Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Take it as it comes

A friend posed a question in the comment section of my last post, "Does it depress you to travel back to before halfway again?"

When the doctor measured our Ant and he stated, "I don't think you're as far along as you think. You might be up to 5 weeks earlier."

Everything stopped.

The air was suddenly drained out of the room. The warm glow from the ultrasound's screen became a blaring headlight from an oncoming collision. The devastation I felt was paired with a crippling fear.

I couldn't process the words or make them seem rational. I didn't want to believe him, or rather, I began to believe he was a quack. But as he measured and spoke, his voice had a soothing confidence and I couldn't deny his skill and the wisdom in his words.

Once the doctor had taken all of Ant's measurements, the average placed him a day shy of 17 weeks. 17 weeks was still in my danger zone. 17 weeks could still end his life suddenly. It had happened before, it could happen again.

I quickly adjusted my thinking to a March birth and not a February birth. I had no trouble seeing his perfect heart, umbilical cord, and spine on the screen and allowing the safety of these visuals to ease my mind about his well-being. But I couldn't reconcile the number. 17 weeks.

17 weeks was not half way. 17 weeks was not a safe place. 17 weeks meant I could still loose him to an unknown assailant, just like I had lost his brother eight years ago.

When I thought I'd hit the half-way mark of 20 weeks, something in me changed. I finally allowed the little part of me that was still afraid to disappear. I knit a pair of baby booties. I bought a board book and a nursing cover. I measured the office and began making plans to turn it into the nursery. I let myself exhale...but now, again, I couldn't breath.

The joy of hearing Andy whisper in my ear, "we're having a boy" was clouded by the thoughts enveloping me from the doctor's words. It wasn't until we exited the office and began to verbally process with one another that I was able to exhale the tension building in my muscles.

As we drove, and sat in the restaurant and ate lunch, we talked. We reconciled the miscalculation and my mind was put at ease, except for the little piece of fear that held on tight. It was then I realized that I hadn't really experienced the moment when Andy whispered in my ear. I hadn't let the definitive news settle in. After all this time of wondering, hoping, trying not to hope in case the one I hoped for wasn't the one we had, imagining life with one or the other, that was all over. We are having a boy. A boy! In that moment, I realized I was grinning, a big 'ol goofy grin.

So now. In three weeks, when my tummy has swelled again, and our boy has grown to weigh his first full pound, and we officially hit the half way mark...I can rest in knowing that my fear left this baby weeks earlier than it would have if I'd known the truth early on and the environment we've created for him was healthier from the start of his life. And until then, I can continue to learn to exhale a little more each day.


Melanie said...

Wow, Meg. I had no idea there was so much tied to being halfway; it just seemed like you were so excited about being halfway a week or two ago. Thanks for sharing.

meg said...

Mel - I was planning on writing a post addressing this very question, since as you can see it was a very weighted thing. Thanks for giving me a jumping off point :-)

autumn said...

This is sweet, loving and all together beautiful. Also, how wonderful is is that from early, EARLY on (evidently) you have a wiggly baby that you can feel and know is swishing around in his little womb room. Sounds like this baby was perfectly picked to be an active one just in case his mama ever had a moments doubt.

Sarah said...

Oh, this is really wonderful and insightful - to realize all the emotions and ups and downs that go into this. It's not just like 'I'm pregnant' and that's magically wonderful , there's a whole roller coaster ahead. I'm so glad for you, and thanks for sharing these thoughts and emotions for those who are coming behind!

sufferingsummer said...

well expressed. I felt like I didn't really breath for 9 months the first time.
and, so much easier to have a spring baby...less clothing needed, more time outside in the fresh air to get used to the Mama thing and more time to prepare!
Way to ride the waves with your head held high.

meg said...

thank you ladies. I certainly am thankful for my little wiggler. And as I stated briefly, I'm also very pleased that this change in date means I was taking prenatal vitamins longer, was eating better meals since practically the beginning and that I didn't have any alcohol the entire pregnancy.

I'm having an easter baby, who can argue with that?!