Yesterday I had the growth scan, and the results weren’t promising. It looks like the baby/I might have something called intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR). Luckily it’s asymmetrical, which from what I read is the more preferred type (?!). She’s measuring right on track for everything but her abdomen–and that, unfortunately, is serious cause for concern. That measurement alone diminishes her growth percentile to 7%. The doctor tried to be reassuring, but she saw in my face that I knew exactly what it meant. I’d done enough research to prepare myself for possible diagnoses. And now, I’m officially in the high-risk OBGYN. I have genetic counseling on Tuesday with an out-of-town practice, and I will have frequent monitoring at the very least, if not more invasive testing depending on the results of the placenta scan. They suspect the placenta isn’t performing adequately. She’s growing enough in the “right” areas, such as her brain and femurs, but she’s still under duress and malnourished.
I cried in the bathroom at the OB. Dried my eyes and barely made it through the referral and into my car. Sobbed again. I am so sad. So very distraught. I know in my bones that I am coming home without my baby, at least for a little while. I fear for her health most of all. More selfishly I am upset that I’ll likely have a cesarean section and wont birth this baby naturally like my others. I read something last night that really affected me: “Babies with IUGR typically do very well in the NICU as they’re already accustomed to being under duress in the womb.” That was from a forum where a NICU nurse chimed in. It was supposed to be comforting. It’s not. Now I’m wondering if she’s so active because she’s suffering, because she’s hungry.
I’ve had difficult pregnancies, sure. Olivia’s was typical and uncomfortable. I had some sickness, backache, swelling. I was young and my body rebounded quickly, however. Aiden’s was traumatic during the birth. I had prodromal labor for about three weeks before he was born, and then there was the hospital debacle (which I still resent fully). I had hyperemesis gravidarum with Jude. Several hospitalizations from dehydration and surgery after surgery for thrombosed hemorrhoids. But they were all healthy. Small, under 6.5 lbs, but so healthy. I don’t know what to do or think. I’m terrified. I can’t imagine not holding my baby after I birth her. Watching her through a plastic incubator being fed through tubes. Not breastfeeding.
I am so scared. I want to crawl into the cave of my bedding and do nothing but cradle my belly, talk to her, tell her it’s all going to be okay. Beg her to grow.
But she might not have a choice.