My wife and I are very excited to announce publicly for the first time:
We’re having a baby!
(We’ve announced it to family members and close friends over the past couple of weeks. Today, she notified her employer that she’s pregnant, so we now feel comfortable posting this to the public.)
On March 20, 2010, my wife took a home pregnancy test, with the happy result listed above. In April, we confirmed at a local clinic and set up our first appointment with our doctor, for May 20 (yesterday).
Yesterday, we showed up for our 9:10 a.m. appointment, filled out the paperwork, and eventually were taken to a small room to wait. Five minutes later, a nurse informed us that our doctor had been called away to deliver a baby in Temple (about 20 minutes away). They told us to come back at 2 p.m.
That was frustrating, because we’d hoped to have the whole day ahead of us and instead had to spend the day waiting for the doctor to get back. But I’m sure his other patient appreciated his quick response to *her* needs.
At 1:45 p.m., we were on our way back to the clinic when they called us, saying the doctor still hadn’t returned. Instead of returning home, we drove to Lowe’s and walked around looking at refrigerators, cabinets, floor tile, wallpaper, cabinet knobs, grout sealant, and a bunch of other stuff we’ve suddenly become more interested in.
At 2:35 p.m., my wife called the clinic and they said the doctor was on his way back from Temple, so we headed over there, taking the long way around, arriving at 3:20 or so.
At 3:40 p.m., we were seated in the same room we’d seen before, and the doctor finally came in at 4 p.m. He apologized for the seven-hour delay.
Our doctor had a good manner. He was brisk and factual, which both of us appreciate, and responded quickly to our questions and concerns. He was impressed with my wife’s bill of health.
Then came the moment we’d been eagerly (and nervously) anticipating… the ultrasound. Both of us have seen pictures of ultrasounds before, but neither of us had ever seen a live view in person of our own growing fetus before.
It was more than a little awe-inspiring, as you already know if you’ve been through this. At the very first, when he was positioning the monitor, it appeared that *two* babies flashed across the screen, and he said “Hold on!” just as I was about to say the same thing. But it turned out to be a flick of his wrist…
Once he got everything positioned correctly, there it was. A 13-week old gestating human being. Its heart was visibly beating, and it was moving around. (I’m saying “it” because we won’t know the gender for several weeks, the generic pronoun “he” is no longer politically correct, and “he/she” has another connotation entirely these days.)
Our tiny miracle was positioned upside down:
In this image, the dotted line on screen is the doctor’s “crown to rump” measurement, which was 7.12 centimeters, or about 2.8 inches long; as long as my smallest finger.
A little later, from another more personal angle, we saw this image:
It shows the fetus facing the instrument, lying on its side, with one arm raised up near its cheek, almost as if it’s scratching or waving. The doctor said, “He’s saluting.” (We live in a military town.)
We watched for several minutes as it moved and floated. Simply amazing to watch. The doctor said everything appeared normal and healthy. (EDIT: And, just as we’d thought based on my wife’s clock-like cycle, the baby is about 13 weeks old. In fact, today *is* 13 weeks by the normal method of measuring such things.)
And then we were done. We set up the next appointment for mid-June, when they’ll do another blood test, and then in early or mid-July, they’ll do another ultrasound to (supposedly) learn the gender of our child. I say “supposedly” because I’ve known a few people who were incorrectly informed of their child’s gender at this point. But it seems to be accurate for most people I’ve known.
We drove home in a daze, and immediately started calling my parents and my wife’s family members, and sending out links to the images (which were then still marked “private” on Flickr).
More Good News
About 5 p.m., we got some more good news. Our home-builder representative called to say all the proper permits had been pulled and everything else finished for our pre-construction. “Construction on your home will begin tomorrow,” he said. “It will be finished on Aug. 17.”
(They build a *lot* of houses, assembly-line style, so they are able to give out exact dates, with weather-delays built in to the schedule.)
Again, we were giddy. Things are moving along well for us, and we thank all of you for your well-wishes and prayers. Keep it up.
I suppose most couples expecting a baby depend heavily on their families and friends for help, advice, etc., but I feel especially fortunate to have the two sisters that I do. One of them actually delivers babies for a living, and the other has had seven of her own, including one delivered at home. I’m also fortunate that my mother doesn’t mind regular phone calls for advice or conversation about the topic.
Marline’s family is excited as well, and several have promised to visit once we’re in the house.