I feel like a fraud. Y’know:
a person or thing intended to deceive others, typically by unjustifiably claiming or being credited with accomplishments or qualities.
In other words…impostor, fake, sham, charlatan, quack, mountebank (never even heard of mountebank before, thanks Google!) A fraud of a blogger. A fraud of a friend. A fraud of a coworker. A fraud of a pregnant woman.
In my last post I mentioned that I had many posts in draft (up to 18 now!) that I just didn’t feel like publishing. I think that’s a metaphor for how my life has been since April. I have been safe in my cocoon at home, basking in being a hermit, and I haven’t wanted to change that. I’ve been afraid to change that.
The fact is, I am (almost) 15 weeks pregnant. I will be 15 weeks on Monday. This is the farthest I have made it since my first pregnancy in 2014. We were able to rule out anencephaly at 10 weeks. At 12 weeks the nuchal scan came back low risk, and last week we got our NIPT results back – normal/low risk on all of the chromosomal abnormalities for which they tested. The heartbeat has been strong. All of our ultrasounds have looked normal. We have been getting good news at every visit and we’ve had plenty – three MFM visits/ultrasounds with Dr. T and two OB visits thus far.
Every time something gets checked off the list – No anencephaly! No chromosomal abnormalities! – I move on to a new worry. I briefly considered purchasing a home doppler, but the nurse at Dr. F’s office talked me out of it and I think that’s a good thing. But I miss the days of being hopelessly blissful and ignorant. Knowledge is power, and I’ve certainly been advocating for myself and asking my questions but I wish I didn’t know so much about what could go wrong, and I knew more about what could go right. The number of different worries that flit in and out of my mind each day are things that were never on my radar in 2013 or early 2014. And I don’t want to see people, because I don’t want to tell people, and at this point I’m starting to either look like I’ve put on some pre-summer pounds or I’m pregnant. My belly is definitely thicker, and I’m probably one of those women that you look at and think – is she gaining weight or is she pregnant? (Rightly or wrongly we’ve all had those thoughts run through our head when we see a woman who’s looking bigger, yes?) And it’s starting to look less like I ate a big dinner and more like a bump. Every time I think I am ready to tell people – first I though we would tell after we ruled out anencephaly, then I told myself after the nuchal scan, then I told myself after we got the MaterniT21 results – I always think of a new reason to delay.
So, I am pregnant. We are having a boy. Come November I should be giving birth to a son. I feel like a fraud because every other time I’ve been pregnant something terrible has happened and then I am no longer pregnant and without a living child to show for it. I know I shouldn’t be embarrassed or ashamed, but every time something goes wrong I feel like all I do is get people’s hopes up (namely, our parents) and then they just get dashed with bad news. I am hoping this time is different. I have resigned myself to the fact that I will never be one of those pregnant women who sing it from the rooftops and tell people as soon as they get a positive test. I honestly feel like I could just tell nobody and let them find out when they will. Organically. No big announcement. If you see me and I have a bump, then you know I’m pregnant. If you see me next year and I’m wearing my baby boy in a sling, then you know I had a baby.
I don’t know how often I will blog for the time being. Even writing this, publishing this, makes me feel superstitious and like I might be jinxing things. Everything has been going well – why change the status quo? But if all progresses well and baby is healthy it will become obvious to those around me anyway, so I can’t hide forever. It’s not that I’m not excited. Believe me, I am excited that things have been going well and (so far) everything looks healthy. I am excited to have a son. I am excited that this is another chance for our dream to come true. But the fear is real.
Now, I am going to shower (I actually got sweaty on my morning walk – summer is approaching!) and then watch some of the Six Feet Under marathon HBO has gifted us this weekend. I forgot how much I enjoyed it the first time around – with the notable exception of “That’s My Dog”… no single episode of a television show has ever made me so uncomfortable… not only was David hijacked, but I felt hijacked while I was watching it and I plan to never watch that episode again. Very f’ing disturbing. I will be skipping that episode for sure.