The last 33 hours have been rough. No, that’s not the right word. They’ve been horrible.

It started out with my routine midwife appointment on Tuesday morning. Everything looked good. Then she measured my belly. Listened to the heartbeat. Said something like, “Wake up little guy!”  it sounded slow to me and that was it. Then she casually mentioned something about possibly needing an ultrasound just so she can be sure he’s growing properly and is the right size. I never had ultrasounds with Ben and William.

They (team midwife) explained that with my previous two babies I measured the same weeks gestation the baby was but with this one he’s measuring smaller. She said something about intrauterine restriction or something…and then that was it. An ultrasound was scheduled for two days later to have some questions answered and I was off.

My amazing midwife later apologized for not reassuring me more as I left that everything was fine and not to worry. Not sure it would have helped much anyway because that’s just what I do.

I found myself driving home (this was the ONE apt. David didn’t make it to) bawling my eyes out with worry.

His heartbeat was slower than normal, he’s smaller than he should be…all these possibilities running through my mind.  It got bad.

Despite the fact that I later called my midwife back and heard her tell me that his heartbeat was actually just perfect and normal (this is when she apologized for not reassuring me more), I was still struggling.

To be compact, I had myself convinced that something was terribly wrong with my baby. Here’s the kicker though…I let myself believe it so wholeheartedly BECAUSE I believe(d) that my ‘trial’ had come.

You hear that everyone has trials, no one will be void. Life is hard and it’s supposed to be. You can’t progress and grow with out them. So my thinking has always been, “Ok, well I haven’t had any major trials in my life so something big must be coming…I wonder what it will be…and when.”

(Is it ironic that my song of the week is about life being too good that it must not be real?)

I was convinced that this was it. Here it was. It made sense! I’d been waiting and wondering what my trial(s) would be and here they were. No more wondering.

What is wrong with me?

To make things worse, this morning after the craziness of the morning (where btw, it didn’t help when Ben’s kindergarten teacher who when we met with her this morning for Ben’s assessment said, “you are so tiny for 28 weeks! I know she meant well but man for this situation it’s not what you want to hear) I started to realize that my baby hadn’t been moving around like he usually does. I didn’t want to panic unnecessarily so I waited some more. Besides, he WAS moving but only in one defined area and very weakly and not very often.  I laid down for a while because that’s usually a time I can count on him becoming more active. Nothing. I finally shared my concerns with David through tears and he suggested drinking a sugary drink so I did. I laid down for a while longer…about an hour. Still nothing. Not like normal. Not his rolling and shifting and really moving…just a faint little kick every once and a while.

So by this time I was a complete mess. I thought it was over. I knew something was terribly wrong. I was gone. David called our midwife and updated her. She told us to head into the local labor and delivery at the hospital. She called ahead and got us an apt with the on call doctor.

The drive there felt like an eternity. Thankfully my mom and dad were able to tag team it and watch the boys last minute.

I was able to get it together on the drive but once we were there I just broke down again so David had to take over doing most of the talking. I will say however that our particular nurse that got us settled was incredible at making me feel better and more comfortable.  She might never know what a difference she made for me today.

All the nurses were wonderful. They got me hooked up right away to the fetal Doppler thing and there it was, just what I needed to hear…his strong heartbeat. Tears of gratitude. He was OK. At least for now I could know that.

A little later they did an ultrasound and found that everything looked normal. They said he didn’t do a practice breath which they were hoping to see but that just because they didn’t see it means anything’s wrong. He’s still young.

His amniotic fluid is plentiful, his organs etc all fine. BUT he is measuring small…about 26 weeks instead of 28 like we thought I was.

We don’t know what this means yet. There is a possibility that I am only 26 weeks and I am doing my darnedest to be open to that possibility (even though I’m very skeptical because with conception dates in mind and a few other factors at play it doesn’t seem right to me – but hey I’ve been terribly wrong up to this point). If that’s not the case then he is a small 28 week old baby and we go from there. Could that mean intrauterine growth restriction? Something else?

We wont know anything until a second ultrasound in a few weeks to compare his growth from the one we got today.

The doctor that came in to answer a few of our questions was nice enough to do so even though it became clear the moment he came into the room that he knew we were ‘midwife people’ and that he didn’t intend on helping us much.  We heard about his morals and the mess that comes from trying to blend two different philosophies…blah blah. We told him that we understood.  Which we really do…to an extent. He answered our questions to the best of his ability.

When his time with us was drawing to a close however he said, “You two seem like awesome people though, so Ill have you come in about 3 weeks and I’ll do another ultrasound and see what I can see.” And that was that.

When I got home it wasn’t much longer before I got a phone call and it was Dr. Horsley asking if I had any other questions. He was very nice and suggested that I actually come in on Friday afternoon for a free of charge ultrasound just so he could get another look and kinda start over with a due date etc. He said he wanted a deeper history of my previous pregnancies and that we would go from there. (I’m trying SO hard not to worry that it was because of something concerning he saw after we left. See…there’s that fear over faith thing again.)

Nonetheless, it was very kind of him to call. I just hope he’s not trying to ‘save’ us from midwifery. Ha. The truth is I have always been grateful for the option of modern medicine…what a blessing if needed.

So that’s my story. I feel about 80% better than I did but there are definitely still some questions I have. Why is baby boy small? Now we wait.

So far what this experience has taught me is that I may seriously have something wrong with me. Not really new news.  I need to figure out why I view the world and God and our trials in the way I do. And why do I allow my mind to take control so heavily.  I mean I really really let myself believe there was something wrong. Why can’t I be positive and have faith instead of fear? Is mother’s intuition a real thing because mine was shooting red flags all over the place…maybe mine is just under the weather….and I guess the story isn’t over yet so who knows.

All I know is I have a lot to learn still. Oh and I love my husband…a lot.

What are your thoughts on trials in our lives..or the lack thereof?   How do you find reassurance through difficult potentially devastating times?

4 thoughts on “28 weeks?

  • Definitely scary. Sounds miserable, but I think you’re being a little too hard on yourself. Something COULD have been wrong dear cuz. Kudos to you for being sensitive and for going the extra mile to protect your baby.

    If you ever want to talk anxiety/depression give me a call. We have a genetic history of it on the Stephenson side. Love to you and yours!

    • Thanks Julie. It’s true. Sometimes (most times) I get too in my head…I need to just breath. I am pretty certain that I suffer from anxiety from time to time. I would love to talk to you sometime! Love you too!

  • Oh Anna that is so nerve wracking. 🙁 Hang in there. Everything will be ok! Something similar happened to me and I was so nervous. They found white spots/calcium deposits on baby’s heart which could be a sign of Down syndrome. I was really worried for a few days until the tests came back negative. All will be well. Update when you can! I will pray for you.

    • First of all Congratulations to you!!! You little boy is here! I bet it’s so nice to finally have him in your arms! I have to tell you a funny story though…we have been struggling with names for out little one and one day at my parents, the name Carter popped into my head!! And it was the only one that I’ve like so far! So for about 2 days that’s what we were leaning towards! I kid you not, the 3rd day I woke up and I was kind of just not feeling it anymore, wasn’t sure etc. and that’s the same day that Aly announced on FB that your little one was CARTER! hahahaha I couldn’t believe it. Neither could my mom. What are the chances. Anyway, I love it. It looks perfect on him and I can’t wait to meet him! I hope you guys are doing well! Thank you for you kind words and encouragement cousin! love you!

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