Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Week 18: Level-II Ultrasound

With most pregnancies, moms-to-be go in for an ultrasound only a couple of times in their 40 weeks of gestation.  If I remember correctly, we only saw GW four or five times in total and that was excessive because of the circumstances (realized we were pregnant after we were already 12 weeks along).  With baby bump #3, today marks sonogram number six in only 18 weeks and I know for darn sure that we have many, many more to come. 

We went into the perinatal office today for our level II ultrasound to check on baby's physical development.  As I talked about with the previous pregnancy, the risk with elevated alpha fetoprotein levels is that either there is a malformation with the baby or there is a maternal issue impacting the reading.  While the second isn't necessarily a walk in the park, the first is obviously the more scary of the possibilities and this in depth analysis of baby's body helps rule out conditions like spina bifida and abdominal wall malformations. 

GV in tow, the sonographer gels-up my belly and projects the images of our little one on the screen inciting excited squeals and flailing toddler enthusiasm at the sight of  "BABY!!"  Starting with the spine, the image gradually works down the vertebrate one by one until the sonographer reports that all looks good there before moving on.  Skipping the heart because I'll require a fetal echo in a week or two anyway, she examines all the internal organs, the baby's growth in girth and length and, again, pronounces all's well.

Lapsing into momentary euphoria, all I can think is "THANK GOODNESS!!"  I can't even begin to tell you how relieved I am to once again have a healthy baby despite my abnormal readings.  Granted I know this means there is something up with either my diabetes impacting the pregnancy (typical) or that there may be issues with the placenta (likely), but as we went through these hoops last time I know that I'm in good hands and that my MFMs wont let anything get out of hand.  If it is, in fact, an old placenta as it was with GV, I can only pray that we don't repeat the abruption of all things.  High AFP, okay.  Placental concerns, gotcha.  Abruption - heck no!

Bringing me back to reality, the sonographer then asks the one question every second trimester mom is tempted by: "are you finding out the gender?"

Answering yes, but no - we're doing a fun gender reveal this go around because, why the heck not?! - she tells HB and me to look away from the screen while she pokes and prods the little guy/gal into a conclusive position. Taking a folded card from the cabinet she then announces "I'll be right back, I don't want you guessing from my scratching!" and exits the room.   Upon returning, she hands me the thoroughly stapled shut card and says "CONGRATULATIONS!"

As tempting as it is to open this card now and know what we're having, we found out the quick way the past two pregnancies and knowing now or this weekend doesn't impact what we'll have the rest of our lives.  Either, this card says it's another little girl (what I want) or it says it's another little boy (what I think it is) - but either which way, I'm putting that card in my purse, handing it straight off to the best mommy-buddy a girl could ask for (yeah, you, SP) and thanking God that baby is healthy and doing exactly what he or she is supposed to be doing: growing!    

Next appointments:  week 20 fetal echo and week 21 MFM check up.  But first: gender reveal! 

What do you think baby will be?  :)

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