Monday, July 20, 2009

Big Head Baby and the Ultrasound

Update: For those of you who found this page when you were searching for more information about a baby who measured large, or whose head measured large, in an ultrasound, our daughter was born vaginally, and the recovery was much easier than for our son. If you have questions, remember that we're not doctors, but you can leave them in the comments, and if we ever catch up on our sleep, we'll respond.

At Mama's last appointment, the doctor was a little concerned about the size of our (apparently not so) little girl and so had Mama schedule another ultrasound to measure the size of her head. This, of course, caused some concern for us, but according to the innernets, it's rarely the case that a baby's head is big enough for a doctor to prescribe a prophylactic caesarean section.

And if Mama is chilled out about it, that's good enough for me so I'm looking at it as another opportunity to take a look at our little girl. This time around, there will be a full observation gallery because Grammy and Cousin S are here, and by the time of our appointment, my brilliant cousin will also be here. Our little girl will almost have more eyes on her during this ultrasound then when she arrives, although if my memory serves me well, hospital regulations require enough staff to field a baseball team be in attendance at any birth.

This development highlights how different it has been for us to have a second baby. When we got this news, we didn't pull out our 16 pregnancy and birthing books, catalog URLs of relevant websites and cross-reference all these answers in a spreadsheet. In fact, I'm not even sure where our pregnancy books are. I think that might be one between Fox in Socks and the Richard Scarry Storybook Dictionary...

OK, honestly, we never did that about anything with 3B, even when he came out with one man down--or is that up? But still, we are much more relaxed about any little bump in the road like this. In fact, we may be too relaxed about some things.

For example, I believe that we need some sort of contraption in the car to keep the baby safe while driving. Apparently, an empty diaper box padded with some receiving blankets is not enough. We need to get another SnugRide. After asking the most reliable sources for advice--and by that I mean posting an update and waiting our Facebook friends to respond--we settled on the one model of SnugRide that is harder to find than hen's teeth, and so I have spent the last three weeks ordering it, being told it's on backorder, canceling that order, placing another order somewhere else...rinse, repeat.

Oh, and there's the matter of 3B's killer crib which has been recalled for the second, third or twelfth time. Since the company is bankrupt--fiscally now, not just morally--they aren't offering replacement parts to fix the problem, so we're getting our little girl a new crib. I was planning on this anyway, since finding that, even after the last recall and fix, the bolts on 3B's crib still loosen over time.

Besides, I want our little girl to have fresh paint to chew off the top rail of the crib, just as 3B had.

As we did with the car seat, the crib model we picked is out of stock everywhere, well, only if you want it in white, which we do. I guess the Obama boom is full of girls, although, honestly, we're just getting it to match 3B's existing furniture.

Yes, it's true, you're only allowed to buy white children's furniture for girls. Boys get brown, dark brown, or light brown. Blah, blah and blah. Besides, markers don't show up nearly as well on brown as they do on white, however, I can attest to the ability of brown to camouflage poop smears.

We learned about this brown/white divide when we ordered 3B his bunk beds--which are working as planned this week, with Grammy on the bottom bunk, Cousin S on the top and 3B still in his crib--and asked for the white beds.

3B was with us and the salesman looked straight at him and said, "You don't want white for him. For boys, there's brown." Actually, jackass, unless you've been in our house and seen his room, his color scheme and his existing furniture, oh, and Mama's master's degree in women's studies, you'd do best to keep your fat mouth shut about colors. And if you had seen all of that, you would have said, "Yes, white is an excellent choice."

Seriously, what decade is he working in?

Oh, I'm sorry, did my Papa Bear protective instinct kick in? That brings me back around to baby girl and her theoretically large noggin. My first reaction to that was that nobody is going to take a knife to Mama without dire need and her clear consent, and if they think they're going to, they'll have to come through me to get to her. I've had someone cut into and mess around in my abdomen--right inguinal hernia repair, thanks very much--and it's no joke. And that was a much smaller incision and less invasive procedure.

So, in our hospital bag, I'm remembering to pack my bat for kneecapping anybody who tries to get to Mama without permission. OK, so the Papa Bear part hasn't changed from 3B to baby-to-be.

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  1. I can't believe the salesman pushed you towards brown for boys - he could've just made you aware of the option - but not made a sexist deal out of it! Gag. That same guy would probably blow a gasket if he saw his own son playing with a doll. Very sad.

    I hope all goes well with your little big-headed baby, PB! You guys are in my thoughts!

  2. Hate to say this but that large head comes from your side of the family... on your father's side too. I have pictures of Chris and Brad's baby Patrick and well, yeah let's talk about big heads. I should also send you the pictures of your favorite niece (the one with a good name) when she was dancing last year.

    As for good reading materials, I have some from your mother's house, but none of them cover the results of the pregnancy, just how to get there.

    My son sitting next to me is wondering if 35 days from now is August 12th?

  3. and I forgot....

    The papa bear in you comes directly down the line from your sister who would really rather be a bear. :-)

  4. Anonymous4:22 PM

    We sidestepped the whole gender/color thing and got bunk beds in wood. Neither brown nor while, but clear stain! I could deal with practicality concerns -- as you mentioned, brown does hide certain stains -- but have no time for gender roles when we're talking about furniture.

    Unfortunately, today it seems like OBs are taking the ultraconservative route to avoid even putting one toe over the "dire need" line. Maybe if they'd let women walk around and relax a little instead of strapping them to monitors in sterile hospital rooms, they could relax enough to deal with all those "large" heads.

  5. Little sister will have lots to think about with 3B chatting and singing around her. It is good she has plenty of space to store those brain cells.

  6. Anonymous4:53 AM

    Evil little shit. The sales guy, that is. Dudelet has a white bed which he chose himself two years ago (it's one of the ones that expands at both ends) and little elf inherited his cot (scrubbed and repainted). We needed a new baby seat, though, having disposed of the old one for some reason.

  7. HA! I had that last minute let's check the size of this enormous baby ultrasound. The doctor was concerned, and frankly since I was the one whose uterus was about to drop out between my knees at any moment, so was I. Ultrasound tech however was not so concerned. Measured the wee-babe in at around 7 pounds, head well within expectations...oh and joyfully added that "SHE" looked wonderful.
    Imagine my surprise when the doctor held up a girl with a penis. I laid there looking and thinking to myself "that is the funniest looking girl Ive ever seen". The doctor had to say Its a boy at least three times before I blinked myself into realization. Oh yes, and the size thing? 10lb 10 oz with a head larger than anything the doctor admits seeing born vaginally in his entire career. 8 years later, doctor still apologized to me at my annual visits saying "if I had know how big that kid was going to be".
    So wave and say hi to kidlet at the ultrasound, but dont believe a word they say.

  8. That's about what the plan is. Every once in awhile Mama gets nervous about what we'll do if they tell us we need a c-section, need to induce, etc. My response is always the same: we'll tell them, "No." Fortunately, we're in a practice in which I don't think they'll do that.

  9. Regarding the sand/water table: worth every penny!!!
    Gage has had his for...almost 2 years now. We LOVE IT!
    Of course, we no longer have a water side...just sand & sand.

  10. LP: Mama asked if we should try to keep the sides separate. My philosophy is that this is a space for him to experiment and discover in, so if he wants to fill both sides with sand or water, more power to him. And yeah, he loves it.