Sunday, June 24, 2012

What You Might Expect When You're Expecting

 This is going to very pregnancy-heavy, so feel free to skip it if you wish. I have some crochet pictures to share tomorrow or Tuesday, so call back then if you're child-free, child-uninterested or just plain sick of tales of bumpiness.

You probably don't know this, but there are inter-cultural differences between German and Irish airport luggage trolleys (or baggage carts - see, even the terminology differs from place to place!) German luggage trolleys are in a permanent state of braking: in order to move the trolley, you have to press a lever and the trolley allows itself to roll. If, say, distracted by something shiny in an airport shop, you happen to release the lever, you'll find yourself wrapped around your suitcases, your trolley glued to the floor by the incontrovertible staying power of a set of German brakes. Irish trolleys, on the other hand, can be braked by pressing down on the lever; the rest of the time, they are free to roll about as they please - if the building tipped sideways or someone gave them a careless push.

The luggage trolleys are rather indicative of how the German medical system works, I think. This week I had the pleasure of conducting a new little science experiment on myself: I got a blood sugar reader, a pricker and a little box of test strips and was sent off to check my blood sugar levels. See, Grandmother Gingerbread probably had gestational diabetes (we say "probably" because back in rural Ireland in the 1950s, prenatal care included such gems as "Drink a glass of Guinness every day to keep up your iron levels!" and "Smoking helps the baby's lungs to develop!") and later in life developed Type 2 diabetes. So I asked to have a diabetes test done as early as possible ... and one of the readings was a little high. No cause for worry, all of the doctors reassured me, and continued to reassure me of the same when all of my self-conducted blood tests came back quite normal. BUT ...

... but I now have "suspected gestational diabetes", which means that I don't actually have diabetes, but it is maybe - possibly - slumbering inside me, waiting to be unleashed by a slice of chocolate cake or a good nosh-up at MacDonald's. I am a German luggage trolley with a permanent brake on: we will prevent disaster by expecting the worst. Adieu, Black Forest Gateau - come October, I'll wrap my lips around your chocolatey goodness with impunity.

This week also had a more pleasant pregnancy experience: we got to see a 3D scan of the Gingerbread Baby to check that all of his organs were as they should be and where they should be. Our doctor even gave us a photo of his little face, hand bunched up under his chin.
Now, let me be honest with you: these photos are generally quite creepy. The baby is inside you - yes, dwell on that for a minute: in your interior - and something akin to a hightech supermarket scanner takes a photo of its face. Very often, the babies look like little aliens or something from a horror film.
Except my child. My child is a stunner.
"He looks gorgeous," I pronounced, with all the certainty of a hormonal spike. "That baby looks just beautiful."
There was a diplomatic silence from my husband at my side. The doctor made non-committal murmury noises: she was more concerned with making sure it had kidneys and a liver.
"Seriously," I said, in the direction of the not-adoring-enough father-to-be, "Isn't he lovely?"
"He looks like ..."
"Don't say it!" I hissed, "That. Is. Your. Child!"
I can't say for sure because I was too busy fixing my husband with a gimlet stare, but there might have been some eye-contact between doctor and father, and wisely, he shut up.

But let me tell you, readers, my baby looks amazing - far more handsome than any other baby I've ever seen. Never before has there been a more beautiful child.
And that is my unbiased, impartial and totally objective opinion.


Ann said...

And that is exactly what your opinion should be of your child.

Carola Bartz said...

And of course you're absolutely right!!! Seriously, I'd worry if you had said anything else. OF COURSE the own baby is the most beautiful, stunning, amazing child on earth. Mine was as well. I'm totally unbiased...

CraftLee said...

Ah Ginger ! You are so witty (even whilst pregnant !) can't wait till the REAL pregnancy hormones start kicking in & you'll forget where you parked the car, what you came into the living room for & how many stitches were on that last row ! Always enjoy your posts & will miss you now I'm off on holidays !
Hugs ( from Cork ! )

Siubhan x

Annie Cholewa said...

Ah, the dreaded suspected gestational diabetes. I had it with number 4. Best to eschew the sweet stuff. I fear I was a little lax and grew a whopping baby for my trouble. Good luck x

Liz said...

I had the lovliest baby in the world too. (In fact had one on two seperate occasions - pretty nifty really). Number one was born red, wrinkled, had peeling skin, loads of black hair, a hairy back and a big bruise-like patch on her butt! Just gorgeous.
She is now 17 and a prom going soon to be six former....still gorgeous.
Number two was red and writhing and angry for about four months solid. Lovely.
Here's to beautiful babies!

Donna Lee said...

Ultrasounds have advanced so far since the 80's when I was last pregnant. At least now you can see clearly the lovely angelic face of your utterly gorgeous baby. I never had need of a scan (and they only did them if there was a clear need), but the ones I saw were grey and white blobs where the head was indistinguishable from the butt.

Chain Stitch Crochet said...

If you said otherwise we would be worried about you! I think the 3d pictures of babies are awesome! I wish they had these when I was younger and had my child 37 years ago.

Sue said...

Of course, of course your baby is stunning...........pah what do dads know. Good luck with your chocolate avoidance!

Petunia Pill said...

How adorable is this post? You're so cute! ignore him! What does he know? I'm actually quite amazed by the technology these days and those photos that they are producing are quite incredible! It's almost as though you're looking them in the eye! Our neighbor just gave birth to a beautiful baby and he was gorgeous in his picture within too! Can't wait to see photos of your stunner once he crosses the threshold! =) I'm sorry you're having to cease and desist with the chocolate goodness...but that will be worth it in the long run. Chin up...this too shall pass.