Thursday, December 7, 2017

Meet Me Halfway

19 weeks!
Technically, I won't be 20 weeks until next Monday, but for me 19 weeks marks halfway through this pregnancy as my high-risk OB informed me at our mid-pregnancy anatomy scan that she wants to schedule a c-section for sometime between 37 and 38 weeks.  So there you have it, friends.  Fingers and legs (and toes and everything else) crossed, we'll meet this baby, boy or girl, in mid-April.

Suddenly, this pregnancy feels very real.  Somewhere around week 18 I popped and now it is quite tricky to hide the bump.  I finally told the head fo my new law firm and while I haven't told my other co-workers, I'm no longer avoiding maternity clothes and fitted tops at work.  The best thing is that I am feeling this baby move!  Despite having an anterior placenta, which makes it more difficult to detect movement, I'm definitely feeling it, especially when I lay down at night to read.  I'm excited for a few weeks from now when the movements are strong enough that R and B will be able to feel them as well.

Telling my boss was interesting and went about as well as I could expect.  Keep in mind that I have only been at this job for 6 weeks, so obviously I was pregnant when I accepted and started.  I decided to be direct: "I'm pregnant.  I wanted to tell you when I joined (which is true), but this is actually my fifth pregnancy and given the fact that pregnancy has often not ended well for us, I wasn't ready to tell you or anyone else when I accepted the job."  It went something like that.  He was wonderful about it -- he has five (!) daughters and was just so happy that we were having another kid and was just great about it.  The whole conversation was a huge relief and I felt so much better about everything at work afterward.

Oh, and our mid-pregnancy anatomy scan looked great.  Baby was moving around like crazy, everything was measuring on track, and he or she has all of the organs you'd expect to see.  We breathed a big sigh of relief.

This little girl's happiness related to all things Christmas is infectious

And here we are in December.  The tricky thing is that everything about this pregnancy reminds me of being pregnant with Q (Baby L - it's confusing, her name starts with Q, but L, which stands for Lemon, was her nickname throughout my pregnancy).  Q was due in early April.  She died on December 30th.  And going into the holidays, I felt great... until I didn't.  Christmas of that year was awful, including a Christmas Eve phone call to the emergency line at my doctor's office, no sleep, and being so uncomfortable I couldn't even walk a hundred yards.  Whenever I think about that Christmas, I get furious at myself for not trusting my instincts, knowing something was wrong, and driving myself to the ER.  So even though I am being closely monitored and I'm taking tons of Lovenox so getting a blood clot is virtually impossible, I'm just anxious about letting my guard down and letting myself get excited -- even know I rationally know this a different pregnancy.   Don't get me wrong - I am just thrilled about this baby and I have moments of being incredibly optimistic and imagining Rob putting this baby in my arms in April and telling me whether it is a boy or girl... but those moments are always tempered by thoughts of cord accidents and blood clots and unexplained late term losses.  Every time a pregnant woman tells me she feels great now that she is 26 weeks along and the baby will be fine no matter what, I have to bite my tongue not to tell them that isn't true.   I know these feelings are exacerbated because we are fast-approaching B's 3rd birthday, which is followed 2 days later by the anniversary of Q's death.  She would be 4.  FOUR.  How is that possible?  What would she be like?  I so desperately wish that I knew.

What is keeping me from a downward spiral of sadness and introspection on this topic is the fact that B is giddy about Christmas and her impending birthday.  Each morning we go downstairs and check the advent calendar for a little treat for her.  We've talked about the cupcakes she'll take to school for her birthday and I mailed invitations to her (very small) party yesterday.  Her joy for this season is contagious and I'm trying to stay present in that feeling instead of the others, although I will make space for the sadness this month, too. I always do.

I'm thinking of all of you who have lost babies this month and sending lots of love.  And I'm giving B extra snuggles and kisses and love because I am able to --- and how lucky am I for that?



8 comments:

  1. Happy and hopeful and anxious for and along with you. One day at a time. I can totally see why this time of year is a doozy. My timeline with Finn was the same as it was with Cale so that just added another difficult aspect of navigating my pregnancy with him.

    So glad your boss was good about everything.

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    1. The similar timelines just add an extra layer of anxiety. You made it through... we can too!

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  2. Yay! Baby looks more adorable than ever. I’m glad things are going well and how great to hear your new boss is so supportive. Wishing you the best as you go through this happy but complicated time. I agree, the enthusiasm of a child makes Christmas much more fun.

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    1. It so does - what a fun holiday season!

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  3. I have been thinking of you! I can't even imagine how difficult it must be heading into this season given what you went through. I had so much anxiety my entire pregnancy. I ended up being 11 days overdue and even when I hit 40+ weeks I would get anxious when baby moved less. I didn't truly believe I was having a baby until she was in my arms! I'm so glad you have B to remind you of the joy of this season even while you hold space for the sadness. Wishing you a happy holiday!

    PS: I am guessing girl because the head shape looks similar to my baby girl in her anatomy scan :)

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    1. Funny, I think girl, too. I was firmly in the boy camp until recently, and now I think girl. Happy holidays!

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  4. So glad things are going well with this pregnancy. I know the fear will always be there but I hope with every bit of good news you can exhale a bit. Happy early birthday to B, and I hope you are able to find some quiet moments of peace on Q's anniversary. It doesn't get easier but I hope the love for your family helps get you through.

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    1. Thanks for your kind note. I have found some quiet moments and plenty of time for reflection and I've decided to be positive about this pregnancy going forward. Onward!

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