Week 23 ~ December 14, 2003
~ More thoughts on my ultrasound
I'm feeling much better about my appointment last week. I realized that I was framing everything in very negative, worrying terms: "the baby is too big" and "I have too much amniotic fluid." But "too big" and "too much" compared to whom? This is my baby and maybe the size we are is right for us. My daughter was big at birth (9 lbs, 4 ozs) and there was no sign of a problem. Perhaps I will discover that I have gestational diabetes, or perhaps this is just the way my body is choosing to grow this baby. I will have to wait for the test results to find out. I have little to no faith in the one hour GTT screening, however, so if I fail that, I won't worry yet. I did receive the results of my blood tests, and everything is normal. I tested negative for each infection and my blood sugar level was in the normal range. Next week I take the one hour GTT screening. If that's normal, I believe we will just continue to monitor my growth.
In the meantime, I am working hard to control my diet and so far doing a great job. I haven't had any junk food since my appointment, I've replaced most simple carbs with complex carbs and I've increased my protein. I hope that I can continue this for the remainder of the pregnancy, as I do believe it is in both my and the baby's best interest to eat this way. I can learn to love whole wheat pasta and live without Christmas cookies, I'm just sure of it! I've been doing yoga almost daily and it has really helped a lot with my aches and pains. Exercise is said to be very beneficial if you have GD, so I'm glad that I am already in a regular routine.
One interesting change sparked by my ultrasound is the way I relate to the baby. I didn't know I was carrying a girl during my first pregnancy, as the ultrasound tech was reluctant to commit himself. So I didn't call her by name or think of her as a girl. Now I find that I think of the baby differently than I did a week ago. I always think of him as a boy and I frequently refer to him by name. It makes him seem more like a real person, somehow. It's an odd feeling; he was no less real a week ago, but now I see him as a definitive person. He's not just a gender-free baby; he's a little boy named Sam.
I also found myself unable to resist buying him his first outfit! While at a consignment shop looking for clothes for my daughter, I couldn't help drifting over to the newborn clothes and ended up with a tiny blue sleeper with green frogs on it. It's very cute. After the shopping expedition, my friend and I went back to her house and she began loaning me baby clothes. She has an extraordinary collection of hand-me-down items from friends and family, most of which look like they were never worn by any baby. So I left with a bag full of newborn boy clothes and the promise of even more when she finds her other boxes of clothing. This is really wonderful news, as my daughter's newborn wardrobe consists mostly of very feminine clothes that we received as gifts. I'm gender-biased enough that while I can happily dress my daughter in navy blue sweatpants and a gray shirt with a football on it, I simply can't bring myself to put my son in a pink outfit with rosebuds embroidered on it. My husband points out that it would be unkind to people to dress a boy baby in such obviously girl clothes, as they would continually mistake the gender, but then again everyone thought my daughter was a boy for the first two years no matter what she was wearing. I particularly remember being asked how old my "son" was when she was wearing a dress!