Wednesday, July 11, 2012

8, or There's a Kidney Bean in my Belly

Whoa.  This shit is starting to get real. 

8 weeks.  Baby is the size of a kidney bean and is developing hands, feet, eyelids, a brain, breathing passages - holy crap there's a baby in my belly!  I was reading ahead last night (which they tell you not to do, but it was only like 12 hours ahead, so I'm sure it's okay) and it started to come over me - this is really happening.  There's a floating person-to-be inside me that's growing at a ridiculous pace and will be ready to come out and meet us all in just a few more months.  Wow.  I've been so focused on not getting too emotionally attached, not getting my hopes up...this is wild.

Guys?  I'm gonna be a Momma! 

Of course, I have to follow that with a disclaimer - I haven't seen a doctor yet.  I don't know that everything is fine and dandy.  I'm assuming.  I'm speaking from a place of hope.  Fingers crossed I won't have to print any retractions, you feel me?

Eight weeks.  Two months down, seven and a half (ish) to go. 

Of course, the 8 week update on Baby Center has to bring up screenings and testings - all the different ways medical science can scare the shit out of you about what could possibly go wrong and result in you not having a healthy happy baby in your arms at the end of the journey.  My knee-jerk reaction is to ignore it all, skip it all, and just let nature take its course and see how things end up.  Surely everything will be fine, right?  I asked Jimi how he feels - he's pretty terrified of the idea of having a baby that isn't "perfect".  Having a Down Syndrome baby is something he worries about and doesn't want to have to face.  He views screenings and tests as a way to arm ourselves with all the necessary information so we can be prepared if something is wrong.  I worry about the stress that would be caused from false/real positives.  I am afraid of learning something is wrong and having to discuss things like "quality of life" or "viability".  I don't want to do anything that could lead to a doctor advising me to terminate my pregnancy.  I don't want to experience any of that as my reality. 

If you've got any advice, this is me, as a first-time-almost-Momma, asking for advice from women who've walked this road before. 


  1. We skipped the testing - the false positive rate is just too high, and that worry wasn't worth it for me.

    Perhaps have Jimi read this post -

    It totally changed my mind/fears regarding the SLIM possibility of having a child with down syndrome.

  2. We skipped the Downs testing as it wasn't always accurate. More importantly, the doc said to consider what we'd do with the information. And, thinking about it, if we had got a positive on teh first bit then the next step was an amnio, which carries a risk of miscarriage. There was no way I could have lived with myself if I had miscarriage (although that's partly cos of my history). And I don't think I would have had a termination either. So it made doing any testing a bit pointless.

    PS - sorry, it's been ages since I've commented. I had a baby and started a new blog. Glad to hear things are going well for you!

  3. I got a false positive on my Down's screening. We went to do an amnio, which yes, does carry a risk of miscarriage, but the risk is very, very small. I wanted to know. I wanted to be prepared. And we ended up not having to worry about the what ifs surrounding that because everything was okay. The whole process was stressful, but you know what, seriously? The wondering THE ENTIRE PREGNANCY was more stressful than the amnio. The amnio gave me a concrete answer. Everything else was still up in the air. And what if one of those screenings comes back with something that can be fixed? I'm not in any way telling you you MUST do the screenings. We didn't do it for E, but I was much older with O and there was more to worry about.

    I don't know. I don't think anything will be anything to worry about. Regardless of what any test will tell you YOU and kidney bean will be fine. I can't tell you that everything will be perfect and that you have nothing to worry about, but I will tell you that everything will be exactly what you need. You can handle anything. You, despite what that inner meanie voice inside you says, are strong and a warrior. Jimi is amazing yes, but you, you are what has gotten you through everything you've been dealt with. And now, you and this perfect man have created a little life and no matter what you will be the best mother to the cutest little bean that graced this world.

    You just do what you know is right. Eat goodies the baby will love, keep on keeping on. Everything else is out of your hands. You are the lucky one, my friend. You deserve the happiest of happy endings. I truly believe that.

  4. This is so exciting! And scary, I know. I didn't do that test with mine, because of the false positives and the risk, and because I knew it wouldn't change anything anyway.

  5. We never really made it to the point of deciding about testing. At 10 weeks, they tried to find a heartbeat, but couldn't. Not uncommon that early, so they sent us for an ultrasound just to be sure all was ok. It wasn't. We saw the baby, but she had a huge growth on her neck/back. They pretty much said that I would probably miscarry. But...IF I didn't, there was a 30% chance of Downs, plus a 30% chance of a Trisomy that wasn't compatible with life. Oh, and also a huge chance for about a thousand other things that could be wrong. But I had seen her. I saw my baby in that ultrasound...and she had waved at me. And so we hung in there. Apparently 90% of people choose to terminate when given our news, and I understand that. It's scary shit. But I knew I was already all in. So we waited.

    After a couple weeks, I still hadn't miscarried, so we agonized and finally decided to have further testing. I was originally against it, because I knew it just didn't matter. But we finally decided we wanted to be prepared somehow. So we went ahead.

    You've met my little statistic. She's 2 1/2 now, and the only thing "wrong" with her is that the poor child looks just like her dad and acts just like her mom. I was able to have a lot more peace of mind through the pregnancy because of the testing, so it was totally worth it for me, but it is such a personal decision. You'll do what's right for you and Jimi and your little kidney bean!


Please don't make me cry.


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