The early weeks of pregnancy are fragile—and confusing. Here, the answers to your questions.
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I dialed my doctor's office with shaky hands and was told to go straight to the emergency room. Next, I called Will at work and instead found myself crying on the phone to a very patient woman in H.R. who agreed to have Will paged. Will arrived home minutes later, sweaty and breathless (luckily, he works just a few miles away) to find me waiting on the front steps of our house with our babysitter and Julia, tears pouring down my face and blood pooling in my shoes.
I'd never seen so much blood in my life. I had on one of those diaper-sized maxi pads left over from Julia's birth, and still the janitor had to follow us down the hospital corridor mopping up the trail of blood behind me. A kind and beautiful woman named Jessie escorted us into an ultrasound room, asked us a few questions, then squeezed some of the cold gel onto my belly so she could take a look. I winced and closed my eyes when the baby came into view on the screen -- I didn't want to see. But, when I opened them again, I saw our baby moving! Kicking! Waving! I turned to look at Will, in awe. He gave my hand a squeeze, and it was only then that I noticed the tears in his own eyes.
I was diagnosed with a placental abruption and told to stay in bed for a week. The rest of what the doctor said is anyone's guess. I was just so elated to know that our baby was alive, nothing else really mattered.
My elation quickly turned to fear as I lay in bed for the next week, reading about placental abruptions on the Internet (I learned that it's actually called a subchorionic hemorrhage if it happens before 20 weeks). I spoke with every doctor I knew. What I took away from it all was that we had an equal chance of a miscarriage, an extremely premature baby, or a completely normal, healthy, full-term baby. We counted on the latter, and have been holding our collective breath ever since.
I'm now 26 weeks pregnant. And, it feels like a miracle. The other day, I asked Julia what she thought the baby would look like. She thought about it for a minute, her face all scrunched up in serious contemplation, and then announced: "Like the sun, the moon, and the stars."
We're having a son. And, already, I feel like he's been willed here by the universe itself.
Check back each week as FitPregnancy.com's Managing Editor, Dana Rousmaniere, chronicles life with a new baby.
Read the next entry: 11.25.06: My Magnum Opus