Surrogacy Timeline

For our current timeline, click here: Second Journey (2017-)
For our previous timeline, click here: First Journey (2014-2016)


The timeline below is a combination of both surrogacy journeys: one that came to a successful completion with the birth of our son in 2016 and one that is still very much ongoing, as well as a few of the important dates through the early years of our infertility before we turned to gestational surrogacy.

2020

September 18: Received word from the lawyer that the paperwork was submitted to the courts but now we have to wait to hear whether we will be granted legal parentage in time.
September 17: Dr. K and Dr. S finally signed the necessary paperwork for the pre-birth order.
September 16: Lawyer sent a scary email to the clinic asking for the paperwork to be completed; we’re 33 weeks along.
September 15: Checked in with the lawyer to discover the paperwork still was unsigned; followed up again with our nurse who said that the plan was to have it signed on Thursday.
September 14: Heard from the fertility nurse that paperwork is being sent to the doctors again and to follow up on Tuesday.
September 11: Received word that the clinic has not signed the necessary paperwork to give us legal parentage; reached out to our fertility nurse again to attempt to get the signatures.
September 10: Emailed the lawyer to follow up on what’s going on regarding the pre-birth order.
September 9: We’re 32 weeks along; Becca had an obgyn appointment and everything looks great.
September 6: We were able to feel Buttercup hiccup for the first time.
September 2: We’re 31 weeks along.

August 31: Spoke with my fertility nurse about getting the signatures from Dr. K and the doctor who performed the embryo transfer.
August 30: Paid the $50 monthly storage fee for our 2019 (IVF #3) embryo.
August 28: Kyle and I signed the pre-bith order and had it notarized before submitting it to the lawyer; reached out to our fertility nurse about getting doctor signatures for the paperwork.
August 26: We’re 30 weeks along.
August 19: We’re 29 weeks along.
August 12: We’re 28 weeks along.
August 5: We’re 27 weeks along and in the third trimester.
August 1: I was able to feel Buttercup kicking for the first time.

July 31: Kyle felt Buttercup kicking for the first time.
July 30: Paid the $50 monthly storage fee for our 2019 (IVF #3) embryo.
July 29: We’re 26 weeks along.
July 22: We’re 25 weeks along.
July 15: We’re 24 weeks along.
July 8: We’re 23 weeks along.
July 1: We’re 22 weeks along

June 30: Paid the $50 monthly storage fee for our 2019 (IVF #3) embryo.
June 24: We’re 21 weeks along.
June 17: We’re 20 weeks along; I was able to attend the growth and development scan in person which confirmed that we are having a baby girl. Unfortunately, Kyle was not allowed to be at the appointment as well, but we were able to FaceTime for the gender confirmation; we received the results from our NIPT scan and Buttercup is healthy.
June 10: We’re 19 weeks along.
June 9: Becca had her blood drawn for NIPT.
June 3: We’re 18 weeks along.

May 30: Paid the $50 monthly storage fee for our 2019 (IVF #3) embryo.
May 27: We’re 17 weeks along.
May 20: We’re 16 weeks along.
May 13: We’re 15 weeks along.
May 6: We’re 14 weeks along.

April 30: Paid the $50 monthly storage fee for our 2019 (IVF #3) embryo.
April 29: We’re 13 weeks along.
April 27: We had an unofficial ultrasound with the doctor while Becca had her check up and blood work. No measurements were taken, but we got to see the baby moving and hear the heartbeat for the first time.
April 22: We’re 12 weeks along.
April 15: We’re 11 weeks along.
April 9: Becca took her last progesterone injection for the pregnancy.
April 8: We’re 10 weeks along; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
April 7: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
April 6: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
April 5: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
April 4: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
April 3: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
April 2: First ultrasound with the obgyn since canceling the 8-week appointment with the clinic to avoid exposure; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
April 1: We’re 9 weeks along; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.

March 31: Received the records from our fertility nurse to pass on to the obgyn since she is unable to fax them while the clinic is shut down; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 30: Paid the $50 monthly storage fee for our 2019 (IVF #3) embryo; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 28: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 27: Heard from our nurse that we will be graduating from care early due to the pandemic; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 26: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 25: We’re 8 weeks along; reached out to our nurse again to try to find out what’s going on in terms of care considering the pandemic situation; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 24: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 23: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 22: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 21: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 20: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 19: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 18: We’re 7 weeks along; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 17: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 16: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 15: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 14: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 13: We had our first ultrasound and a heartbeat was detected to be 112 bpm. Baby is measuring 0.42cm from “rump to crown.” Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 12: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 11: We’re 6 weeks along; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 10: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 9: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 8: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 7: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 6: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 5: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 4: Second beta test showed doubling numbers and we are working on scheduling a 6-week ultrasound with the clinic; we’re 5 weeks along; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 3: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 2: First beta test came back positive! Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO to help sustain the pregnancy.
March 1: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.

February 29: Paid the $50 monthly storage fee for our 2019 (IVF #3) embryo; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 28: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 27: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 26: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 25: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 24: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 23: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 22: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 21: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 20: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 19: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 18: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 17: We transferred our May 2018 AA blastocyst; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 16: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 15: Paid the $50 monthly fee for keeping our 2018 (IVF #2) embryo frozen; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 14: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 13: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 12: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 11: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 10: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 9: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 8: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 1 cc of PIO as part of the transfer protocol.
February 7: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and started Progesterone in oil (PIO) injections as part of the transfer protocol.
February 6: Becca had a baseline ultrasound and blood work to monitor how her body is responding ahead of the transfer, took 3 estrace tablets and was able to finish Lupron injections.
February 5: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 5 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol.
February 4: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 5 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol.
February 3: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 5 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol.
February 2: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 5 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol.
February 1: Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 5 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol.

January 30: Paid the $50 monthly storage fee for our 2019 (IVF #3) embryo, our first payment for this one; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 5 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol.
January 29: Escrow account has finally been set up for reimbursements; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 5 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol.
January 28: Had to resend the contract with our signatures to our escrow since the version they had only had our carrier and her husband’s signatures; Becca took 3 estrace tablets and injected 5 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol.
January 27: Got a call from our fertility nurse threatening to cancel our upcoming transfer cycle if we didn’t pay– we already did– and had to sort it out with the front office over a couple of hours; received the finalized insurance paperwork for this cycle; Becca had a baseline ultrasound and blood work to monitor how her body is responding to the medication; injected 5 units of Lupron and started taking 3 daily estrace tablets as part of the transfer protocol.
January 25: Becca injected 20 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol.
January 26: Becca injected 20 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol.
January 24: Becca injected 20 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol.
January 23: Paid for our upcoming frozen embryo transfer and the additional fee for having a gestational carrier; Becca took her final birth control pill and injected 20 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol.
January 22: Got a call about payment from our fertility nurse and tried to pay online but it wouldn’t go through; Becca took a birth control pill and injected 20 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol. 
January 21: Becca took a birth control pill and injected 20 units of Lupron as part of the transfer protocol. 
January 20: Becca took a birth control pill in preparation for the transfer and started injecting 20 units of Lupron as part of the protocol.
January 19: Becca continued taking a birth control pill in preparation for the transfer.
January 18: Becca continued taking a birth control pill in preparation for the transfer.
January 17: Becca continued taking a birth control pill in preparation for the transfer.
January 16: Spoke with our contact at the escrow company to work on setting up Becca’s access to the account for medical reimbursements; Becca continued taking a birth control pill in preparation for the transfer.
January 15: Paid the $50 monthly fee for keeping our 2018 (IVF #2) embryo frozen; Becca continued taking a birth control pill in preparation for the transfer.
January 14: Received instructions on how to finish the set up of our surrogacy escrow account and access it in the future; Becca continued taking a birth control pill in preparation for the transfer.
January 13: Purchased an insurance policy through ARTrisk for the upcoming transfer cycle; Heard back from the financial advisor at the clinic to confirm that we will have to pay a significant extra charge to transfer an embryo due to having a gestational carrier; Becca continued taking a birth control pill in preparation for the transfer.
January 12: Becca continued taking a birth control pill in preparation for the transfer.
January 11: Becca continued taking a birth control pill in preparation for the transfer.
January 10: Kyle and I read through an 18-page document and signed all the consent forms for a frozen embryo transfer to take place; Received information on costs for the transfer from our financial counselor at the clinic and asked her some questions; Becca began taking birth control pills to begin preparing her uterine lining.
January 9: Received the medication protocol for the transfer with a tentative date.
January 8: Becca received her box of transfer meds.
January 7: Sent a check to the escrow company for our account ahead of a transfer.
January 6: Becca had blood work done to update her infectious diseases panel so we can move forward with scheduling a transfer; Heard from our fertility nurse to say that she is ordering transfer meds so we will be ready and sending an undated protocol to Becca; Spoke with the fertility pharmacy to schedule Becca’s med delivery and submit payment; Reached out to the escrow company for instructions on funding the account.
January 3: Reached out to confirm that Becca and her husband need to have more blood work since they only just had this test done in May 2018 and heard back that it’s only good for 6 months so they do have to repeat it; Becca’s husband completed his blood work; Spoke with our fertility nurse to ask about what we should expect when planning to schedule a transfer.
January 2, 2020: Heard from our coordinator that we’ve been given official legal clearance from the clinic; Becca and her husband were sent paperwork for labs to screen for infections disease since it’s been so long.

