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Fear in the Health of Your Baby

While pregnant with my second child, I blogged about a dream I had. You can review it here if it has slipped your mind. At the end of my dream blog post is information about a woman giving birth to a bird and it is interpreted as a "fear in the health of your baby." I feel like now is a good time to "come clean" about the impact that dream and it's interpretation had one me.

I had what I call the "down syndrome" ultrasound on December 7, 2012. This elective ultrasound checked for several birth defects. I did this ultrasound with my first child - I have always felt like I would want to be prepared rather than shocked at what can and might happen. Four days after this ultrasound, I received a call from my doctor. I was at work, at my desk and usually I don't take these calls, but for some reason I took this one. My husband was out of town working, which means he is pretty impossible to get a hold of until he has a break between working and having dinner with clients and customers.

My doctor told me my ultrasound was normal. The size of the baby was okay, the parts were all normal, the genitalia was normal (thankfully no gender reveal was noted!) But she then told me the ultrasound revealed a Choroid Plexus Cyst on part of my baby's brain. She then told me this is very common, but often not "caught" on ultrasounds, only 1-2% are ever be seen. She said this cyst can be a marker for genetic problems - one in particular being Trisomy 18. This means a person has an extra 18th chromosome. It is less common than downs and often associated with other abnormalities and deformities.

But none of the "markers" were there on my ultrasound - such as smaller limbs, or clenched, folded over hands, etc. My chance of having a child with Trisomy 18 went from 1 in 40,000 to 1 in 20,000 due to this cyst. As I sat at my desk frantically writing this all down, I was holding back tears and an overwhelming fear that my child was going to not survive or would be extremely challenged. I was told no repeat ultrasound was necessary because there were no other indicators or markers to show this genetic issue.

I freaked out. I was unable to get a hold of my husband which may have been a good idea, because I was unable to even talk due to the tears and fear I had. Instead I emailed him all of the information you are reading and when he did get back to me, I was able to process the information and talk to him. It was a rough week or so, and there were many times I'd google Trisomy 18 and begin reading a website and then stop, breaking down in tears and hoping that my child would be fine (hey, I already had a kid without an ear, so this fear was real).

A few routine doctor's appointments later and discussion about this situation again - assuring me everything was normal and another ultrasound was not necessary and I felt much better. The thought crossed my mind every now and again, and thankfully when our son was born, he was healthy and perfect in every way.