Over the last week or two, I’ve felt moments of panic again. My mom said to me, with a bit of exasperation I think, that she had expected me to start feeling more confident at some point as this pregnancy progressed. And indeed, you would think, at 22 weeks, that I might finally be past all the worry and uncertainty.
In fact, as this pregnancy continues and Skittle gets bigger, I seem to be fretting more. Because if there is one thing scarier to me than a miscarriage, it is a stillbirth. To lose a baby whom I have celebrated, seen on ultrasound (multiple times!), heard her heartbeat, felt her kicks…I can’t imagine anything much worse.
And now that I do feel Skittle move daily, I have something new to obsess over. Instead of constantly bringing out the doppler to analyze the sound of her heartbeat, I instead agonize over how frequent her kicks are, and how strong. There were times over the holiday weekend when she was very quiet and I felt like I couldn’t relax, could hardly even breathe, until I felt her move. And when I did, the relief that washed over me was, I imagine, akin to crashing in a commercial plane and walking away from it without so much as a scratch. Yes, I am a little crazy.
Thankfully, I had a prenatal appointment on Tuesday and was able to talk to the nurse practitioner about my concerns. She told me, at this stage, it’s perfectly normal to feel a baby move a lot one day and very little the next. Skittle is still small and can hide away in places where her movements may seem muffled — or may not be felt at all. However, by 24 weeks, I should be able to do kick counts. If at any point, I don’t feel her move as much as I think I should, I can drink a glass of water and a glass of OJ and wait for 6-10 movements within the next 1-2 hours. I love that! Unlike in my first pregnancy when I was told that I would learn Cupcake’s patterns and would “just know” if she wasn’t moving often enough, this gives me a solid standard by which to judge Skittle’s movements. Which is exactly what I have been looking for. I will try so hard not to do constant kick counts, all day long, but now I know what to look for if I start to feel panicky and that in itself is enough to give me some peace of mind. I like having a plan.
In the last few days, though, I have not had to worry (or use the doppler) at all because Skittle has been a jumping bean. Which I am perfectly fine with.
In other news, remember my friend Lillian who conceived around the same time as I did in January and then proceeded to miscarry just a few weeks later? Well, she’s pregnant again. She got a positive at 10dpo and told me the next day. I am ever so hopeful for her, but am asking that if you’re so inclined, please send all sorts of prayers and good thoughts to God and the Universe. I want this to work out for her so much. Thanks, friends. xo