These days are so long. When you spend a good portion of your day carefully examining ceiling tile, latex glove boxes, and the plastic bag blowing in a tree, it's safe to say you have surpassed your threshold. I cannot process on more thing.
Yesterday, we went for a routine ultrasound appointment with our specialist. Something we had to do at 24 weeks. I was anxious about something coming up prior to us going. Even the waiting room makes me nervous, it's so small, with crazy wallpaper on two sides, and I can almost feel the walls crashing in on me. Not Kevin, he sits next to me belting out the oldies for the "entertainment" of the others waiting. Secretly, I realize he is trying to take my focus off the wall crashing in, he wants me to laugh or at least focus my energies on telling him to be quiet.
We go into yet another tiny room for the ultrasound with the doctor. He reviewed his notes verbally from our last appointment and began to take measurements via ultrasound. All is well, everything looks great. All we hear is good, good, good! He just wants Tobin in a different position to get a better look at his heart. He had me lay on my side for 5 minutes, in hopes of him changing position, and left Kevin and I. We were giddy. Relieved. All great news. Kevin shared with me about a current Tech co-op in his building, which propels us back to funny stories about our days as Huskies. We were laughing, feeling pure joy. Doctor came back in for a few more measurements. I had referenced my desire to get my cervix measurement at least four times at this point. It was on his do to list to. When he got to that point he said from his top view it looked fine, but he cannot give us an accurate measurement without doing a vaginal ultrasound. He said, it's completely up to you if you want that done. Yes, I want that done, I was feeling bubbly joy and was looking forward to a great measurement that would send my happiness even higher. I got all set up to feel this continued relief, but his first words were "uhhhh ... I am so glad we checked this." The joy and laughter was complelty stolen from our bodies. We then learned that my cervix which was previously below the normal 3cm range a month ago at a 2.8cm, had now shrunk to the dangerously low level of 1cm. His mind was moving fast and saying scary and hopeful things, tears were pouring from my cheeks, and Kevin was in shock but maintained his role as my rock as we found ourselves driving across the street to be admitted to labor and delivery.
The last month has been a peaceful one for me. There has been no new bad news, no scares, and little fear. It has been time to embrace and love my Tobin. I had difficulty really bonding during the first trimester, for fear of losing him. Then the trip to the ER and news of increased risk, made it once again difficult to get attached for fear of losing him. My hope and belief is that Tobin will live a healthy life in our home, but if that does not happen, right now is my only time with him. I don't want to take any time with him for granted. Koen was loved dearly while he was in my womb, and I am happy that the exact same fierce mama love is present for Tobin too.
In the last week my anxiety has started to grow. Today, I am 23 weeks 6 days. I had Koen at 26 weeks 6 days. I am only 3 weeks from that same stage. It even falls on the same day of the week - a Monday, as my weeks switch on Tuesday. Koen's due date was August 29 and Tobin's is July 29. So much is similar. These milestones will bring more hope, but with it they also bring much fear. I am nervous even going to the bathroom. Scared of any bacteria. I am not out much anymore, but if I am I stay far away from public restrooms. Not easy right now as there is always pressure on my bladder, but I am doing everything in my power to protect the precious baby growing inside of me. The problem is, so much of this is not within my power, this is not something I can control or fix. Such a hard thing to accept. Because it is out of my control, my mind drifts to what I will do if Tobin dies. I envision what things will look like, how we will do things, my horror and pain. It is a scary place and one I try to avoid, but it is impossible to stay completely away.
On Wednesday, I go to see our specialist. To be perfectly honest I am not sure exactly why. I find myself carefully selecting the questions I ask. I don't really want to know all the answers, with answers comes more fear, and I have already reached my threshold in that department. When we went to see him last summer the plan was for him to merely consult my OB throughout the next pregnancy. After my trip to the ER with bleeding and my ACLA blood test results, which all occurred in the same week, I found myself being called to schedule the appointment at 24 weeks. I think the combination of those things increased my risk and got me a first class ticket to his office. They will conduct another ultrasound. Besides checking my cervix length, I do not know what they will be looking for or what they will find. My understanding is that it will be the specialist doing the ultrasound, not a technician. While getting a look at Tobin will be comforting, I fear what they may find. I pray it is nothing, but so often during this pregnancy it seems to be one more thing. I don't want one more thing. I want a healthy baby.
My blood pressure has been awesome throughout this pregnancy, by the grace of God. My OB is no longer having me monitor it, but I still do. The past few days it has been a bit higher, not high, but higher. I know this is directly correlated with my anxiety. I ask that you pray that my heart would be calmed and that the appointment on Wednesday will give us peace. Much love and thanks for your support.
On our way home from errands we wanted to take Hackett to the cemetery. We didn't want his first exposure to be at the funeral on Friday. We now knew where Koen would be buried and needed to show him. Showing our son where his brother would be buried is not something I ever planned on doing in my lifetime, yet here we were. We did it with brave faces, our desire was to give him reassurance. Death was a new event for Hackett, something he had never had to deal with. Three days before Koen's birth, my mom had to put her dog to sleep. She brought him to be buried at our house. That was Hackett's first taste of death, and he was very emotional. I was more than concerned for his little head and heart that needed to process death on a much deeper scale.
I am Jackie.