Perinatologist Appointment

Today was our perinatologist appointment with Dr. Morales. After checking in a little early we waited for what seemed like forever before we were called back into the ultrasound room. We know the drill by now. Come in, lay down, nasty goo on the belly, ultrasound begins.

The tech was really nice. She explained each and every part she was looking at and measuring. We got to see Jax’s spine, brain, bladder, kidneys, stomach, and of course arms, legs, feet, and hands. She even showed us the umbilical cord and where it inserted into the placenta and the baby’s belly, and she measured the placenta itself too. We asked her if it would be their office or Dr. Connors who would call us with the results and she said that Dr. Morales was watching the ultrasound in the 0ther room as she went and reviewing it along the way, and would be in to give the results after she was done.

Sure enough a few minutes after the ultrasound was done Dr. Morales came in. He was really soft spoken and very nice. He explained what they had been looking for in the brain based on what the previous ultrasound had shown. Basically there are two ventricles, or tubes, in the brain where the cerebrospinal fluid is made and drains from the brain into the neck and down into the spine. If this backs up, like a sink, then it overflows and can cause fluid on the brain and too much pressure. Luckily, Jaxson’s brain is perfect and normal and he is wonderfully healthy! YAY!

The only concern Dr. Morales had was in regards to the positioning of the placenta. We have heard all along that it is low and close to the cervix, but that it wasn’t yet placenta previa (where the placenta covers part or all of the cervix) and should move up as we get further along in the pregnancy. Based on this ultrasound however, it appears that part of the placenta is covering J’s cervix. While this isn’t a defeat or technically dangerous, it can cause trouble if it doesn’t move up and away from the cervix. If it doesn’t move up, J may have to go on bed rest further along in the pregnancy and would probably have to have a C-section.

So, we go back to Dr. Morales on November 7 for another ultrasound to check on the placenta’s position as well as Jax’s growth. Right now Jax is still measuring about a week ahead of schedule and he is already 13 ounces! We are just relieved that everything is okay with our baby boy. And we laugh because this was our 7th ultrasound and we were told we would only have two or three. Just more opportunities see our little guy!! πŸ™‚

(By the way, there may or may not be a video posted below. It is nothing important or pertaining to our story, just an advertisement. Ignore please! :))

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Jaxson’s 20 Week Sneak Peek!

I have to say, modern medicine is really and truly amazing. We have come so far! We had our 3D ultrasound this morning with both of our moms in attendance. We checked in, filled in some paperwork, and went back to the ultrasound room. It was crazy! It had like 7 chairs plus the ultrasound table, all gathered around a flat-screen TV, so it was like going to a movie theater. We joked that we should have brought some popcorn and drinks. After a few minutes of setting up, it was time for the ultrasound to begin.

All the moms were mesmerized and so excited to see little Jax on the screen (including me and J!). They both remarked how far ultrasounds had come since they were both pregnant (J’s mom in the 70’s, my mom in the 90’s). 3D ultrasound wasn’t even around when my mom had me and my brother and sister! The ultrasound tech flipped between 2D (regular black and white) and 3D images (more defined) and got some really great shots. She had to work at it to get the money shot since Jax is modest and had his legs crossed, but she finally succeeded (and yes, he is still a boy!). We laughed and joked a lot about that, especially since he decided to grab at it later on in the ultrasound. Oh, what we have to look forward to. πŸ™‚

We got to see Jaxson’s little feet and arms and legs, and his face. Oh, his face! He is such a cutie already, I think he looks so much like J when she was little. Perhaps the coolest part of the ultrasound were the video clips. We got some of him sleeping and moving his arms and legs around, and he even gave a thumbs up at one point. He waved a little and punched a lot. Our favorite video clip is the one of him yawning, even though it is just simple black and white. We can’t stop watching it, over and over and over again.

