The first time I saw you

When I found out I was pregnant, my doctor told me that he wasn’t exactly sure how far along I was. First of all, I had had what looked like a light period, so that date wasn’t all that helpful. And second of all, an exam was not telling him very much because of the way the uterus was positioned.

Back in 1987-88, sonograms/ultrasounds were not all that common. They usually only did them if the mother was at risk or needed more invasive testing. But my doctor said a sonogram was the only way to know for sure how far along I was.

At 20 weeks, I went in for the ultrasound and was very, very excited about it. I had already heard your heartbeat in the doctor’s office, but now, I was going to be able to see you! How amazing is that? I couldn’t believe I was actually going to see you, my child, before you were even born.

The technician ran the little scanner over my belly, and oh my gosh, there you were: a grainy, black-and-white image on a small computer screen. But I could see you.

I could SEE you.

I asked her if she could tell if you were a boy or a girl, and she said she couldn’t quite see but thought maybe, just maybe, a girl. The bigger news was that I wasn’t 20 weeks along. I was actually 24 weeks along. A whole month shaved off my wait time to see you in person!

I still have the picture of you: it’s your face, with your tiny hands up on either side.

When I got home, I went for a swim and thought about that little face I saw. I wondered how you liked the sensation of floating in water inside and outside of your mommy. As I swam my laps, I pictured your eyes, your nose, your mouth. I imagined you smiling at me as we played in the water, laughing and splashing together. I wondered if you’d have blue eyes, like mine.

You and I took a trip to Hawaii at Christmas in 2013. We went snorkeling and swimming in the ocean, and I saw your beautiful smiling, laughing face as you looked at all the fish. Blue eyes that match mine. Just as I imagined them the first time I saw you.

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