Karen Erikson is a mom and a former surrogate, who lives in the Inland Empire (Temecula/Murrieta area) and would like others to know what it’s like to become a surrogate.
In October 2019, I delivered a healthy set of twins for a couple who couldn’t do it on their own. It was one of the most exciting moments of my life. The medical portion of my journey began on February 1st, 2019 and ended on April 12th. During that time I had given myself 129 doses of different medications.
The medication involved with the surrogacy process varies by clinic, my dosage was unique to my own personal journey and does not necessarily reflect what another surrogate would experience as a part of the process.
I remember the anxiousness that I felt holding my first injection, the size of the needle was a little overwhelming, but once that was done the rest were easy. Typically the injections are given in the upper, fatty portion of the butt cheek, sometimes the abdomen. The nurses and doctors who are involved with the process are very good at giving you the training you need in order to administer your medications as well as a calendar so you know exactly when you should be taking your medications.
I started with Delestrogen, which is an injectable form of estrogen. I had to give myself the injections, which took a little bit of practice. I never valued yoga more than I did in that moment as I tried to turn around and reach my backside. After two weeks, I had to include Endometrin twice a day. Warning, TMI moment…Endometrin is a progesterone vaginal suppository. Yes, you read that right…twice a day…vaginal suppository. If I were to measure the level of comfort between the injections or the suppositories and have to choose one to use for my next journey, it would definitely be the injections.
In between all of the medications I was taking prenatal pills, and attending monitoring appointments where my hormone levels were checked to make sure that my body was prepared for the upcoming embryo transfer. My embryo transfer was on February 20th, but I had to continue the medications until the twins were measuring at 10 weeks gestation in order to make sure my body didn’t reject the pregnancy.
I know all of that sounds like a lot to go through, but it was worth every shot, even if sometimes they were a little painful. If you decide to pursue surrogacy, I recommend checking out YouTube for tips and tricks on how to alleviate some of the pain associated with the process. One trick I discovered was to apply heat to the area before the injection, and to use a massager to relax the muscle. It really made the injections go in more smoothly.
Like I said before, the medication protocol does vary by IVF clinic. There are some clinics that even follow a natural cycle that use minimal medication. If you have been thinking about surrogacy, I hope that my story helps you feel more comfortable about the medication portion of the process.
Interested in becoming a surrogate or learning more about the process? Extraordinary Conceptions can help guide you along the way. They have helped thousands of people all over the world achieve success through surrogacy and egg donation. Education and information is empowering, and they strive to provide that to all of their clients, especially with extra support for their surrogate mothers. Extraordinary Conceptions can help you decide if surrogacy is right for you and your family. Here are some things you should know when deciding on becoming a surrogate!