Since we’ve had a few days to grasp the thought of a little Jeff running around, I can’t even begin to describe how grateful and excited I am. Even moreso with the confirmation that baby is indeed a wiggly boy, this journey has become so much more real. It was a true blessing to see for ourselves all of his wiggly appendages and getting the confirmation that Baby B is healthy and on track. And finally, since I’ve passed that momentous halfway point, instead of counting up, I’ve begun the exciting countdown to meet our little dude.

As I’ve been saying for a few weeks now, and as witnessed on the ultrasound, this kid likes to move. He may have been too shy to show off his profile, but he sure wasn’t shy about showing the other important parts! Every day as his kicks are getting stronger and more consistent, it’s a vivid reminder that there’s a little Beckham in the making in there. Caught off guard by his persistent kicking, and not used to the strength of the motions yet, I caught myself yelping as I sit at work. What cool, but fun feeling.

I’ve had a few days to simmer, but I have to revisit the topic of the actual ultrasound experience on Tuesday. As mentioned before, since my dr. doesn’t do ultrasounds within the office, we’ve had to go to the radiologist in town. For whatever reason this time, our dr. sent us to our local hospital.

(I won’t specify where for obvious reasons, but if you do a little google I bet you’ll find all kinds of info. about this place’s past and ongoing issues.) If it’s any indication, our adopted homestate of NJ has been synonymous with a plethora of issues over the years– political corruption, high taxes, organized crime.
Uh, Sopranos anyone?
Regardless of the made-for-tv news stories, we love NJ and vowed to have our first child and perhaps, raise our family here. As we both continue to work our way up the corporate ladder and cultivate new friendships, we both gainfully acknowledge how good NJ has been to us.

ha. All of the mushy stuff doesn’t mean our lives can escape the usual theatrics! Because we’re Jen and Jeff, obstacles and adversity like to follow us. Character builders, as I like to call them, seem to go hand in hand with our momentous milestones and even, daily life.

Two separate years of enduring our long distance relationship/engagement, oven disparity at the Contemporary Arts Center on our wedding day, busting our rim and back tire on the Jetta on the breakdown lane lacking-Pulaski Skyway on Christmas Eve (with a trunk full of gifts, no less!) The list goes on and on…
We might not have the best of luck, but we damn sure have a hell of a lot of character!

And that goes without saying, our big ultrasound couldn’t have happened without a hitch. We had a pseudo countdown until the day of the ultrasound! Other than finding out, it was the biggest moment of the pregnancy byfar!


Jeff and I both went to work on Tuesday, as usual. Since I work in the City and take the PATH, I decided to work half a day; Jeff’s office is several miles southwest of our town, which meant that he’d have to leave an hour and a half before the appointment. We met up, parked around the block and made it to the appointment half an hour early, just as we had planned.
When we walked in to the hospital, there was a Grand Piano on auto-play in the lobby. The halls looked dated, old and kind of run down. We looked around and didn’t notice the elevator, so we asked the man at the help desk for directions.

“Take the elevator to the fifth floor to get to the Pre-natal Medicine Department,” he said.
We opened the door to the Pre-natal Department. I picked up the sign in sheet, signed my name and hoovered at the desk until the receptionist acknowledged us. We were the only ones in the waiting room. For about 10 minutes, the receptionist continued her paperwork and never looked up or even said a word to us.

Finally she picked up the sign in sheet and read my name.
“Jennifuh?” She said. “Um. Your appointment was scheduled for 1pm.”
In a panicked state, I instinctively grabbed my planner, flipped to May 8, then looked up at the giant clock that read, 2:30.
“Oh, actually, no, I had it scheduled for 3. My husband works a little too far south, I work in NY and am on deadline, so 1 wouldn’t have been an option for either of us.” I told her as I turned to Jeff to express my confusion.
“Well, my calendar has you down for 1. And you nevah showed. So now I can’t fit you in.” She snapped.
“Well, MY calendar says 3. I’m not sure how this discrepancy happened, so can you tell me how that affects us now?”
“My next availability isn’t until Tuesday the 15th or Saturday the 19th. Our calendar fills up fast.” She told me.
“Neither of those work. I can’t take off of work and Saturday is booked. MY next availability isn’t until June.” I told her, injecting my bitchiness.
“Uh, well. you have time. Why don’t you guys just come back and schedule when you are available.”
“Yeah. that won’t work for me. We both traveled here, got here on time…” I started to yell back at her.
Finally Jeff interrupts the almost girlfight, pulls out his phone and says, “ok, so, please tell me what our options are for TODAY. What can we do now? Is there anyway you can fit us in now?”
“You can wait and see if someone ELSE doesn’t show up. Other than that, you’ll have to reschedule.”

Crap. This isn’t how I imagined it.

The receptionist goes on to say how the other appointments take a long time, and my level II ultrasound takes awhile, so no, it was highly unlikely that I would be seen today. Great.

Jeff pulls me, in my angry state, out into the hall to diffuse the situation.
“Lets make some calls” he told me.
Still bitchy I asked, “Who are we going to call? It’s not like a phone call can fix this situation!!!”
“No, but we can go elsewhere. I mean look at this place, they can’t even keep up with the maintenance, do you think this is their first scheduling mishap?” He said.

So, he called my OB. He called the other radiologist in town, and made an appointment for the next day.
At this point, my excitement turned to rage. How the hell did something so special turn into something so frustrating?

And that’s when the receptionist peeked her head out and waved us in. She shoved some papers our way, never vocally clarifying whether or not the appointment would go as planned. Refusing to look her way, Jeff filled out the papers for me. The waiting room was still empty.

The receptionist went to the Ultrasound Tech and abruptly dropped my folder on her desk. She leans in to the Tech, starts wagging her finger and says some obvious obscenities in Spanish. Tagalog and the Bicolano dialect are closely related to the Spanish.

Clearly, I was not their number one fan.

“Ghetto” sums it all up.

After all the papers were finished, I heard my name. “Jennifuh?” the Tech called. We followed the Tech into our curtained area. I got all situated and she started the process. Finally, after all that anger, I was starting to calm down.

That’s when I saw the baby on the screen. She moved the instrument around my belly and there he was! He moved constantly throughout the screening. Like the receptionist, the Tech didn’t say much. I decided, in my head, that she was just as rude as the receptionist. Her abrupt motions were annoying, but I didn’t expect any less. I assumed the words she typed into the Ultrasound machine indictated the baby’s various appendages and organs. Jeff held my hand tightly. With every new thing the Tech typed, the tighter he grasped. The moment was special once again.

Finally, the Tech asked, “you DID want to know the sex, right?”
“Yes please” we said in unison.
I saw baby’s leg, then I saw the other leg and that’s when I saw the “third” leg.

As the Tech typed she confirmed, “It’s a boy!!”

Tears, the uncontrollable kind, flowed. When I looked up at my husband, he had a different reaction. He didn’t seem to get it.

“Um. I don’t get it? I don’t see it. How?” Jeff asked.
“Dad, you’re offending baby here. He’s all offended you don’t see it!” The Tech said.
“But where? Can you point out what I’m looking at?”

And that’s when she pointed to baby’s penis and said ever so eloquently, ” Um, dad? Your baby is packin‘!”

The uncontrollable tears turned into uncontrollable laughter. Who the hell says packin’ in reference to a baby boy, anyway?

At the end of the day, albeit a few snafus, we ended up having a very special moment at our big ultrasound. Above all, we found out that we’re having a very active, healthy little boy this September.

But, what the hell? Packin’? Yes, packin’. I truly look forward to the day I can look back, laugh and retell this story with a straight face.

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