2019

December 29: Sent a finalized contract to the escrow company for review.
December 27: Reached out to our escrow company about re-opening our account since it was put on hold in October when legal was dragging on.
December 26: Submitted the letter from our attorney to our coordinator through the fertility clinic but her office is closed until after the holidays.
December 24: Received a letter of legal clearance to send to our clinic for approval to work on scheduling an embryo transfer.
December 23: Becca’s signed contract was sent back to their lawyer.
December 19: Signed and notarized our final carrier contract; scanned the full document and sent it back to the lawyer; Becca and her husband signed and notarized their portion of the contract.
December 15: Paid the $50 monthly fee for keeping our embryo frozen.
December 13: Finally received the final copy of the contract to be signed and notarized by all parties.
December 12: Reached out to our lawyer for an update.
December 6: Consult with ARTrisk to talk about purchasing a health insurance policy for our carrier as a backup before the enrollment period ends on the 15th; finally heard back from Becca’s health insurance that there are no surrogacy exclusions for her prenatal care.
December 2-5: Working on options for health insurance while we wait for Becca’s company to send out their benefits plan in case we run into exclusions and need to buy another policy before the deadline.

November 28: Becca received the updated contract from her lawyer.
November 27: Heard from Becca that they still haven’t received the contract, a week later. Got in touch with our lawyer to ask what was going on but he said he did send it. Still waiting to hear what happened.
November 26: Becca reached out to her insurance company ask about their benefits again to try to resolve the potential issue with health insurance.
November 23: Paid the $1,200 fee for our carrier’s lawyer.
November 22: Finally heard from the lawyer late at night to say that he had gotten “sidetracked” by something urgent and did not send the contract earlier but had sent it to their lawyer today.
November 21: Checked in again to see what it going on with the contract.
November 20: Still waiting for our lawyer to send the contract.
November 19: Discovered that the lawyer still has not sent our carrier’s lawyer the updated contract.
November 18: Heard back from our lawyer about something in the contract.
November 15: Paid the $50 monthly fee for keeping our embryo frozen; approved changes to the updated draft of the contract.
November 14: Received the latest copy of the contract.
November 13: Received an email from the lawyer to say that he is only just seeing the revised contract now because it “didn’t show up in [his] inbox.”
November 10: Sent the contract back to our lawyer for updates.
November 9: Joined a closed Facebook group for Intended Parents through surrogacy to ask some questions regarding the contract.
November 6: Working on researching a few things for the legal contract.
November 4: Continued research for the legal contract.
November 3: Researching some issues for the legal contract.
November 1: Received the latest draft of the contract from our carrier’s lawyer for review.

October 29: Escrow account placed ‘on hold’ due to the legal contract taking so long.
October 28: Reached out to our coordinator with the fertility clinic about what we can expect for various timelines depending on when we finish legal.
October 25: Our coordinator at the clinic checked in to get an update on legal.
October 23: Spoke with our carrier about some of the wording with the contract.
October 22: Escrow company checked in to see if we’ve completed legal yet and what our timeline estimate is.
October 21: Heard back from the lawyer that things are taking longer due to revisions needing to be made.
October 20: Contacted the lawyer for an update on the contract.
October 19: Researching open enrollment for health insurance in Becca’s state. Since her job is changing plans, we will need to do a new insurance verification to determine whether there is a surrogacy exclusion for prenatal care coverage.
October 18: Received a check back from the clinic for being overcharged by the billing team by $32– wish it had been for more!
October 15: Paid the $50 monthly fee for keeping our embryo frozen.
October 8: Our carrier and her husband received the contract and will be reading through to determine any necessary revisions.
October 7: Finally, finally able to approve the contract to be sent to our carrier’s lawyer.
October 5: Finally received the updated contract to approve to be sent to our carrier’s lawyer.
October 4: Kyle was finally able to speak to the lawyer and discuss contract revisions. We were told we’d have the updated contract by end of day to look over this weekend, but it never came.
October 3: In touch with the lawyer trying to get the changes to our contract done and schedule a time to speak with him on the phone.
October 2: Working on setting up an account through the surrogacy escrow company.
October 1: Reviewed and signed the surrogacy escrow agreement.

September 30: Spoke with the third escrow company and received an escrow account agreement to look over and sign.
September 27: Researching more escrow options and have decided on another one to contact.
September 26: Researching more escrow options.
September 25: Tried to get in touch with the lawyer to follow up on some of our questions only to find he is out of town until next week; heard back from another escrow company only to find they’ve been recently acquired by a bigger company with some pretty bad reviews, so we will be contacting another option.
September 24: Continuing my research and narrowing down other options for an escrow company since the one we chose has been completely unreliable with regards to communication.
September 23: In contact with the lawyer regarding legal representation for our carrier; paid (what should be) the final bill for IVF #3: $384.99.
September 22: Further research for surrogacy escrow companies.
September 19: Contacted by the lawyer about reviewing the carrier contract; Kyle and I discussed the revisions we want to make to the contract and we finally were able to send off our compiled notes to the lawyer for updates.
September 18: Compiled notes for the carrier contract; reached out to escrow company.
September 17: Contacted by clinical coordinator about upcoming process and timelines for scheduling.
September 16: Kyle finished reviewing the carrier contract and we are planning to compile our notes to be sent for revisions.
September 15: Responded to the coordinator about where we are in legal and asked about estimates for a transfer date; paid the $50 monthly fee for keeping our May 2018 embryo frozen; working on finished contract review.
September 14: Kyle’s finishing up reviewing the contract.
September 13: I’ve finished reviewing the rough draft of the contract and Kyle is working on finishing up the rest of it before we compile our notes and submit them to the lawyer for revisions; contacted by our coordinator at the clinic for an update on legal.
September 12: Still carefully reviewing the contract separately and making notes– I am on page 32/42 and Kyle is on page 20/42. Hoping to have everything ready to send back to the lawyer within a few days.
September 11: Reviewing the contract.
September 10: Reviewing the contract.
September 9: Reviewing the first draft of the contract to be sent back to the lawyer with any changes.
September 8: Received a first draft of the carrier contract from the lawyer to review before being sent to Becca.
August 29-September 7: Waiting for the first draft from the lawyer.

