Lately I've been thinking more and more about the possibility of doing another surrogacy. Can't believe I'm saying that, because it really wasn't something I thought we'd do again. Not that it wasn't a great experience (obviously - look who we have to show for it!), but it was tough in many ways and I was ready to close that door and call it a day. But the more I think about baby #2, the more I think surrogacy may be the way for us to go again. It addresses many of my fears about adoption, specifically the lack of control issue (not that you have perfect control during a surrogacy, but certainly more than with adoption). There are pros and cons with each, but as Adam said, surrogacy is the "challenge" we know.
Now with these thoughts also come a host of issues. Mainly two things: One, we don't have any more embryos (well, technically we have one but that isn't enough to go forward really), and two, we don't have a surrogate. Jenna graciously offered to carry for us ONCE, and she's done her job well : ) We can go back in and try to get more embryos, which will be really hard on my body, but will probably create at least a few to work with (as long as my body continues to work). It does mean more drugs and hormone manipulation (which I'm not crazy about), and a tough retrieval. For those not familiar with the IVF world, here's how they retrieve eggs.
Now for me, due to my surgery prior to radiation where they moved my ovaries WAY up in my abdomen, this type of retrieval is no longer possible. Which means a surgical approach, where they would go through my abdomen to reach the ovaries. Definitely more complicated, more risky, and a harder recovery. There's also a chance it just won't work, depending on the location of my ovaries once they fill with follicles. If they're too close to organs, or lying behind organs, they won't be able to do a retrieval. So as you can see, GETTING more eggs to make embryos may be tough.
But then there's the issue of finding another surrogate. It's hard in Canada because the only legal kind of surrogacy is altruistic. Now as intended parents you can pay all expenses relating to a carrier's pregnancy, including things like life insurance, food, maternity clothes, childcare, housekeeping...so really, in the end, it almost adds up to any fee you'd pay in the U.S. But because it's altruistic, it's much harder to find someone wanting to carry a baby for someone else. There is an agency in Guelph that works with matching people up, but they do charge a $5,000 fee to do that. However, that may have to be the route we go if we decide to pursue another gestational surrogacy.
I'm trying to do some soul searching here, to figure out what's going to be the best plan of attack for us. If we do go the surro route, I'll need to stop breastfeeding Addie so I can go on the hormones, and then we'll have to freeze all our embryos while we look for a carrier (because I'm going to be 36 in September, we can't wait too long to do this). We may pursue both options (surro and adoption) at the same time, just in case one doesn't work out we're already in the game for the other. However, both are incredibly time-consuming options and I'm thinking I'm only going to have the brain space and motivation to tackle one at a time - after all, I do also have a little girl to take care of and give TONS of attention to : )
So where does that leave us? I'd say about 75% leaning towards another surrogacy. However, it can only work if all the pieces fall into place...
Anyway, that's where we're currently at for baby #2. A bit in limbo, but trying to see the forest through the trees. I'm anxiously awaiting my moment of clarity : )