 4 kids and Teagan adore one another!
2. Get attorneys (April 2017)
Brandi and I found each other online independently with out the help of an agency. Thus, we needed to make sure we were both mutually protected. In April we both found attorneys. We have an attorney. Brandi has an attorney. Together our attorneys drafted our surrogacy contract to make sure both parties were equally protected and represented.
3. Psychological Evaluations (May 2017)
Mandated by the state of MN and our IVF Clinic, Brandi/Bryan and myself and Travis had to go through extensive physiological evaluations to prepare us for this process. All four of us took personality tests and had sessions with a surrogacy psychiatrist. During this time every worst case scenario was discussed including matters of life and death of our baby, but also of Brandi. In May, we passed these evaluations.
4. Find an IVF Clinic and undergo IVF: (May 2017)
As this baby is 100% biologically ours I had to undergo IVF to harvest my eggs. Travis injected 50 shots into my stomach and butt over the course of 21 days. On May 24, they surgically retrieved 9 eggs, 7 of which were mature. They fertilized my eggs with Travis and 6 fertilized. They then grew the fertilized embryos in the lab for 5 days to see which ones continued to grow and multiply and ultimately hit a crucial stage called blast. 4 of them hit blast!
The day my shots arrived!
My first injection
Right before egg retrieval surgery- full of eggs. Unable to walk – waddling like a boss.
Going in for egg retrieval surgery!
The eggs retrieved – the black circles!
5. Test the embryos: (June 2017)
We elected to have our 4 embryos tested to make sure they had the right amount of chromosomes. A cell was taken out of each embryo before they were frozen. The cells were sent to a lab in CA that conducts PGS testing. Two weeks later we got the devastating call only 1 out of 4 of our embryos was normal, a little girl. Due to this, I will be doing a second IVF this August to harvest more eggs.
6. Surrogate Medical Evaluation (July 2017)
On June 10, Brandi underwent an extensive medical exam at the IVF clinic. Saline was injected into her uterus to check for any issues such as polyps, cysts, or fibroids. She passed with flying colors! In addition to these tests, the FDA requires blood and urine tests by all parties involved to ensure we are not spreading disease to one another and the baby. Surrogacy is viewed the same as an organ transplant by the FDA. You are putting 3rd party tissue into someone else. As sexually transmitted disease is a concern, both Bryan and Travis had to undergo this testing.
Brandi’s reaction learning she had passed the medical eval!
7. IVF round 2 for Tory: (August)
To harvest more eggs and give us the best shot I will undergo another round of IVF starting August 13th. The one normal embryo retrieved last time is currently frozen. Although she is normal she is a lower grade embryo. We will harvest one more round of embryos and will select the strongest one for transfer between the two batches. We are going Darwin on this – survival of the fittest. The strongest healthiest embryo will be the one transferred into Brandi.
8. Brandi starts her injections: (August 2017)
Brandi has to take injections 5 weeks leading up to the egg transfer and for the first trimester assuming she becomes pregnant (Can we just all give this woman a standing ovation now?!)
9. Embryo Transfer: (September 2017)
AKA get Brandi pregnant day is scheduled for 9/27! Each transfer has a 60-70% success rate. If we need to do another transfer it will be roughly around Christmas.
If this first transfer works, Baby Daudelin #2 will be due June 15, 2018!
10. (Update: The first transfer WORKED but was delayed a couple days. Baby boy Daudelin is due June 17, 2018!)