Surrogacy, while bringing many individuals and couples joy and happiness, also has the potential to become loss and heartbreak. At any point during your journey, whether after the transfer or during the pregnancy or birth, tragedy can strike, which makes it all the more important to enjoy all pregnancy milestones and victories possible during the surrogacy path. Although worrying is a common human reaction to stress or risk, remaining cautiously optimistic and enjoying each step closer towards achieving your dream ensures you have beautiful memories and moments along the way.
Surrogacy Milestone #1: A Surrogate’s Embryo Transfer
This is a major first step and a time to be hopeful and celebrate. For some intended parents, finding the right gestational surrogate and/or egg donor could take time, so this moment is an important highlight to acknowledge and cherish. Some surrogates and intended parents celebrate by participating in lucky rituals/beliefs surrounding conception for the day of transfer. Others make scrapbooks, memory books or keep a journal record of their thoughts, feelings and experience. Choose a way to celebrate that speaks to your heart, as this is most certainly a victory among many.
Surrogacy Milestone #2: Making it Through the First Trimester
The risk of miscarriage continually declines as pregnancy progresses. The highest risk taking place early in the first trimester, but by week 6 the risk begins dropping and by 14 weeks most women have a 1% chance of miscarriage. Yet another reason to bask in joy as you continue along your surrogacy journey! Embrace the good news with unabashed jubilance and know that a huge life dream is even closer to becoming a reality.
Surrogacy Milestone #3: Ultrasounds!
While some intended surrogates may require more ultrasounds than others, these are opportunities to actually view baby, rather than just mentally envisioning your future. Baby’s heartbeat will be heard and seen, along with other anatomical parts. During an ultrasound, gender can sometimes be determined around the 18- 20 week mark, if the positioning of the babe allows. X-rays, photos or videos are a fantastic keepsake but there are other options available, usually for purchase. Heartbeat animals and 3D/4D technology are popular ways to capture this sneak peak.
Surrogacy Milestone #4: Gender Reveal
A popular milestone to celebrate, there are many creative ways you can unveil the baby’s gender with surprise and glee! Watch a surrogate reveal the gender to her intended parents! That’s just one example of the creative, touching and hilarious gender reveals dreamt up by surrogates and intended parents! Whether you choose something simple or something more intricate, a gender reveal will create a memory that will be held dear for years to come.
Surrogacy Milestone #5: A Surrogate’s Growing Belly
Celebrating the growth of the belly is a favoured way to track and recognize the passage of time and the progress on your path. This can be done in different ways and during different stages during the prenatal period. Weekly or monthly photographs, with different perspectives, is a common way to capture the expansion of baby and uterus. Some choose to keep data; measurements of body areas (waist, hips, bust) over the pregnancy. Others, wanting a more creative memento, might choose to paint or cast the belly later in the third trimester. And the best part? As belly grows, the ability to feel and see baby move grows too!
Surrogacy Milestone #6: Birth Day!
Like pregnancy, labour has the potential to present complications, minor and severe. So once baby does arrive, be sure to take a deep breath and enjoy the completion of the surrogacy and the brand new beginning of an entirely new amazing, crazy, complicated, fulfilling and indescribable journey into parenthood.
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