I love that we got a CD of the photos and video clips so we can watch it whenever we want. I hate waiting so long between ultrasounds so hopefully this will tide us over. He is still not very well-defined since he is so little, especially since his fat hasn’t started forming under his skin just yet, but we got some great pictures regardless. They advised us to come back around 26-30 weeks and the pictures will be a lot more detailed and look more like he will look when he is born. I know we will be doing that for sure.

I am so blessed and grateful for our beautiful baby boy. I just can’t wait to meet him!! Here are the pics and video from today, enjoy!! πŸ™‚

And here are the video links! YAY! πŸ™‚

20 Weeks (The Middle of the Road)

Today marks our halfway point already! I can’t believe that we have finally crested the hill of our pregnancy countdown and are now on the downward slope. I know that February will be here before we know it, but at the same time I also know the days will be dragging along. J has less than 100 workdays until Jaxson’s due date, and in total we have 140 more days to go. I know we are so ready for Jax to be here already!

There are women who love being pregnant. And there are women who don’t. J is definitely the latter of the two. She has really popped a baby bump in the last few days and is having constant aches and pains in her legs, her back, her feet, her…you get the point. Regardless not only is she ready to meet Jaxson, she’s ready to get him out of her body too! LOL

We had our checkup with Dr. Connors on Tuesday to review our ultrasound results from last week. Unfortunately there was a finding on the ultrasound in regards to Jax’s brain. Of course we were freaking out when Dr. Connors herself called us to tell us this, so we moved our appointment up from Thursday to Tuesday. Jaxson’s heartbeat is holding strong and steady in the 130s to 140s and everything else on the ultrasound looked great, however since he is measuring in the 86th percentile for size, J has to have another glucose test to make sure she hasn’t developed gestational diabetes. In regards to the finding on the ultrasound, Dr. Connors said that the left ventricle in his brain was measuring a little bigger than normal, 0.9 instead of 0.7. She said that she wasn’t too worried about this since it was such a slight variation and that it could really be due to positioning since he was not cooperating for the measurements. We felt much better after going in to see her. She really is such a great doctor and handles our neuroses quite well!

Regardless, we have an appointment to see a perinatologist this upcoming Tuesday in order to get a level 2 ultrasound (higher resolution images) so they can re-measure and make sure everything is okay with our baby boy. I’m confident everything will be just fine, but I’m thankful for the extra precaution too. As always we will let you know how that turns out.

On the upside we are getting to see our little Jax a lot lately! Not only do we have the level 2 ultrasound on Tuesday, we are having the 3D ultrasound this morning with both of our moms. I know they are both so excited to have this opportunity to see him and share in the experience with us. My mom can’t stop talking about it! I hope we get some good pictures to share with everyone this time since the last ultrasound was kind of a bust on picture quality. πŸ™‚

J has been feeling him moving around…A LOT. She has been feeling a fluttery/tickly movement for a while, but now she can really feel him kicking and punching and doing somersaults. I can’t wait until I can feel him too! I have a feeling it will be any day now. Yay! And she is happy to finally be showing a little bump now!

image

Jaxson just keeps packing on the weight! He is now the size of a cantaloupe, weighing just over 11 ounces and measuring approximately 7 inches long. Since conception, Jax has been measured from head to butt since his legs were curled up, but starting this week his measurements are taken from head to toe! The taste buds are now working and he can taste what J had for breakfast, lunch, and dinner by drinking the amniotic fluid. Jaxson’s taste preferences are being determined already, and it seems like he loves Mexican food! OlΓ©!

If he’s anything like J, Jax is going to love cheese!

19 Weeks & It’s A …

Wow! What a great week full of exciting milestones! We are not only now in the fifth month of pregnancy, but Wednesday gave us only 150 days until our due date and Friday left us with only 100 working days (for J at least) until our due date. Not only that, but Friday we FINALLY got to start calling our little one by HIS name…yep, its Jaxson Bennett in there! We are so excited! πŸ™‚

We found out the gender in the first five minutes of the ultrasound. The tech didn’t get the best picture on the printouts but the live version was like BAM that’s a penis right there! Once we found out, it was hard to sit through the whole ultrasound. We kept looking over at each other and whispering his name, big grins spread across our faces. I for one felt like a huge dork but I was so happy I didn’t care too much.

