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Daily Journal

Week 16, Dec. 4 - Dec. 10

Thursday, Dec. 4th
Baby Update: Rapid and sustained growth continues all this week. Over the next two days, the baby's head and neck will straighten as more bone is formed and the back muscles become stronger. - "The Pregnancy Journal" by A. Christine Harris, Ph. D.

Friday, Dec. 5th
Had my first dream about the baby last night. Isaac's first question was, "well, was it a boy or a girl?". It was a girl. But I won't ponder much on the validity of the dream because in the dream the baby had blonde hair. I realize it's possible... my nephew has blonde hair. But I don't think it's likely. I think a couple of things can be guessed pretty accurately about the baby. A. It will have dark hair. Maybe not black like it's daddy's, and maybe not pure brown like mommy's, but definately somewhere inbetween. B. The baby will have brown eyes. Sure Grandpa Sperry has hazel eyes, but he's the only exception to that rule on either side (at least that I know of). C. The baby will likely have same shape eyes as Isaac. "Slant-eye" (Isaac's term) seems to rule over "round-eye". D. The baby will likely have darker skin than me. Isaac's pretty light (at least a lot lighter than his brother Henry and his dad), so it's hard to say just how dark the baby will be. And that's about what I can guess the baby will look like. Just 6 more months until we find out!

An evening entry: Isaac and I had a day out today in downtown Seattle. We saw "Gothika". We liked it but nitpicked it a bit. Isaac didn't like the "movie ending" because in the real world it wouldn't have happened the way it did. There were some other thingst that were confusing but we still liked it. Then we went to Old Navy where I bought my first pair of pregnant pants. They are of the "under the belly" variety. They should do me well until I can't fit in to my jeans anymore.

Baby Update: The baby's head and neck have assumed more of a straight-line relationship. - "The Pregnancy Journal" by A. Christine Harris, Ph. D.

Saturday, Dec. 6th
Baby Update: During this month, the baby's body will begin to grow faster than its head. - "The Pregnancy Journal" by A. Christine Harris, Ph. D.

Sunday, Dec. 7th
Wore the pregnant pants for the first time today. All of my other jeans were being washed and they were really comfy. Didn't help the heartburn I got after dinner though.

Baby Update: Over the next three days, the baby's tonails will begin to grow from their nail beds. - "The Pregnancy Journal" by A. Christine Harris, Ph. D.

Monday, Dec. 8th
I've got a doctor's appointment tomorrow. It's the 16 week one. There's a chance (though a small one) that he'll do an ultrasound. I think the fact that my uterus hasn't "popped" out of it's current position yet might guarantee he doesn't do one for the sake of finding out the sex of the baby. That's usually done at 20 weeks anyway. I also have to come to a final decision about prenatal screening. I'm leaning towards not doing it (and Isaac's with me on that leaning). It's a tough decision I think. From what I've read there are a lot of false results with these tests, causing women to go through unnecessary tests, such as the amniocentises (think very large and long needle in the belly! Yikes!).

For those that don't know about this kind of stuff, the initial test is just a blood test that determines the risk of the baby being born with a genetic disorder, such as down syndrom or a neural tube defect (think spinal things)... the results come back as "1 in 1,000", "1 in 10,000", etc. If the numbers come back in normal ranges the test is said to be "negative" for risk. Otherwise, the result is "positive" for risk. If you get a positive result you have a little meeting with a genetics counselor, and then you either do a level 2 ultrasound and/or an amniocentises. A lot of people agree to the level 2 ultrasound but decide to skip the amnio because of the (slight) risk of miscarriage. One decision we have made is that if I do decide to go ahead with the blood test that the only test we'll do after that is the level 2 ultrasound.

My concern is that I'll be unneccessarily put under stress. I all ready know what stress does to my blood pressure and it's not good for myself nor the baby. Besides that, we don't feel there's much reason to suspect the baby would be at risk for any disorders since there aren't any on either side of the family that we know of. And if I get a "false positive" I'll be extremely stressed for no reason. Also, many of the tests that come back "positive" result in perfectly healthy babies.

I'm going to do more reading today. Or again I should say. I've all ready read everything in the house on the subject. And I'll hope the doctor says something tomorrow that really helps me make a firm decision.

The baby seems to be doing fine. It hid from the doppler last night and scared me. We finally found the heartbeat though. It was really low, and it was low again this morning. I'm hoping it moves into a more optimal position for the doctor tomorrow.

Here's the heartbeat for 16 weeks.

I know this is a terribly long entry, but I've just one more thing to add. I get an email every week that details the development of the baby at the end of each week (it includes an illustration of what the baby looks like). So here is a link that details the baby at 16 weeks.

Baby Update: The principles of exchange that govern the baby's blood supply make it impossible for the baby to completely deplete the mother's blood supply of nutrients, so there's always something left over for your system. - "The Pregnancy Journal" by A. Christine Harris, Ph. D.

Tuesday, Dec. 9th
Aside from the doctor's appointment there isn't much to report today. Feeling fine, the baby is fine, all is fine!!

Baby Update: The baby's head now appears upright, rather than curving down on the chest. The toenails are growing from their nail beds.
- "The Pregnancy Journal" by A. Christine Harris, Ph. D.

Wednesday, Dec. 10th
I think I'm going to begin seeing some real changes in my belly soon. This morning when I woke up I felt my stomach and it felt noticeably harder than before. And when laying on my stomach it now feels like I'm laying on something, but it's not uncomfortable yet. According to one book I have, this next week will be one of rapid growth for the baby, which should also mean rapid growth for me. I've still got 2 to 6 weeks before I'll feel the baby move. I can't wait!

Baby Update: The baby measures 4 3/4 inches long crown to rump and weighs 3 3/4 ounces, having more than doubled its dimensions in a mere two weeks. (Pretty amazing, huh?) - "The Pregnancy Journal" by A. Christine Harris, Ph. D.

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