This was written mid-April, right before I started feeling the baby move and before I was showing at all. The Sunday Scribblings prompt was Fearless.
Fearless. The thought almost makes me laugh these days. I am far from fearless. And I don’t like it.
When I was PG with Wally, I had the luxury of believing everything would be fine. Why wouldn’t it? We had a scare early on, but it was nothing, and everything was fine and of course it was. Pregnancy equals baby, right? I really wasn’t even all that worried about potential problems with the baby, or things going poorly with the birth, or whatever. I expected that everything would be perfect, and it was.
This time, though. This time I don’t have the luxury of expecting things will be perfect. I don’t have that sweet innocence about pregnancy that (most) other people do. I read through the posts in my Due Date Club (DDC) at Mothering.com and it makes me a little sad – I remember being like those women. But I’m not like them any more.
Now I’m struggling to outrun that haunting fear that the baby has died and my body’s just not caught on. That I started bleeding overnight and when I wake up, I’ll be covered in blood. I’m fearful of the statistics that tell me that I have a much, much higher chance of having a baby with a birth defect. (MTHFR is “strongly associated” with birth defects.) I’m afraid to tell people about this pregnancy, and I don’t know why. I’m afraid I’ll lose this one, too. I’m afraid I’ll carry this one to 40 weeks and lose him/her. I’m afraid.
And I don’t want to be that girl. In some ways, I’m refusing to give in. I refuse to rent a doppler. I refuse to think about birth defects. We’ll probably refuse the 18 week ultrasound (as we did with W). But, in some ways, I can’t get away from it. And so I just have to deal with it.
I’m not one to say that we can change the world just by thinking happy thoughts about it, but I do think that my positive expectations played a rather large role in my positive experience with Wally. And I don’t want my negative energy this time around to dominate. I need to get past the fears, past the worries, and into a better place.
I’m hoping that, once I start growing and feeling the baby move, I’ll be able to relax a bit more.
Update today (June 4). After a lot of heartache, tears, back-and-forth, and phone calls with Cosette, we decided to go ahead and go in for the Level II Ultrasound at 19 weeks, this past Monday. I wanted to refuse it. I did. But ultimately, I realized that I was stuck in this place, and it was not a good place. It was a very bad place. You can see some of that in what I wrote above. I was not enjoying anything – not only the pregnancy, but anything. Plus, Cosette had talked with Dr. Mahone and they agreed that if I did this ultrasound and everything looked good, then I could probably skip further ultrasounds as long as Cosette felt the baby was growing appropriately. Without this ultrasound at 19 weeks, everything would still be a big mystery. With the ultrasound, we’d either be much reassured (that the placenta was functioning well, that the baby was a good size, that it had all of the parts it needed), or we’d know there was a problem, but we could go about dealing with it.
So it was Monday. A student did it, and she was not allowed to give us any commentary. Argh. When the real U/S tech came in, she said we were going to see Dr. Drake in just a few minutes, so she could go over everything with us. They grilled me about whether I’d had trouble gaining weight, if I was really sick early on, if Wally was small. Oh. My. God. There was a white spot on the heart and I asked what that was. “Oh, we see that sometimes.” Yes, I wanted to say, but when you see it, does the baby live?? Because I bet sometimes you also see a baby whose intestines are on the outside of his body, and that’s not good!!
But, ultimately, Dr. Drake came in and, after the requisite small talk, said that everything looked good. She was ready to walk out at that point, but I asked about 8 questions that required answers such as “yes, everything looks good.” “no concerns at all, things look really good.” “It all looked really good. Great. Perfect.” I just wanted to hear her say it. I considered taking out my phone and videotaping her say it.
Anyway…so here we are. I still feel like I’ve betrayed myself with the ultrasound, but I can live with that. I have enjoyed being pregnant more in the last 2 days than I have since, well, March 2007.