This was intentional. The dirndl picture camoflaged something I haven't felt ready to announce until now:
Yes, it is true. Sorry, Kristina, I know this will upset you.
Although I thought I was done having children - and in fact swore never to be pregnant again last time around - a passing moment of baby notalgia changed my mind for about 5 minutes and that was apparently enough.
There are numerous reasons not to have a baby but there are even more reasons to have one, such as:
- Maternity fashion has come a long way since I was pregnant with L. Back then you had a choice between a too-short baby doll top with unflattering stretch pants or a floral mu-mu dress. Today, long empire-waisted tunics are in, praise the Lord.
- I have absolute power. I can yell, 'GET ME SOME FOOD!' day or night and I will be obeyed by total strangers.
- I somehow never threw away any of our baby stuff. . . it felt too wasteful to give away stuff before it was worn to threads.
- Actually, scratch number three, because IT'S A BOY!!!
- I'd never had an amnio before and I was always curious.
I don't know how it is in the US but in Germany they give you a brochure with a graphical cartoon of a baby floating in a disembodied womb with a big needle sticking in from the outside.
I found the picture distressing but received a disapproving frown when I cheeped in dismay and inquired if it had to be so. . . graphic.
"That's what happens," I was informed sternly by the medical assistant. "What else would the picture show?"
The doctor who did the procedure (recommended because the baby's small intestine echoed funny and was 'too pale' in the ultrasound, whatever that means) patted my hand kindly and informed me that although the procedure isn't fun, at least in Germany they use 'thin' needles.
It felt a bit like being congratulated for not having my baby in a barbarian country like the US where they still use railroad spikes but I appreciated the thought.
I was warned I would feel a prick and some pressure but it was way more than pressure. It starts with a prick sure enough but right as you're thinking now would be a good time to stop the needle continues to punch through your stomach muscles.
I had sore muscles for two days but the procedure only lasted 40 second. And we had our results the next day so I really can't complain, especially since our baby has the normal number of chromosomes.
Let me mention here that my regular doctor was on summer vacation when I was refered for ultrasound because the baby's kidneys looked a bit irregular. When my doctor returned after all the excitement (ours, not his) he raised a perplexed eyebrow and inquired mildly why we did an amnio in the first place.
We told him the whole kidney ultrasound story, whereupon he informed us that swollen kidneys are pretty common in boys. Then he rolled his eyes. 'Geneticists!'
We're actually still waiting on one more test for cystic fibrosis, not because anyone thinks our baby will have it but because - according to my doctor - as long as they have all that nice genetic material they like to test it for stuff.
Or they could be cloning me to introduce more American genes into the German genepool, but somehow I don't they are.
So... I'm about 6 months pregnant and still trying to pretend my life isn't about to completely change. I even went to my kick boxing class about 3 weeks ago but decided to give it up when I saw how nervous my high kicks made everyone.
K and L are thrilled to have a baby brother. L drew me this picture showing the baby growing in my tummy: