After many weeks of suspense, today Joe and I went in for the big second trimester ultrasound appointment, and our major hope — aside from a healthy and properly-growing baby, of course — was that we would be able to learn the baby’s gender. (I wrote a bit about that and our decision to find out the baby’s gender here.)
And everything went as perfectly as we could have dreamed — not only do both baby and I appear to be perfectly healthy, but we managed to catch the baby in a “spread-eagle” position that allowed the ultrasound technician to confidently tell us whether we’ll soon be parents to a daughter or a son. It was such an exciting moment — but since it came at the very end of the ultrasound session, I thought I would first show some of the other images, in the order that we got to see them.
First, baby’s profile, in what our ultrasound technician called a beautiful textbook shot:
I should mention that our ultrasound technician was an absolute pleasure to work with — very personable and friendly, and she made lots of jolly comments about how cute our baby is. (Although I’m sure she says that about everybody’s.)
One of the first things she asked was whether we wanted to find out the gender. We enthusiastically said yes, but she had to go through the routine prenatal checkup and examine a million other things first. For instance, here’s our baby’s good steady heartbeat:
She took a bunch of measurements, and made notes by typing things directly onto the screen before saving a still frame or printing it out. It seemed like she made notes to label nearly every feature as she checked them one by one. Here’s baby’s little right foot, conveniently labeled for clarity:
It’s also neat how the ultrasound can see right through everything — check out these little baby arm bones:
Every time she pointed something out — a bone, or an organ, or an eye lens of all things — I would ask if it looked healthy and normal, in neurotic first-time-parent fashion. Her response was usually to chuckle and say, “Well, it’s there!” before explaining what (if anything) it might look like if there was a problem.
While examining the head, one particularly cute frame captured the baby with mouth open wide — possibly yawning? I’m not sure how clear it is in the following image:
All of this went on for quite a while — I actually had to get up to use the bathroom at one point during the ultrasound session — and for most of it, it didn’t seem certain that we’d be able to determine the gender at all. But then, finally, the baby shifted position enough to allow a clear view:
That was actually how we found out — rather than saying anything aloud, the ultrasound technician just started typing some notes, and the words “ITS A GIRL” appeared slowly across the screen.
So that’s the story of our exciting ultrasound and baby-gender-revelation experience. And now that we know that we have a daughter on the way, hopefully we’ll have an easier time deciding on a name for her — not to mention stocking up on baby clothes and nursery decorations and all those other fun happy things. Stay tuned!