Thursday, December 4, 2008

Almost Halfway There

M. and I went in on Monday for "The Big Ultrasound." I think people always refer to it that way because that's when the gender mystery is often revealed, like that's the whole purpose for the scan. I must say, in anticipating the appointment, it definitely felt less big to me than the one I had with Finn, since I knew we would be leaving the office not knowing whether Baby #2 is a boy or a girl. Still, lots of important stuff happens at "The Big Ultrasound," none of it centered on what's between the legs.

For the most part, all went well. I feel compelled to qualify since the technician did find an echogenic focus on the baby's heart. It's soooooo not something to worry about, apparently (then just don't tell me!), but it is considered one of the 6 "soft markers" for Down's Syndrome. It happens in a small percentage of all normal pregnancies, and when no other risk factors are present, no further monitoring or testing is encouraged. We fall into that category - the baby was otherwise perfectly healthy looking. Still, the doom-and-gloom scenarioist that lurks inside me can't just proclaim "Everything was perfect!" when asked about the ultrasound (even though everything else, truly, was perfect). Add to that my own heart issues (still having palpitations, every day, I have a follow up visit with the cardiologist next week and I'm hoping to get some answers) and the fact that I was THAT PARENT who received a phone call from daycare (a mere 2 hours after the ultrasound) telling me that my sweet little boy had BITTEN one of his friends... well, saying that the day was draining would be an understatement.

BUT, when I am not a physical and emotional zombie, I completely ignore any mention of heart issues and have been getting quite excited about this baby. It helps that I have been feeling all kinds of movement below the belly button. I didn't mind being pregnant with Finn, but pregnancy has been a lot harder this time around, and feeling those little kicks and punches is really, really rewarding. We are starting to get a move on preparing for this baby, and I think it's helping M. get excited, too. Last weekend we picked up a second-hand changing table for the new nursery, which M. managed to assemble pretty darn fast despite not having the manual/instructions, and despite lots of offers of "Daddy, I help you" from a screwdriver-wielding Finn. This weekend, we are going to see about securing a second-hand double stroller (Craig's List has been great for this stuff). It all makes me want to jump right in and start washing little clothes and organizing and reorganizing the nursery (my only form of nesting, apparently, as Finn's room was the only spotless one in our apartment as we counted down the days to his arrival 2 years ago). But, I'm pacing myself, since Good God, do I really still have 20+ WEEKS to go!?!?! It already seems like I've been pregnant forever - I've been pregnant since the summer (found out about baby in August), through entire fall, and now winter. It's hard to believe I have to make it all the way to mid-Spring.

Anyway, back to that ultrasound. The baby measured at around 10 ounces (no idea if that is big or small for it's age, but the doctor seemed happy). At the end of the scan, the doctor turned the screen away from us so that he could take a look at the gender. I keep thinking how weird it is - someone knows this fairly important bit of information about our baby, but we don't. However, I'm not waivering in my resolve, I'm still excited to have this surprise as a carrot to hold out to get me through what I'm sure will be a long labor. I have sneaking suspicions that it's a boy. MAYBE I saw something boy-like when the technician was checking out the umbilical cord entry into the belly?? AND there's a slightly higher incidence of echogenic foci in boys than girls (yes, I read some scientific journal articles online about this - couldn't help it, my geekiness kicked in). But we won't know for sure until April, and I plan on leaving it that way.

For your viewing pleasure, some profile pictures of the baby, who looked like he/she was trying to cram as much of both hands into his/her mouth as possible:


  1. I hear ya on the "it seems like forever" feeling. I'm 4 weeks ahead and can't wait either! Once I'm past the holidays I'm going to be really ancy. Glad you aren't stressing about the ultra sound. I'm taking a boy if we do a betting pool!

  2. From an outsiders point of view, it seems like you just told me you were pregnant! How weird is that? Of course, you are pregnant on the same schedule I was last year, so each time you hit a milestone, I get to sit back and recollect. Kinda nice from this side of the mommy world.

  3. GREAT photos. Mine were pretty crappy all along of the twins. I feel like you've been pregnant forever too. :)

  4. What great pictures!!! I just love those profile ultrasounds :)

    We wanted to find out the genders of the twins (just so SOMETHING wouldn't be a surprise ;) ), but Maggie didn't cooperate. Ah all turned out just fine.

    We had multiple heart ultrasounds for both of my pregnancies since heart "stuff" runs in both sides of my family. Scary stuff, and hard to not continually worry...but if the docs are saying not to, might as well take what comes when it comes...right? :)