On Wednesday, we went to the doctor and she pulled the handheld doppler monitor from her pocket. I held my breath for the few seconds of pressing on my abdomen it took of her to find it. Ba-bump, ba-bump, ba-bump. “160 beats a minute” she pronounced, smiling.
I let out my breath, the one I’ve been holding for 8 weeks now. Since that first faint line on the home pregnancy test, through the onset of morning sickness, though the first prenatal appointment up to the end of the first trimester, I’ve been waiting. I cried from relief when we saw the first ultrasound and the doctor said those words I’d been praying to hear, “everything looks normal”. And even though I knew it was unlikely, I still prayed and bated my breath for bad news at the next appointment.
It’s hard after miscarriage, when you’ve had fewer successful pregnancies than not, to enter into the joy of a new pregnancy. You thank your lucky stars as you eat saltine crackers for every meal, because the only time you’ve been nauseous was during your one successful pregnancy. You obsessively google the statistics, so that you know exactly when the risk of something going wrong goes down the next percentage point. And you remind yourself every day to hold back your complaining about aches, sleeplessness, or exhaustion, because so many are still waiting to experience a pregnancy that feels like this.
I still feel trepidatious as I make this announcement: at the end of January 2017, the Broady Bunch will be plus one. We are pregnant, expecting, hoping and praying. If you’re the praying type, offer yours up for us too, that the only surprises with this pregnancy will be happy ones. And while you’re at it, say a prayer for those who are still waiting for their good news.