First of all I have to say that I am completely amazed, truly blessed and just straight-up overwhelmed at how wonderful you all are. I was not expecting all of the sweet and supportive comments and emails I received after mentioning how scared I was after getting the phone call from my doctor about the 20 week ultrasound. I read every single one of your words and they truly made me realize that while I write to get my feelings out/keep the family up to date/make you all laugh once in a while, this blog has become something so much more to me and I feel like I have such a strong support group because of it. So to all of you, thank you for being there and for your kind words and prayers.
With that said, I figured I’d write my 21 week update a day early because the follow-up ultrasound was the biggie of the week and without it, I wouldn’t have much to write about. So without further ado…
Kind of funny to think that we went from a cantaloupe to a banana but I guess before, baby was being measured from head to bum and now it’s from head to foot. So let me tell you about this sweet little banana and all that happened in her world this week.
Tuesday was our follow-up level 2 ultrasound after my doctor saw a light spot on the baby’s heart last week. When my doctor had called me, she simply told me that the spot could be a calcification of the muscle or it could be nothing, but either way we shouldn’t worry but should have it looked at. And of course the only thing I did was worry. And cry. And eat a lot of ice cream. Actually what’s really funny is that the very first thought that ran through my head when I was freaking out was, “I NEED A CIGARETTE!” Of course I didn’t have one, but I was shocked that I haven’t had one for oh, 9 months now yet it was the first thing to pop in my head like I never quit. Weird.
Anywho, by the time Tuesday morning came, I was in less a state of worry and more back to my old self where I knew there was nothing I could do but wait and see. So Scott, my mom and I all went to the hospital that morning where a tech did the first part of the ultrasound. She measured the baby’s bits again – bones, kidneys, brain, etc. – and she found the spot in the heart right away.
So it wasn’t a shadow.
And I was surprisingly calm.
And for shits and giggles I asked her to verify for us that this baby is for sure a girl ’cause I’ve already been lied to once! And yep, baby is a girl. No doubt. I saw her lady bits. So after the tech did her thing and gave us more pictures…
…the high-risk OB came in and explained to us exactly what this spot in her heart means. She said it’s not a birth defect, it’s nothing we’d have to have monitored once baby girl is born, and it should be gone by birth. The significance of it is that it is considered a soft marker for a possible chromosome disorder, aka Down’s Syndrome or Trisomy 18, though with no other markers present the odds look good for us. So she looked for other signs – fluid around the kidneys, short limbs, a short or non-existent bone in the nasal passage, the thickness of the skin fold behind the neck, markers in the brain and bladder – she explained everything she was looking for and checked each one off as perfect in our little girl. Nothing out of the ordinary other than the heart spot. So while our chances for Down’s Syndrome are now up to something like 1 in 210, everything looks fantastic and the doctor didn’t seem concerned in the slightest.
We then talked about an amniocentesis. They can draw amniotic fluid from the placenta and test it for a 100% yes or no but the procedure carries a risk of miscarriage with it. I asked her if she recommended it in our situation to which she said it’s completely up to us. She told us to look at it like this….
The odds of a miscarriage from an amnio are pretty much the same as the odds of the baby having Down’s, so which would be worse for us? 1) losing a potentially perfectly healthy baby by having the procedure, or 2) giving birth to a baby with Down’s.
For me it would be way worse to lose this baby, Down’s or not. I love her with all of my heart. I am so completely and utterly attached to this little one that I would be devastated if anything were to happen to this little life growing inside me. And while it’s such a personal choice and I would never ever judge anyone for making a choice different from mine, I would not terminate the pregnancy if I found out early (or ever for that matter) that this baby has Down’s. For me the choice was simple. So we’ll hope and pray that baby girl is healthy and know that with a 0.5% chance of a chromosome problem, the odds are lookin’ pretty damn good.
Other things this week:
This weekend I was absolutely ravenous for burgers…I think I had 3 burgers in a 24 hour period. We’re not talkin’ those little mini frisbees of meat that McDonald’s calls a “hamburger”, we’re talkin’ 1/3 lb angus burgers that were twice the size of the bun. Yum. Oh, and it turns out a panini maker is awesome for cooking a burger in under 5 minutes, though it makes a huge greasy mess on the counter (but I’d totally do it again in a heartbeat).
This week Scott has been able to feel baby girl doing her aerobics, her kicks are getting stronger! If I watch my belly I can see it bounce once in a while – I even put the remote on my belly to see if it would move but the only movement I got to see was the beating of my own heart. Eh.
My belly button is getting more and more shallow…I have a strong suspicion it’s going to pop out to an outtie at some point over the next few months.
I’ve officially gone up another bra size which just blows my mind. Man I hope these puppies stay after everything else goes back to normal (or as normal as can be after a baby)!
While apparently it’s common to pop blood vessels when pregnant because of all the extra blood coursing through the veins, I’ve read I should expect to be Super Hero Bloody Eye for the better part of 2 weeks because it takes longer for an eye to absorb blood after a vessel pops. So today I wore a super hero ring to distract people and draw their attention away from my eye and towards the sparkles.
So far I think it’s working. I’m seriously scared of what’s gonna happen to my eyes when I start to push during labor though if one little pukey incident turned me into someone that can scare small children with barely a glance.
21 week belly shot (oooo, look at the sparkly ring, not the eye, the ring):
And to think, this morning someone actually told me I’m starting to show.
For past weeks, visit My Pregnancy Calendar
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