Friday, January 28, 2011

And so it begins...

I have always wanted to be a parent.  When I was a little boy I wanted to play with the little girls, not because I liked them necessarily, but because they had all the baby dolls!  As I got older I realized that there might be one little problem on my road to becoming a parent... the act it takes to make a baby.  It wasn't very long into my adolescence that I realized that was going to pose a HUGE problem.  So with a lot of grief and sadness I pushed that dream out of my head.  However, pushing it out of my heart would be impossible.  I discovered there were other options in creating a family and I always told myself that when I got my act together I would be a father one day.  I would allow myself to fantasize about what that day would look like.  Adoption, surrogacy, the possibilities were unlimited.  Growing up the child of a single mother my fantasy always included me and a lot of kids.  Never not once did I ever see myself raising my children with a partner.  Until he came into my life. 

I have never ever put much stock in relationships.  They were just not a huge priority for me.  Initially I was WAY to busy having fun and... making other things priorities.  Then school and my career became the only thing that mattered.  I decided I needed to knock out college and get started on my career so that I could live out my dream of becoming a single father of a bazillion kids.  Something told me that I might need to adjust my idea the day I met Tony.  I jokingly told him on our very first date that I wanted kids.  Lots of kids.  I thought the look on his face said it all.  His eyes widened and his jaw dropped a little.  I thought I lost him right there.  As it turns out he has always dreamed of being a father as well.  PHEEEW!  It was not long until we started talking about moving forward. 

We both were feeling a crisis of time and wanted to act fast before our dream of chasing after a kid (or 7 if I have my way) changes to include walkers and wheelchairs.  As we started the foster to adopt process we decided we wouldn't tell anyone till we were further through and had stuff to report.  UNFORTUNATELY I am NOT so good with secrets and the very next day I was confiding in one of my besties, Megan.  "Let me have your baby!" she exclaimed.  Now, as any gay man knows a lot of woman offer to have babies for gay men.  we learn to joke it off.  So I laughed and agreed that would be perfect.  Tony and I concentrated on navigating the process it would take to become foster parents and hopefully adoptive parents.  All the while Megan is adamant that we allow her to give us the amazing gift of fatherhood.  Then one day I brought up Megan's offer and we started seriously considering it.  Several conversations later and the three of us sat down to discuss what expectations, limitations, and outcomes each of us expected.  Megan and I work together, so Tony showed up at the office on the day we were to meet with a dozen roses for me.  He wanted me to know that whatever transpired in the following days, weeks, months whatever the outcome that we werein this together (insert AAAAAW here).  I fall more in love with that man every single day.
The initial conversation among the three of us was AWESOME!  Megan joined our family that very day.  She was already a huge part of my heart, but that day she and Tony started their connection and their own relationship.

Megan loves being pregnant.  She loves the experience.  She has an ADORABLE and AMAZING little girl and is satisfied raising her to be an exceptional child.  Raising another baby and child are not in her plans.  So she will conceive a child with us, carry it to term, and Tony and I will be this child's parents.  Megan and the baby will ALWAYS be in each other's lives and know and love each other.  We will tell our baby about the amazing gift that Megan gave us and how fiercely he/she/they were loved and wanted by everyone involved.  Megan's daughter and this baby will know each other, fight with each other, and love each other like only siblings can. 

We had it all set up.  Now... how do we... you know....  Well there really was no question, the "event" will occur in a nice clean Doctor's office as nature intended! 

We were all very naive and thought this would be a very a simple process.  It has not ended up being that way.  We made our intitial visit to the fertility clinic.  And as it turns out it is not as simple as we thought.  We wanted to do this without lawyers and such.  We had assumed that there would be social workers and second parent adoptions and some legal stuff, we just had hoped to do it with as little complications as possible.  NOT!  We were soon informed that since Megan and the other genetic contributor were not married and not sleeping together there would be a PLETHORA of testing done.  We, of course, expected to have to test for HIV and other STDs and STIs.  We were not prepared for the GALLONS of blood that were taken, or for the fact that the blood needed to be screened for every possible exposure...including MAD COW disease.  We were also not prepared to be required to obtain a legal contract.  There goes our simple "handshake" deal.  I know. It sounds very naive.  You have to remember that Megan is one of my best friends and we trust each other.  So off to a lawyer Tony and I go! 

The lawyer we went to was... HORRIBLE.  She was a scary, intimidating, manly type woman who immediately begain scaring us to death with the worse case scenarios.  And she did not mince her words let me tell ya.  Now in all fairness I am sure she is a very good attorney, however, I hated her on sight.  She made it very clear that she did not have Megan's well being at heart.  She represented us and only us.  She told us that we needed to draft a surrogacy agreement, Megan would have to severe her parental rights, and then we would have to go through the second parent adoption process.  I did not want this process to be so clinical.  I did not want Megan to feel like she was a breeding machine.  I wanted it to be simple and full of love.  I wanted Megan to be protected and treated fairly.  The thought of this woman anywhere near my friend was appaling.  In the truck as we made our way home I started to cry.  It just seemed so...hard.  Why did it have to be so messy?  What was Megan going to think when we relayed this information to her?  What if it was too different from our original plan?  Could we be so close to something that we both had wanted for so long and it all fall apart?  "Hey, it's going to be okay.  I promise."  Tony said to me as we got on the freeway.  He took my hand and much to by disapointment the tears just came harder.  I wanted so badly to believe him, but I couldn't.  "look at me" he softly demanded.  I met his eyes and saw the love and determination in his face.  "I said I promise."  I can't explain it, but I believed him.  Before I knew it we were turning off the freeway way before our exit.  I asked him where we were going.  "I know what will you make you feel better."  And off to Babies R US we went.  I told ya, he's incredible.

Megan was not put off at all by the new information regarding our process.  It wasn't exactly the way we wanted it, but it was the way it was supposed to be.  We all decided against using the original attorney though.  So we made an appt with an attorney we were referred to by our fertility clinic.  I was unable to go, but Tony and Megan went instead.  I could tell by the tone of my husband's voice when he called me at work after the meeting that this visit had gone very different.  He was excited!  Megan and Tony both really liked this man.  He was warm, funny, and he specialized in this type of thing!  As it turned out the original lawyer was wrong about several things.  There was still A LOT to do, but the process was much easier on everyone concerned. 

The last hurdle to clear was Megan's husband.  In this state a married surrogate has to have the consent of her husband.  And originally the idea of his wife being pregnant by another man, no matter how the conception took place, understandably was an issue.  Fortunately that hurdle has been cleared.

So here we are on the brink of the abyss and ready to jump.  All the medical, legal, and personal stuff has been taken care of.  We are ready to go!  I know that all of us were naive about this process in the beginning, but I absolutely feel ready... for this part.  

Until the day he walked into my life I had no idea I had been waiting for him all this time.  My family loves him.  The day he asked my parents for their permission to marry me was one of the best days of their lives (mostly because they knew I was someone elses problem). 

The day he asked me to marry him was the best day of mine.

So what's next?  Stay tuned.  It's going to be amazing!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for your kind comments... I love your story and wish you guys only the best... I can't wait to read more about the journey ahead of you.. I already want another, but will wait till Hudson can @ least hand me diapers.. LOL.. Good luck and God Bless!!