Everything has been going well with the little babe. But it’s been over a week since the last scan, so my nerves and fears and paranoia and anxiety is back.
We had the NT scan last Thursday at the Perinatal Diagnostic Center. The sweet ultrasound tech, named Carlos, performed the scan, taking his time and explaining what he was doing the entire time. The nuchal fold measured less than 1mm (anything under 3mm is considered low-risk). He went on to check the basic anatomy of the baby, assuring us that all looked good. He checked to make sure there were two legs and two arms. He showed us the baby’s hands and together we counted all ten fingers. He measured the crown to rump length and we saw the baby was measuring 5 days ahead with a heart rate of 174. He tapped my belly to get the baby to move around and into the positions he needed to take all his measurements. At one point, the baby fell asleep, and so he gave my belly a few small thumps to wake him/her up from its snooze. The baby woke up, moved around a bit and then…began rubbing its eyes.
My husband and I melted. It was such a human response.
As the ultrasound tech continued to take various measurements, he stopped to point out to me that my uterus was contracting. We could see the contractions on the ultrasound and it was blocking images of the baby that the ultrasound tech needed. He told me contractions were normal and would probably subside within a few hours, and that it can sometimes happen if the mother is overly tense or anxious.
My eyes filled with tears. Which doesn’t take much these days.
I know it’s normal to be anxious at a scan like this, but anything that reminds me that I am overly tense or anxious reminds my of why I’m feeling this way. And then I feel vulnerable, damaged, and weepy.
When the ultrasound tech realized that I was so nervous, he started trying to assure me, in his sweet calm way, that everything he was seeing so far was really good. My husband squeezed my hand.
And even my anxiety couldn’t stop me from grinning ear to ear watching our little babe on the screen, moving all around, dancing, and being adorable.
When the scan was over, the doctor came in to talk to us about the results of our blood test. She said our results came back with the lowest risk for downs syndrome she had seen in a really, really long time. She said she had just been in the hallway marveling at the results with the other nurses. My husband and I just stared at each other with stunned happiness. I felt like I had just won a prize. But whenever I get good news, I immediately think of my friends and readers and fellow bloggers who perhaps have not gotten that same good news recently, and I feel guilty. At the same time I feel so happy and relieved, my heart also breaks a little. In those moments, I feel so close to the pain and heartache that so many others have felt, and that I have felt so many times before.
And once again, the confidence I felt that day, after seeing a strong baby and receiving good test results, has slowly faded over the last week. Even though we have made it so far and are so close to making to the 2nd trimester, a place I’ve been desperately seeking for so long, I still feel the same uncertainty as I did when I first got that positive test. I know if it were anyone else I would have no doubts at this point that they would be holding their healthy baby in about six months. But I still feel so vulnerable, so scared that some way and some how this baby will still get taken away from me.
I have to remind myself everyday of all the positive news we’ve received over the last two months, all the statistics that are in our favor, and that at no point has our baby given us a reason to think he/she is not a fighter and a surviver.
And today, I am 13 weeks pregnant.
After 22 months, 3 positive pregnancy tests, 2 miscarriages, 2 surgeries, 1 D&C, 5 doctors, and countless tests and procedures, I have finally completed my very first twelve week eternity.
For that I am filled with awe and gratitude. And as always, keeping hope.