Sylvain and I both took off work on Thursday, and we spent the morning puttering about the house waiting for our appointment with the Ceritified Nurse Midwife. I'd been waiting for five weeks for this appointment and time was creeping by, but the last two hours before we left were the longest eternity of my life! Finally we made our way to the Birth Center at Clark Memorial Hospital and met Beth - my new favorite person. She was everything I thought she would be - no lab coat and stethoscope, just a normal lady who's really good at helping people have babies. She works in a practice with another CNM and two OB/GYN's, which makes me feel good, just in case. We sat in the exam room and talked with her for a long time and she really helped ease my fears about pregnancy, labor and delivery.
When it was time for my exam, she reminded me that we may not be able to hear a heartbeat this early, but that's okay - everything would still be fine. On the outside I was all, "Oh, okay. No problem." But on the inside I was shouting "OH MY GOD IF I DON'T HEAR A HEARTBEAT TODAY I'M GOING TO FREAK OUT!!" Sylvain was sitting by the head of the table as I laid down on my back. She squooshed some goop onto the end of a big plastic stick and held what appeared to be an old transistor radio in her other hand. She put the goopy stick on my lower abdomen and flipped a switch on the radio. All we heard was a "whhooooossshhh" and a "sswwwwiiiissshhh" and it sounded like the ocean. There was an ocean inside my body. I immediately thought about that Modest Mouse song:
A third had just been made and we were swimming in the water.
Didn't know then, was it a son was it a daughter?
And it occured to me that the animals are swimming
Around in the water in the oceans in our bodies,
And another had been found, another ocean on the planet
Given that our blood is just like the Atlantic - and how...
Man, I love that song.
The ocean sound was really cool, but I was starting to get a little nervous when I was able to sing that song almost all the way through and we still hadn't heard a "bum-bump" sound. I thought she was about to give up when she swiped the goop stick around to one side and suddenly - there it was. The most beautiful sound I've ever heard in my life. A quick, fluttery, thumping of a sound. Beth looked at us and smiled. I looked at Sylvain and smiled. I didn't think I'd cry so quickly, but I was totally fighting back tears. I knew that if I tried to say anything...anything...I'd let loose a flood. Sylvain was quiet, I was quiet, so Beth finally broke the silence and said, in a rather sing-songy way, "Yup! There's a little person in there!" I tried to say, "That's so exciting!" But instead I said, "That's so ex...." and couldn't finish. I was totally choked up.
I giggled while I wiped tears from my eyes and Sylvain noted that this was the third major event of our lives that I laughed through - first the proposal, then the wedding, now our baby's heartbeat. I reminded him that I laugh when I'm nervous, but inside I was secretly glad that he notices little things like that.
We finished up the exam and left with our goodie bag of books and pamphlets from the birth center. I smiled for the rest of the day. What an overwhelming sense of relief it was to hear, "everything looks good!" Ahh. Everything looks good.
Thanks to all of our friends and family for the prayers and happy thoughts. This week has been much more relaxed and easy-going now that we've been to the doctor. My nausea is pretty much gone, I've accepted the fact that my clothes don't fit anymore, and I'm so excited about our journey ahead! What a wonderful time it will be!