The week before Thanksgiving (week 17) was a big one. We had our anatomy scan scheduled and would finally learn whether Fire Monkey would be a boy or a girl! When asked previously whether we wanted to find out, I said I couldn’t stand the suspense and Science Guy, ever the practical one, said there was really no point in not finding out. So that was that.
I’d had my first ultrasound to confirm and date the pregnancy right before hitting week 8. So the last time I looked, Fire Monkey essentially looked like a gummy bear. Which I thought was pretty darn cute already!
I guess I still had the gummy bear image in my head, even though I’d seen pictures of different stages of fetal development. When we went in for the scan at 17.5 weeks, I wasn’t prepared for how real the baby already looked! Maybe it’s because I taught anatomy last year but when the image appeared on the screen, the first thing I noticed was all 12 thoracic vertebrae flexing as the baby moved. (I didn’t count but I tried.) We saw ten fingers and ten toes, which is always a good sign, and again, I was surprised by how “done” they already looked. It was truly amazing.
A friend had suggested that I drink a glass of cold juice before my scan, which I did. Baby Fire Monkey was very active, turning somersaults, waving and apparently kickboxing. At one point in the scan, I put my right arm behind my head to support myself in the right position, and Baby appeared to copy my pose, which was pretty funny.
The nice ultrasound lady showed us some of the internal organs, which I didn’t expect to be able to see. It was especially cool to look upwards through the skull at the brain–we could even see the cerebellum and ventricles! (Once a science teacher, always a science teacher.)
As the scan moved from head to toe, Baby followed my instructions to be an exhibitionist and we were able to see, quite clearly, that we are having a boy! (No picture, sorry. I have decided that, as a general rule, I’m not going to post our child’s junk on the Internet.)
We got this great shot toward the end. Science Guy immediately exclaimed, “Spiderman!” So Peter is now in the running for a name. I think he’s either going to be a surfer, a rock star, or fluent in sign language. (Actually, he’s probably just waving his hand and the middle fingers are out of plane. But it’s fun to imagine him rocking out in utero.)
We asked the ultrasound tech if we could see the 4D scan, and she warned us that our little guy hasn’t put on much baby fat yet so he still looks kind of skeletal. She wasn’t kidding.
I’m a horrible mother because I burst out laughing. He looked like a scary teddy bear! Still cute in a gremlin sort of way. I promise I won’t laugh at him when he’s born.
Science Guy and I had both hoped for a girl but I don’t think we were terribly disappointed after seeing our son. I actually had a small flicker of intuition two weeks before our appointment, when I was holding my friend’s sweet 6-month-old son at church. As he fell asleep in my arms, I remember thinking to myself, “Hmmmm, boys are pretty cute too.” So I think I kind of knew then.
Now taking suggestions for names!