So there isn't much left to the "story". Over the next several hours we just went on with the flow of things. My parents came by to wait until I was released so they could take me home.
The only important thing left was when Baby's Daddy finally arrived. On Sunday around 2 his airplane finally landed after much chaos and many delays. He came straight from the airport. Baby's Momma went to the hospital lobby to get him so me and Ann Ann had our last few moments alone. I picked her up and got her ready to meet her daddy.
When they came in the room I got excited all over again. I got to see Baby's Momma see her for the first time, now I was getting to see Baby's Daddy see her for the first time. He washed his hands and I handed him his baby girl. He awkwardly held her and just stared at her chubby little face. Baby's Momma stood by him to help him hold less awkwardly. They were finally all together! He looked up at me and just said thank you about 20 times. Tears were welling up in his eyes and Baby's Momma's eyes. And of course as soon as that happened there were tears pouring down my face. I thanked them for letting me be part of this journey with them.
Shortly after the nurse came to wheel me out (not because I was broken, but it is just policy to wheel patients out).
I got home to an exhausted husband and exhausted children. They were all driving each other crazy. My hubby did an amazing job though getting the house picked up before I got home which helped me relax a little. However, about an hour home and everything hit me:
I was physically exhausted - I had 4-5 hours of sleep in the last 55 hours and during that time pushed a baby out so my body was still out of whack and oozing blood and contracting (I was on some medicine to keep contractions going so my uterus would shrink faster to avoid hemorrhaging).
I was emotionally exhausted - Since Baby's Momma and Ann Ann were in the room the whole time I never really had time to myself to just work through the emotions of those 2 days. I am SO glad they were there with me, but putting on a "strong" face for the Momma the whole time was a little draining.
So as everything hit me, I felt overwhelmed. I felt that everything in that moment was completely out of control and I just cried. For no real reason. Just a release of all the exhaustion.
Around 11 PM that night I finally went to bed. For much needed rest for every part of my being. By morning I was mostly back to myself. Still tired because...
Note to myself and other potential surrogates: Pumping is a nightmare
In order to have a milk supply without actually breastfeeding you have to do far more work than when a baby is nursing. I have to get up every 3 hours and pump both sides for 15 minutes each. Pumping colostrum is pretty painful while you wait for your milk to come in. I was so excited for my milk to finally arrive...until the engorgement started while my knockers adjusted to the "demand" of the pump. So yeah...every 3 hours without fail for 15 minutes (no more, no less).
But at least Ann Ann is getting the milk she needs!
And with that I ask myself, would you do it again? And although I am pretty sure I know my answer, I want to wait a few months to make sure. So I won't really answer that yet.
Thank you all so much for reading about this journey! Thank you for praying with me through the rough times, and rejoicing with me through the awesome times. Thank you for your support and encouragement.