My mom is my surrogate

Why do you want to share your story?

I want to share my story and give people hope with using a gestational surrogate. Gestational surrogacy can seem so daunting in the beginning. I want to share my story on how we journeyed through it.

What led you to the Fertility Centers of Illinois?

When I started researching fertility clinics i had seen so many others with great experiences coming from FCI. Another wonderful thing they offer is monitoring at any of their locations! There are a lot of appointments with fertility treatments, so having more options close made the process a lot easier.

What was the infertility diagnosis?

The reason we were on the path to gestational surrogacy was due to Asherman’s Syndrome. Previously, I got pregnant with twins via in vitro fertilization (IVF) with Dr. Kaplan. Unfortunately, we lost those babies late in the first trimester. I underwent a D&C as recommended by my OBGYN. Unknowingly, D&Cs can sometimes result in scar tissue formation inside the uterus, known as Asherman’s Syndrome. This makes it extremely difficult for a embryo to implant in the uterus.

After many unsuccessful attempts to remove the scar tissue, we moved to gestational surrogacy.

How would you describe your experience with your physician?

I could go on and on about how wonderful Dr. Brian Kaplan is. His bedside manner is a 10/10. You can tell when you are sitting in front of him, his mission is to help you. This field is such a sensitive topic, that comes with a lot of emotions. I shed a lot of tears in his office, and he always met me with such genuine empathy.

One thing I will always remember is when Dr. Kaplan came in before my anesthesiologist and sat on my other side and let me squeeze his hand while I got my IV. I’ve never had a doctor do that before, most doctors seem so busy they can’t be bothered. He’s always got the patient in mind.

What infertility treatments did you undergo?

After my husband and I froze our embryos with IVF. We started the process with prepping my mom to be our gestational carrier. Dr. Kaplan was hesitant at first. Due to her age he had to talk with his colleagues to see if we could get the green light to test her. He let us start off by doing a rigorous amount of testing with her primary care physician, OB/GYN, and a Maternal Fetal Medicine specialist. She passed them all with flying colors. We went on with the clinics gestational carrier team and scheduled both of our psychological exams, and screenings.

Once all the testing was complete we were thrilled she was an ideal candidate. My mom completed a mock cycle with an ERA to make sure we had the correct timing of progesterone, and we transferred one beautiful embryo a month later. Who is now our little one on the way!

What helped you get through treatment?

The biggest help for me was connecting with others going through infertility struggles online. There is a whole community of people who understand what you are going through. Connecting with them on social media made me feel less alone, and also learned a lot from them.

Do you have any words of hope for others?

The most cliche thing I can say is, don’t give up hope. There are so many ways to become parents, and everyone’s path is different. Whether we got pregnant, used a surrogate, or decided to adopt, I knew i would stop at nothing until i was a mother.

Tell us about your little miracle!

We can’t wait to meet our little one! She is kicking away in Grandma’s belly everyday. We can’t wait to feel her kicks from the outside and see her face! My mom tells me she dreams about the delivery and getting to see my face and reaction when the baby is born. It feels like we are living a dream.

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