I am 24 weeks pregnant today. We had a day full of appointments: regular pre-natal, fetal echocardiogram, and a level 2 ultrasound. It was set to be an exciting day of getting to hear and see baby girl a lot! It turned out to be a bit of a hard day instead. My first appointment went well and we headed to University of Minnesota Children's Hospital for the echo. This is a standard procedure for moms with type 2 diabetes as there is a slightly higher risk of heart abnormalities. We got in early because the appointment ahead of us was a no-show. A fetal echocardiogram is basically just an ultrasound focused on the heart. It was a bit more painful than a regular ultrasound because they have to get much better pictures of just one organ. My abdomen is very sore tonight from all the digging in.
The ultrasound tech did about 25 minutes of scans, then came in with the doctor. This is standard procedure so it didn't concern us. He reviewed the scans, then took a few more pictures on his own. He got all the shots he needed and briefed us on the results. The good news is that baby girl's heart is structurally in tact. All the chambers look good and it is pumping blood well. The not good news is that the heart wall is thicker than it should be. This is commonly called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. He said it isn't the worst he has seen, but it is still something to monitor. From everything I have read, it sound like this won't go away, but it also won't necessarily mean she will have a major issue. The doctor did not seem overly concerned, but that only eases a hormonal pregnant woman so much. I held it together through the appointment, but cried the whole way home. We will have a repeat echo in about 8 weeks to see how things have progressed. The increased possibility of a heart issue was never mentioned to me in the past, so it was a bit of a surprise. It will be even more important for me to keep my blood sugar in control to minimize any further thickening. The closer we get the end the more difficult it can be to keep in check, so I am concerned about this too. As you likely know, heart issues are a bit of a touchy subject with us at the moment since Jimmy's dad is awaiting a heart transplant. For now we will just have to continue praying that she will grow as healthy as possible. We won't know what it really means until closer to her due date.
We had a full anatomy scan this afternoon as well. I will have once more scan at 28 weeks, then twice weekly starting at 32 weeks. Her abdomen is measuring a bit small, but everything else looks great. She was being very proper, with her legs closed and crossed at the ankles, so we didn't get a chance to confirm gender. Our first tech was very confident, so I trust she got it right. Baby girl is still head down, which is good if I want to try for a VBAC. Parker was head up, but flipped during week 32, so we will see if she stays this way. There is still a lot of room to move around and she could flip a few times. I am feeling her move every day, which is the best. I missed this the most once Parker was born.
I had a couple more crying spells this evening. One just before dinner and one while we were saying bedtime prayers. I am trying to keep a positive attitude, but also be realistic about what this could mean for all of us. Your thoughts and prayers for peace in this mama's heart would be appreciated.