August 28: Heard from our lawyer to discuss the contract.
August 27: Sent our previous carrier contract from 2014 to our current lawyer for reference and discussed some of the matching terms for our upcoming contract.
August 26: Submitted $2,500 payment to the lawyer for the drafting of our carrier contract.
August 25: Emailed our lawyer about the fee agreement.
August 15: Monthly payment submitted for embryo storage fee ($50).
August 11-22: Taking a break from the surrogacy process while we’re away to celebrate our 10th anniversary.
August 5: Contacted by our clinical coordinator for an update on legal.
August 1-9: Going through our previous carrier contract and getting together matching terms for legal.

July 30: Received a call from the fertility nurse that Becca’s EPA results came back and she will need more exposure to progesterone prior to an embryo transfer.
July 25: Signed and submitted the HIPAA forms needed for third-party reproductive treatment.
July 22: We received our official medical clearance following the mock cycle and can move on to the legal process.
July 19: Talked a few times with our clinic financial advisor back and forth and sent her a copy of the unexpected $1600 bill, which she finally determined was sent in error- remaining balance from IVF #3 is $384; heard back from our fertility nurse that Becca’s lining measured 9.4 and we are now waiting for Dr. K to review and give us clearance.
July 18: Submitted payment to the lab for the endometrial biopsy analysis; reached out to our fertility nurse to discuss obtaining final word on medical clearance.
July 17: Followed up with our financial advisor through the clinic to get to the bottom of all the unexpected bills we are continuing to receive from treatment 6 months ago.
July 15: Becca had an endometrial biopsy as part of the mock cycle, which will analyze whether her lining would be best to receive an embryo transfer; standing payment submitted for $50 to cover embryo storage.
July 14: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day and 1cc of progesterone in oil injection for the mock cycle.
July 13: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day and 1cc of progesterone in oil injection for the mock cycle; received yet another unexpected bill from the clinic regarding payment for IVF #3 to follow up on, this time for $1600.
July 12: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day and 1cc of progesterone in oil injection for the mock cycle.
July 11: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day and 1cc of progesterone in oil injection for the mock cycle.
July 10: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle, as well as 1cc of progesterone in oil injection in the early morning and at night; paid $600 fee for endometrial biopsy through the clinic.
July 9: Becca had her blood work and ultrasound for the mock cycle and the results were normal, so she continued her estrace pill 3x a day and can begin injections. She is also scheduled for an endometrial biopsy for next week.
July 8: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle.
July 7: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle.
July 6: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle.
July 5: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle.
July 4: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle.
July 3: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle.
July 2: Paid remaining bill for my “donor panel” from IVF #3; Followed up with the billing department of the clinic on my most recent unexpected bill from treatment and was able to get the amount down from $630 to $384.99; Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle.
July 1: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle.

June 30: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle.
June 29: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle.
June 28: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle.
June 27: Becca: estrace pill 3x a day for mock cycle; signed HIPAA forms from the clinic for third-party reproduction communication; received cost estimates for the upcoming ERA procedure.
June 26: Becca began taking an estrace pill 3x a day to start the mock cycle.
June 25: Initial consult with the lawyer regarding starting the process for our carrier contract.
June 24: Reached out to a potential lawyer who deals with surrogacy.
June 21: Becca stopped taking the birth control pills she had been on for earlier screening in order to prepare for the mock cycle.
June 15: Payment submitted for embryo storage fee ($50).
June 14-21: Legal research to find someone who can handle our contract, and eventually (hopefully) a pre-birth order.
June 13: Received yet another unexpected bill (this time $630) from my last IVF cycle that I’ll need to follow up on– this has become a monthly thing, I guess.
June 7: Becca received a timeline from the fertility nurse for upcoming appointments.
June 6: Got an adjusted bill for the “donor” exam and blood work that I needed to complete prior to an egg retrieval, since my embryo will be transferred to a gestational carrier.
June 5: Heard from our fertility nurse on start dates for the mock cycle at the end of the month.
June 3: Received results from the insurance verification and confirmed Becca’s current plan should cover her prenatal care.

May 31: Becca received her medication for a mock cycle, the final step of the physical screening.
May 29: Spoke with Dr. K about Becca’s consult and medical results, as well as the endometrial receptivity analysis test; Becca had a conference call with her insurance company and ARTrisk to give them permission to verify whether her insurance will cover prenatal care for a surrogate pregnancy; Becca’s husband completed his required blood work; I spoke with our fertility nurse about meds for Becca’s mock cycle and scheduling the ERA; spoke with the fertility pharmacy about payment for the meds.
May 28: Becca traveled to the main branch of our fertility clinic to meet with Dr. K for an in-person consult, some blood work, and a mock transfer (to make sure everything goes smoothly for the real thing).
May 27: Sent in a few more documents for the insurance verification.
May 24: Submitted the form for ARTrisk to verify Becca’s insurance coverage through a surrogate pregnancy.
May 22: Followed up with billing through the clinic on a fee that showed up on my account.
May 21: Phone consult with ARTrisk to discuss surrogate life insurance policies; submitted payment for our sessions with the social worker.
May 20: Contacted our fertility nurse to move forward with the mock cycle for Becca.
May 17: Group session with our GC, her husband, and our social worker.
May 16: Signed some paperwork for the social worker; finally received a call back from our previous social worker about updating our IP session.
May 15: Started the application for the insurance verification with ARTrisk; scheduled a consult for next week to discuss surrogate life insurance policies; standing payment begins for monthly embryo storage fee ($50).
May 14: Met with our social worker to complete the Intended Parent session requirements; reached out to the coordinator to figure out what our next steps should be; contacted ARTrisk to inquire about their insurance review service; contacted our fertility nurse to ask about making plans for a mock cycle.
May 13: Called our previous social worker one last time to see if she could provide an updated consult on our IP session but still didn’t receive a call back. Decided to just start over with our current social worker and scheduled an appointment.
May 12: Reached out to our current social worker to see if there is still time to meet with her for our IP consult before our group session.
May 11: Emailed our clinical coordinator to let her know that I can’t get a call back from our previous social worker about updating our intended parent consult for this surrogacy journey. Trying to work out a back up plan.
May 10: Paid the remaining $219 from treatment that insurance kept denying.
May 8: Talked with the clinical coordinator about our IP consult; reached out to the social worker from our first surrogacy journey to schedule an appointment with her.
May 7: Reached out to our clinical coordinator in an attempt to settle the issue of our individual session with the social worker.
May 6: In touch with the billing department to finally settle outstanding bills my insurance has denied for the most recent treatment cycle; cancelled order for CoQ10 egg quality supplements since I will not be doing another IVF cycle in the near future.

April 30: Received a run down of our upcoming requirements through the clinic’s social worker for the surrogacy process.
April 26: Referred back to the billing department for outstanding $219 I’m trying to settle between the insurance and clinic.
April 25: Contacted our clinical coordinator to deal with clarification regarding our individual and group counseling sessions for the surrogacy process; called LabCorp to deal with the wrongly denied IVF lab bill for $1100 and had them resubmit the claim; called the insurance company to straighten out the mess of the wrongly denied coverage for the $1100 bill and the $219 one through the clinic; contacted my financial counselor to follow up on the $219 that should have been paid.
April 22: Received another bill for the $1100 my insurance is denying from my IVF by saying I have another primary insurance (I don’t). Trying to get in touch with LabCorp to find out what I should do next.
April 18: Confirmed dates for the GC group session with a social worker through our clinical coordinator.
April 15: Received a bill for $219 left over from my IVF cycle that my insurance is wrongly denying by claiming that I didn’t have a plan with them at the time of service (I did). This is the fifth unexpected bill I’ve received for this cycle since February, most of which have been issued in error. Each one requires the time and energy of following up or fighting it, and I’m extremely frustrated at this point.
April 10: Heard back from our social worker about payment for further screening; received possible dates for required group counseling with Becca and her husband through the clinic.
April 9: Reached out to our social worker to schedule the next part of evaluation.
April 5: Becca had her HSG as part of the GC screening and everything came back normal.
April 3: Mailed in copies of insurance card to LabCorp to fight the $1100 bill my insurance company is refusing to pay.

