Friday, April 3, 2009

37 Week Prenatal Doctor's Appointment

Mike and I attend my 11th prenatal OB appointment today, and all is well. Mike is peppy and energetic, so as to dissuade any negative thoughts the doctor may have had with Mike's little catnap at the last visit. And I'm sure the doctor was excited to be working his final day before his vacation to Key West!

Today, he does an ultrasound to take measurements of the baby. We haven't seen the baby on the screen in 17 weeks, and naturally, he is quite a bit bigger now! We can only recognize little bits of him at a time, but see his head, his spine, some fingers, his femur, his back, his neck, and his testicles ("You do know what sex the baby is, right?" The doctor asks before pointing this out. Phew! He's still a boy! Good news, since I have washed all the boy baby clothes and put them away already!)

It's neat to learn exactly how the baby is positioned in my belly, although our previous guess seems to be correct. His head is still very low, and when the doctor does a cervical exam, he even says, "I'm surprised you're not more uncomfortable given how low the head is in your pelvis." And of course, I do feel the baby down there, occasionally pressure at different points and lots of squirming, but I'm fairly used to it at this point, so I don't think of it. He emphasizes how it is great the baby's head is this low already in preparation for delivery.

The baby's back is on the left side, as it has been for at least a month or so (the nurse at our birthing class told me that is where his back was when she felt my belly as a demonstration for something), and this is where I feel the hiccups the strongest--on the left lower side of my belly. The butt and testicles are very high between my ribs (good to know!), and his knees/feet are on my right side, which is where I feel the most movement, and probably why the baby squirms like crazy when I lie on my right side.

He assures me that he expects I have a couple more weeks to go. Later, I tell Mike, "I assume we have a couple more weeks to go! I'm still 3 weeks from my due date! Actually, I'm surprised he didn't say 'a few weeks' instead of 'a couple weeks!'" Then I realize, I am only 2 1/2 weeks from my due 'a couple weeks' is becoming more accurate...

After taking the measurements of the baby, he says the calculations bring my baby's weight to 7 pounds 4 oz, with a margin of error of 1 pound. I am surprised since last week, the doctor guessed the baby would be between 6 and 7 pounds at delivery, based on my size, and now the computer is estimating he is 7 pounds 4 oz at present! The doctor says, "Yes, you're hiding him in there quite well." But he points out the baby is in the 55th percentile, so he is still just about average.

We go over my simple birthing preferences, ask a few more questions, and we are off. I won't see him next week, as he's on vacation, but will the following Monday. It is hard to believe that when I see him next, I will be just 1 day shy of 39 weeks!


Monsoon Mama said...

wow, so exciting! it's great that the baby is in such a good position for labor. wonderful! also, just fyi-- my OB estimated that anand was about 8 lbs at 38 weeks, and he was born 2 days early at 7 lbs 4 oz, so sometimes the docs aren't totally accurate, so that may explain the discrepancy between this visit and the last one. you are REALLY coming down the home stretch... YAY!

Tara M said...

That's true, Div--I guess we won't know until the time comes--but good to hear Anand was smaller than anticipated! I was thinking--man if he gains another pound, it's going to be almost 8 1/2 pounds! Which, granted, is not that big (I was 9 pounds 12 oz--but the 3rd baby), but still. I guess I can also look at it in the way of saying, "Well, then it's an extra pound I won't have to worry about losing afterward!"

Yeah, the home stretch!!!!! Yikes!! Yay!!! And all those unintelligible words!!

Mike said...

Tara: No pun intended, I hope, when you said "home stretch" in that last column. (wa-wa-waaaaa..!)

A margin of error of 1 pound is pretty'll be fun to see where he ends up. Anyone up for putting money down on a due date?

grandma berta said...

Remember Marnie was induced early too, thinking Kaia was getting very big, but she was only 7-11, which is big enough but you were my biggest at 8-12.. a full pound more than Kyle. 1 lb. variation is a lot!

Tara M said...

Mom--I've been thinking I was 9 pounds 12 oz this whole time! I was only 8 pounds 12 oz? Still relatively big, but not NEARLY as big as I had thought! I guess I can stop bragging about how big I was at birth... ;)