A few months back, I saw an advertisement at my gym for a research study through Vanderbilt. They are recruiting participants who are actively trying to conceive or are up to 9 weeks pregnant. I did some research on the research study, and decided it was something I was interested in doing. Basically, you answer questions about your pregnancy, your diet, your exercise, your sleeping habits, etc., and they provide free pregnancy tests, ultrasounds and monetary compensation along with gift cards that can be used for the new baby. Plus, you get the satisfaction that you are helping in some small way by allowing these Dr's to delve into your pregnancy and the outcome. Pretty awesome stuff all around.
I've had a couple of phone interviews in the past couple months and now that I'm pregnant, today was my first visit to them for an early ultrasound in the 6th week. I'm 6 weeks 6 days today, so we just barely squeaked it in before the 7th week starts. Unfortunately, it was a trans-vaginal ultrasound, which if you aren't familiar with, is exactly what it sounds like. It's not the most comfortable thing in the world, but hey, neither are contractions, so I think all of this is designed on purpose to build up your tolerance to pain and awkwardness before you get to the finish line. I just know it's part of the divine plan.
I sat down with a very nice lady who asked me several questions about how I have been feeling with this pregnancy. She was checking boxes off as I answered the questions, so I'm hoping there were boxes labeled "LIKE ABSOLUTE CRAP", "TOO CONSTIPATED TO SIT DOWN", and "SLEEPS WITH EYES OPEN." She couldn't really give me any advice on how to curb my morning/all day sickness and nausea, but I figured since my Dr. isn't really offering any great solutions, I wouldn't find much help here either.
What they were able to give me, however, was the first glimpse of my baby. I stared at the screen intently, searching for the heartbeat. She zoomed in. I couldn't see it. Zoomed some more. Wait, there it is! Beating like crazy. Beating strong and fast. I exhaled and felt a wave of relief wash over me. She told me the heart beat is at 139 beats per minute and that everything looks good. It's all really happening now. You would think I would have realized this when I'm losing my Raisin Bran in the toilet, but there's nothing like seeing the pitter patter of that heartbeat to really seal the deal.
Have a great week!