March 28: Sorted out the latest $3400 billing error with the fertility clinic.
March 27: Received an $1100 bill from the blood work for my January 2019 cycle, which my insurance wrongly denied by claiming that I have a different primary insurance.
March 26: Received an unexpected $3400 bill for my most recent IVF cycle for the second time. Contacted the clinic to inform them that this has already been paid and ask that it be removed (again) from my account.
March 25: First part of results from the social worker’s evaluation for the psychological phase of GC screening came back normal.
March 22: Paid the outstanding $1800 to the fertility clinic for January 2019 cryopreservation.
March 14: A follow up phone meeting to get our new clinical coordinator up to speed on where we are in the surrogacy process; received clarification on the cost of a future mock cycle from the financial counselor.
March 12: Informed of a new change in our clinical coordinator for the surrogacy process through the fertility clinic. 
March 11: In further contact with our clinic’s financial counselor regarding an outstanding bill; spoke with our social worker about screening.
March 9: Check in with social worker regarding scheduling evaluation and paid $450 bill for screening; contacted our financial counselor to get to the bottom of the outstanding bill.
March 6: Received a call about an outstanding cryopreservation bill for from my January 2019 cycle, which I’d believed to be included in the deposit paid in December.
March 5: Check in with fertility nurse regarding the upcoming testing.
March 4: In touch with the social worker about scheduling screening.
March 3: Becca completed her personality inventory for the gestation carrier screening.

February 26: Assigned a social worker through the clinic.
February 23: Becca started birth control to regulate her cycle for gestational carrier screening.
February 14: Heard back from the clinic’s financial counselor that the outstanding balance was issued in error.
February 13: Received an outstanding bill for $3400 for my IVF cycle that should have already been taken care of and reached out to our financial counselor through the clinic for clarification.
February 11: Check in with clinical coordinator; signed a document for the clinic regarding screening.
February 10: Submitted $2,800 in payment for upcoming screening for our potential gestational carrier. Sent email to financial advisor at the clinic for further clarification on costs.
February 7: PGS results are in: 3 of the embryos came back as abnormal, only 1 was able to pass screening.

January 31: ‘Day 6’ update: none of the remaining embryos survived.
January 30: ‘Day 5’ update: 4 blastocysts have been biopsied and frozen; samples were sent to the lab.
January 27: ‘Day 2’ update: 9 embryos
January 26: ‘Day 1’ update: 9 embryos fertilized via ICSI
January 25: Egg retrieval #3: 19 eggs collected, 16 were mature.
January 24: Preparing for egg retrieval and took my antibiotics ahead of the surgery.
January 23: Appointment #6 (blood work and transvaginal ultrasound) there are 22mm follicles present in both ovaries now and I was instructed to give myself the trigger shot at exactly 10:30pm tonight, which will tell my body to finish up the maturation process for my eggs. My retrieval is scheduled for Friday at 10:30am. Stim Day 10: HcG injection (10,000 units). Received a call from Dr. K to confirm approval of Becca as a candidate for gestational surrogacy and discuss upcoming screening and new tests available.
January 22: Appointment #5 (blood work and transvaginal ultrasound) several follicles are in range of being ready (about 18-22mm), but there are many more behind that aren’t quite there yet. Waiting to see if I will trigger tomorrow or Thursday. Stim Day 9: lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu). Talked to Becca about her consult with Dr. K.
January 21: Appointment #4 (blood work and transvaginal ultrasound) largest follicles are measuring 18mm in my left ovary and 17mm in my right as well as lots more in the 12-14mm range. I’ll probably trigger in the next three days. Stim Day 8: lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu). Becca had a consult with Dr. K to go over her medical records and the process of screening for gestational surrogacy.
January 20: Stim Day 7: lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu).
January 19: Appointment #3: (blood work and transvaginal ultrasound) largest follicle is measuring 14mm with several in the 12mm range. Dr. K said I’m about mid-point. Stim Day 6: lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (300 iu), Menopur (225 iu).
January 18: Stim Day 5: lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (225 iu), Menopur (225 iu).
January 17: Appointment #2 (blood work & ultrasound); Stim Day 4: lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (225 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu).
January 16: Stim Day 3: lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (225 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu).
January 15: Stim Day 2: lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (225 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu).
January 14: (Baseline) Appointment #1: (blood work & ultrasound) at the clinic. I also had my FDA-required blood work, “donor” exam, risk-factor questionnairie, and gave a urine sample so I can have my embryos approved for the transfer to a gestational carrier. My fertility nurse called in the afternoon to say I can officially start. Stim Day 1: lupron (10 units), Gonal-F (225 iu), Menopur (225 iu).
January 13: Lupron injection, Day 17 (10 units).
January 12: Lupron injection, Day 16 (10 units). I hit Cycle Day 1 and got my period, so all that’s left is to have a baseline ultrasound and blood draw on Day 3 before I begin my stim injections for the next phase of IVF.
January 11: Lupron injection, Day 15 (10 units).
January 10: Lupron injection, Day 14 (10 units). Check in with my fertility nurse, but since I’m still waiting for my period to begin stims, there’s nothing we can do but continue to wait.
January 9: Lupron injection, Day 13 (10 units).
January 8: Lupron injection, Day 12 (10 units). The clinic finally realized its error and the fact that Becca’s medical records have been sitting in another office for over a month. They have now been received by the correct office and will be up for review.
January 7: Lupron injection, Day 11 (10 units). Followed up with clinical coordinator on the medical records situation regarding approving Becca as a candidate for gestational surrogacy, which they’ve apparently had in a separate office for a month now, despite telling me they didn’t have them.
January 6: Lupron injection, Day 10 (10 units).
January 5: Lupron injection, Day 9 (10 units).
January 4: Lupron injection, Day 8 (10 units). Finally received the rest of the medication and supplies I’ll need for treatment.
January 3: Lupron injection, Day 7 (10 units). The rest of my IVF medication was supposed to be delivered today but there is a “delay” through UPS and I’m trying to get it rescheduled for tomorrow.
January 2: Lupron injection, Day 6 (10 units). Update from our clinical coordinator to say they haven’t received medical records yet.
January 1, 2019: Lupron injection, Day 5 (10 units).

2018

December 31: Lupron injection, Day 4 (10 units). Scheduled the delivery of my stim injections and paid the copay. Paid the final deposit to the clinic on our 3rd IVF cycle.
December 30: Lupron injection, Day 3 (10 units)
December 29: Lupron injection, Day 2 (10 units)
December 28: Started Day 1 of Lupron injections (10 units) until my baseline appointment on Cycle Day 2, about two weeks from now. Contacted by our financial advisor at the clinic and we were given until Monday, December 31 to make our payment for the cycle.
December 27: Blood work and transvaginal ultrasound for Day 18 of my cycle to determine whether ovulation has occurred. Received the results from my nurse in the afternoon, which suggest that I ovulated the night before. Lupron was delivered by the pharmacy this evening, so I will begin injections tomorrow. Contacted our clinical coordinator asking for any available updates on Becca’s medical records for review.
December 26: Spent a couple hours on the phone throughout the day with the on-call nurse at our clinic, the insurance company, and the fertility pharmacy. Finally figured out the insurance problem and got the prior authorization needed from my doctor for the lupron. Scheduled delivery for that medication for the next day, and as of 7pm things are looking better for moving forward with treatment.
December 24: In touch with the fertility pharmacy over the insurance issue that is now holding up treatment. Trying to reach the clinic for further instruction.
December 22: Shipment of fertility meds was supposed to come but didn’t, likely resulting in the cancelation of this cycle.
December 19: Confirmed upcoming treatment plan and cost estimate.
December 18: Scheduled delivery for IVF Cycle #3 meds.
December 17: In contact with my fertility nurse to schedule my initial Day 18 blood work to begin Lupron injections for another IVF cycle.
December 5: Check in with our coordinator at the clinic to get an update on the review of Becca’s medical records. 

