Sunday 26th February 2017
Today is ’emergency scan day’. I had been dreading this day since my appointment letter was pushed through the door and had dropped on to the mat a couple of weeks before. I ripped it open as soon as it did and I remember feeling so upset that it had fallen on a day that meant Matt wouldn’t be able to come with me. The one scan I probably needed him to come to the most would be the one scan in our whole duration of being parents that he would have to miss.
I don’t know if this is just me, a mum thing or something else but I accepted it pretty quickly. I stood tall, put my shoulders back and vowed to bulldoze through it by myself and for our baby. I wasn’t going to rearrange the appointment. The almost four week wait had already been so hard to try and ignore, to try and think past, think away. I had to go! So I told myself to be brave and strong and to get the ‘diagnosis’ so that I could be everything that my baby would need. There was no other choice. Being a Mother is all about playing the card that you have been dealt, poker faces, game faces, thinking fast and acceptance. There are no days off, time outs. You have to be 100% in, from the moment you see those lines on the pregnancy test. And that is something that I definitely am.
And that is what has gotten me through the days to the here and now. Waiting for the seconds to tick by on a clock. Sitting and waiting in my long, dark green maternity dress that makes me feel confident. Tapping my feet, waiting for my sister to collect me for my appointment. Thankfully I have the best family and support network to step in and fill in the gaps for Matt so that this day would be much less stressful, a little easier on me. One sister was taking me to the scan and willing to hold my hand through good or bad news and one was looking after Noah and Ellenah so that we could protect them, soften the blow if I had to come home with hard news that may upset them. At least I had time to remind myself and be thankful for the positives, the good things about my life while I waited. Being a glass half full type of person really helps sometimes. It helps keep a smile on my face when things feel tough anyway. Even if the smile is a little shaky, unsure and a little forced. Sometimes a smile is all you have to kick back with, push on and get through something. So it matters.
Anyway, my sister is outside. Best grab my keys, pregnancy notes, purse, kids, a deep breath and that smile which I am relying on to get me through this next couple of hours.
Our baby is perfect! Weighs about a pound. Has kind of big feet. Doesn’t like to be told what to do. Or to be moved. Has a stubborn streak (like mama) and a strong will. Likes wiggling fingers and toes. And is doing beautifully while growing in my tummy. We are doing okay and I have nothing to worry about as far as any measurements or investigations at this point can tell.
And now I can breathe. Like really and truly breathe. I can feel that weight of worry that I have been shifting around with me for weeks to simply fade away.
It ended up being possibly the most lovely, detailed scan that I have ever had in any of my pregnancies. The sonographer was just so lovely to me and so reassuring, I could have hugged her so tightly if I wasn’t so excited to jump out of the room to call Matt and tell him that everything was fine, is fine and everything is going to be okay.
I can’t stop glaring at the scan photograph’s, especially the one of our baby’s foot. I feel like I can reach out and hold it in my hands. I feel like I’m walking on air. I feel like I can’t describe what is happening in my heart. Like I can’t describe how light I feel with relief. Words certainly can’t do justice just how happy I am that my baby is healthy. For a moment then, I was really and truly afraid. Scared to my core. Terrified within every inch of my being.
I’ve never held onto the saying ‘the world only gives us what we can handle’ so much in my life.
But…I am human! I was anxious that the world had me all wrong.
I think everything is going to be okay from now. For the first time in this pregnancy, I walked away from a scan with hope.
20 Weeks Pregnant… Yikes!
In those early weeks, I would never have imagined being halfway through with this pregnancy. I remember the night before I ended up doing a stint in hospital with severe dehydration due to HG, I said to my husband ‘How am I going to get through this?’ with tears streaming down my face. I remember questioning myself. Asking myself if I could actually survive this. I know that sounds dramatic but when you are in the throws of it and you have absolutely no control over your body or your life anymore… It is very hard. And that statement doesn’t do the reality justice in any way. It doesn’t even come close.
So to only have another 20 weeks to go… What a milestone? What a feeling!
p.s. Subscribe to my YouTube Channel for more updates and to meet baby when the time is right HERE!
And this is how I felt when I turned 19 weeks pregnant! This was a massive turning point for me in this week. I had reached a point when I was DONE with being a victim to pregnancy and I so desperately wanted to enjoy it for everything incredible that it is and for all of the wonderful ways that it is going to change my life when I have my baby here with me.
Tuesday 31st January 2017
We saw our baby again this afternoon. In one breath, it was incredible. I had been counting down the days to see my little one again. To check in, check how much baby had grown… to see the little life growing in my tummy move around and be. Words can’t describe the feeling that I get in my heart when I see my baby on the screen above me. It feels like it’s just me and my baby in the room. Everything going on around me becomes a blur. I can’t properly hear the medical jargon that the Sonographer mumbles under his breath. The silence that hangs in the air around his concentration is irrelevant. I just lay there on the bed, gripping Matt’s hand and watching the screen in amazement and complete awe. I feel like I have to remind myself to breathe in these moments. It’s almost like I don’t want to waste any time because as much as having these scans can tell you, they go fast…And I never want to miss a single second of the experience.
This time was different though.
It didn’t go fast. It took me a while to notice in all of the excitement. It took me a bit of time to realise that the Sonographer was prodding my tummy that little bit harder, more aggressively. It took me a bit of time to realise that he was repeating two measurements in particular, over and over again. Once I did, I removed myself from my happy bubble and joined Matt in the room where I was met with more mumbling and the words cleft palate being thrown around, abnormalities and incomplete heart measurements. And, suddenly I felt numb.
I tried to read the Sonographer’s face, I tried to pick apart every facial expression.
I didn’t understand what he was saying. I didn’t understand his cold tone. I didn’t understand why he wasn’t being a little more kind to us. I didn’t understand what all of this was going to mean for our baby, for our baby’s life. I didn’t want him to tell me to come back in a few weeks time because he isn’t sure if our baby has a cleft palate and / or something wrong with the heart. I didn’t want him to take one final look before marching us out of the door, to then tell us that just because he can’t see any other abnormalities, it doesn’t mean that they are not there.
And worse still, I didn’t understand why I was justifying what he said on the way home. I didn’t understand why I was saying that he probably has to give a ‘disclaimer’ like that to all parents-to-be. I didn’t understand why I felt so calm.
Was it because deep down, I believed with my whole, maternal heart that everything was fine? Was it because I believed with everything that I am, that we would get through anything? Was it because I felt that after everything that me and my baby had already been through together, this wasn’t going to distance us from each other? I don’t know!
I told myself that everything was fine and threw myself in to sharing the news about the sex of our baby with our nearest and dearest. I launched myself into all of the things about the scan that we could celebrate… and would! I let the love and excitement from those around us envelop me and conceal any doubt in the back of my mind. I let them take away the ‘what-if’s’ and the questions that I was pushing down in to the pit of my body.
But tonight, as my exhausted body tries with all of its might to fall asleep in the dark, I am praying that my little human is okay… And I will, every night until ‘a few weeks time’… And then again, until my baby is nestled in my arms, safe and sound and surrounded by so much love.