Well, I’ve been sitting silent on the news that Drew and I are expecting a baby, and now I am feeling a little more confident about sharing the news because we crossed the first rite of passage of those to come and heard the heartbeat yesterday afternoon! I wish that I had gotten it together to record it, but unfortunately with all of the travel that’s been going on, it just didn’t happen, so I will have to rely on my words to do the telling for me. It was pretty incredible—the baby’s heart is beating at about 150-160 bpm, and so the contrast of my seemingly slow heart to his or her speedy rhythm was shocking and lovely to hear. One of the most common things that we hear about pregnancy is how potent it is to hear the heartbeat for the first time, but as with so much, no matter how many times I have heard that before, I still didn’t truly understand until I heard a second heartbeat coming from my body. The beginning of a baby is in there! Although I have known for what seems like a small eternity about the baby at this point (4 weeks, eternity, whatever) yesterday was the first day that I didn’t feel like I was pregnant with questions and doubt, I felt like I was pregnant with someone that will become the person that we know as our child, and as so many other women have reported, that was the moment that it really clicked that I am this baby’s mother.
We are thrilled with our midwife—she is very practical and no-nonsense when it comes to birth and gave me a sense of capability and strength throughout our visit. Their practice is very low tech, and although they will of course keep a close eye on me, her basic philosophy is that a woman armed with all of the right information knows best. She emphasizes nutrition to keep the baby and baby mama healthy and barring any complications, we will only have one ultrasound at 22 weeks (where we’ll find out the gender) and otherwise we’ll will have one appointment a month where we’ll continue to hear that little heart beating. I know that everyone is different, but for me it is very comforting to take a low tech approach to the pregnancy. I have tried to avoid learning about all of the things that can go wrong to the best of my ability and instead have stayed focused on what I can control to help everything go right. What I have found is that that is kind of a hard mission because so many books will start out describing the beauty of budding life, and conclude with a dire warning that pretty much anything that you encounter while you’re pregnant could cause your child to have three (or no) ears and a false sense of security in his or her early to mid forties. Pretty charming stuff. Pregnancy is one que sera sera after another, but I think that it suits me just fine.
Oh, and did I mention how cool it was to hear that heartbeat?