2.04.2011

many are the plans...

{it's another long one. i wrote it mostly for me... to remember this day. but feel free to read it too... if you have the time.} =)

baby yawning


well, here i am, just over half-way through my pregnancy... and i can not help but think of a favorite bible verse of mine. but i'll get to that in a bit.


as promised, here are some more sonogram photos. this is one that the technician took about half-way into the ultrasound appointment. baby-b was yawning... or at least that's what the technician said. i exclaimed, "oh, my goodness! i'm so glad that happened and that i have a picture of it. just recently, i saw someone's sonogram scan that showed the baby's mouth open like that... in a sort of yawn. and i thought to myself 'how neat would that be to have a picture of that!' and now i have one!"


she replied, "well then i'm really glad i got that one for you." and this was one of the clearer shots, too. she took some of the feet, the head side-view, the genital area {but folded that one before she gave it to us so that we would not know the gender}, and a few other things. but nothing seemed as clear as i hoped it would. maybe that is how they usually are, but i had an expectation of them being more clear.


in case it's hard to see what is what, here is a labeled version of the photo of the sonogram pic.


baby yawning with captions

well, i'm writing tonight to record my experience of the ultrasound appointment i had yesterday. between traveling to get there and back and the appointments/meetings themselves, it was a six-hour ordeal. we had the third worst blizzard in recorded history here the day before, so it was a wonder we even made it there. but we did.


several people told me i would cry. i had no doubt in my mind when told so by others that i probably would. and i did end up crying, but it was different than i thought it would be. i was laying on my back, b. was sitting to my left and the monitor was to my right, which meant i had my head turned away from b.


i saw the baby almost immediately, but i did not cry right away. i wish i could remember exactly what point i started to... i think it was when i saw the full body shape... or maybe when i saw the heart beating steadily within the chest cavity. or perhaps it was when i saw baby-b's tiny feet.


regardless, it was several minutes into the process when it happened. i did not make a noise. i just began to feel warm tears stroll down the skin of my face and onto the paper that covered the exam table. it was quiet. the technician was quiet. baby was quiet. b. was quiet. i was quiet. nothing but the sound of tears on paper... and even that was oh so quiet.


it was a moving moment. but not big moving like i thought it would be. just quietly moving... almost more moving in my heart than anywhere else... i did not feel some big moving force in the room. i only felt a tiny movement in my heart. small, but so very large, too.


b. was holding my hand when i cried. he does not show emotions all that much. i have to know what he is thinking and feeling through his verbal expressions... and even those are few and quiet. but just the way he held my hand, i knew he was feeling at least a little of what i felt. and probably a great deal!


so here is the part where i will get to that favorite verse of mine.


while we were in there, the technician had to leave two or three times and come back with more instruction from the doctor that would be analyzing the scans. baby was in an awkward position, and it made it hard to get proper photos for them to analyze. and baby would not move around to get in a better position. so the young technician had to try a few things.


i did not know it at the time, but now i know that it is common for the baby to be in an awkward position like that when the placenta is really low like it is in me.


by the end of the ultrasound {about 45 minutes later}, the technician had informed me that it took so long because she had a difficult time getting images of the placenta {which they need to look at}, as it was at the bottom of my uterus, right on top of the cervix.


i thought nothing of it when she mentioned it, but i did start to feel discomfort the more she pressed around to get a good picture.


then, after the ultrasound, we met with a genetic counselor to discuss the things that could go wrong from a genetic standpoint, especially given the age we are having this baby at. the genetic counselor showed us some diagrams, and one was a drawing of an impregnated uterus with leader lines pointing to what the different parts of the image were. in the diagram, the placenta was at the top of the uterus, and i had just come from the sonogram that indicated that mine was at the bottom.


so when she was done and asked if we had questions, though i knew my question was not a genetic-related one, i still asked about the position of the placenta. my exact words were, "i noticed in this image that the placenta is at the top of the uterus, and i was just told mine is on the bottom. is that normal? can the placenta be anywhere in the uterus?"


she replied and said, "yes... we did see from your procedure that yours is low. and there is nothing wrong with that, but it may mean that you will have to have a c-section instead of being able to give birth vaginally, because we would not want you to give birth to the placenta first."


well, i did not think very much of it at the time... only that i DO NOT want to have a c-section, and that i hope it does not come to that. but we did not go into too much detail, so i was not overly concerned. i was just glad that we had a pretty decent initial sonogram result, showing that the baby's heart was beating steadily and strongly, with no apparent abnormalities.


that was yesterday. and although i was a little tender near my cervix from all the pushing around the technician had to do, i was for the most part doing well.


