Mommy Guilt: I Has It

I know there are older moms in this world who go out there and get pregnant and have picture-perfect pregnancies that would make a twenty-something feel like an old-timer.  I am NOT one of these women.

Around 12 weeks gestation I began to have blood pressure issues and was put on medication to control it.  Then at 25 weeks I failed the 1-hour glucose test so badly that my doctor just skipped right over the 3 hour glucose tolerance test and diagnosed me with gestational diabetes.  That was not controlled with diet alone so I’m taking medication for that, as well.

Despite these things, my pregnancy has been fairly easy.  I’ve had no cramping, no spotting and, as of today, no contractions.  Baby is very active and seems happy to stay put for the duration.

Because of the gestational diabetes I am seen every two weeks by Maternal Fetal Medicine so they can monitor the size of the baby.  This week I began to have biweekly biophysical profiles (BPPs) to monitor the baby for signs of stress. (Where you are these might also be called non-stress tests or NSTs.)

BLOOD PRESSURE CHECK

BLOOD PRESSURE CHECK (Photo credit: Morning Calm News)

Yesterday was our first BPP.  It is an ultrasound where the technician checks to see that the baby has a proper heartrate and movement of arms, legs and spine, as well as “practice breathing” – movement of the diaphragm mimicking breathing.

Baby girl does indeed practice breathing because she gets the hiccups Every. Single. Day.  Sometimes twice a day.  Yesterday she got them first thing in the morning.  But at the ultrasound office?  She didn’t want to practice breathing, she wanted to sleep.

The technician said she had 30 minutes to show us diaphragm movement, but we’d breezed through all of the other parts of the test, so she pulled out a small buzzer, placed it against my belly and shot a short burst to “wake the baby up.”

Watching this little person curl up in protest… it made my heart clench up.  This is not some small animal we were trying to rouse, this is my daughter!  I fought back tears, calming only when the tech said “there we go!” and focused on her diaphragm as it began to move.

I spent the rest of yesterday replaying those events in my mind.   Was there something I could have done to spare baby girl some discomfort?  Should I have poked her a bit instead?  Will she remember this moment, will it traumatize her?

Is this what mommy guilt feels like?

 

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