November 20: Working on having Becca’s medical records sent to the clinic for Dr. K to look over.
November 19: Gave our clinical coordinator Becca’s contact information to begin the first round of screening; forwarded the “Intended Parent” informational packet from the clinic on to Becca.
November 17: Ordered another 3-month supply of CoQ10 for increased egg health in preparation of my next IVF cycle.
November 16: Phone meeting with our coordinator. We also received an updated “Intended Parent” packet with the clinic’s guidelines for gestational surrogacy. 
November 15: In contact with our “donor team” (gestational surrogacy program) coordinator through the clinic to discuss matching with Becca.
November 14: Dealing with the issue of Becca’s insurance for the surrogacy process.

October 30:
Working with Becca on some of the details regarding gestational surrogacy.
October 24: Officially postponed IVF treatment, hopefully no later than late December or early January. Switching to working on the surrogacy aspect of the process in the meantime.
October 19: Continuing the discussion of gestational surrogacy with Becca.
October 18: Talking further with Becca about the possibility of her being our gestational carrier.
October 16: Fertility clinic re-submitted the codes for my diagnoses and treatment plans to determine coverage from the new insurance.
October 15: Fought with the insurance over my denial of coverage and, once I was able to educate them on what gestational surrogacy actually is, it was confirmed that I had been wrongly denied. Heard back from my financial advisor at the fertility clinic who, again, stated that surrogacy would negate coverage for my part of the treatment. Called the insurance company for a second time to deal with it– this was not true and I should be covered for treatment my body is receiving.
October 12: Heard back from our financial advisor that I was denied coverage for IVF treatment by the insurance company simply because I cannot carry the baby myself. This should have absolutely nothing to do with my egg retrieval, and we have decided to fight it.
October 11: Received an email out of the blue from Becca*, a friend, offering to carry a child for us via gestational surrogacy.
October 10: Consult with our financial advisor at the fertility clinic regarding our insurance benefits and received a basic idea of what we could expect our out-of-pocket cost to be. Received instructions from our fertility nurse for beginning our next treatment cycle.
October 9: Reached out to our former surrogate agency about signing a contract with them.
October 8: In contact with our financial advisor for treatment through the fertility clinic concerning a change in insurance for our upcoming IVF cycle.Discussed contacting the surrogate agency with Elle to move forward on a sibling journey.

September 7: Contacted by our “donor team” clinical coordinator from the fertility clinic for updates on the surrogacy process.

August 25:
Ordered a third 3-month supply of CoQ10 to support egg health during IVF treatments.

July & August: Working on possible contract details with Elle in discussions over another surrogacy journey.

June 29: Elle told us she would be willing to begin the surrogacy journey with us for a second time. However, because of the contract we signed in 2014, we will still need to go through the agency.
June 25: Consult with our fertility doctor over my upcoming medication protocol for IVF.
June 21:
In touch with my fertility nurse about screening requirements for a gestational carrier and our next IVF cycle.
June 8-16:
Working on some of the logistics for the surrogacy side of things with Elle over the span of several days.
June 3:
Dealing with budgeting for the surrogacy process.

May 29: Ordered another 3-month supply of CoQ10 to support egg health for another retrieval.
May 24: PGS results are in: 3 of the embryos tested abnormal, 1 tested normal and will remain frozen. Plans are being made for a second IVF cycle around August.
May 17: ‘Day 7’ update: the last 3 embryos did not survive; cells from our four frozen embryos are being sent out to the lab for PGS testing today.
May 16: ‘Day 6’ update: 1 more BB blastocyst biopsied and frozen; 3 more on watch.
May 15: ‘Day 5’ update: 3 AA blastocysts biopsied and frozen; four embryos left that could go either way.
May 12: ‘Day 2’ update: 8 embryos left
May 11: ‘Day 1’ update: 9 embryos via ICSI
May 10: Egg retrieval! 17 eggs collected, 12 were mature.
May 9: No more ultrasounds, blood draws, or injections. Just taking my antibiotics and waiting for my surgery tomorrow.
May 8: Monitoring appointment #5: follicles still growing, but my estrogen level is high, putting me at risk for hyper-stimulation. Dr. K wants me to take my trigger shot tonight at 8:30pm in preparation for an egg retrieval 8:30am on Thursday morning.
May 7: Monitoring appointment #4: everything looks good with a few follicles in range or close (largest is 18mm) and a handful that still need some time to catch up, estrogen level is about 2,500. I’ll start having daily appointments now until my egg retrieval. Lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu).
May 6: Lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu).
May 5: Monitoring appointment #3: estrogen level 1,266; Lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu).
May 4: Monitoring appointment #2: several follicles present in both ovaries, estrogen level in the 700s; Lupron injection (5 units), Gonal- F injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu).
May 3: Lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu). Appointment for an analysis for Kyle.
May 2: Monitoring appointment #1; estrogen level is at 273 and everything looks good, largest follicle is 12mm. Lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu).
May 1: Lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu).

April 30: Lupron injection (5 units), Gonal-F injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu). Received additional syringes in the mail for Lupron.
April 29:
Baseline appointment with blood work and ultrasound; given the okay to begin the stimulation phase of my IVF cycle, estrogen level at 29; wrote a very large check to pay for treatment and received final clearance to get started. Lupron injection (10 units), Gonal-F injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu).
April 28:
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 27:
Lupron injection (10 units). Cycle Day 1; finally able to make an appointment for baseline ultrasound and blood work before beginning stim injections. Ordered more syringes because I have been on Lupron for much longer than planned now and will continue it throughout the rest of my cycle.
April 26:
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 25:
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 24:
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 23:
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 22: 
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 21:
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 20:
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 19:
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 18:
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 17:
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 16: 
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 15: 
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 14: 
Lupron injection (10 units)
April 13:
Sarted daily Lupron injections (10 units) until my baseline appointment on Cycle Day 3.
April 12: Appointment for Cycle Day 18 blood work to confirm ovulation so I can begin injections. Signed the final consents to begin IVF.
April 10:
Received all the injection meds and supplies for my upcoming cycle.
April 9:
Pre-authorizations for IVF meds were sent to the insurance and approved, and we paid off the remaining pharmacy bill.
April 3:
Scheduled the delivery date for all of my injection meds & supplies.

March 30: Signed another document pertaining to treatment.
March 29:
Consultation with the lab that will handle our embryo screening. Received protocol for our upcoming IVF cycle.
March 23:
We were chosen to be featured ‘Intended Parents’ on a matching website for surrogates & IPs and given a free profile, which has just gone live.
March 22:
Our insurance has finally decided on the amount of our coverage after more than 6 weeks of waiting (a month longer than necessary) and daily calls from our financial counselor and myself. We also received some additional documents to sign in preparation for treatment. 
March 20:
Our insurance case has now reached the supervisor and is supposedly being sent to an analyst to be dealt with by end of day tomorrow. If we don’t receive the pre-determination in the next few days we will likely miss out on another month of treatment.
March 19: Results from the clinic concerning Ashley’s most recent appointment: AMH level is 5.5 (increase from 3.2 in 2015) and antral follicle count of 26. No new information on our insurance, but we were told to check back tomorrow.
March 16:
Joined a third surrogate meeting group. Also continuing to check online ads through a specific website daily.
March 13: Our infectious disease blood work and screening came back negative.
March 12: Our case was sent for review by our insurance, which is hopefully the final step before they make a decision.
March 8: Still waiting to hear back from our insurance. It’s been over a month now and holding up everything. Today we’ve been told that our case has been moved up the chain for a priority decision, and we’re hoping to hear back before the weekend.
March 6: Got a call from our clinical coordinator to say that Kyle will have to redo his blood work and FDA questionnaire for the surrogacy “checklist” due to a mix-up, which puts us a step behind again. But, at least our financial counselor is back from medical leave.
March 4: Ashley had blood work to check her Day 3 FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone) and AMH (anti-mullerian hormone; indicator of ovarian reserve) levels as well as a baseline ultrasound to check her antral follicle count. Kyle completed his FDA questionnaire and blood work to determine his risk factors for surrogacy.
March 3: Joined another Facebook group to match surrogate/IPs.