but then today, i decided to google "position of placenta during pregnancy". that is when i came across the real term for what i was told i have... "low-lying placenta" or "placenta previa".


and it was then that my "i hope i don't have to have a c-section!" turned to a lot more concern and even a tiny bit of worry... especially until i had the chance to talk to my ob-gyn about it.


i knew he would have gotten the results of my ultrasound by the time i did my google search, so after showing my mom a couple of links and asking her to pray, i called my doctor's office and asked them to have him call me. i found out later... he would have anyway {when he got some time... after having seen my results}.


so from about 2:00 until about 6:30 or 7:00 when he called, i felt a bit uneasy about what i had read.


only about 1 in 200 women have placenta previa, and in most women, it corrects itself. when the placenta is low in the uterus like that, it just means that the egg happened to implant itself in the uterus in a low position. and in the majority of women that this happens to, it corrects itself, since the placenta moves upward in the uterus as the growing baby causes the uterus to stretch and grow. but in a small percentage of those women who are shown to have placenta previa about half-way through the pregnancy, the placenta does not move away from the cervix {birth canal opening} in time... by the end of the 40 weeks when baby is ready to be born.


but not only is a c-section inevitable at that point... other complications could arise. there could be mild to severe bleeding that could put the mother and baby at great risk... shock or even death. now, of course, this is not the majority. but just reading that in one place is enough to make a person stop for a second or two... especially this tend-to-worry girl.


and even if that worst-case scenario does not come to be, there is a chance that any bleeding will make the pregnancy too risky to be a normal walking-around pregnancy... there is a chance that complete bed rest for the last trimester is needed... or even hospitalization. yikes! and there is a chance that the baby will have to be delivered anywhere from four months early to two weeks early... depending on when the complications start if they ever do.


again... not the norm. but still a possibility.


and this is what made me think of the verse...


many are the plans in the mind of a man,
but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.
~proverbs 19:21


i think of that verse, because i had plans. plans that have been forming in my mind for quite some time. i had let myself be pretty inactive during the first trimester, because i was beyond exhausted and so terribly nauseous throughout. but i thought, "well, when my nausea subsides and i am in my second trimester {before i am too uncomfortably large}, i will just do all my planning and getting ready for baby. i had just decided at the beginning of last week that this weekend is when i will tackle the baby's room and start moving things around for it.

and i still will be working on it... but from an entirely different perspective. first of all, i've been told not to lift anything heavier than a gallon of milk. {oh, i forgot to tell about doc calling... he finally called around 6:30, and though he put my mind at ease about the situation, he also did not take it lightly. he said if i have even the slightest bit of spotting or bleeding, i need to get to the emergency room immediately... even if it seems like nothing. and he said i absolutely can not drive myself, because what may start out as mild bleeding, could quickly turn to severe and cause me to pass out... not a good thing if you are driving. he let me know that there is a good chance everything will correct itself and i will never have a complication to speak of. but he also made it very clear that i can not take any chances or take this condition lightly.}

well, if i have to err on the side of caution and not lift anything at all heavy, this changes all my plans about working on the baby room... and many other things i wanted to do to get ready for baby. so now you see why i think of that verse.

depending upon others during my first trimester was a very difficult thing for me. i felt like i was putting people out, and though i appreciated what they did so very much, i felt so bad not being able to do the things they did for me myself. the only redeeming factor was knowing i could once again do everything on my own in the later trimesters... especially the second. i really think God is trying to teach me something here!... like how to learn to let others care for me... how to ask for help... how to let go of the things i want to have control over.

even if no significant complications arise, i still have to be extra cautious and listen to the doc and take it very easy. AND I HAD PLANS!!! this very weekend, b. and i had planned to get started on the baby's room. like i said, we still will... but i will just speak my thoughts and ideas, and he will execute them. i can do a little bit, but not what i was expecting to do. there are some other restrictions that will be placed on me/us because of this for the remainder of my pregnancy, too. but they are on a much more personal note, so i will not go into that here.

but there is one other thing i did want to write down so that i will always remember it... tonight, to celebrate the for-the-most-part clean bill of health that the ultrasound gave baby-b, b. and i went to celebrate at our favorite local cafe with their friday night authentic english fish and chips and smashed peas {b. passed on the peas}.

while we were there, we had a quiet little corner of the cafe, and i sat next to b. instead of across from him. i wanted to speak quietly to him about all that the doctor had just told me {doc called when we first got to the restaurant}. before we left for the restaurant, i had told b. what i found out online about what having a low-lying placenta means. when i was done, he said, "come here" and had me sit on his lap so he could hug me and tell me not to worry. i sensed concern in his voice, but also a faith and trust that all would work out okay.

