/ The RE's Muse: Consider me counseled and other holiday news

The RE's Muse

After 4 years of infertility, 2 surgeries, 1 miscarriage, and 19 months of high risk pregnancies, hubby and I now have two little women in our lives--one a toddler, the other not far behind. Buckle your seatbelts, it's gonna be a wild ride.

Monday, December 27, 2004

Consider me counseled and other holiday news

Well, we went public Christmas eve, the 12 week mark. The night found us at SIL's for dinner with family and before we sat down to eat, A and I passed out everyone's holiday cards. Tucked behind each holiday card in the envelope was a second card--one of those holiday photo holder cards--with a recent ultrasound photo in the photo slot and the inside inscription read "Happy holidays...Love, A, Dee, and baby Dee (due 7/8/05)." To say the reaction was surprise was an understatement.

The entire scenario was v funny--especially since not everyone opened their cards at the same pace--which meant that a dear Aunt across the room cracked hers first and then loudly proclaimed, "A baby!" To which my MIL, who had yet to open her card (protesting that it wasn't Christmas yet) said, "I heard that" and I replied "No, you didn't--now open your card!" And on it went...until finally everyone had opened, etc. My MIL, bless her sweet self, quietly cried at the counter and when my other SIL asked her why, she said it was b/c she wanted to know if it was okay to get excited about this one yet. I told her yes, though I myself am still working on that notion with every day that passes. And yesterday A and I invited her in to come hear the heartbeat when we listened in on the doppler. Generally speaking, a pretty good holiday weekend was had by all.

Then today was the appt with the genetic counselor. All in all, I think it went rather well. A couldn't join me as his first morning back in the office post-holiday was a hectic one so I went it alone. I figured this was one visit I could handle by myself since I likely wouldn't get any bad news. And you know what? I didn't...whew.

We basically went over my family's genetic history as well as A's. Went over my odds for Down's or trisomy 18 (1 in 212 or thereabouts for either) given my age. It seems that the biggest concern of the counselor's was my congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH), a recessive condition. We know I have it but we don't know if A has it--though the odds are extremely unlikely that he does. My condition affects about 1 in 30,000 people. So the counselor is going to check and see if there has been any development in the CAH arena as far as testing goes. The last time she had a patient with this condition--5 years ago--there was no known screening test for it. There may be now but she's not sure. If there is, A will be sent for the testing; if there's not, we wing it and test the baby once it's born (again with the optimism these people). The good news is that CAH is largely manageable and not a life-threatening condition.

I did again decline the amnio at this time. At last week's OB visit, I agreed to an Integrated Serum Screen test (a supposedly more accurate version of the standard triple screen test) and if that comes back abnormal--it correctly identifies about 80-85% of Down's and trisomy 18 babies--we'll reconsider the amnio. The counselor recommended the level II ultrasound at 18 weeks when they'll check the baby thoroughly for physical markers of potential problems. Another level II will also be done around 24 weeks for that same reason she said. If the integrated serum screen comes back normal, my odds for Down's, etc., drop to about 1 in 400-500. Simply put, the counselor said, there is a 99.5% chance the baby will be normal, .5% it won't. So we'll see what time tells us.

In other news, corny, yes, but that husband of mine can still manage to surprise me. I am a material girl...there I said it. There isn't much more I truly love for presents (birthdays, holidays, you name it) than jewelry. I don't know why, but I do.

Alas, A is largely anti-jewelry as he doesn't think the expense matches the value (this is the man who wanted to return the Tag Heuer watch I bought him as a gift a few years ago b/c it was "too expensive" and something he would never have bought for himself--yes, I told him, that's why it's called a gift. He ended up keeping it--besides he had wanted one for years.) So imagine my surprise when I opened my Christmas present from him to find a white gold Chopard heart ring. It is beautiful and was completely unexpected, and I like to think it symbolizes so much right now. I lurve it--and my SIL for telling him that it is what I wanted for Christmas (and for going and getting it for him since he is notoriously late in shopping every year). Note to self: must stop taking hormonal mood swings out on A; he loves me, bless his heart, even when I am a raging hose beast. That must be true love...either that or he likes pain.

I hope you each had a wonderful holiday...no matter what you did, where you were, what you got or didn't get. My 2005 wish for you is that the new year brings health, happiness, and your dreams come true...no matter what they may be. Oh, how I wish that....


At 2:51 PM, Blogger Julianna said...

What a wonderful way to tell everyone! I had tears in my eyes. So happy for you Dee!

At 6:19 PM, Blogger Jen P said...

Fabulous news all around, Dee. Fabulous. I'm hoping the screening goes well and you get to that due date quickly. Best wishes!

At 6:46 AM, Blogger Toni said...

I like that way of telling....much more creative then "Hey, I'm pregnant". I'm sure everything will go well with whatever testing you decide...


At 6:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We told everyone xmas eve too. I brought out the ultrasound pic and casually started showing it to Nanna, who already knew. Pretty soon everyone had gathered around and started the screeching and howling and it was cool. 90% of them said they had guessed it when they walked in the door because you can see my belly now bigtime, but they hadn't wanted to say anything in case I was just drinking wayyyyy to much beer lately.
It's weird, allowing others to become all optimistic and excited, isn't it?. I feel like a traitor to myself. God, I hope my doppler comes in the mail tomorrow.
Are you showing yet?

At 9:04 PM, Blogger Heather said...

What a wonderful way to tell everyone the news! Also, congratulations on making it past that magical 12 week mark. I know what a relief that is.

Here's hoping everything continues to go as well for you as it has up to this point. So happy for you :-)

At 11:38 PM, Blogger NSR said...

Wow, what a fun way to tell the family. Glad to hear you are doing well!



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