Sunday, December 6, 2015

It's a....


We went in for the 20 week anatomy scan on Wednesday. It was pretty clear pretty quickly that it's a baby boy growing in there! We got to watch him wiggle and squirm for awhile while the tech took all his measurements. We even got to see him with the 3D ultrasound to get a pic of his little face and hands! Then the doctor came in and said, "Everything looks great....That's pretty much all there is to say." Which was all I wanted to hear. So far, so good! We talked about the plan for the future, which will include another check up at Maternal Fetal Medicine at 24 weeks, and then weekly biophysical profiles starting at 28 weeks. He said the chance of stillbirth after a normal BPP is 1/1000. While we already know the odds have not played in our favor historically, this will provide reassurance from week to week. I'll most likely be induced between 38-39 weeks if everything goes well until then.

This is great news, and we have been happy all week because of it. I feel baby boy move pretty regularly (several times a day), which also provides reassurance. There is some level of frustration,  however, which is that if we had been monitored this closely with Sloane, the chances are that she would be here. If we had a BPP at our last appointment with her (4 days before I went into labor), the chances seem to be that they would have caught it. Maybe not-but she would have had a better chance. Which then leads me to think, why aren't ALL pregnancies treated as high risk? Obviously some women would not want that, and that's fine, but some would. And let's be honest- pregnancy and prenatal development are a high risk situation, just by nature of what they are. There's a lot going on in not a lot of time and a billion things that can go wrong. Does it really have to take a baby dying to get monitoring to make sure that the next baby doesn't die? Obviously, I'm not the kind of friend you want to have when you're pregnant, because I can be a tad fatalistic and doomsday. But, we will try and keep focusing on the here and now, which is that as of right now, baby is healthy, strong, and alive.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Baby L #2: 20 weeks

We find out the sex of baby L #2 tomorrow!

So many people have been so excited for this appointment tomorrow. Excited to the point that they remember when the appointment is weeks or days after I tell them. Maybe these are all just exceptionally thoughtful people, but I do not remember when my own appointments if they aren't in my calendar, let alone someone else's appointments. People are good.

Having other people be excited about finding out the sex, and being excited in general for this baby, is slowly starting to creep into my own emotions. It has been really hard for me to start to accept that this pregnancy may have a different outcome than my pregnancy with Sloane, and I definitely have not totally accepted that yet. But the more people that are purely excited, the more I start to think that there must be something to their excitement. If so many people can think that I will walk away from this with a healthy baby, then maybe, just maybe, I actually will. If so many people can assume that pregnancy leads to a living baby, then maybe it will for me, just once. While I know better than most that a healthy pregnancy does not always lead to a healthy baby, maybe I can be one of the majority this time around.

I'm not sold yet, but I'm entertaining the thought.

I can't say I am necessarily excited to find out the sex tomorrow. I honestly do not care if it is a boy or girl-either outcome would be accompanied by its own set of feelings. But I am excited to see this babe wiggle and squirm again, and find out if everything is developing ok. That's what gets me excited these days, being reassured that everything looks healthy and normal. And finding out how much monitoring I will have as the pregnancy progresses. No doctor can tell me either of those things enough. So hopefully tomorrow will be a good day!

Baby L #2: 14 Weeks

Written October 16, 2015 and saved until now...

August 15, 2015. 

I think this picture does a pretty good job of capturing the moment. At a hotel in Franklin, TN, I took a pregnancy test. Not the first, but hopefully the last for some time. As I sat waiting for the result, my mind raced with a million thoughts. If it was negative again, I would be so disappointed. But if it was positive, would I really be able to cope with the anxiety that would follow? Was I ready to start this journey again? When I saw that positive result, I felt immediate relief, followed by panic. What a relief to be done with the TTC journey, and what panic to be starting the PAL journey. I showed the test to Josh, who responded with pure excitement, and then I started crying. It was a beautiful, exciting, and nerve-wracking moment.

Since then, I have had 3 doctor's appointments with my midwife which have included 2 ultrasounds, and then 1 ultrasound for the 1st trimester screen. Everything has looked great. At each appointment, hearing the heartbeat has provided immediate, albeit short-lived, relief. Within a few days, I go back to wondering and assuming if this baby has died without me knowing it. I tend to err on the assumption that this is the case, because there is not much anyone could do at this point in the pregnancy even if something went wrong. That may seem fatalistic, but it definitely seems easier to assume the worst and then be pleasantly surprised than to assume everything is fine and have your world crash down. I've done the second path, so I figure I will try the first path this time.

Most of the time, it is easy to forget that I am pregnant. I am just starting to show, I feel fine, it is too early to feel the baby move, and not many people know. This is my typical means of coping, to forget momentarily. Because of this, the struggle has been how to bond and make memories with this pregnancy while still protecting my heart that the worst may happen. I don't think there is an answer to this question. I think it will be a daily struggle until this baby comes out.
There are glimpses of hope though. A friend gave us a present for this baby this week, and my Human Resources person talked about next summer when I will be home with my baby. I let myself look at baby clothes online once, and even ordered some maternity clothes. It seems foreign and strange when other people talk so surely of my future with this child-we still have a long 25 weeks to go and a lot can go wrong in that time. But it is also a nice reminder that maybe things will work out. Things have to work out how you want them to at some point, right?

Telling people I am pregnant has gotten easier. At first, it felt strange to hear their excitement. For while I feel excited, it is definitely not the only emotion I feel. It is getting easier to hear excitement though. I am remembering that this is how most people react to the news of a pregnancy, not with fear and trepidation.

We are doing ok. We will keep hanging on from one appointment to the next.