February 28: Both of us had our blood drawn to check for any infectious diseases that could be passed on to a gestational carrier through our embryo(s). This is one of the steps our clinic requires before we’re able to have treatment.
February 27:
In contact with the “Donor Team” at our fertility clinic (they handle everyone who is using donor eggs/sperm or surrogacy) about our insurance coverage and what the exact cost of treatment will be– again. We hadn’t expected to be waiting 3 weeks for this information, but I’m hoping now that it doesn’t hold us up.
February 20:
Trying to follow up on our insurance. Unfortunately, our financial advisor is unexpectedly on medical leave, and we will be handled by someone new. 
February 16: 
Signed two documents for the fertility clinic as part of the checklist we have to complete before undergoing IVF for gestational surrogacy.
February 12:
Introduced via email to our “clinical coordinator” through the fertility clinic, who works with us on the surrogacy side of things. We were sent a long checklist of tests, exams, and meetings we will need to have completed before being able to start treatment. This is only because we are using a gestational carrier.
February 11:
Joined a Facebook group for IPs (“Intended Parents”)/surrogates to meet.
February 8:
In contact with our financial counselor through the fertility clinic to go over what our insurance might or might not cover concerning the IVF treatment.
February 7: Appointment to meet the new doctor at our fertility clinic. Assigned a nurse and a financial advisor (both of whom worked with us during our first journey). Made plans for yet another round of infertility testing (the third time around- 2012, 2014, and 2018).

January 28: Going over our 2014 agency contract to understand the exact wording that prohibits us from working with our previous gestational carrier without paying the agency a second time.
January 3, 2018: Scheduled an appointment to meet the new doctor at our clinic for a consultation.

2017

December 12: Things are not looking good to move forward for another cycle in January as planned and we will be focusing on some of my health stuff instead, but we are still hoping to complete another treatment cycle before our insurance changes and we may be moving out of the area of our clinic following Kyle’s graduation.
December 7: Beginning the overwhelming research for available loan options with the IVF clinic and surrogate agency.

November 2: Made the decision over the course of a few weeks to stay with our fertility clinic and attempt to complete an IVF cycle prior to Kyle’s graduation.

October 5: The doctor who handled our first case is now retired, which means we’re starting over. Regrouping to determine if we should plan to find a new clinic or ask to be moved to a new doctor at the same place. Once Kyle finishes his master’s program in May 2018 we may not be in the same area, state, or even this part of the country, so we are reconsidering being tied down to this clinic if we already have to start over with a doctor anyway.

September 20: After discussing some options over the last few weeks, we decided to reschedule our plans for an IVF cycle in January 2018. I’ll begin taking a supplement to support egg health with hopes of a better result this time around.

July 2017: Forced to cancel plans for another IVF cycle.

June 2017: Talked again about the possibility of working with Elle on a sibling journey, but we were still struggling to figure out how to meet some of the agency costs (the contract we signed in 2014 would require us to pay them again for matching with Elle).

Spring 2017: Making plans for another IVF cycle to take place over the summer.

2016 (Second Journey)


November 2016: Started talking to Elle about the potential of doing a sibling journey with her and decided to revisit the possibility in a year as she worked through some things and we tried to figure out costs and focused on Kyle’s degree.

July 2016: Canceled plans for an IVF cycle for financial reasons* with the hope of having enough together for the following summer.

*Started making plans and working things out for the second journey since November 2015.

2016 (First Journey)

January 24: Sweet Pea is here! He was born on his due date at 5:19am, weighing 7lbs 2oz and measuring 20 inches in length. Welcome to the world, Ross David.
January 21: Appointment with the obstetrician; Sweet Pea’s heartbeat was 144 bpm and he was estimated to weigh 6 lbs 15 oz. We got another glimpse of his face in 3D, but unfortunately there still hasn’t been any progress toward labor otherwise.
January 17:
We’ve reached 39 weeks.
January 15:
Appointment with the obstetrician; Elle is still only 1cm dilated and no progress has been made since last week. We got a freebie peek at Sweet Pea’s face via 3D ultrasound and he was estimated to weigh 6 lbs 8 oz (although it is often inaccurate at this point in the pregnancy).
January 10: We’ve reached 38 weeks.
January 9: We’ve made it to Elle’s and are now waiting for Sweet Pea to make his debut.
January 8: Appointment with the obstetrician; Elle is 1 cm dilated and Sweet Pea’s heart rate was 132 bpm.
January 6: Kyle and I left home for the delivery! The first leg of our trip is complete and Orion was dropped off at my parents’ house. 
January 3, 2016:
We’ve reached 37 weeks.

2015

December 31: Appointment with the obstetrician. Sweet Pea’s heart rate was 129 bpm. He measured ahead at 37-38 weeks and was estimated to weigh 6 pound and 7 oz, which puts him in the 50th percentile.
December 29: Contacted by the legal team from the agency to go over the logistics for how everything should be handled during labor, delivery, and being discharged from the birthing center; Received the results from the group beta strep test: negative.
December 27:
We’ve reached 36 weeks.
December 23: Appointment with the obstetrician; Sweet Pea’s heart rate was 146 bpm. Weekly appointments will now start.
December 21: Conference call with our program coordinators from the agency to go over final preparations.
December 20:
We’ve reached 35 weeks.
December 13:
We’ve reached 34 weeks.
December 9:
Elle had an appointment with the obstetrician. Sweet Pea is still measuring a few days ahead and his heart rate was 142 bpm.
December 8: We received a digital copy of the signed pre-birth order from our lawyer to keep with us at all times in the hospital in case we need to prove that we are Sweet Pea’s legal parents.
December 6:
We’ve reached 33 weeks.
December 2: A judge in Elle’s state reviewed our case and granted us status as the legal parents of Sweet Pea by signing a pre-birth order. This means I will now be able to be listed on the birth certificate as his mother.

November 29:
We’ve reached 32 weeks.
November 25: We had our 3D/4D ultrasound, the very last one! We got to see what Sweet Pea might look like, and he weighed 4 pounds, 1 ounce. He’s still measuring a few days ahead, and his heart rate was 134 bpm. We were both also able to feel Sweet Pea hiccup for the first time while staying with Elle & her family for the appointment and Thanksgiving. In addition, the pre-birth order papers were filed with the local court and we are waiting for our case to go before a judge. 
November 22:
We’ve reached 31 weeks.
November 20: We signed affidavits saying that we are Sweet Pea’s biological parents; Elle also signed an affidavit, which stated that she is carrying a child for us and is not related to him.
November 15:
We’ve reached 30 weeks.
November 12:
We signed an engagement letter with the attorney who will hopefully be able to complete the pre-birth order.
November 11:
In contact with the legal team, trying to resolve issues. I’m starting to wonder if it will be straightened out before Sweet Pea gets here.
November 9: Followed up on some problems we’re having with the legal side of things. Our program coordinator at the agency has now gotten involved in trying to get the legal team to deal with our case. 
November 8:
We’ve reached 29 weeks.
November 6:
Elle officially passed the second glucose test.
November 5:
Elle took the three-hour glucose test. We are waiting for the official results from the doctor’s office, but she checked her own levels during the test: 78 (fasting), 163 (1 hour), 152 (2 hours), and 128 (3 hours).
November 4*: Conference call with our program coordination team from the surrogate agency to follow up on some issues, delays, and miscommunication. We are still not considered the legal parents of Sweet Pea, and we are rapidly running out of time to deal with it.
November 3: 
Received the news that Elle failed her glucose test and will have to go back later this week for a follow-up test to make sure she doesn’t have gestational diabetes.
November 1:
We’ve reached 28 weeks and the third trimester.

