OK, well, apparently the cost of the cruise itself is rivaled only by the cost of the internet minutes I am required to purchase for my lap-top. I guess the concept of “FREE” Wi-fi hasn’t reached the cruise ship industry just yet ….. So forgive me if my updates are not as um ….. Verbose ….. As usual. And hey, I don’t want to hear any of you say that expensive internet service might be a good thing in disguise, either.
To answer your question, no, Blaine is not here with me. But I’m not alone. My mom came with me. Actually, to be more precise, *I* tagged along with my mom. And 31 other retired people that she went to high school with.
What really happened was that a group of girl friends she has lunch with on a regular basis, most of whom she went to school with, started talking about having a Girl’s Day Trip. Which evolved into an Girl’s Overnight Trip. Which evolved into a Weekend Getaway, which evolved into a week-long cruise. To Alaska. At which point most of the ladies agreed that if they were planning something that grand, they would need to (like to) include their husbands. So suddenly, it was fifteen-something couples, most of whom live in the same town, and attend the same church, and are alumni of the same high school, all planning to cruise to Alaska together. And personally? I think it totally rocks.
My mom really wanted to attend, but with my father deceased, she wasn’t about to take her chances sharing a cabin with a total stranger. They started planning this trip early last summer, and at the time, I was preparing to get pregnant in my surrogacy journey. Counting on the calendar, I knew I would deliver the baby in April-May-ish, so I told her I would LOVE to go with her. Then, we had what is called a “blighted ovum”, meaning I got pregnant, but a baby never developed in the sac. Fast forward through a miscarriage, d&c, a move to Oklahoma, and a holiday wait before we could undergo another IVF attempt. Looking ahead on the calendar, again …… I knew I would most likely be pregnant in September, when the trip was planned, and couldn’t possibly leave the country to cruise to Alaska, while percolating someone else‘s bambino. So we decided Blaine would go with my mom. A little awkward, perhaps, sharing a cabin together, but he and I agreed that my mom should absolutely NOT miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime-opportunity to take a trip this fabulous, with friends, some of whom she has known almost sixty years. So pregnant-me was out, and Blaine was in. And although I confess I was a wee bit envious, I was mainly just glad she was still getting to go.
After the second miscarriage, in March, I assumed we would undergo IVF a third time, and that I would most likely still become pregnant before September. Blaine was still agreeable, and my mom was still agreeable, so we stuck to the plan of the two of them traveling together, and me being jealous. (OK, so the me-being-jealous wasn’t part of the plan, but you know what I mean.)
Then, only a few short weeks ago, yadda yadda, personal stuff, testing, testing, testing, blah blah female stuff ….. We decided NOT to undergo another IVF attempt. And while I was sad and disappointed to realize that I wouldn’t be attempting another surrogacy at this time, the consolation prize was the knowledge that I was now free to travel on the cruise as my mother’s companion.
So that’s what I’m doing.
And I was right ---- it totally rocks.
We spent yesterday in Vancouver, doing all kinds of amazing touristy stuff, some of which might or might not have included me walking across a suspension bridge while my scaredy-cat mother stood and hyperventilated on the side and wouldn’t even attempt to cross. Wouldn’t even put one little pinky-toe on the bridge. Wouldn’t even think about it.
And more sightseeing, and lumberjacks, and ferries, and blowing fuses in hotel rooms, and trolleys, and customs, etc.
And now our group has successfully boarded the ship and is preparing for our first night aboard. And mainly, I’ve eaten my way from port to starboard, from aft to stern, and just finished dinner and am watching the clock waiting for the midnight buffet. And thinking perhaps I should have packed more elastic-waist pants.
Because even though I’m NOT pregnant, and this trip is in reality the silver lining of not being pregnant, I have a feeling by the end of the cruise, I will be as big, if not bigger, than I am when I actually AM pregnant.