Baby Blankenship Update

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.-- So many emotions in the past few weeks that I couldn't keep up with my own brain.  On Wednesday May 6th we had our first round of in vitro with our gestational carrier.  In case you haven't read some of my previous posts let me explain.

I was born with a rare syndrome and do not have ovaries or a uterus so I can't have children.  My beautiful, wonderful sister has decided to carry a baby for me, so my husband and I using a donor egg and his sperm are going through in vitro fertilization where they transfer embryo's into my sister's uterus and hope they take.

I told myself that I would not get upset if round one did not take.  I know that this will work eventually, and the Dr we have been seeing even said our odds are very high and there's no real reason it shouldn't work within three rounds.

Even though I told myself this and even told other people this, it didn't stop me from feeling like someone punched me in the gut when I found out that round one did not work.  I felt a sadness that I didn't even know existed.

Jim came home from work after the call and stayed with me because I was virtually inconsolable.  When people tell you this journey is long I now understand, everything that was exciting about it vanished when I realized it wasn't a snap your fingers process.

In case you are new to this procedure let me give you some background on how it works:

1. My sister does rounds of hormone's to get her body ready to carry a baby that isn't hers.

 2. When she's ready we go to the clinic where they take 2 embryo's they have created from a donor's egg and Jim's sperm and transfer them to her uterus.

Jimmy, Me and Dani before the procedure

This is a picture of our two embryo's before transfer!

3. We go into a room where the Dr. basically does an exam on Dani's uterus, and then through a catheter inserts the two embryos.  While they do that someone has an ultersound going so Jim and I can actually SEE the two embryos going into the uterus, it is WILD to say the least.

That tiny white line, that's the embryos!

4.  Now you sit and wait... 10 days after the transfer they can tell you whether you have a successful pregnancy or not.

I got the call on Monday the 18th at around 1:30, the nurse sounded so nervous that I knew something bad was about to be said.  It didn't work.  As I mentioned earlier, nothing can prepare you for that phone call because each round you go in so positive thinking THIS will be the round, THIS is when it is going to work and we'll be parents. 

After I rested for a few days and tried not to think about it we had an appointment with our Dr. for a followup.  Dr. Young explained that this is very common and can honestly be a number of variables, he said typically it's due to having a thin uterine lining, meaning my sister would probably have a "lighter" period that month (because that is what you are shedding, your uterine lining). 

He told me that 90% of the time this process works within 3 rounds and for us to not worry that it's perfectly normal for it not to work the first time. 

The hardest part for me about sharing my story and our journey to parenthood is the questions I get.  When it didn't work I had about 1 million texts from friends and families asking if it worked, I had to relive my sadness every time I wrote someone, "no it didn't take this time." 

That doesn't deter me from telling our story though, mainly because I hope someone else going through this process or one similar reads it and says "YES, I understand!"  Maybe they will feel not so alone. 

So we are going in for round 2, it'll probably be about 5 weeks until we can try again, my sister has to take another round of hormone drugs, and then they have to create the embryo's lots of science going on here... I have high hopes though that round 2 will be my round.  Stay tuned....


  1. Praying every day for you three! <3

    1. Thank you so much Amanda! When this DOES happen we will definitely go to you for some unique maternity photos of my sissy, Jim and myself! =)

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