October 30: Appointment with obstetrician. Heart rate was 146 bpm and he is measuring 28-28.5 weeks (about a week ahead). Elle had her glucose test and we are waiting for the results.
October 25:
We’ve reached 27 weeks.
October 18:
We’ve reached 26 weeks.
October 16:
Appointment with the obstetrician. Sweet Pea’s heart rate was 150bpm and he was measuring a week ahead! Appointments will now increase from monthly to every two weeks.
October 11:
We’ve reached 25 weeks.
October 4:
We’ve reached 24 weeks.

September 30: Our lawyers started the pre-birth parentage order process so that Elle’s “presumed parental rights” are terminated prior to delivery in hopes of having me listed as Sweet Pea’s legal mother on the birth certificate (getting Kyle’s name on the certificate shouldn’t be a problem as the father).
September 27: We’ve reached 23 weeks.
September 20:
We’ve reached 22 weeks.
September 16:
We had the “growth & development” ultrasound (anatomy scan) during which they looked at everything from the brain and heart to the kidneys and bladder. Sweet Pea measured 1 pound, 1 ounce and all of his organs checked out okay! Only one more ultrasound left!
September 13:
We’ve reached 21 weeks.
September 6: 20 weeks! We’ve reached the halfway point.
August 30: We’ve reached 19 weeks.
August 23:
We’ve reached 18 weeks.
August 21: Received the non-invasive prenatal testing results and, as far as they can tell, Sweet Pea is healthy.
August 19:
Gender reveal ultrasound. It’s a boy! His heart rate was measured at 153 bpm. Elle’s blood was drawn for the second part of the non-invasive prenatal testing. Sweet Pea now has a real first name! Still working on the middle one yet.
August 18: Kyle and I got to feel Sweet Pea move for the first time!
August 16: We’ve reached 17 weeks.
August 9:
We’ve reached 16 weeks.
August 2:
We’ve reached 15 weeks.

July 26: We’ve reached 14 weeks and the start of the second trimester. Also, Elle felt the first “flutter” of Sweet Pea moving– twice!
July 21:
Appointment with the obstetrician; Elle’s blood was drawn for non-invasive prenatal testing. Sweet Pea’s heart rate measured at 160 bpm. 
July 19:
We’ve reached 13 weeks.
July 12:
We’ve reached 12 weeks.
July 5:
We’ve reached 11 weeks.
July 2:
First official ultrasound with the regular obstetrician (3rd official ultrasound total). Everything is measuring appropriately and the baby was very active today! We watched Sweet Pea wiggle and dance around for several minutes and were even able to clearly see the feet and all of the fingers on one of the hands. The heartbeat was measured at 170bpm today.

June 28: We’ve reached 10 weeks; Elle completed all of her injections and will now get the first significant break from them in over six months! By now the placenta can take over the job of producing progesterone.
June 26:
Our first appointment with the nurse at the regular obstetrician’s office. We didn’t have a scheduled ultrasound, but we were able to hear the heartbeat (167 bpm) and get an unofficial “sneak peek” of the baby at 9 weeks and 5 days.
June 21:
We’ve reached 9 weeks.
June 19:
The second ultrasound (8 weeks and 5 days) is behind us. The baby measured 2.04cm (from the top of the head to the baby’s bottom) this time with a heart rate of 170 bpm. Today was the first time we were able to see the baby move. We also received word that we have “graduated” from care through our fertility clinic. The next step is to be transferred to a regular obstetrician.
June 14: We’ve reached 8 weeks.
June 7:
We’ve reached 7 weeks.
June 4:
First ultrasound (6 weeks and 4 days)! Sweet Pea’s heartbeat was 125 bpm and everything looks great with a measurement of .64cm. Due date is January 24th, 2016.

May 31: We’ve reached 6 weeks.
May 26:
Elle’s beta levels continue to be strong; today’s number was 1689! We are now planning for a 6-week ultrasound.
May 24: We’ve reached 5 weeks.
May 22:
Beta levels progressing at 397.6.
May 20: Received the news that we are pregnant! Beta levels at 212.
May 8: Transfer Day: transferred one (previously frozen) embryo to Elle (our gestational carrier). We’ll get the results in 2 weeks.
May 5: Received a call with our scheduled FET time: May 8th at 2pm.
May 1: We were approved for a FET based on Elle’s ultrasound results; Elle started progesterone injections, which are meant to help support a pregnancy.

April 30: Elle had an ultrasound to measure her lining (10mm).
April 17:
Elle began estrogen injections every third day.
April 16:
Elle had her baseline ultrasound (5mm lining) and we got approval to officially begin the cycle.
April 14: Elle finished her pre-cycle birth control pill treatment.

March 31: Elle began taking birth control pills to prepare for our FET (frozen embryo transfer)
March 30:
Scheduled the dates for a FET cycle
March 27:
Spoke with our fertility nurse about how to move forward with a frozen embryo transfer using our last embryo
March 24:
Received the results of our first (fresh) embryo transfer: Negative
March 12:
Day 6 Update: One more blastocyst survived, which will be frozen. The last three embryos were lost. Final result: 2 out of 17 embryos.
March 11:
Transfer Day (Day 5): one blastocyst transferred to Elle; 12 embryos lost.
March 9:
Day 3 Update: All 17 are still thriving; 11 of them have made it to the next stage while 6 are taking a little longer to get there. This will be the last update we get until the embryo transfer since they will be in transition on Day 4.
March 8:
Day 2 Update: 17 are still going strong.
March 7:
Day 1 Update: 17 of the 24 eggs were fertilized via ICSI. Elle began progesterone injections in preparation for the fresh embryo transfer next week.
March 6: The day of Ashley’s egg retrieval. 27 eggs were collected and 24 of them were mature.
March 4: Ashley’s 7th monitoring appointment. The ultrasound showed 17 follicles that are 15mm or larger and should be mature. Given a “trigger” shot of HCG (the final injection) at 8:30pm; egg retrieval surgery was scheduled for Friday morning. Estrogen still below 4,000.
March 3: Ashley’s 6th monitoring appointment. Her blood work showed her estrogen level has remained under 4,000, which is good. Lots and lots of follicles present on the ultrasound, a few of which have now reached maturity. Menopur will be lowered. Follistim injection (150 iu), Menopur injection (150 iu)
March 2: Ashley’s 5th monitoring appointment. Largest follicle measured at 17mm and blood work showed an estrogen level of 2,514. Follistim dosage will be lowered. Follistim injection (150 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu)
March 1: Ashley’s 4th monitoring appointment (blood work and ultrasound); estrogen level of 1,486 and largest follicle measured at just over 14mm with a handful of others around 10mm or a little above. Doctor estimates another 2-4 days of injections until we can do an egg retrieval. Follistim injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu)

February 28: Follistim injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu)
February 27:
Both Ashley & Elle (our gestational carrier) had ultrasounds today; Ashley’s 3rd monitoring appointment results showed that the follicles in her ovaries are still growing but not where they need to be yet, so her dosage of Menopur will be upped. Elle’s lining is a perfect 13mm and she will be ready for the embryo transfer. Follistim injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (225 iu)
February 26: Follistim injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (150 iu).
February 25: Ashley’s second monitoring appointment (blood work and ultrasound); estrogen level jumped up to 250, so the medication dosage will remain the same. Follistim injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (150 iu)
February 24: Follistim injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (150 iu)
February 23: Ashley’s first monitoring appointment (blood work and ultrasound); follicles are fairly small, estrogen (at 50) is still low. Medication dosages upped. Follistim injection (300 iu), Menopur injection (150 iu).
February 22: Follistim injection (225 iu), Menopur injection (75 iu)
February 21: Follistim injection (225 iu), Menopur injection (75 iu)
February 20:
First day of injections; Follistim injection (225 iu), Menopur injection (75iu)
February 17: Ashley had her blood drawn (estrogen 28, progesterone 0.3) and an internal ultrasound (follicles present in both ovaries); We were given the green light to finally start our IVF cycle, signed all the necessary consent forms, and submitted payment for the full cycle. Time to get started!
February 16: Ashley finished “pre-IVF” birth control treatment.
February 14: Elle stopped the daily Lupron injections and started Delestrogen (0.20 ccs) injections every third day.
February 13: Received Ashley’s IVF medications; Elle had an ultrasound and blood draw to evaluate her body’s response to the Lupron.
February 5: Elle began daily Lupron (20 units) injections in preparation for our IVF cycle.

