Our nuchal scan was yesterday. At first the tech said nothing and just scanned and scanned and clicked and clicked while I tried not to freak out. But then she tossed us a bone (“Heartbeat is very strong”) and I could mostly relax. It is still a surprise to me that the baby is alive at every scan, even though it manifestly should NOT be a surprise at this point. I am now at least three weeks past where we lost the last one (11w6d today), and I rationally know that my odds of having a baby with a severe birth defect are now higher than the odds of losing the baby (not that either set of odds is high). But I still worry.
Anyway, the baby looked perfect. The nuchal measurement was 1.3 mm, which is fantastic and even lower than E.’s was. Everything else also looked great. She showed us the feet, the fingers, etc. Baby was just chilling out, swallowing some amniotic fluid and occasionally flailing a limb, so it was easy for her to get the measurements she needed.
We also didn’t have to wait at all- it was a really quiet day, so we were out of the clinic within an hour, even with the longer ultrasound, and needing to get blood taken for the first round of the IPS screening, and seeing my doctor (who had to step out to take an emergency phone call part way through our chat).
Dr. B. wants me back in a week and a half for a final graduation visit as all the bloodwork should be back by then (the Harmony results weren’t back yet yesterday). But then I’ll be released from the clinic and will just see my midwives.
We had another chat about my thyroid and when I reminded him who my endocrinologist is, he said, “Oh, Dr. W., he’s a legend!” Apparently my endocrinologist, as well as being the rudest man alive, is also the doctor who pushed for mandatory testing for thyroid function for newborns. Dr. B. said if anyone had earned the right to a ridiculous ego, it was him. So that was an eye opener.
When Q. and I were sitting there waiting to see the doctor, I looked at the photos and said to Q., “You know, I have just now realized that we might actually bring this baby home in June.”
“I know,” said Q. “It’s kind of hard to get your head around it.”
I am still twitchy and will stay twitchy probably for the rest of the pregnancy and certainly until the anatomy scan at the end of January as I know too many women (not even through blogs, but in my ‘real’ life) who have lost babies at 18 weeks or later. I know things happen. But I also know that getting to here is a major milestone and things look good at the moment. And that is worth celebrating.
Q. and I went out for lunch and ate too much high quality pizza and Italian cheese. Then we went to the mall to buy Q. a new wedding band (he somehow lost his in a pool change room a few weeks ago). I wasn’t sure we’d have time to do this before picking up E., but Q. went to the same place he bought my engagement ring in 2006, asked to see the wedding bands, took about 45 seconds to peruse them, confirmed with me which one was closest in size the one he’d lost, and decided to buy it. Even with having to size it we were out of there in under ten minutes. I love that man.
The only downside to yesterday was we’d agreed that if the scan went well we would break the news to E. that I wasn’t going to go to Australia. I haven’t been banned from flying by my doctor, but he didn’t exactly embrace the idea when I first mentioned it, and Q. and I both feel it is just not worth running the risk. It is a very long flight that is very hard on your body and we know if anything happened, even if it probably would have happened here anyway, we would always wonder what if. This is our last chance at a second child and nothing, not even a summer vacation on the beach at Christmas, is worth risking that.
E. was, as predicted, distraught. At first he ran down into the basement to cry and then he ran into the living room to hide behind the couch (his ‘snake house’) to cry. Then he determined that if I can’t fly, I should take a ship to Australia. Then he decided that if I couldn’t go, he wouldn’t go either and we’d just send Daddy. And no matter what we held out to him as positives (You get to miss school! You get to go to the beach! Mummy has to stay here and write lectures! We can Skype every day!), he would not shift on that. But gradually, gradually he started to come around. I told him about how I didn’t go to Australia when I was pregnant with him. We reminded him that I went to the UK without him for two weeks right before he turned two, and he had so much fun with his Grandpa he didn’t even want to Skype with me. We reminded him that Daddy went away for three weeks last summer. By bedtime he was manfully trying to cope with the news and was seriously discussing with me how we have to keep me “safe so the baby can keep growing properly”. Dear little thing. I am sure the airport goodbye will be very difficult (for all of us) but I know he will be fine once he is there, and I also know it is the right decision, even though it is gut wrenching for me to send him to the other side of the world.
The tech didn’t give us a print out of the typical cute profile shot (which is sort of annoying, but it’s not like I don’t have a pile of u/s photos of this baby). But this one I really like. It’s like the baby is waving and telling me, “Hey Mum! Look how well I am doing at growing both halves of my brain!”
And then she gave us one of the 3D u/s photos as well. Q.: “I wish they just wouldn’t do that. They are little aliens right now and the 3D ultrasounds really emphasize that.”
So here is our little alien, with his/her hands up by his/her face. The link above goes to E’s nuchal scan post, and you can see a similar 3D shot there. Family alien resemblance?
A baby. There’s really a baby in there.
It still boggles my mind.