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Matters of the (Baby) Heart

We were among the lucky few who had our “big” ultrasound pretty early. I was just over 17 weeks pregnant at the time, and even though I’m not a very patient person, I actually wasn’t the one that picked the date. The genetics department called us and said that that was the day and time we would be coming and thankfully it worked for us.

During our genetics consult and anatomical survey ultrasound we were mostly concerned with our baby’s brain. Because I have a brain/skull malformation, that was the biggest worry on our minds, and the thing that our ultrasound tech and the maternal/fetal medicine specialist focused on the most. I mean, we wanted to know if we were having a boy or a girl, but otherwise, we really didn’t allow ourselves to worry about anything else.

And happily, our son’s brain looks great, his neural tube is fully closed and he’s adorable. But we have to go back tomorrow for a second ultrasound because there are concerns about his heart.

They didn’t give us a whole lot of information about what they were worried about, just that it needs a second look. We know that his heart has 4 chambers (like it is supposed to), we know that the ultrasound tech got clear pictures of it despite the baby’s best attempts to not let her get a clear picture of anything (except his boy parts, which he stayed completely still for), but we know that the doctor and the tech conferred for a very long time and that the decision is that we need another look.

The most information they could give us was that his heart was very small and that we needed to see it when it was a little bigger. They had us schedule another appointment in about a month.

Well, tomorrow is the day. Tomorrow his heart is hopefully big enough for us to see.

I have done a pretty good job of maintaining my calm while we waited for tomorrow to come, but I would be lying if I didn’t say that I was worried. I know that there’s absolutely nothing I can do and that worrying is useless, but I find that when things get quiet, my mind wanders to the what ifs. I think about surgeries, about NICU stays, about medications and other scary things.

I know that we have great doctors, we are already at a great hospital with one of the best pediatric cardiology programs in the country, but we had hoped that we’d never have to make use of it. More than anything we hope that our little guy’s heart is big enough to get a good look and that all they see is a well formed, well working little heart.

I’m not sure my heart can take much more waiting.

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