First, really quick, the comments issue is now completely fixed. Nobody should have any problem commenting. I love getting them and I try to respond to every one, so feel free to leave one if you're so inclined!
I stopped in at the perinatologist's office after, which is conveniently located right next door. I let them know I didn't have an appointment but wondered if it'd be possible to talk with the doctor and ask him a few questions. I waited about five minutes before the doctor himself came out to get me. I'm seriously so impressed with the quality of care and personableness that we've had.
I told him about the heart rate and asked what his opinion was and if it tells him anything. I appreciate his honesty though it was still hard to hear. He said while it's not bad, obviously a higher heart rate is better than 60 BPM, that wasn't the most concerning issue that he had seen.
He said the most concerning factors are the structural heart abnormalities and the fluid around the heart and neck. I asked him from what he's seen, what has he seen. He reiterated that it's very concerning to him. Since we don't have much information right now and we don't know of any chromosomal abnormalities, it's hard to prognosticate (that's a new medical term I've already learned).
He said that when we check again in two weeks, if the fluid has decreased or increased or stayed the same, that'll give us an indication of further progression. I agreed to the blood test and that will either rule out or confirm Trisomy 13, 18, or Down's Syndrome. He said if we're able to rule out Trisomy 13 and 18 (both of which are "incompatible with life"), then that "further bumps up the possibility of life."
Oh so hard to hear all these things. The waiting and not-knowing are brutal. I feel like I measure the days in relation to the next ultrasound.
I've tried to remind myself of God's grace in this process. Some examples of which are:
- Matt's mom is a Nurse Practitioner and she specializes in Perinatology (though not here), so she's been a great resource and encouragement for us. How's that for a non-coincidence?
- My parents who live here. My mom has made herself available at the drop of a hat to watch the boys while I go in to the doctors, she's brought us dinner, regularly asks me how I'm doing, has fasted for us, and a thousand other things. We're so, so blessed.
- The friends who have been physically present and available. I read an article this weekend about how true friendships need physical presence and times of suffering really show that. I've had a few in particular who have pursued me (even when I've tried to isolate myself) and not let me get away with not responding. I need that so badly, even when I think I don't want it.
- The people who have sent our Baby Nugget and our prayer needs all over the world. It blows my mind. When Matt originally asked me if I was going to write about it, I said no. But I am so glad I changed my mind because the outpouring of prayers and support have been so very needed.
- The friends who don't live here who have sent cards and texts and messages and emails. I treasure every single one of them and I don't take them for granted. I told a few people that I feel like Moses when he was too weary to hold his arms up any longer so others held them up for him and the battle was won (Exodus 17:8-14).
- God's Word and prayer. Most nights no longer find me mindlessly surfing the internet or getting lost in a book but rather curled up with my Bible and journal, filling my weary soul with truth and hope.
This is not an easy process. Jesus himself, when he heard word that Lazarus had died, even though he knew that he was going to raise him from the dead, wept (John 11:35). I weep. I grieve. Some days feel hopeful and others dark.
This verse was shared at church this week and I came home and read and reread it and wrote it again in my journal for good measure:
"And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you" (1st Peter 5:10).
So, prayer needs for Baby Nugget:
- Again, first and foremost, complete miraculous healing.
- Structural heart abnormality to be something that can be corrected with surgery.
- Fluid around heart and neck and anywhere else to completely go away.
- Baby to remain whole and well in my womb for as long as possible.
Thank you again, we appreciate you so much.