* Author Topic: Ukraine surrogacy journey  (Read 8091 times)

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Ukraine surrogacy journey
« Reply #20 on: 15/12/16, 09:25 »

Monday 5th Dec

Early start today as I have to be at the clinic at 8.30. I was told not not eat after 6pm the evening before, and be nil by mouth. I did drink some water until around 9pm , because I know it will have passed in a few hours. But after 9pm, it was small sips if I needed it. I was also told not to brush my teeth in the morning and wear no makeup. I got to the clinic and was met my a new girl who was an assistant to the English department. She had not been with someone who was having this surgery before so she was very nervous. I don't know how I felt about it,instead of being reassured, I had to reassure her. Anyway, I was taken around 9 o clock upstairs, to a room with 8 single beds. She told me to change into a gown which was sheer and see through 😬 and there were 3 other girls in beds there , talking in Russian. They were egg donors and looked so young. 2 of them had very bed coughs which made me feel uneasy. You see, all through the stimulation, I had made sure to look after my body well, stay away from sick people and be very careful. Everyone always talks about how important good health is during stimulation. And here were these young girls who are donating eggs and very poorly. But they seemed in good spirits and were laughing and joking together. I was also very aware of the fact that I had been on steroids to help egg quality, and my immune system was very weak. Sharing a room with sick people was not the best environment for me.

I had to wait a long time, until about 10.30 until it was my turn. One by one, they took a girl and she would be bought back, unconscious on a trolley and moved back to her bed. This would be a bit vulgur because her genitals would be exposed to the whole room until them moved her and covered her with the duvet. I saw it happen 3 times and each time I got more nervous.

When it was my turn, I walked to the room and could feel my heart beating very fast. It was more scary because I could not speak the language and couldn't ask any questions. They had me lay down, legs in the stirrups. My left arm was taken to put a cannula for the anaesthetic, and right arm taken to put a heart monitor on my finger and a blood pressure monitor on my arm. My gynaecologist appeared to do the prodedure and started by putting a clamp in and cleaning me with some fluid inside. I actually became very scared because I thought they may start before I was even asleep. But they didn't. I started to feel groggy, and before I knew it I was waking up, confused. It took a few seconds to remember, a little longer than waking up from a dream and not knowing where you are. When i woke up I could see he English speaking interpreter sat next to me and they were moving me from the trolley to the bed. She said I was only gone about 15 minutes, and that they had given me a lot of anaesthesia because I was taking a long time to fall asleep, but also that I woke up very fast. Some of the other girls were still asleep at this point. They wanted to keep me in longer than usual to observe because of the extra anaesthesia. Also, later I found out that my heart rate became very low and unstable during the surgery. Usually they would have kept me in for 2 hours, but she said I would have to stay until the end of the day. I was told not to get up, to stay laying down and keep my legs straight. I guess this is to help the bleeding stop. And also that they put something inside similar to a tampon to help stop the bleeding.

These hours were not so bad, the nurse kept taking my vitals, had some glucose and vitamin drips feeding into my vein and kept pulling the duvet to check if I was bleeding or ok. But I felt a little pain similar to period pain for an hour, then felt fine.

I asked my manager to get a driver for my husband when I woke up and get him to wait there for me as he had already given his sample, and it would be a long wait. He was very worried when they said he wasn't allowed upstairs to see me, but was ok after I called him and told him I was fine. He had been suspicious because they weren't allowing him upstairs, it's not what we had experienced in the uk. But because it's a communal room with other ladies,they don't allow men inside.

At 4.30, I was given the all clear to leave. I went back to the hotel and was ok walking , all without pain. I went straight to bed to rest. My aftercare instructions were to eat beetroot(???) and to drink a lot of water and rest for 3 days. I have to go back on Friday to have a check up also. This assistant to my manager told me that if my embryos look very good, then the doctor may decide to only transfer 2 to the surrogate. I know that the quality will look good, but I'm suspicious of how good they actually are. So I said to her that I want 3 transferred,not 2. She said I can speak to the doctor about it on Friday. She also said that when the doctor checks me on Friday, she will tell me if I am ok to travel back to the UK or if I will have to stay a little longer. I had planned on changing my flights and travelling back on Saturday, but decide to just leave them for Wednesday 14th, as it will be very difficult and expensive to change them so last minute.

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    Ukraine surrogacy journey
    « Reply #21 on: 15/12/16, 09:32 »
    Tuesday 6th December

    Today I woke up with the worst chesty cough. I wonder if I caught if off the girls at the clinic :( feeling terrible, I know I need to keep my germs to myself and not infect other people who maybe having treatment. So breakfast was a quick affair with a table in the corner. I did speak to a girl I met from China. She is so sweet,and been here for 1 month as her babies are being born sometime in the next month(2 boys from a surrogate). I have spent some time with her over the past week and although her English is broken, she is very nice and always tries her best. She seems like an amazing person, and we have shared a lot of information.

