Jun. 14th, 2011

lemon_says: (lemonbaby)
I had to have a follow-up sonogram this morning because of a moderate previa that was evident on the last one. The good news is that the placenta has moved.

But of course that's not all, is it? It never is.

The technician told me that the baby is "measuring small." Okay, Anya measured small the whole time, and without the benefit of more than one sonogram, and was only 6.3 and 18.5 inches at birth. So I wasn't that freaked out.

But she wouldn't just shut the hell up about it. Everything was, "Well, the GOOD part is that you don't have to have a c-section from the previa...but she's small. Oops! That measurement is smaller! Let's delete that one." She went out and asked the doctor, who told her to just do one more measurement and then schedule another u/s in a month to check. It looked like the final percentile--and we all know how much I love percentiles, with my two skinny kids--is about 16th. A month ago the tech measured her at about the 30th. She actually asked me if I was "losing weight or trying not to gain weight." (Many of you might remember I had this same weight accusation thing going on with my first two, for which I gained 25 and 30 pounds respectively, perfectly within the range of normal, and anyone around me now can attest to the fact that I AM EATING.)

Do I know what all this means? I think it means that we have just enough technology to tell us nothing, just enough to make us panic over things we can't control. I think it means that you never get a chance to just relax, because there's always another shoe dropping somewhere. I think it means that even when you do everything you're supposed to do, there is something that tells you that it is inadequate on your part, that science can tell that you aren't doing it right, but can't tell you how or why.

We have all of these charts and graphs and diagrams that show you exactly where every baby and child ought to be from the second his heart starts beating until he grows up, down to the ounces and millimeters, and if you don't match those, if you don't have a magical 50% and above baby, then you're treated to weeks of panic, worry, and helplessness, because there's not a damn thing you can do about any of it.

I spent all of last week sick over something that was going on that I couldn't control, and just as things are improving on that front, this comes up. I suppose I shouldn't let it bother me that much; I know that sonogram measurements are entirely dependent on the tech, the position of the baby, whatever, and are notoriously inaccurate. I know that someone has to be on the lower half of the percentile chart or there are no percentiles. I know Anya didn't crack 20 pounds until she was almost 18 months old. I know Ez was in the less-than-third percentile until he was 7 months old.

But none of that matters much today, right now, when I have been given something else to worry about, some other way that I am doing something wrong. I wonder if we don't have too much technology, like we have too many interventions with birth now, all this technology that just doesn't mean shit.

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lemon_says

July 2011

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