I could sense the talk was coming. It came with a vengeance the last time, and I was 37. Now, I am 39 and approaching the second trimester of my second pregnancy. I knew the “advanced maternal age” talk was on the horizon. It finally went down yesterday, when I got my first ultrasound.
Since we weren’t exactly planning on having this baby, I had no idea how far along I was. I know that sounds pretty stupid, but I really didn’t think that conceiving a baby was something I could do with no effort. It took years of trying and every trick in the book to conceive our first. I guess there is something to the “All you have to do is stop trying!” mantra that everyone likes to shove down your throat when you are infertile.
Anyway, I needed to have an ultrasound so I could date the pregnancy. If the memory of my last period was serving me correctly – I would be about 12 weeks along. This is about the time that the first set of genetic tests can be done if you are “advanced maternal age,” so we decided to kill two birds with one stone. Needless to say, I was nervous.
I have really been trying not to live in fear through the first trimester of this pregnancy. I think I have been doing a pretty good job. But there was definitely some sweaty palms and hand-wringing before I went into that ultrasound room. When you have suffered a pregnancy loss, there is always a flicker in the back of your mind that it could happen again.
I entered the ultrasound room, and waited patiently for the tech. When she finally arrived, I smiled and said “Hi.” She responded with, “How old are you?”
“Thirty-nine,” I said.
“Forty?” She replied.
“No, thirty-nine.” I insisted.
“Almost forty,” she decided.
“Fine. Almost forty,” I conceded.