    She has shared some stories of the couples she had met whilst being there. She said one of the friends she made has twins too. But although she was in Kiev waiting for the babies to be born, she was only told they were born when they were already 3 days old. I heard a similar story from someone else about an Irish couple who were not informed that their baby had been born for 2 weeks! I was shocked!

    Today has been a long day of rest. It's hubbies last day and I feel bad that he has not had an opportunity to go out and explore,like I have this past week. But I guess, he will have a chance to do this later.

    I messaged my manager today and she told me that I won't have an opportunity to speak to the doctor about the embryos on Friday. She said the surrogates wait upstairs in the ward and get called and taken one after the other, so there is just not the opportunity to discuss anything before it happens. I'm shocked by this, surely they should discuss with us how many embryos we want to have transferred, based on quality of embryos. At this stage, I won't even know how many embryos we have! But she says it's impossible :( so I told her to pass the message on. I don't know if she will,I really hope she does. Honestly, she isnt a good manager, I feel that she needs to do what she says and not be so scattered. I have to say, sometimes I just don't have too much faith in her, that she will do what she says. What I can say is that I have faith in my doctor, she really is amazing at what she does.

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    « Reply #22 on: 16/12/16, 09:53 »
    Wednesday 7th Dec

    Hubby goes back to the UK today. Probably for the best, I have the worst flu I ever had in my life! I don't want to pass it to him. My body is weak from the steroids, and so many people are sick in the hotel. My ovaries ache, I don't think they are healing very fast because I am so sick. Even my arm, where the cannula was put is very painful and badly bruised. I have had fever , I hope this is because of the flu and not infection after surgery.

    Friday 9th Dec- transfer day!!!

    I wake up and I feel nervous. I am looking forward to finding out how many embryos I have , so I can compare previous stimulations to this one and know what the embryology department is like.

    When I arrive at the clinic, there is yet again, a different assistant. She has been working there for 2 months. She sees the doctor walking past in the hall and stops her, the doctor asks how I'm feeling , I say I have had the flu very badly and feel very weak and still feel like I haven't healed from the procedure. She says it's normal and takes time and says good luck. This is the extent of the post operative examination she was insisting on, on Monday. I feel a little annoyed, considering I could have changed my flight and been getting ready to leave the next day! But I let it go, there's more important things to occupy my head.

    I ask the new assistant about my embryos and she says they can't tell me, the embryologists are busy. She says that she can send me a report on Monday and it will have the information. So again, I'm a little disappointed. I had been told that I would find out today about the embryos.

    The clinic is busier today than any other day I have been there. People are sitting in the hallways as the waiting rooms are so full. I am told that the surrogate will have the embryos transferred and then she will sign the contract after she has rested a few hours and will be ready to leave. I don't like the sound of this and ask if they can get her to sign before transfer. I had previously said to my manager that I do not want my embryos put into anyone before a contract is signed. This assistant assures me that this is how they do it and it's not really done the other way. I tell her, that if that's the case, I'll wait at the clinic all day until the contract is given to me. She tells me that it maybe 3pm or later, and I say that's fine. To give some context, it's around 10.30am at this point.

    I find a little corner in a waiting room that has a spare seat and go to wait. The assistant returns in about 15 minutes and says that they will get the surrogate to sign before the procedure, so I should be free by about 12 o clock.

    I sit there waiting, nervously. I was hoping my manager would have come today so I can ask her to double check the marriage status of the surrogate, especially since I know how busy the clinic is and mistakes can be made easily. I decide to send her a quick message, knowing that she will be in the office building next door. The message read "Hi lida I know I keep asking this, but as it is embryo transfer today, please can you double check that the surrogate is single. I have so much anxiety about this, it would be a disaster if she was married."

    My manager doesn't reply , so while I am sat there, about an hour later, I see one of her assistants come into the waiting room. This is the same girl who met me and my husband in September, and I have said hello to her once today when I arrived at the clinic, but I don't really have much contact with her. I approach her and ask her so she can ask the medical team, and she practically bites my head off for asking. She is very rude and abrupt and sounds annoyed, reacting as if I have, personally, asked her continuously for a few hours or days. I am shocked, but I laugh it off and tel her that I don't know how their clinic works, if they ever change surrogates last minute, or is mistakes are ever made, so I have to be sure. And if this works, I will be the last time I will be asking. I'm left feeling really stupid, on top of the nerves I was feeling. But I am impressed that I keep my cool and don't lose my temper with her for the way she spoke to me. At this point, I'm confused, wondering if she feels she is doing me a favour, or if she realises that I am paying them tens of thousands to provide a service.

