The journey of two guys ( with one cat & lot of great friends) trying to get through life and expand their family through surrogacy in Thailand.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Nursing School Vs T.M.I.

Those of you out there with a background in healthcare will probably be familiar with the following conversation:

“Hello unassuming stranger, looks like you’re getting ready for the storm with all your milk and bread!” said the elderly lady in front of me in the supermarket line. (I should explain that when there is a big snow storm in New England, milk and bread suddenly seem to become very hot commodities. Seriously…two weeks ago there was a news story about the shortage of milk and bread in grocery stores here in the Boston metro… so, naturally I panicked, immediately went to the store and bought as much as possible in an effort to fit in. This is the second year I’ve done this.)

“Yes, I have both milk and bread, because I’m a New Englander and that’s what we do!” Said the boy from California desperate for approval.

“That’s great! I hope it all fits in yah cahhh. (that’s “your car” for people not from Boston) So, what do you do young man?” she asked while loading her milk and creamer on to the belt.

“Actually, I’m just finishing nursing school.” I said as I silently cursed myself for forgetting milk related products like creamer. I did however feel slightly vindicated noticing that she didn’t have naan bread like I did. Surely I should get extra points for variety of bread products.

And then it happened…

“Oh…” she said with a sudden gleam in her eyes. “So, maybe you’ll know. I’ve got this boil right in between my…well my you know what. Do you think I should pop it, or just leave it be?!”

A slight gasp escaped my lips as my hand rose to my forehead awkwardly.

“.......Oh. Well…ummmmm……..uhhhhhh…..huh. Oh look, I think the cashier is ready to take your coupons!” I responded knowing full well that no amount of milk, bread, or acceptance was worth enduring that conversation.

This is one way that nursing school leads to too much information. (At least I learned something about myself: Evendently, I have to be in the right location to talk boils with a little old lady. In the hospital, no problem. At Stop and Shop, not so much...)

There is also another way that nursing school provides too much information. I spent last summer in my OB/peds rotation, which was amazing. We were able to assist with deliveries, give babies the all-important first vaccines,  care for newborns in the neonatal care center and NICU, and teach new moms and dads how to feed, hold, change, and  care for their new little ones. Yes, it was as awesome as it sounds.

But there is a drawback. While we as nurses are expected to know the natural progression of fertilization, pregnancy and delivery, we’re also expected to know the complications that can come along with fertilization, pregnancy and delivery. (Even more so than a complication free pregnancy.) After all, being prepared when something goes wrong is one of the most important roles of a nurse. We’re kind of like boy scouts in that way. 

Those of you who are going through a similar journey to ours know how difficult it is being removed from so much of this process. Add to that in depth knowledge of everything that can go wrong at any given time in development, and you have now discovered why during the last attempt I turned into a basket case for bursts of 5 minutes every other day or so. To know about everything going on, and to know that you’re physically so far removed from it all isn’t easy. But it’s what we sign up for as IPs going through international surrogacy.

That said, as we gear up for our next shot I take a moment every now and again and remind myself: what will be, will be. I am determined to try to enjoy the process as much as possible, regardless of how difficult that is. So now, I tuck away my paranoia; my doubts; my worries; my fears, and I try to think about this little dream of ours that we're working so hard to achieve. I am determined to once again find the delicate balance between being vigilant and involved, and just being flat out crazy.

We transferred funds to New Life last week. $10,700 for a second attempt with the same egg donor as last time cycling for us and fresh embryo transfer.  No word yet on when our fabulous ED will start her cycle, but hopefully we should be hearing about it sooner rather than later. (In fact, my next email is going to be to our NL contact to confirm they have received the funds and find out about getting a timeline.)

Hopefully things will get rolling soon. And hopefully this damn snow will clear up so I can go back to my low carb lifestyle.


  1. Hey Justin!! Have been thinking of you guys and wishing this try will result some good news. Hope all is going well. xoxo

  2. Staying in the moment is something that I have to work at as well. I can definitely empathize on how difficult it is! Good luck on the next attempt....

  3. positive vibes..positive vibes...

  4. Can't wait to hear about how the cycle progresses. All our best wishes. Greetings from London, where it's *finally* stopped raining. Hope the storms peter out in Beantown soon.