Archive for October, 2008

6 Weeks Pregnant

We’re pregnant again!

I got to see the heartbeat on an ultrasound today! I’m only 6 weeks along (due May 25–just one week before Daniel’s birthday), but because of a small amount of bleeding, I had blood tests and an ultrasound done early just to ease my mind.

I’ve been strangely both confident and extremely worried for the two weeks we’ve known about this pregnancy so far. There was only one moment when I thought I was losing this pregnancy, but after I cried and prayed, I felt what seemed like divine relief. I felt like this was going to be a growing and learning experience for me. The lessons are Patience and Trust. I had had 5 straight nights of insomnia, where I was only able to get 3-4 hours of sleep per night because my body and mind could not relax. But as soon as I felt that relief, I was able to sleep again.

Last week, when I had my first bit of bleeding (and also my teary relief), I made an appointment with a doctor recommended to me as an OB so I could get an ultrasound and blood work. But it turned out, she was not an OB–she was an Internist/Pediatrician, but she did basic well-woman care at her practice. So she didn’t have an ultrasound machine, and I still needed to find a new OB. (My most recent OB no longer works as a back-up doctor for homebirth patients.) She was able to order the blood tests that measure the amount of pregnancy hormones in my blood to make sure my levels were rising at a healthy rate, though. My first test came back with very high numbers (a good sign), but we still needed to see the numbers from the second test (two days later) to make sure it was rising steadily. The second test was done on Friday, but I didn’t get the results back until yesterday afternoon! The wait was so difficult, but my numbers were great, and I felt a flood of relief.

That night, I had a bit of spotting again, and the doubt returned, but I had already made an appointment with the OB that my midwife recommended as one of her best back-ups. Today was that appointment, and it was something else…

We arrived about 20 minutes early so I would have time to fill out the new-patient paperwork and hopefully see the doctor as close to my appointment time as possible since Dan wanted to go to the Red Sox game tonight (my appointment was at 3, and he was hoping to leave for the game around 4:30). When we walked into the office, we saw an older man shuffling down the hallway, and Dan jokingly said, “Maybe that’s the doctor.” It turns out it was! He is very old, very slow, and hard of hearing. He wore a headband/light thing on his forehead with his name labeled on the side in huge letters. He never used it, and never took it off.

When we got to the front desk, and I told the receptionist I was a new patient, she told me she’d be with me in a minute. She didn’t end up giving me the paperwork to fill out until 3. I didn’t get called back until around 3:45, when the nurse weighed me, took my blood pressure, then told me to wait back in the reception area because there were no exam rooms available. We didn’t get put into an exam room until about 4:10, where we waited another 20 minutes for the doctor to come in. He came in, asked me some questions, wrote down my answers, then proceeded to tell me he would do an ultrasound and I should get undressed and sit under the paper sheet and that he’d be back in a minute. It took me less than 15 seconds to be ready, but we waited… and waited… and waited, and he didn’t come back! Finally around 4:40, the nurse popped her head in and said the doctor had just finished with another patient and would be in shortly. We told her that Dan had to leave (his ride for the game was circling outside by this point) and that we needed the doctor to hurry. After another 5 minutes, I finally told Dan to just go and that I would call him when I was done. He left reluctantly, but the doctor didn’t return for another 10 minutes after that!!! And when he walked in and saw that Dan had left, he asked why we didn’t tell him Dan had to go, since he would have come in much sooner if he had known! After telling him we’d told the nurse just that, he marched out of our room again to yell at the nurse for not telling him, then repeated over and over how disappointed he was that Dan wasn’t there. I just can’t believe that he chose to see another patient rather than waiting the few seconds it took for me to be ready for the ultrasound.

His first attempt at the ultrasound was unsuccessful at finding the baby. He didn’t see the pregnancy at all in my uterus, or anywhere else, but muttered under his breath that he saw some fibroids. He removed the probe, talked to himself a little, did a manual pelvic exam, happy to find there was no pain or tenderness, and also happy to find that my uterus was nice and firm. So he tried the ultrasound agian, this time pressing down on my abdomen with his hand, and–hallelujah!–he found the baby! And its little heart was beating away. It was pretty impressive that something so small (only .53 of a centemeter!) would show up on an ultrasound at all–and that we could see its heart beating, too. And not only did we see it beating, but we could see it actually pumping in that rhythmic motion. I was expecting a simple flicker to indicate the beating heart since it’s so early, but it actually looked like a teeny tiny heart–which is, of course, what it is.

So after the doctor measured the baby (it measured the textbook size for its age), he printed out a few pictures from the ultrasound and said congratulations and started writing in my chart. He never mentioned the fibroids again. So I asked him, “Did you say I had fibroids?” And his only response was, “Uterus is bumpy.” And that was that.

So I may or may not have fibroids, but they’re not really dangerous anyway–especially if they’re tiny. And I am happily and healthily pregnant. And finally comfortable enough to announce it!

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