    I wait until around 1pm and then the assistant who I was dealing with this day, comes back with the contract. She is nicer and tells me that she will definitely send me the embryo report on Monday. She also is more understanding about the question of the surrogates relationship status. She tells me that 3 embryos have been transferred to a surrogate a few moments ago, so we are officially in the 2 week waiting period.

    When I get back to the hotel, I receive a very sharp blunt message from my manager, who finally decided to respond to my message. Her reply is "I'm not going to answer that question again and again". I'm absolutely shocked. I decide to send her a polite message back and stay calm "I'm sorry I had to ask. My lawyer insists I keep asking to be safe." And her reply is "it was answered a million times".

    Now, I'm not going to lie, i was already in a bit of a state before this message exchange began. I had my egg retrieval surgery at the beginning of the week, followed immediately by the worst flu virus I have ever experienced .i spent the week in bed with fever and chills and my wounds from surgery weren't healing as my body was so strained already. And on this day, I was getting very anxious worrying about the embryo quality, nervous about the surrogate embryo transfer, as well as the many emotions that go along side it. I can't begin to explain the worry, anxiety and turmoil a person goes through when they decide to go ahead with surrogacy. You wonder who the surrogate is, will she take care of her body, is she healthy, will she eat and drink well and avoid risk.

    Anyway, to keep things simple, I'll copy the message exchange to be accurate of what was said.

    Me: "Hi l*da I know I keep asking this, but as it is embryo transfer today, please can you double check that the surrogate is single. I have so much anxiety about this, it would be a disaster if she was married."

    Manager: "Dear S, I even won't answer this again and again))"

    Me:  "I'm sorry I had to ask. My lawyer insists I keep asking to be safe."

    Manager:" It was answered mil times"

    Me: "And if I ask a million more times, you should answer."

    Manager: "Dear S, I provided you with this information. You have You have it in written and oral form. You have the same my attitude as all together clients. I have many couples, who need my help and I cannot spend all my time to answer the same questions every day. Have a nice day!"

    Me: "It's actually not written in the contract.
    You are my manager, I thought if I have questions it should be asked of my manager. If You prefer me to ask someone else, just tell me who to ask.
    If you are very busy, this is something to discuss with your employers not clients. Clients are the ones who managers should keep happy. And I do understand you are busy. But you know, it's not exactly easy for me either.  Not only are my hormones unbalanced, I am very sick, in pain and very anxious. So if I try to be polite and try to do the right thing for myself, you should try to understand. And I will try to be understanding too.
    And by the way, it would have been much quicker if you just said yes!"

    I don't know if I am over reacting, I'm now questioning if I am because of the hormones, the worry and stress. But at this point I am so angry, I actually got a nosebleed!! I ring my husband and for the first time in the longest time I can remember, I'm actually swearing. And the first time in as long as I can remember, he doesn't care that I swear. I'm so shocked and appalled at this very moment, and completely regretting using this clinic. If this is how they react to a question, how will they react if something actually goes wrong?

    I am now sure,more than ever, that I can't rely on the clinic or its staff to do right my me. They are taking on so many new clients everyday, but not equipped to deal with it. And it also means that now, people will have to wait longer for surrogates and treatment, so they will start to accept anyone applying to be a surrogate and not reject people how they once did. This can only lead to problems for the clients of Biotexcom. At this moment, I feel I've made a very bad mistake choosing this clinic. We have spent over 15k so far, and paid 2 of our 5 instalments, so it's too late to back out now. But I feel a dread in my gut, I know that things can go very wrong.
    I found it very difficult to sleep that night.

    Monday 12th December

    Over the weekend, I received a message from a girl I had met the previous week. She had her egg collection 2 days after mine, and her embryo transfer to a surrogate was going to happen morning. She already knew about her embryo numbers and quality.

    So around 8.30am, I send a message to the new assistant I met at the clinic on Friday, asking her if she can send me the embryo report as soon as she can. She says she will do it soon. An hour later, she sends me the email with the report. Out of 13eggs retrieved, we have 5 blastocyst embryos on day 5. 3 were transferred to a surrogate, so we have 2 frozen. It doesn't give a great deal of detail about the quality of the embryos, or grading, so I can't really compare with previous stimulations, except for embryo numbers. Previously I have had 4 day 5 blastocysts from my first egg retrieval, and 6 from the second. So 5 sounds about right.

    Now that I have the embryo report, and the signed joint agreement with the surrogate, I just need to wait until Wednesday to fly home.






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    « Reply #23 on: 19/12/16, 08:25 »
    It's 10 days after embryo transfer and I'm sitting tight, waiting to hear from the clinic at the end of this week.