Jaxson was really low down in J’s uterus so the tech had trouble getting good pictures this time. We are going to ask Dr. Connors about that. Last visit she said he was a little low but it shouldn’t be a problem as he should move up as her uterus grows. It can be dangerous if the baby is too low, as it can cause premature labor. Regardless he was really active and since I could watch the live version of the ultrasound I got to see him kicking and punching and wriggling around in there. I got to see his bladder and kidneys, his brain and a foot, and even got to see him open his mouth! So cool! The tech all said he weighed about 10 ounces, which is definitely ahead of schedule a little bit.

J doesn’t get to see much at these ultrasounds because of the way the screen is, it can’t swivel enough so she can see it while lying down. So we decided to schedule an appointment for an ultrasound at a place nearby which my friend at work recommended. You get a CD of pictures, video loops, and it gives you both 2D and 3D views of the baby! They were having a special so it wasn’t very expensive for the 20 minute session, so we are going to do that next Saturday morning. J will be 20 weeks then, although Jaxson is still measuring about a week or so bigger, so I think we will get some really great pictures to share.

In other pregnancy news, J has been a little more emotional lately so I’ve just been rolling with the punches. It hasn’t really been that bad for me, I just know she is uncomfortable so I try to do the best I can to help her out. I cleaned the whole house Thursday after work which she thought was really nice. We hung out with our good friend Cole yesterday and watched Finding Nemo in the theater and then drug her around for baby shower shopping. J’s got a bad ankle and she thinks she has a bone spur in the same foot so she was really hurting her by the end of the day. Her feet have been swelling a little too, so we will be bringing these concerns up at our next visit with Dr. Connors.

J also got some new maternity clothes while out shopping and man, she really looks pregnant now! It is hard to be overweight and pregnant, not just for the physical aspects, but the emotional ones too. We both lost about 60 pounds before she got pregnant and now her weight has been slowly creeping back up due to the pregnancy. She says that most days she just feels like she looks fat, not pregnant. I am always sad to hear this as I think she looks pregnant, and I also thinks she looks beautiful. So I do my best to remind her of this and encourage her, and I think the new clothes she got might just help too. I could tell she felt better when she saw herself in the mirror and went “Wow, I really look pregnant!” πŸ™‚

Oh and J told me I couldn’t buy anything until we knew what gender the baby was, so we went to Once Upon A Baby, a discount store near us with new and used items and clothes for newborns up through teens. Now I’ve gotten my shopping fix at least until after the baby shower. We had fun looking at all the cute outfits and decided on three super cute ones. The first one has whales on it and since I love love LOVE the Mommy stuff, I couldn’t resist the lion one that says Mommy’s Mane Man and the elephant one that says Mommy’s Peanut. Here they are! I think we made good choices for our first outfit purchase. πŸ™‚

Whale overalls

Mommy’s Mane Man

Mommy’s Peanut

So I guess that is all I have to report this week in baby land. Our doctor’s appointment is next Thursday so we will have more to say then I’m sure. Can’t wait for the 3D ultrasound net Saturday too! Not to mention, next Saturday is HALFWAY through the pregnancy. I can’t quite believe it!

So for now, here are the pictures from this time around. Although not the best quality, they still count and it was still great to see him and be able to finally start calling him by his name. πŸ™‚

Heartbeat was 136…perfect BOY heartbeat!

He’s got big feet like me!

View of the skull now that the bones have begun hardening.

Nose & Mouth
(upper jaw with baby teeth under those gums!)

He opened his mouth to drink!

And last but not least, there’s the winky!!

