Yesterday was just one of those days. You know, the kind of day where you feel like you have lived an entire day and experienced every emotion possible before the clock strikes noon. Yep, that kind of day.

We had an appointment in Dubai yesterday morning to get a special ultrasound and blood work called an NT scan that would assess the baby's risk of having any chromosomal abnormalities.  A little back story...as of yesterday I am 15 weeks along. This particular scan is really only accurate when it is performed between 11 and 14 weeks. Basically, due to some miscommunication between our regular doctor, the health unit at the Embassy, and ourselves (it's a very long and frustrating story...) we found ourselves at 15 weeks pregnant still going to the clinic in Dubai to get this scan done.

This being my first pregnancy, I find myself constantly worrying about the littlest things. I think the hardest thing is not feeling the baby moving around inside of me since I am still not far enough along. Not having that constant reminder that everything is okay can be quite anxiety-inducing. At least for me. Before every appointment, this anxiety and worry only amplifies. I worry about the baby not growing and there not being a heartbeat. The moment right before the ultrasound begins is a mixture of anticipation, excitement and fear.

Yesterday's appointment was no different. The entire hour and a half drive to Dubai I was worrying. Not only was I worrying about the baby, but I was also nervous that we would get there and they would refuse to do the ultrasound and blood work because I was already outside of the 11-14 week window. That added stress was no fun.

So, we arrive at the doctor, fill out the paper work, and take a seat to wait to get called back. A few moments later, one of the nurses at reception comes over and asks me if I am sure that the date I had put for my due date was accurate because that due date puts me at 15 weeks and too far along to do the scan. Cue internal freak out...my worst fear is happening. I informed her that, yes, the date was correct, and that I understood that I was out of the window, but that our doctor still wanted us to do the scan.

When she left, all I could think about was how disappointed and sad I would be if we couldn't get this scan done. Really, it wasn't so much finding out the risk for abnormalities that I was concerned about. I am young and healthy enough that everything was most likely fine, anyway. And, had the scan shown a high risk for anything abnormal, it wouldn't have changed anything. We were still going to have this baby and love it unconditionally regardless. If I am being honest, I was most upset about the prospect of not being able to see the baby again on an ultrasound. I had heard such wonderful things about this particular clinic and the high-powered ultrasound machine they have. I was looking forward to seeing some high-quality images of my baby. And, I knew that I would be sent home with a DVD of the ultrasound for a keepsake. I was not about to miss out on that!

Eventually, another nurse came over and told us that even though we were outside of the window they would go ahead and do the ultrasound for us. And, if everything looked good on the ultrasound they would just forgo the blood work. Cue sigh of relief...I would get to see the baby, and probably wouldn't need to get blood drawn.

When we were called back to the ultrasound room, we met the doctor who was very nice and understanding. Actually, we had no complaints about how our situation was handled by the clinic at all. They could have easily sent us away when it was determined that we were too far along, but they didn't. Everyone was very understanding and did their best to accommodate our situation.

The doctor got the ultrasound started and we finally got to see our baby. The doctor took a bunch of measurements and pointed out all sorts of things...the brain, heart, stomach, ribs, hands, feet, etc. We also heard a strong heartbeat. Thankfully, everything looked perfect! It was the best feeling, especially after all of that worrying and anxiety. The ultrasound itself did not disappoint, either. The image was so much clearer than the one we see at our regular doctor. We even got to see our little one in 3-D!

Not only were we reassured that everything looked great, but we also were able to find out whether we will be welcoming a boy or a girl this November!! The doctor was able to tell us with "95% accuracy."  I will have to leave you all hanging for a little bit, though...we want to make sure we let our immediate family know the exciting news first. Then, I will definitely let the cat out of the bag. Pete and I were so excited to find out! I have my 16 week appointment next week and I am hoping to have my regular doctor confirm the sex, too, so we are doubly sure!

Needless to say, by the time this appointment was over I was exhausted and drained from the roller coaster of emotions! More than anything though, I was so happy and relieved that this little baby is growing and developing as it should.

We left the doctor with some pictures, a 10 minute-long DVD of the ultrasound (which I may or may not have watched several times already), and a website with a couple of video clips from the ultrasound.

As a reward for reading through this very long post, here is our baby...

{love the little baby leg at the top!}

And, you can see the clips of our ultrasound, here! You can watch the clips through the website or download them. They are about 15 seconds long each, but will replay on a loop.

I appreciate all of you that stuck it out and read through this entire post...I just needed to get it all out there.

I can't wait to share the big reveal soon!

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