Friday, November 5, 2010

8 out of 8 ain't bad

Week 32 is almost over...  Had my appointment at Maine Med today.  Feels like I go all the time.  Today was an awesome appt.  Well, all except for the fact that we didn't get good pictures of Rachel.  I have come to realize that there is definitely a technique to getting a good shot.  The sonographer we had today had an extremely hard time getting a clear picture at all.  I wasn't going to post one because I couldn't pick one I really liked, so I asked Des (she always helps me when I'm indecisive like this)  She looked and said "there aren't any good ones" and then picked the same one I had picked, so that's what we're going with. :o)  She is just like me.  That can be a scary thing! 

So...  Thank you to everyone who has been praying for my fluid, and specifically that Rachel would swallow like she should.  Today she had a full belly!!  This means she is swallowing!  I measured a week smaller than I did two weeks ago, which actually means I've made a lot more than 1 week progress... (I measured 36 at my 30 week and only 35 at my 32 week.)  That means I'm only measuring 3 weeks big instead of 6!  Oh, and that is with her gaining over a pound in the past 2 weeks.  She measured 3lbs. 9oz. today!   I can't tell you how good this was to hear.  We have gone to so many appointments that are filled with information that stinks and we have to accept.  It was good for my heart to hear something positive.  I got all emotional hearing good news...  She's swallowing.  Ahhh, music to my ears.  Something I've always taken for granted.

How many times do we usually think  "wow, today my baby's belly is full because she's swallowing" while we're pregnant?  It has never occurred to me in any of my previous pregnancies what a gift swallowing was.  I don't think I ever even considered it.  I looked at the ultrasound report today...

kidneys: normal
bladder: normal
movement: normal
stomach: normal. 
lungs: normal
heart: normal
cord: normal
placenta: normal...

"8 out of 8" they called it.

I have never appreciated these things like I should have.  I've always worried about stupid stuff.  Stuff that doesn't really make a difference... boy or girl, room decorations, how far apart the kids will be and if the due date is a "good" one, money, clothes, blah, blah, blah... 

Because then the report says...

Head: cranial vault abnormal
Brain: anencephaly

Who cares if it's a boy or girl, has a cute room, no room at all, or shares it with 5 siblings...who cares if the kids are too close or too far apart or if your due exactly when you never wanted to be... who cares how much diapers cost or what kind of clothes you buy your baby if she doesn't have "8 out of 8"??  I never even knew there was such a thing and today... it's all that matters.  Not just because she won't be here long enough to have her own room or be a little sister to Des and not another brother... because when you realize how fragile life is, you realize what's important.  Rachel has taught me to appreciate the 8 out of 8 - hoping that next time, we'll get 10 out of 10, but knowing we have NO control over that.  I am positive that I will never enter another ultrasound will a sense of entitlement, as if I will automatically get a healthy baby because I think this kind of stuff happens to other people.  And believe me, I never thought I did that.  I always thought I appreciated my healthy babies, that I understood the gift I was being given.  I see things more clearly now.  I appreciated them for sure, but not with a full understanding of how complex and detailed God created them and how powerless I am over it all.  When I had Desirae, I remember thinking how she was strong and healthy because I did everything "right" while I was pregnant with her.  No, she had 10 out of 10 because God gave her 10 out of 10.  It feels good to say we had something to do with it, but we don't.  If that was the case, I would have to feel really bad about Rachel's condition because if we take the credit for the good, we need to take it for the bad too.  Desirae doesn't have an incredibly advanced brain because of me any more than Rachel is missing hers because of me... It's all up to God.

Every time we get to peak at our precious baby, we are humbled by the wonder of God in her.  She dances around my womb with "8 out of 8", her heart is beating, she is swallowing, her belly is full...  At our first ultrasound 3 months ago, I couldn't stop focusing on what she was missing.  Now I don't see that at all.  I see all the things she does have... each one a miracle in and of itself - and we know for Rachel "8 out of 8" is perfect because God doesn't make mistakes.

I know that to be true, but I'm still trying to explain it to my heart.


  1. I feel that I have come to know you through your blogs. I cry. I love. I believe in God. I rejoice in your strength. You are the most beautiful soul I have ever -- I can't say known, but I can say the most beautiful soul that my heart has ever felt. You are an incredible angel here on earth, and baby Rachel will always be one as well. She will soar above the clouds, watching over you, healing your heart from all the pain. Her heart will be whole, she will be with Jesus, in his arms, in his loving arms.
    God bless you,

  2. Both you and Rachel look absolutely beautiful in these pictures! I love how content & happy she looks & I love your baby belly!

  3. Rachel looks like she is smiling she everything to smile about . A Beautiful mom who loves her and Dad who loves her and brothers and sisters who adore her .

  4. Rachel looks soo peaceful and very content in this u/s photo. Her position almost looks like she is praying, (perhaps she is.) She has angels watching over her all of the time. With people all over praying for her.
    You are an awesome mother, with strength and wisdom that exceeds most other people! Praying for the Lord's Peace for you all the time.


  5. Look at her lips!!!! so cute!!!

    love and prayers

  6. Woohoo! I am so happy she is swallowing! Praise God for that full belly and all of the wonderful things we so often take for granted. We will continue to pray for you guys and that Rachel will keep on swallowing!

  7. I've been keeping up with your blog...hugs to you and Rachel. Just wanted to add my comment that on the ultrasound she looks like she is blowing you a kiss! What a precious, precious gift from God--He never makes mistakes!
    Much love and prayers to you.


We so appreciate your words of encouragement!
Thank you! ♥ The Aubes