    I had a dream last night that the clinic sent us a message saying the pregnancy test was positive and we were having a Girl. Ok, I know that it's impossible because we wouldn't find out the sex of the baby this week, but in my dream it happened. And how did I react in my dream? I sat down for 5 minutes, in shock. I didn't speak, I just sat and absorbed the information for a while,and then I was so unbelievably happy.

    I'm getting nervous about the news. I am prepared for it not working the first time, and hubby and I have spoken a couple of times about what we will do if it fails. Even though there are 2 embryos that are frozen, we feel that if the best 3 don't work in a surrogate, maybe the problem lies in my eggs. I am inclined to switch to donor eggs if this attempt doesn't work, but we will see what happens and then decide.

    Now we wait some more. I really hope the clinic tells us on Friday and doesn't make us wait.

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    « Reply #24 on: 24/12/16, 09:45 »
    It's Christmas Eve!

    On wednesday(12 days after transfer) I messaged my manager to ask her exactly which day they will test and if we will find out the results before Christmas. Up until this point, no one had told us exactly which day the test will be,also I thought it would be good to remind her that we are eager to find out.

    She didn't reply to me until yesterday.  Her viber message simply said that our surrogate is not pregnant since the HCG test showed a negative pregnancy. They will advise after their holidays about how long it will take to get another surrogate for us.

    For some reason, I've gotten so used to having negatives for these pregnancy tests,I wasn't surprised. I waited for hubbie to get home and told him, and he was very disappointment. It's heartbreaking to see him so disappointed each time, but I have to stay strong for him and cheer him up. It's normal to feel disappointment, I understand this, I just don't want him to lose hope.

    We discussed it last night, and have decided to try again with the 2 frozen embryos. It's our last attempt at trying to have a baby that is genetically linked to both of us, and this seems to be more important for hubbie than me. So we will try, although I really think it will fail again. We can only try and hope.

    For now we will enjoy our Christmas and try to wait patiently.

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    « Reply #25 on: 6/01/17, 09:15 »
    We are well into 2017!

    I have no news on thensurrogacy front, as our clinic and is still closed until next week, but I can say one things. Although having another failed attempt can be disappointing and down right brutal, the relief of knowing I don't have to go through more hormone therapy or treatment is leaving me elated! I'm just relieved beyond words :)

    Christmas was a nice quiet one for me and hubbie. We stayed in and spent it together, lounging and eating festive food. I think he needed to have a nice comfy Christmas, with just the 2 of us, so he could firstly wallow internally, and also so both of us could comfort each other....well this is how I see it from where I am. My husband is a complicated creature who doesn't like to communicate his feeling much, but from the little he offers, I understand him.

    Life is carrying on as normal for now. We will just let things progress and try not to focus on the surrogacy too much. And fingers crossed, we will see some results in 2017!

    I hope everyone had a festive Christmas and a happy new year!

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    « Reply #26 on: 9/01/17, 08:42 »
    I had a message from the lady I met in Kiev-she was the lady who was waiting for her twin babies to be born by a surrogate. Her babies were born in Friday! She said that she might be able to see them on Saturday.

    On Saturday, her manager said that she wasn't allowed to see them because it was a holiday(Christmas in Ukraine) but she got very worried and went to the hospital.  She knew from another couple who she had befriended, that other people meet their babies on the first or second day, and on the third day, they take them home.at the hospital, the doctors told her that it's not because of the holiday, it's because the babies are quarantined so they don't get any germs. She has been distraught as the clinic are giving her no information and she is worried sick that there is something wrong with the babies.

    Disturbing as this is to hear, there is something worse that she told me. The couple that she befriended told her that their surrogate wasn't  cared for as promised by the clinic. Their manager had told them that she was staying at the hospital because she was past her due date, being cared for. The couple decided to go visit her at the hospital and found out she was never there,and they tracked her down to be staying in a very small room in an apartment

    This is one of the many stories I have heard from people who have either experienced it first hand or a second hand account of someone who is there and met someone who has this experience and really made me question if I want to carry on with this surrogacy journey . If the clinic is just concerned about making a profit.

    Right now, I need some time to think. In a few days, I may decide to bring it up with my manager and see what she says. 

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    « Reply #27 on: 20/02/17, 14:55 »
    Hi Everyone

    For all of you that have been following my journey,I want to add a link to my blog. I will be carrying on my diary on the blog, here's a link

    https://oursurrogacyblog.wordpress.com

    ****UPDATE********

    Since starting this surrogacy diary, I have started an open dialogue with BioTexCom to help them improve their service. If anyone is thinking of contacting BioTexCom, please message me first so I can give you some information and refer you to the clinic. By doing this, I have more cooperation from the clinic and they will carry on making positive changes , that will improve services for us all :)


    Thanks
    Sxx