J is severely allergic to mango, so luckily the baby is only the size of one! Weighing in at 10 ounces and measuring about 6.5 inches this week, Jaxson is developing the five senses of taste, touch, smell, hearing, and sight this week. He should be able to hear our voices this week and hair is beginning to grow on his scalp. The waxy coating of vernix caseosa is forming this week, which coats his skin and protects it from wrinkling during his final months in the womb. We are closing in on the halfway point in development, and Jaxson’s arms and legs are now in proportion to the rest of his body.

We’re almost halfway!

18 Weeks & Navigating Uncharted Territory

Welcome to the fifth month of pregnancy! We are fast approaching the halfway mark and we are so anxious to meet our little one! I have heard it said before, that it is like missing someone that you haven’t even met yet, and that is so true. I dream about the day we get to meet our baby and the things we will do as he/she grows into a little person day by day. I can’t wait for the memories and all of the adventures parenting will bring to us. It is truly a journey into uncharted territory, without a map and only a few guides (our parents) that we trust to help us navigate these unruly waters.

Speaking of uncharted territory…I don’t think people really understand what it means to be lesbians making babies. I created this blog not only to chronicle our journey into parenthood but also to be a resource and a help for others going through similar or same situations. When we first began our journey, there was little information that I could find to help us figure out where to even start with the baby-making. All we knew was that we needed sperm and neither of us had that to offer. We found our donor pretty easily and the second we saw his baby picture we knew he was the one for us. We got the go-ahead from our OBGYN in May 2011. So now what? We tried inseminating at home a few times and when that didn’t work, we finally found out about the only fertility doctor in our area. In 5 months of seeing the fertility doctor and two attempts at insemination, we were finally pregnant. The whole journey to actually conceiving took us about a year, and what a year that was. Roller coaster, much? πŸ™‚

Now that we were pregnant, you would think that a simple Google search would give you all the answers you could possibly need. There are literally dozens of pregnancy apps available for Android and iPhone and plenty of books such as What to Expect When You’re Expecting. But they are all made for straight people with references to Dads and how sex can be awkward now. That’s not very helpful for us! There is little to no information about gay or lesbian pregnancy online. We are all that we have, but we must seek each other out for safety in numbers, it seems. We have a few “blog friends” that are also lesbians making babies, and we read (or at least I read and then convey the info to J) their blogs with dedication and curiosity. Some are further ahead in their pregnancies than us and some have already had their little ones and are now blogging about parenthood and its woes and wows. It is so nice to read about their experiences and see what we may have to look forward to. I can only hope that my blog can help others too.

In fact, it may have already done that! We received an email on the blog this past week from a woman in NYC that is using the same donor we are. I couldn’t believe it! I knew that he had at least two other donor children, a boy and a girl, in late 2011 from a Donor Sibling Registry search, but another person at the same time as us is crazy! She emailed to say good luck and that maybe we could keep in touch. When my mom was pregnant with my sister, she joined a group called FebMoms, and they were a bunch of pregnant women that were all due in February 1996. They had a whole thing set up where they could email each other and have that support group there. They even all got together and met once, with their Feb Babies in tow. I think that is kind of neat. I would imagine there are other such groups out there, but one for donor children? Now there’s something I had never thought of before. Maybe one day we will have a group where other donor kids can get together or at least keep in touch, because I’m sure one day in the midst of their teen angst, we will hear “You don’t understand being a donor kid! I’m the only person like me!” I’m not being pessimistic, I’m just being truthful! But I guess we will see. No sense worrying about it right now, but it is kind of cool that there is someone else out there going through the exact same thing as us, or at least, really damn close. We aren’t sure how we feel about it just yet, though…it is cool but still a little strange. I mean, who else has gone through this? We are definitely in uncharted territory now.

