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The 12-week ultrasound.

2007-12-05 - 9:39 a.m.

So, the ultrasound. Last time I went for the 12-week IPS ultrasound, it lasted about 15 minutes. This seemed all too short and left me thinking that I could never get tired of witnessing the miracle of life growing in my belly. Well, I am here to tell you, after an hour and 20 minutes of someone digging an ultrasound transducer into your belly, you can get tired of “the miracle of life”.

The amount of time I got to spend gazing at the Biscuit was, in fact, the only satisfying thing about the experience. The technician couldn’t get “the right angle” (and I think I heard that phrase about 50 times) to save her life. First she thought my bladder wasn’t full enough. Then her hand got tired (about 10 minutes in) so she grabbed an extra harness grip thing that goes onto the transducer… except it had a slight point on two corners which scratched and dug into me for the entire rest of the time I was on the table. Then my bladder was full enough, but the Biscuit wasn’t moving and my belly button was causing a “shadow” right where she was trying to look. Then the Biscuit started moving, but was moving too much so she couldn’t pin him down long enough to grab the shot. Then my bladder was too full and I was given a small paper cup and told to pee just until I’d filled it up twice.

Okay, first of all, it’s not totally easy to aim into a cup, given the equipment I’ve got, and second, it’s not easy to start to pee (but not too fast!), fill up a cup, stop to dump the cup, then repeat, especially when you’ve diligently followed orders to drink 4 cups (a liter) of water an hour before your appointment. But I did it, and went back for another round, and as I came back into the room I hear the tech complaining to her associate that her hand was going into spasms. Poor woman.

When I got back I was told that now the problem was that the Biscuit’s own facial bones were causing a “shadow” right on the area of skin at the back of her neck that needed to be measured. It seems to me that if this was the problem, no amount of bladder fullness or trying to catch the baby at the right moment of flipping back and forth would have possibly helped, nor would any extra pressure on my belly from the transducer.

I think it might have even gone on for a lot longer (and as it was I was told that I'd pretty much set a record for the longest IPS ultrasound ever there), but the blood lab was closing and I had to get blood drawn the same day for the IPS, so after being there for a seeming eternity, she desperately took a couple of measurements that would “have to do”, filled out the paperwork while the office called the blood lab and asked them to stay open and wait for me, I was told to “sprint – but not too fast ‘cause you’re pregnant – to the blood lab” at the other end of the hospital. I was never given the dating estimate based on the various measurements that were taken, and I was never given any pictures or chance to request pictures. In fact, she was extremely non-forthcoming with any information whatsoever and basically said that I shouldn’t be looking on the internet to find out anything about what certain things – like measurements of the nuchal fold – mean. Bah.

On the plus side, this particular blood draw was one of the most painless ever, so there’s that at least, right? And I have to go back for the next one on the 22nd of December or later. And since the lab is closed on weekends and that’s a Saturday, you know what that means? Another Christmas Eve visit to the hospital on the Monday, woo hoo!

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