Thursday, May 24, 2012

Getting Ready for Baby!

{Disclaimer: This is a LONG post! But, it has to cover 9 months since I didn't keep up with it as I went :)}

As we went through the pregnancy, things were going as perfectly as possible! The doctor was very reassuring that Baby was growing just as it should, I was doing everything that I should, and this pregnancy should be perfectly normal! My due date was determined to be May 20, 2012. My heart had never been happier :)

Of course, Hubby and I jumped at ANY and ALL opportunities to see our little "pumpkin" via ultrasound, and we got our first chance at a mere six weeks! This was to confirm the viability of the pregnancy after my inital bloodwork came back so wonderful! We were able to see the fetal pole (would eventually turn into Baby) and see the heartbeat!! The heartbeat was at 135, which seemed low to me, but the technician simply said that she thought the heart had just started beating a day or two earlier - it would get faster :) Here is what our first sneak peek looked like:

To some, it's a mere blob on the screen... to Hubby, my mom, and me, it was a miracle and blessing.

As time went on, things still progressed perfectly! Hubby and I were so excited to get to hear the heartbeat for the first time at 13 weeks - I recorded it on my phone and turned it into an mp3 file so I could keep it forever!! This time, the heart rate was at 160, and it was very strong! I think I kept a smile on my face for the next several days... I was over the moon!

FINALLY, the big day came... we were going to find out if this little pumpkin was a boy or a girl! Hubby and I were honestly okay with whatever the outcome was; as long as Baby was healthy, we were happy! This was grandbaby #19 on Hubby's side and #3 on my side - and odds were, it was going to be a boy. ALL of our siblings (7 in all) had boys first, and on my side, the other two babies were boys, also! Now, my mom and sister in law were pulling for a girl so they'd have someone to dress in bows and dresses, but I knew deep down Hubby was praying for a little guy to teach how to hunt and fish and play sports. On January 3rd, all of the curious minds were put at ease:

We were, very CLEARLY, having a little BOY!

Tears of happiness flowed, and it looked like Hubby was going to burst with pride, right then and there! {He had told me, on our very first, blind!, date, that he had always wanted to have a "Junior"... so once we saw on the screen that it was a little boy, we no longer had to be thinking of any names. The decision had been made long, long ago!}

From the doctor, we went to go start revealing the results to our family - first to my brother/SIL, then to Hubby's mom at work, and then onto dinner with my parents. Everyone got an envelope with the following inside, and they had to verbally make a guess before they scratched off the silver:

After they scratched, it revealed:

My brother and my dad guessed correctly - everyone else guessed girl :-) NO ONE was disappointed, though!! There were so many happy moments that night; it was so much fun! After dinner, we had to run home so I could prepare the reveal cupcakes for the staff at school the next day. We had a morning meeting that everyone was to attend, so I knew it'd be the perfect chance to let everyone in on the secret of boy or girl - and who doesn't love a sweet treat early in the morning?!? I stuffed each cupcake with blue frosting and put them out with the following poem and sign-up sheet. Before they could eat a treat, they had to mark down their guess!

(sorry, I can't get it to turn for some reason!)

Once they marked their guess - which, as you can see, most people guessed BOY! - they got to take a cupcake and bite into it. Once again, many happy memories from that day :)

Like I said, Hubby and I jumped at any chance to see our little man on the screen and to get sneak peeks at him, so when it came time for our 3D/4D ultrasound, we made sure to invite the family, as well, so they could all share in our joy. We loaded into the room, I hopped on the bed, and we watched our boy squirm around on the screen! He waved, he smiled, he yawned... and all the while, he had his legs back behind his head, crossed at the ankles! Very flexible :)

We soaked up every minute of the 3D/4D sonograms session, and we even purchased a DVD of the whole thing so we could watch it whenever we wanted to! Since this took place in February, we thought it would be the last time we got to see Baby until he actually arrived... but...

On the morning of March 7th, I woke up with some spotting, which, given my history, was super scary for me. I immediately called the doctor, and they told me to head up to the hospital so they could check me out. After a couple of hours of tests and a very in-depth sono (yay - got to see Baby again!), it was decided that I was most likely going into pre-term labor, at 29 weeks! I was admitted to the hospital, and they hooked up monitors to watch Baby's heart rate and to see if I was contracting at all. After a few more hours, and some VERY nervous grandparents!, it was determined that I was, indeed, NOT going into labor, and we were just fine! A blood vessel probably burst or something, but neither Baby nor myself were showing any signs of anything odd. Since they had admitted me already and started some steroids in case Baby did come early, I had to stay overnight. Even though the whole ordeal had quite a few people worried and panicked, it turned out to be okay, and I got yet another peek at my boy. :-)

During the sonogram, Baby was measuring 2 weeks ahead, so my doctor decided that I would have another sono at 37 weeks (on April 26th) to see how big he really was and to figure out if he'd need to be delivered a little bit early. I was anxiously looking forward to that day!!

Little did I know I'd learn to love that date for a whole other reason...

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