Being pregnant is one of those things that just doesn't seem real until a certain point. I am not sure what that point is, but I would imagine feeling the baby move for the first time and getting a nursery ready are some of those moments. I had my first prenatal visit today and while the information that they asked about and gave was nothing more than what most books will tell you about, it was still a big deal. Having your husband see you have your annual exam done is an interesting experience. After all the question asking and exams, the doctor broke out the doppler to hear the baby's heartbeat. After about five minutes of some strong pushing around on my stomach and upper pubic area, we still hadn't heard anything. She told me that it wasn't a big deal but that they were going to send me down to have an ultrasound and that I didn't need to be worried. I don't think I realized that it was kind of a big deal.
We were taken back to the ultrasound room where she did an external ultrasound and quickly said that there was no reason to be worried because that little baby had a strong heart beat. She showed us on the screen and when I looked I'll be honest I figured it would be some sort of amoeba like blob that I would have to lie and say I saw the whatever it was that she was pointing to. But immediately, I could pick out the head and some flailing limbs. Then she pointed out the healthy strong beating heart and I felt the tears begin to slide down my cheek as I grabbed Brooks' hand. There was no way I could take my eyes from the screen to even look and see what Brooks was experiencing. I didn't realize how much it would have meant and devastated me until that moment when I saw that strong flickering of our baby's heart.
She then proceeded to do an internal ultrasound, which I'll be honest just looked like a big ummm, pleasure device that I had to insert. Hey, no one told me about that business. She did a variety of measurements and captured a bunch of images for the ObGyn office upstairs and then proceeded to talk to us about what measurement she was taking and how fast the heartbeat was. Then she offered us a three dimensional picture which was not at all the amoeba I expected. Yes, the baby at this point looks semi alien like with it's big head and fat torso, but there are moving arms and legs.
Right now, the photo tucked away at home has made it real. Those 167 beats per minute make it real. September 19, 2011 makes it real.