(I was 5 and a half months pregnant in the photo above. )
Back to motherhood today. 🙂
As I was telling you in the previous articles of “Untold story of motherhood”, my pregnancy wasn’t like a walk in the park. First trimester felt like a bad joke but somehow me and the baby “survived” and we entered into what seemed like a smoother and happier period. For about a month or so it was perfect. Now when I look back at those times, it was the best period of the entire pregnancy. I gain some of the weight I lost, felt better, more energised and so happy that everything was going well and the baby was growing as it was supposed to.
But well, surprises happen every day, and sometimes they’re not good at all. My test results for the detection of chromosomal abnormalities showed that my baby had a high risk of Down Syndrome. I remember the day I got the results as it was yesterday. I went to see my doctor and when she told me I could not believe it. I burst into tears and I kept telling her that I can’t believe this. After everything we went through the first trimester, it couldn’t possibly be all for nothing. I felt like I was punished for something and couldn’t understand for what and why. She told me that the results do not confirm a syndrome, it just tells us there’s a risk and the only way we could know for sure was to do an amniocentesis. I was scheduled very fast as my pregnancy was almost 5 months so by the time I would get the final results I would be close to the 6th month. If the results are positive and you decide to stop the pregnancy, the doctors will induce the labour and you practically give birth to your child, the natural way. My stomach tightens even now when I think about this possibility. If the results wouldn’t be bad enough, you have to go through another nightmare.
Amniocentesis, good or bad?
The day of the amniocentesis was another day that will be hard to forget. During the procedure, while the needle was inside my uterus, the baby kicked the side of the needle, mixing the amniotic fluid with some blood, that apparently was mine. The assistant’s face changed into panic but the doctor remained calm and continued to extract the fluid. After she took the needle out she saw that the fluid was a little reddish and explained what happened, assuring me that the baby was ok. We had to wait for half an hour while they rapidly tested the amniotic fluid to see if it can be used for further testing, because the blood inside could have damaged the test’s accuracy. There are 2 tests that can be done on the fluid, one gives the results in about a week and one in about 3 weeks. The second one is the most accurate and the most complete, but the first one gives fast results on some of the most frequent abnormalities. Unfortunately, the accuracy of rapid test was compromised by the blood inside the fluid, so we had to wait for 3 weeks to know the final results. They were incredibly tough weeks for me while I tried to stay positive, but I found it very hard not to think about what could go wrong. I had to take antibiotics and some meds to prevent contractions while being very careful not to lift any weights or make any effort that might trigger contractions or a miscarriage. The funny thing is that I was having contractions and had trouble walking without any pain for more than 200 meters, but because they were a little strange I didn’t knew for sure what they were until later on.
All this story has a happy ending, because the results showed that my baby was healthy and it was indeed a girl, which made me soooo happy and thankful.
Amniocentesis is a choice, not a must. No one will make you do it if you don’t want to. It is your decision to wait and find out on the day you give birth or to do it and know before. Before you make any choice, you should try to learn about the benefits and the risks and decide what’s best for you. I knew I could not live peacefully for the next few months knowing my baby had a high risk of anything.
Be happy, be healthy, be positive and have faith. Sometimes all you have is faith.
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