The First Doppler Check – 12 Week Appointment for Baby #3

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAs I prepared to go to our 12 week checkup for this pregnancy, I found myself wishing I could just live in oblivion. Not go to the doctor, not listen for a heartbeat, and just live in the hope that everything was okay. Obviously this is not a reasonable tactic. So today we loaded up in the car and headed out for our third doctor visit. I still don’t even like walking into the office by myself, but we were running a couple minutes late, so Adam dropped me off at the door.

As I signed in and took a seat, I couldn’t help but overhear the chatting of other pregnant women in the waiting room. One young woman, with a large belly was talking loudly over the soft buzz. I felt my gut twist as she loudly proclaimed that she had cried for three days when she found out her baby was a boy. She went on to say that she was okay with it now, but she really hopes he is smaller than six pounds when he is born, so he can be a tiny baby.

All while I sat, quietly thinking over and over to myself, “God, please let my baby have a heartbeat today.”

Wow, how priorities can change. A part of me wanted to have a few words with her, a part of me wanted to go wait in another room, and a part of me longed to be that ignorant and innocent in pregnancy. To have the luxury of JUST worrying about what gender your baby is or how big they will be at birth. Must be nice. It’s hard to remember what that was like.

Adam joined me in the waiting room, and after a long wait, we were called back. We had the normal normal nurse checks, then sat in the examination room and waited some more. Adam and I tried to make small talk, but I felt so distracted. Finally our doctor came in, and asked how we were doing. He laughed at Kyla (who was bouncing around) and gave her some fruity snacks from his special drawer. He asked some questions and then it was time. I laid back as he prepared to put the Doppler on my stomach. I had imagined this moment hundreds of times. I had wondered what it would be like to listen once more for signs of life inside my pregnant belly.

As I laid my head back, I felt a sort of numbness take over me. I thought I might cry, but instead it felt like I was somewhere else. I lay perfectly still as he began to search around. After 2-3 swipes around my belly and finding nothing, I felt like I was having a horrible deja vu experience. I’m not sure how long it normally takes, I only remember the last time. I didn’t look at his face as he kept looking. The doctor moved to the other side of my belly and there came a quick, whooshing sound. I looked up to see him smiling, probably as relieved as I was. I felt so out of it, I couldn’t tell for sure if that was the baby’s heartbeat or mine (Even though it was 168 BPM)! I’m sure I looked silly as I simply said, “Is that the baby’s heartbeat?” He assured me that it was as I apologized and said that I’m still pretty traumatized. Looking for a heartbeat is not fun anymore.

Relief doesn’t begin to express the flood of emotions that I experienced all in one moment. I felt a tear try to well up in my eye, but instead I just breathed and asked Adam to get his phone and record the beautiful, miraculous sound.

Click to hear: Baby 3

As we drove home, I thought to myself, “life will go on as we planned this week.”

No moving to plan B, or crisis preparedness. This is one time in life that I am so thankful for no excitement, but just the regular routine.

Now I will enjoy the rest of my day in peace and simple joy. For like another baby loss mom said, “Every day there’s a heartbeat is the happiest day of my life.”

Almost four weeks have passed since this sweet day of relief and joy. Each day on this journey is a challenge, yet each day is also a gift. We still have many mountains to cross in the months ahead, but we rejoice at each victory.

I ask for your prayers as we prepare to for the next hurdle this coming week – our 16 week checkup. I have battled a lot of anxiety as the day approaches. Yet God is faithful and He will carry us through. Thanks everyone for your support!

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