so, back to the restaurant... sitting there, i told him everything the doc told me, and he knew how anxiously i had waited for the doctor to call so that i might gain some peace of mind and hear the situation right form the doc's mouth... which is usually better than reading about it on the internet, no? anyway, when we were done eating, i got close to b. and said, "i love you... you  know why?"

he said "no". {i know he knows the reasons i love him, but he just meant, "i don't know what you are gonna say next."}

i said, "because you showed a lot of concern for me when i told you what was going on."

he just looked back at me and said, "of course... you're my lady."

then he looked downward toward my belly and he said, "and that's my squirt. of course i'm concerned."

needless to say, i got tears in my eyes, and i hugged and kissed him. it was probably the strongest bonding we have had since this pregnancy began. he told me, again, not to worry. i told him i would try not to... that i will pray when i grow concerned and try to trust instead.

and i meant it. my mom is in prayer with us, and she has begun to ask others she knows to pray, too. i have asked a few others who are close to me to pray as well.

it's weird to have something that could end up being absolutely nothing or become something quite serious... and so many scenarios in between. very strange. but in absolutely every scenario that could play out, i have to trust God. i prayed so many times that my age would not contribute to anything going wrong with this pregnancy/birth. and i know that age is one of the factors that could cause placenta previa.

but i also know that God knew from before i, myself, was born what his plan for me would be. and i have to trust him daily... gotta listen to the doc, too.

one of the coolest parts about the blogging community is the support i have found there in the midst of this pregnancy... people have come out of the woodwork {people i believe God specifically placed in my life}... like one who delivers babies for a living and has already spoken to me about this, helping to put my mind at ease. another who is a doula {something i had never heard of until i met her}. and they were already involved and interested in my pregnancy before i even found out i have placenta previa. {countless others have offered their experience as mothers or advice on being pregnant.} it's a comfort to know i have people i can write to and ask questions about my pregnancy to... knowing they will have seen it all and will probably have some sage advice.

just one more way i know God is taking care of us.

18 comments:

S. Etole said...

You are, have been, and will continue to be my prayers ... be at peace.

Chris said...

Georgia, all I can say is I am here for you, in every sense. I know a little of the fear you are going through...okay, a whole heckuva lot, to be fair. And when I found out what was happening tonight, I cried. I had read about placenta previa during my pregnancy, so I knew a little about it. I thought, "Oh no...why can't she just get through this 100% okay?" But that is not how life goes, as you know. And you are doing wonderfully right now, and taking good care of yourself, and listening to your body (very important). And I am one of the many who are praying for you and thinking of you daily. And if you need anything, or have any questions or concerns (or just want to chat), just holler.

In the meantime, enjoy the pregnancy, enjoy baby-b, and enjoy letting others care for you. I remember that part of my pregnancy fondly, even before anything started to go wrong...I think it's a natural inclination for people to fuss over a pregnant woman, and it's a very good thing :)

georgia b. said...

now i'm gonna cry, chris.
=)

thank you for that very sweet and heart-felt note. i will definitely be calling you to chat!! gonna rest up this weekend, but i will call you monday.

hugs!

and thank you for your prayers, both of you {susan and chris}. so very appreciated.

Cabbage Babble said...

I don't think I"ve had a chance to say it yet, because I've been absent in the blog-world due to my own pregnancy, but CONGRATS! I am so happy for you. Just be positive about it and hopefully it will all work out for the best.

When you described seeing the baby and feeling the way you did - it was perfect - and it was exactly how I felt. You truly have a way with words.

georgia b. said...

thank you, rachel. so sweet of you to say. thank you for the encouragement. i had no idea you are pregnant! i really must go check out your fb page to update myself on what is going on with you! thank you for telling me. i wish you the best, too. CONGRATS!

Stacey said...

Love the photo. So happy you got some clarification. So sorry that you have this to worry about. But so amazed at your faith and trust about all of this.

I just sent you an email. And ask away! So happy I can maybe be of some help to you.

beth said...

georgia....i had placenta previa with cate and spent two weeks on bed rest with her. somewhere between 8 and 10 weeks i started bleeding and back then, that's all they did. an ultrasound to see what was going on and then bed rest.
after those two weeks, i did nothing strenuous, no sex the rest of the pregnancy, no heavy lifting....all to protect my wee little one.
when i was in labor, i didn't care how she came out of me as long as she was fine.
after 24 hours of back labor, they finally delivered her with forceps. she was perfect.
i know you don't want a c-section. but when the time comes, you won't care what they do as long as you deliver a healthy baby.
don't let the rest of your pregnancy be shadowed with questions about delivery. go out and enjoy and love and do and walk and shop and read and pat your tummy.
it will all be fine in the end.
besides. my appendix scar from surgery at 16 looks far worse then any c-section scar i've ever seen.

