After eighteen weeks of stress and freaking out, we finally made it to the doctor's office today. Can I just say one thing? We have the greatest clinic ever. Why, you ask? Valet Parking. No crap. They have valet parking at the Women and Children's Pavilion of our local hospital, the one that I happen to be going to for all of the prenatal and actual-birthy parts of The Bean's life.
Just let it sink in. Valet Parking. For free.
That was only, like, the third-best part of the day. The second-best part? The nurse that we dealt with was was the sweetest woman on the face of the planet. We only saw her, because it was just a preliminary appointment, but I was completely OK with it. She was knowledgeable, efficient, and the kindest, most generous and funny person I've talked to in a long time. In fact, it was the day of incredibly nice people. Even the people at the grocery store seemed sweeter than usual. Maybe I've just started looking more pregnant, and people like pregnant women more? I'm sure as hell not going to complain. The nurse also managed to get us in for an ultrasound next Tuesday. I had assumed we would have to wait a while longer, but she called them up and sweet-talked them into finding an open spot for a comprehensive scan.
The absolute best part of the day was that the nurse bogarted the Doppler on the sly and let us listen to The Bean's heartbeat. The Boy was a little freaked out at first because it took her a few minutes to find it--apparently my own heartbeat is incredibly loud-- and The Bean kept moving around. But she finally put the monitor in just the right place, and we heard this incredible, insistent thumping. This kid is strong.
It's such a surreal experience... you intellectually know that there's a baby in there: you've peed on the stick a million times, you've peed in the cup (which, by the way, is not really as easy as it sounds after a while... enough said about that. Thank God for paper towels), you've done the blood tests, the doctors' tests have come back positive-- but it doesn't really seem real until you hear the little thump-thump-thump-thump. A startling affirmation that, all of the sudden, you've accomplished something, you're responsible for something-- there's an entire other life hiding out inside of you. Something in you, and of you, but not you.
I've never felt more accomplished and terrified and thrilled in my entire life. I wonder how I'll feel when I actually see The Bean in person next week.