January 28: More blood work for Ashley to get an update on her anti-mullerian hormone level (3.2) prior to starting the IVF medications.
January 22:
Finally received the projected dates for our IVF cycle. The next several days were spent trying to see if our insurance will help cover the medications Ashley will need (they won’t).
January 18:
Ashley started taking birth control pills, which will help prepare the ovaries for stimulation, allow her cycle to sync with Elle’s (our GC), and give the doctor more control over timing.
January 16: We received medical clearance from our fertility clinic and were approved to begin planning for our first IVF cycle.
January 14: Kyle & I, as well as Elle and her husband, have officially received legal clearance from the surrogate agency to move forward.
January 13: Elle had an ultrasound to measure the lining of her uterus following two weeks of injections (13mm). This was her final test for the medical screening.
January 12: We signed our wills, which had to be drafted to include surrogacy-specific wording in order to receive legal clearance. Copies were sent for review to our surrogate agency.
January 11: Elle took the final injection for her mock cycle and will have an ultrasound to measure the lining of her uterus.
January 8: Elle signed the official Carrier Agreement.
January 7: We signed the official Carrier Agreement and sent it to the agency.
January 6: Received the final draft of the Carrier Agreement from our lawyer.
January 5, 2015: In touch with our lawyer at the agency to go over clarifications and revisions for the Carrier Agreement.

2014

December 31: Contacted by our lawyer to continue working through the Carrier Agreement.
December 30:
Elle (our GC)began injections for her “mock cycle” as required by the medical screening to test how she responds to the medication.
December 23:
Ashley had another round of blood work; Elle had an HSG (a test to determine how open the fallopian tubes are using injected dye and an x-ray) as part of the medical screening.
December 22: Received new draft of Carrier Agreement to review.
December 17: We were approved for the financial program we applied for through the fertility clinic.
December 15: Met Elle and her husband in person for the first time; completed both individual and group counseling session requirements; Elle continued with her medical screening as required by the fertility clinic.
December 12: Met with our lawyer from the surrogate agency to finish revising the first draft of our Carrier Agreement, which will be sent to our GC
December 11: Met with a lawyer to draft wills with surrogacy-specific wording
December 10: Completed applications for various financial programs
December 9: Met with our financial counselor from the fertility clinic to discuss available programs and payments; chose an IVF program after weighing the costs for services.
December 8: Met with our “Intended Parent Support” team member from the surrogate agency; our carrier and her husband booked flights to travel to our Fertility clinic.
December 4: We received first draft of the legal contract we’ll sign with our gestational carrier and were given 5 days to make any necessary revisions.

November 24: Spoke with our GC clinical assistant about setting things up for our carrier to travel to the fertility clinic for her medical screening
November 22: Met with our program director from the surrogate agency to discuss what to expect in the coming weeks while we wait for the contract with our carrier to be drafted.
November 17: Officially matched with a gestational carrier.
November 15: Met our potential carrier for the first time over Skype.
November 14: Received the call to say that the potential carrier would like to set up a meeting via Skype.
November 12: Completed our profile, which will be sent to the potential carrier to look over and decide whether or not she would be willing to work with us.
November 6: Signed contract with surrogate agency and officially became clients.
November 5: Met with a lawyer to review the contract before signing.

October 28: Received the first information on a potential surrogacy match.
October 27: Spent the morning & early afternoon in consultation meetings over Skype with a potential surrogacy agency to discuss everything from the step-by-step process to how we will legally protect ourselves and the custody of a future child born with the help of a carrier to the expectations of cost and when each payment will be due; made the decision that we would like to sign a contract with this agency.
October 24: Completed a pre-consultation questionnaire and provided in-depth answers on issues such as how we met, how will we care for a future child, what kind of outside support we have in our lives, what qualities we want in a gestational carrier, how much involvement we want to have in the pregnancy of our child, what role we expect the carrier to have in our lives post-birth, and an outline on how we plan to pay for everything.
October 21: Only heard back from one agency (located about 8 hours from us) and set up a consultation appointment to be conducted through Skype.
October 20: Finally built up the nerve to contact a couple of nationwide surrogacy agencies on the list provided by our fertility clinic as a jumping off point.

September 15-October 2: Fertility treatments were put on hold so we could take a special trip to England & Wales before coming back to tackle the difficult issue of finding a gestational carrier.
September 8: All-day appointment at a main branch of our fertility clinic located a few hours away from where we live; attended a two-hour injection class in order to learn how to inject Ashley with all of the different medications she will be on; blood work was taken from both of us to test for infectious diseases; additional blood work was taken from Kyle to fulfill an FDA requirement; Kyle filled out an extensive questionnaire required by the FDA for the intended father; first in-person meetings took place with both our fertility nurse and our GC clinical assistant; Kyle finished the last of his infertility testing; we completed everything on our pre-screening checklist and can’t move any further without first finding a gestational carrier.
September 4: First meeting with our fertility financial counselor.

August 19: We received our genetic testing results, Ashley is a carrier for cystic fibrosis, but it will not affect any children we might have because Kyle is not a carrier for the same disease; Kyle is a carrier for a very minor genetic disease.
August 13: Kyle received the initial results for his infertility testing.
August 12: Second round of infertility tests began; additional blood work was taken from both of us for genetic testing; later that day Ashley received some of the initial results of her first ultrasound; long phone meeting with our GC assistant during which we discussed the pre-screening checklist that we would be working through, as well as the overall process.
August 6: Scheduled a meeting with financial counselor; introduced to GC assistant over the phone.

July 23: Initial consultation with fertility clinic; we met Dr. M and were assigned a team- a gestational carrier (GC) clinical assistant, a fertility nurse, and a financial counselor.

June 30, 2014: Contacted a fertility clinic to set up a consultation to begin the surrogacy process.

2011-2014

Late 2013: After several issues from coming off medications and additional health problems, we were told that even if we were able to have and sustain a pregnancy, it would be dangerous for both me and the baby. We started to research both international and domestic adoption and gestational surrogacy.

November 6, 2012: I had surgery to remove some of the scar tissue in my abdomen and our odds of getting pregnant were estimated to be higher for about 3 months.

September 2012: First round of infertility testing. Kyle’s test results showed some minor issues and mine revealed a lot of what we already knew or suspected, including blocked and damaged tubes, damaged reproductive organs, and multiple issues from cysts, including a paratubal one that had to be removed via surgery.

August 11, 2012: First early loss.

August 2011: Met with an obgyn to discuss our imminent plans to start trying and the high-risk nature of a pregnancy due to my medical conditions.

May 2011: Met with my doctor to discuss coming off my maintenance medications in order to have a safe pregnancy.

2 thoughts on “Surrogacy Timeline

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