Monday, July 2, 2012

Gummi Update

I'm the worst, really.  I know I am.  It's okay though.

We got the results from the blood screen back... a week ago.  If you have no clue what I'm talking about, feel free to zip back over to this post, where you can read about our little pregnancy scare.  To sum up, at our anatomical sonogram, our doctor noticed what are called 'choroid plexus cysts' on our son's brain.  These cysts are simply pockets that sometimes happen as the baby's brain is developing, and while harmless in and of themselves, they have been linked to chromosomal abnormalities such as Trisomy 13, 18, and 21.  Basically, the average woman's chances of having a baby with Trisomy 18 are around 1 in 4,000 - many Trisomy 18 abnormalities result in early miscarriage.  But, seeing the isolated cysts (meaning there are no other signs of T-18) ups the odds to something like 1 in 400.

Enter genetic screening.  I took the quad screen to test my hormones and blood levels to measure the risk of my having a baby with chromosomal abnormalities like Trisomy 18 and 21.  While the test can be inaccurate for the better or worse (again, read the aforementioned post for more information), it was nice to hear the nurse tell me that based on my results, our risk was something like 1 in 3,779.  Big sigh of relief, prayers of thanks and a collapse on the couch after that phone call. While we're not out of the woods yet, I feel infinitely better than I did a few weeks ago.

Now I can start thinking about the future without a knot in my stomach.  I feel like I am free from this nagging worry and doubt and we can talk about our second son without a dark question in the back of our minds.  And so of course, with this gift of unburdening, I have been making absolutely no progress on tacking down a nursery theme.

Because even with all of the scary cysts and the scouring of Google for every entry I could find on Trisomy 18, a big part of me kept saying, "Wait, a boy?"  I mean, when the tech asked if we wanted to find out the sex and then said ever-so-nonchalantly "Well, it's a boy", it took me at least thirty seconds to realize what she'd said.

"Wait, what?"  I stammered, as if she'd uttered the gender in some new language.  I should tell you I wasn't hoping for a girl against a boy, even though having one would be so sweet.  But I had started dragging girly things into the nursery.  Hello, flowery crewel chair.  Hello, watercolor pansy print.  Hello, butterfly mobile hanging from the ceiling.  I had this gut feeling that #2 was of the XX chromosome variety.  And since my instincts were spot on last time, I had this motherly hubris happening.  Of course, there is a 1 in 2 chance of guessing correctly, and I am ever in the odds.  Of my two pregnancies, I have been right 50% of the time.

And so I will try to work the crewel embroidered armchair into this second son's room, mostly because I have nowhere else to put it.  The pansy print goes, the butterflies stay.  And we are thisclose to choosing a name for our newest progeny; and it's one we haven't shared with anyone yet, so get ready to be surprised.

And in the name of pure celebratory feeling, I will share with you our little Gummi's picture from the day we found out he was a boy.  A picture that might be the most terrifying thing to ever make me laugh.

And finally - thank you so much to the countless friends, family and readers who have texted, emailed or commented on Facebook with words of encouragement, shared verses, and prayers.  Koby and I can't express what it feels like to be so supported and cared for by people like you.  We covet your prayers still and will keep you up-to-date on the progress of the pregnancy.