My first prenatal appointment was on Friday morning.
I got to see a tiny little embryo on ultrasound which made me feel an unexpected surge of joy. I always find the reality of growing a human being somewhat hard to believe, but it’s true. There’s a baby in there.
The tech snapped a blurry picture for me to take home and later I showed it to the boys side-by-side to another image of a 6 week embryo from online, pointing out for them the yolk sac, the heart, and the arm and leg buds.
Roscoe and Merritt wrote notes to the baby and drew a picture for the baby’s book. Merritt’s four year old note went like this:
Dear Baby: I hope that you, my little blobby baby, when you are done being in your time-out in Momma’s belly...that you are having a good little baby blob party in there. I love you dear blobby. I love you cutie cutie, blob blob. Love Merritt and Roscoe and Jacqueline and Andy.
Yes, our little blobby baby. We love you so already.
With fingers crossed for a full-term pregnancy we are planning another home birth. On Friday I met my midwife’s collaborative physician who glanced at my chart, noted my 5.5 hour labor with Roscoe at 38 weeks and 2 days, and my 4.5 hour labor with Merritt at 32 weeks and 6 days and confidently diagnosed me with a weak cervix. No one has ever suggested that as a cause for Merritt’s premature birth and so I pushed back because I want our approach to be as accurate and as effective as possible. I have been fixated on preterm premature rupture of membranes (PPROM) for the last 5 years but he said he is rarely wrong.
Over the last couple days I’ve been doing my own research and I’m inclined to agree with him. Short labors and successively shorter gestations are a hallmark of a weak cervix, which also implies that if we do nothing I could likely give birth even earlier than last time.
I have a lot on my mind now. Progesterone. Pessary. Cerclage. Accepting a weak cervix as the cause is a game changer. It means more monitoring, more procedures. It means a bunch of things that I don’t understand just yet. This is frightening as it is encouraging because there are things we can do to prevent this from happening again.
My midwife wants to take this pregnancy one week at a time, an approach I really need and appreciate right now. Let’s just get you through the first trimester she said.
Morning sickness is in full swing, and I feel like I'm moving at a snail's pace, foggy and oh so tired. One day at a time will be the only way to walk this journey to meeting our third baby.