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The story of our precious little girl's 17 months of life with Trisomy 18 (July 4, 2010 - December 15, 2011) and of us, re-learning to live "after Lilly."
"I will praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made ...." Psalm 139:14

Monday, February 21, 2011

Flashback: The first ultrasound

For awhile now, I've been wanting to do a series on my pregnancy with Lilly. I often get questions from people asking if I knew Lilly has Trisomy 18 while I was pregnant with her. (Doctors and nurses have asked me this during Lilly's hospitalizations too.) So I thought I'd answer that question. Maybe it will help someone who is pregnant and in the same position, to know the progression of what happened.

I was 17 weeks pregnant when I went for my first ultrasound with Lilly. (January 11, 2010) I was excited because I wanted to see my baby and find out if it was a boy or girl. (I'm a planner so I love that technology can tell us pretty accurately the baby's sex.) Well we didn't find out the baby's sex because the tech said the baby was just too small.

My husband and I enjoyed watching the baby during the ultrasound - it was a very active baby. Even the doctor commented on that when he came in and watched. Ultrasound is an amazing thing!

After the tech was finished, the doctor came in. (I have since decided that's never a good sign for the doctor to come in. With my other two children the tech took the stuff to the doctor, got his OK, and that was it.) There were 4 things this doctor was concerned about:

1) The baby had a spot (cyst) on its brain,
2) the umbilical cord had only 2 arteries instead of 3,
3) he couldn't see the baby's stomach, which might mean blockage in the esophagus, and
4) the baby never unclenched its hands, other than 1 finger (a possible sign of something deadly we'd never heard of - Trisomy 18)

Add those things to my "old" age of 39 and that might mean something was wrong with the baby.

The doctor stressed that he thought everything would be Ok and cleared up at another ultrasound, which I would have in 2 months.

He was also obliged to tell me that under law I still had time for an abortion if I wanted. I found it baffling to think that no matter what you believed about abortion - how could you do it after spending an hour watching your baby turning sommersaults in your womb?

My husband and I left the ultrasound rather emotionally exhausted. It hadn't been what we thought it would be. Have fun watching the baby, get some pictures, find out the sex, and then go home without a worry. Still, we didn't worry too much. We both had heard too many stories of doctors getting things wrong. Yet we did decide to start asking for prayers. Just in case.


  1. So, Lilly, you had diffrent plans!

  2. LIsa,

    I can't even imagine how that must have felt. When Brandi went in for her ultra sound, she did so because she thought she might have lost the baby. She hadn't felt as much movement as she had been feeling. She was right about 17 or 18 weeks along. The u.s. confirmed that the baby was very much alive, just in a different location where she was unable to feel as much movement. She called me that night to tell me she really thought something might be wrong because the tech took so much time around the heart, and the head looked smaller than her other boys' who all have really large heads. We're praying for God's will. They believe this baby is a blessing no matter what, but she has cried many tears this week and is coveting prayer for this sweet little baby. Thank you for sharing this!