Lyn Lepre said...

what an amazing post -- will be thinking of you. I had by twins at 34, and so was also a high risk pregnancy. developed a heart condition while pregnant with them... was so scared, so can somewhat relate to how you must be feeling. Thankfully, all was well -- I believe, as you do, that God watched over us and took care of me and the girls. He will be watching you, too.
Take care of yourself... will be thinking and praying for you and baby b.
And, if you ever want or need to talk c-sections, I had to have one and it was just fine. You can't even see my scar anymore. Seriously.
Hugs to you!
Lyn (aka babydoc11)

georgia b. said...

thank you stacey... you have been a comfort to me in this... your knowledge of the situation on top of your friendship is such a blessing.

beth, thank you for your words of encouragement and hope. i will definitely heed your advice. i think it is excellent! and it is nice to hear from someone who had the same thing, but had it turn out just fine.

lyn, thank you also, for your advice and encouragement. again, it's good to hear from others who believe the way i do and can testify to God's care. and you are a baby doc! even more encouraging.

i feel so much love from you all!

Melissa said...

Blessings to you Georgia and and sweet baby B...God is holding you gently in His hand.

Tammy Westin said...

Georgia...

I had it too...with Eli. Mine corrected itself...praying yours will too. And it's true... when delivery time comes - you won't care how it happens...as long as it happens! Try not to worry, friend.

Mae said...

what a wonderful post. it really brings back memories. i don't know if it helps at all but i, too, had a low-lying placenta at this stage in my pregnancy but it did manage to clear itself up and i delivered (both) without a c-section. (i was actually scheduled for a c-section for my first for other reasons but he decided to come on his own terms!) do make sure you get loads of rest. i know how hard it can be to ask for help and to let others help you. i'm absolutely horrible at it. but what must be done for your and the baby's health and safety takes precedence! ps. that b. of yours sounds like a gem!

georgia b. said...

thank you so much, mae. {um, yes... i've so those very words to describe b... a gem!}

thank you so much, tammy and melissa.

sweetmyrtle said...

hi Geogia,
someone told me ths quote yesterday 'Man plans and God laughs'. we must be open and trust don't you think? i also think that you know one of the lessons you need to learn when you said you need to allow others to look after you.
a good friend had plancenta previa in her second pregnancy. she didn't listen to advice and carried on without resting & taking care of herslf and had a big bleed. She ended up in hosiptal for bed rest for the last 5 weeks till full term and had a c section. She and her baby were fine but i do feel that if she had heeded the advice and allowed others to take care of her then the whole experience would have been less traumatic.
so in that light, take care of yourself & go lightly.
also i believe in the power of thought & visualisation. implanting positive images in to your head of being healthy and of a positive best possible outcome for your delivery is a must. try to avoid reading the negative stuff. i know only too well how that is hard not to do as you wish to inform yourself but if it scares you and doesn't feel good reading it then give it a wide berth. implant only positive, wonderful images into your mind and use these in your prayers also.
take care sweet friend
with love
Ginny x

georgia b. said...

thanks, sweet ginny... i know you are absolutely right! and many others have said the same thing. it's good to have a hubby that reminds me thus... he always knows from the look on my face when i have gone into "thinking too much" or "worrying" mode. then he always helps me snap out of it. i just need to focus on thinking positively while i am home alone and he is at work. =)

so nice to have you as a bloggy friend. i MEAN it!

Danielle said...

I'm going to be praying for you! What a great perspective you have, and such a supportive hubby! I praying you'll just be swallowed up in God's peace.

georgia b. said...

thank you, danielle... feeling a lot more peace about it now after talking to a bunch of people and praying. but i still appreciate that very much!

Lisa said...

I'm keeping you in my thoughts and prayers! I know that your baby is truly a gift from God and the most important thing here is trust & surrender. You know? Of course that's so much easier said than done! But this is a lesson I am learning myself...maybe not on quite as big a scale, but its there nonetheless. But I know that everything will work out just fine with you and your budding family, it will work out just exactly the way it is supposed to. Isn't there such comfort in that? But still, I know it can be scary. And there is comfort in knowing that God knows the desires of your heart, you know? This baby is going to be a miracle in so many ways. <3