I did so much research on trying to get pregnant that I never did any on what to do once it happened. I have no idea what the steps are or what questions to ask, which is why I begged you all to help me come up with questions for my first OB appointment. I'm excited to say that our appointment went wonderfully, and both Keegan and I feel confident with Dr. L (hopefully) delivering our baby in August.
First of all, we were taken back to the ultrasound room where I had my first over the belly ultrasound! Right away we saw Breadcrumb who was starting to look more like a baby and less like a blob. We were even able to see his/her little feet kicking away! The heart was beating at a fast 176 bpm and the ultrasound tech decided due to measurements, and the date of my last period, that our official due date is August 10 (due to conception date, I figured August 12, but whatever works,) which put me at 9 weeks, 4 days yesterday (which also means I need to move my weekly updates from Tuesdays to Sundays.)
Next, we went back into an exam room where my OB's nurse went through a bunch of questions with us such as family history of genetic diseases, if we smoke/drank/did drugs, etc. Basic questions to see if there would be any red flags for this pregnancy. We also had to decide right then and there if we wanted to do genetic testing and if I wanted the option of an epidural during delivery. I was really taken aback by having to decide on the epidural, but apparently if you check "no," they don't inform the anesthesiologist that you're in labor which means you don't have the option. If you even have an inkling of maybe, possibly, wanting an epidural, they suggest you check "yes" so that the anesthesiologist will be in the hospital. My hope is to do a natural birth if possible, but if I find I can't handle the pain, I will want an epidural. You bet your bottom dollar I checked "yes," just in case.
Our OB clinic has started to screen for cystic fibrosis which is commonly denied by insurance. Apparently only Medicare covers it, so if your insurance denies the claim it's $800. We decided to call our insurance and see if they cover the screening before going ahead with the genetic screening blood work.
Unfortunately my family history did raise a red flag for this pregnancy. My dad has Antiphospholipid Antibody Syndrome which can cause miscarriages in the second trimester of pregnancy. I haven't been tested; my RE actually gave me a request to get tested before we did our IUI, but I got pregnant on our last cycle of Clomid. My OB said that she isn't worried about miscarriage in my first trimester, especially since its almost over, but she is worried about my second. I'm on baby aspirin for the rest of the pregnancy as a precautionary measure since that's what they would do with a patient that did have APS.
I was also told to stop my Metformin at 10 weeks so that when I do the gestation diabetes test between 24 and 28 weeks, the numbers will reflect my natural levels instead of what they would be on Metformin. If I do have gestation diabetes, then I will go back on Metformin for the remainder of the pregnancy. With the chance of having APS, I also have an increased risk of preeclampsia, so I have to watch out for signs.
I had a pap and breast exam done since I was past my yearly date. Note to all pregnant ladies who have a pap done during pregnancy: you will spot afterwards. Even though my OB warned me that I would spot, seeing blood in the toilet while pregnant is still a heart stopping event. Take a deep breath and reassure yourself that your body is doing what it's supposed to.
The last part of my appointment was talking with my OB about delivery. In my last post, I mentioned that my hope is to have a natural birth and I was afraid that hospital regulations would make that difficult. I am beyond excited to say that my OB was able to calm my fears. I asked her if a natural birth is possible in their hospital's setting and she excitedly said it was. She said that there is a whirlpool tub that I can labor in as long as my water hasn't ruptured, there's a shower, I can bring my own birthing ball and music, I can dictate how I want the lights to be and more. She's had women deliver standing, squating, hunched over the bed, however it feel comfortable to them. The only restriction is that you cannot have candles because they have tanks of oxygen in the rooms.
There is no time restraint for delivery as long as baby is doing well, and mother is progressing. The only time they would recommend a c-section is if baby is in distress or mother has been pushing for hours and it looks like baby just won't fit. Before I could even ask, Dr. L said she doesn't do episiotomies unless baby has crowned multiple times and it looks like the head won't come out without a bit of help. She mentioned that she will do oil massages to try and stretch out the area.
I asked about a doula and Dr. L said that while she hasn't worked with many of them, they are allowed and she has had good experiences in the past. She was also able to give me a few recommendations for the two doulas that she has worked with as well as pros and cons for both.
Overall it was a wonderful, surreal appointment. I sat in the waiting room where I had sat for over a year time after time, seeing all of the pregnant bellies and ultrasound pictures while I was trying to figure out why my body couldn't do what everyone else's seem to do so easily. Finally I was sitting there, pregnant, with my own ultrasound pictures tucked away in my purse as to not hurt anyone else. It was a place I never thought I would be, and I am thankful every day for the experience.