We thought telling our closest friends and family would make it seem “real” but nothing could convince me more than SEEING MY BABY’S TINY LITTLE HEART BEATING! Today we had our first ultrasound. Despite that disgusting blue gel (which is worse than sand I will have you know!) the whole experience was amazing. Melbs came with me to our 9am appointment this morning and I wish we had asked one of the nurses to snap our photo because I’m pretty sure we looked like the eagerist beavers you’ve ever seen. Eyes wide, anxiously thinking of all the questions we mustn’t forget to ask, wondering, worrying what was coming next!
First it was lots of paperwork. Some of the questions surprised me: Are you at all related to the baby’s father? Has the baby’s father kicked or punched you lately? Are you currently using drugs? Homeless? These are certainly not the sort of things I expected to think about today but alerted me to the fact that some people answer yes to these questions. First thought was sock, second was sadness, and finally, gratitude. Boy, do I live a wonderfully privileged life. How very fortunate I felt to be there, with my non-related, non-abusive husband on that morning.
After all of the surveys were done, the nurse wanted my weight, which is eight pounds more than my wedding day, 3 more than last month, and a lot less than I felt. Blood pressure and heart rate are normal, teeth look good. Yes, my breasts are sore, and okay yeah, I’ve been tired and grouchy. Finally on to the ultrasound!
Again, blue stuff aside, this was pure magic. The whole time I was laying there waiting for the doctor to see my baby I worried that she wouldn’t see anything. That I had fabricated this baby in my mind and over exaggerated all of my symptoms. That I had wasted everyone’s time, and boy would my mom be disappointed… The doctor kept saying things like, “it should show up any second now…” and “maybe if I try this way…” and I almost felt like crying. And then she saw it! I saw Melbs’ face before I turned to the monitor and it was confirmation enough. Baby Melby was real.
Despite what I’ve always thought when looking at those god awful ultrasound snapshots on Facebook, the large black bean thing is not the baby. That little white blur is. And inside that little blur was a tiny little sparkle— the baby’s heart beat. It has a heart beat!
After that, the rest was easy. We verbally shat on the doctor with all of our questions:
“Can I drink coffee?”
“Can she run marathons?!”
“Should we get rid of our cat?”
“What about pate? That’s old advice right? Surely I can eat pate!”
The doctor was wonderful and patient and sent us home with a goodie bag full of journals and calendars and stickers and books and belly lotions. I felt validated. I felt excited. And then I had to go back to my regular, non-mother life and respond to a bunch of emails. But I kept my baby’s first photo on my laptop all day and smiled.