Yesterday was the second hardest day of my life. My surrogate baby left to Australia and I am left wondering how I got to where I am. It's strange that just a couple of months ago I was perplexed that I felt so little connection to the baby that I carried for so long. It's strange also that I was sure that I could let her go with her parents without a worry. And now. Now I am broken hearted. It's funny how pain makes you think and think.... and think. Like you are trying to figure out what can make it stop. I've found that if I had not offered to breast feed, things would be very different. Four weeks of nursing this little tiny baby was not what I had planned, and somehow, it just seemed to happen. As each nursing passed, I grew more in love with her. More attached and more deeply wondering if there is any possible way that she could remember me on some deep level in the future.
The day was long, wet with many tears and bouts of crying and dreading her parting from me, yet eager to have it done and to be on the side of less pain through healing. The trip to the airport was the same, with me sitting beside her, gazing at her sweet face and stroking her tiny little hand in mine. Tears pouring down my face, it seemed that I couldn't say, 'I love you' enough times. Once through the check in process, with time short, there was much urgency to get her nursed for the very last time so the new family could pass through security and be on their way home. This last nursing was in the waiting area with many people around and I let them distract me as often as possible, but toward the end, it was impossible. As I stroked her little cheek, I knew when I took her from my breast, I would never nurse her again. With her mother sitting beside me, I took baby Mikayla up in a hug and kissed her and cried hard. Her mother standing up, I placed this gift that I love so much into the sling around her mother and I hugged them both telling them I love them. I whispered, 'Take good care of her' into her mother's ear as we cried together. Walking over to the others then in line for security, more tears, hugs and promises of visits were shared.
Walking out of the airport with no baby in my belly, no baby in my arms and no baby waiting for me near by was the emptiest that I have ever felt. As I spent the rest of the night unable to stop the random tears, I grasped some of her left behind clothes to my chest and sobbed. I knew I could have avoided this pain, but I didn't care. If I had kept myself separate and kept my milk from her, it would have hurt less, if at all, but I never would have had the joy, the love, the pleasure of sacrificing so much. Nor would I have the sweet memories of her tiny little body curled up and nursing at my breast, her tiny little hand so gratefully grasping me like she too treasured every moment.
As the time goes by, I know that I can think of her and feel the joy and love and not the pain, so much. In the end, I am in awe of how grand this journey has been and how deep the feelings. All of the feelings, in fact. The joy, the pain, the love. And I am proud of myself for being open enough to accept it all. Tonight, I have hope that I can lay my head down and not cry myself to sleep. The thoughts of this little girl in the future is a pleasurable distraction as I think of seeing her again one day and wonder, how will my heart feel at that moment. Whatever it may be, I am certain that it will not be pain or sadness and I am thankful that those days will come.
My time will now be spent finishing my book and I will still post on this blog related to my feelings of the surrogacy and how the family is doing. It's my hope that some how, I have helped to touch someone through sharing so openly here and know that it's true that It is better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all.