Back to baby news, we FINALLY have our ultrasound next Friday (YAY! :)) and can’t wait to see our little guy or girl again. It feels like it has been forever since we last saw the baby. We want to know so badly so we can call it by a name already! So I guess we will see. Keep your fingers crossed that he/she doesn’t keep her legs crossed again. πŸ™‚ The baby has been REALLY active lately and causing J some pain. I read this week that the intestines are moving up and so that is probably what is going on. Other than that, not much to report yet, we are just waiting for the ultrasound!

Our little sweetie is the size of a sweet potato this week, weighing in at almost 7 ounces and measuring just about 6 inches long. Baby’s blood vessels are visible through the paper-thin skin and the ears are now settled in their permanent positions. Baby now yawns, hiccups, rolls, and twists in the uterus, and the movements in the womb should be noticeable by now as baby begins moving more and more in the coming weeks. If its a girl in there, the uterus and fallopian tubes are now fully formed and if its a boy, the genitals are now noticeable, even if he’s hiding them during the ultrasound.

This little guy or girl is a mover and a shaker!

17 Weeks

Baby’s just grown a little bit this week but a big growth spurt is definitely coming. He/She’s about the size of a large onion this week and definitely kicking J’s ass. She’s been emotional – I made her a sandwich with lunchmeat she didn’t like, and I had cut the crust off in the shape of a heart…she called me crying that her sandwich was gross and mangled. Then she felt really bad when I told her it was a heart and she told me she just wouldn’t eat that day…to which I replied “Walk next door and buy yourself a sandwich!” and she goes….”Oh.” LOL Pregnancy brain is definitely in full force too – she can’t remember ANYTHING which is highly unusual for her. She is always so organized and put together and lately…not so much. She’s been having major belly troubles…she had a steak last week (one of her favorites!) and it gave her problems for dayyyyys. She’s been having a lot of restless nights and trouble sleeping, especially having really bad nightmares. I feel so bad for her! 😦

She had her cardiologist appointment this past Wednesday which went really well. She really liked her doctor so that’s good. He sent her for an ultrasound of her heart yesterday just to make sure everything was good although he really didn’t think anything was going on. I’m sure she’ll get the results next week sometime.

It is less than two weeks until the next ultrasound of our baby and I can’t wait! It seems so crazy….this whole pregnancy goes so fast at times and at other times it is like “Wow we have so much further to wait for our little one.” I keep getting panicked in one moment and then ecstatic the next. It is not that I am afraid of having a baby, not at all, it is just that it is such a HUGE change and I am anxious for it to hurry up and get here so I can adjust already. You can imagine how having a baby will be all you want, but in the end it is always an adventure taken without a detailed itinerary or road map. You can’t plan for everything and this is definitely one of those cases. πŸ™‚ That’s okay though, because I couldn’t imagine being on this journey with anyone else!!

We were talking the other day about doing something nice for ourselves, like a little mini vacation within the state, just us, so we can just get away and have some alone time…I’m looking forward to that. πŸ™‚ It says in the What To Expect When You’re Expecting book to take a baby-moon, so I guess we’re taking that advice. Our last vacation was in April to get married, so we are about due for something fun!

I’ve been working on the baby shower stuff…we’ve bought some napkins, cups, and some little goodies. We went to Party City and priced out the other stuff we want as well. We get to see Betti this weekend so I’m sure we’ll get to talk about it with her. πŸ™‚ I have the invites ready to go out! I’m just waiting until after the ultrasound on the 14th to see how it goes (hopefully we find out if there’s a boy or a girl in there!). J thinks that this little one will keep us guessing for a while…it would be our luck. LOL

Baby’s weighing in at about 5 ounces this week and is about 5 inches long already – baby can fit in your palm! Bones are transforming from cartilage into bone and getting stronger every day. Sweat glands are beginning to develop now and baby’s finally starting to put some meat on those bones by starting to form fat this week. Also baby’s unique set of fingerprints are now in place at the tip of those little fingers.

We can’t wait to find out if there’s a little prince or princess in there!