Pregnant with Baby #4 (and I Just Turned 41)

Dear Readers, This post isn't an emailed question from one of you. It's from me, your BabyShrink.

I can finally come out with the news I've wanted to tell you for 18 weeks now: I'm pregnant!

This has come as somewhat of a surprise to us, although a very welcome one. Many of you recall we originally went through infertility treatments to get this ball rolling, but needed no help with babies #2, 3, and now 4. So here we are: a 4-for-1 deal!

My age is not the least of it. As an old lady of 41, my OB chart has "Advanced Maternal Age" stamped all over it. I've gone through several rounds of genetics screenings, and all the anxiety that goes along with it. I had killer morning sickness (uh, ALL-DAY sickness) for several weeks. But the worst part has been keeping the secret: from you, my coworkers, and even my kids. But we finally feel safe -- at least safe ENOUGH -- to break the exciting news.

So thanks to all of you for your patience; I've been remiss in posting quite as often as I'd like, and my response time to your questions has stretched out a bit. But I've been accumulating some heavy-duty experience that I hope will continue to help make BabyShrink fun, interesting and new.

Depending on your interest and questions, I'll be posting some of the things I've learned these past several weeks. I expected to have a CVS (for early chromosomal testing) -- and didn't. Then I expected an amniocentesis -- and didn't have THAT, either. But there are some wild new screening procedures that helped us though that decision-making process, and these are all pretty new. I look forward to your questions about how to decide when, if, and how to make decisions about genetic testing in pregnancy, and all the strong emotions that can go along with the process.

And in the meantime, I've discovered that my good-old standby baby bottles -- the ones that have gotten us through 3 babies -- are no longer considered safe (due to the BPA). So I've got to learn about all the newest STUFF out there as well....and I LOVE baby "stuff". So I'll need your help in deciding what to buy (and what to skip) this time around.

I'll also be asking for advice from those of you with large families. Having #4 feels exciting -- but daunting. This is uncharted territory in both my family and my husband's, so we need all the help we can get!

Thanks to all of you for your support and encouragement, and I look forward to going on the rest of this exciting journey with you.

Aloha,

Dr. Heather The BabyShrink