Tuesday, January 31, 2012

16 weeks

I am starting to think I might be a bit overextended. Things are pretty OK for now but it occurs to me that with the possibility of a new baby in July (yes I say "possibility" because I am a medical person and therefore justifiably paranoiac) I may have to cut back on certain things. For one, I've been having fun with the speaking engagements but travel is the worst and I find it guilt-inducing to be away from my children, even though they can largely toilet and dress themselves independently (so long as you don't need things to be on right-side out or require pants to be on bottom, shirts on top, that kind of thing). Anyway, I have some speaking engagements booked through early Spring, but I don't think I'm going to be accepting any more after that nor for any appreciable amount of time after the baby is born, unless they're relatively close by or, like, for the most noble cause in the world.  (Or if they're going to pay me a skrillion dollars, in which case ideology be damned! Not really. A little bit. Show me the skrillion dollars first.)  LIMITS. I HAS THEM.

Speaking of which, here's your 16 week picture, pervs.

In the interest of uniformity of variables I'm trying to take all such pics first thing in the morning, because due to the happy effects of progesterone (and smooth muscle relaxing properties thereof) the different between AM and PM is obviously not at all related to uterine distension but nonetheless enormous. Literally. The night bloats, am I right, ladies? It also does not help that I have only one pair of maternity pants left in my closet--unless you count scrubs, in which case I have a hundred pairs. Apologies, however, for that fact that this particular pair is weirdly baggy in the crotch and makes me look like I am sporting a monster dong. (They are from one of our outpatient orthopedic surgery centers, if that explains anything.)

Back to the subject of paranoia, my OB offered to take a look at gender parts tomorrow (they don't routinely do an ultrasound at 16 weeks but he is very nice and after exchanging the Secret Doctor Handshake he said that if we wanted he could do a quick peek as "a courtesy")

(There isn't really a secret doctor handshake)

(There is an encoded medallion that you hold up to the sun on the solstice, however, that shows you the location of the hidden tomb of Hippocrates)

...but really, I don't care if Thing 3 is a boy or a girl so long as s/he is healthy. I know everyone says that and it's true, but we all know that in medicine, especially those of us with a background in Pediatrics, have seen Very Bad Things and it seems like whenever you're trying not to worry about Bad Things, it's all you can think about. So here's to normal exams and good results, right? Of course the genitalia of the fetus is almost certainly one of the least important parts of an anatomic survey, but of course I am a good little monkey and always very CURIOUS.

Hope you had a good weekend and all that.


  1. "There is a encoded medallion that you hold up to the sun on the solstice, however, that shows you the location of the hidden tomb of Hippocrates"

    you crack me up, really...!

    Health aside (& I don't mean that lightly), I think most of us would have a niggling little wish inside for a gender of the opposite sex after having two boys or two girls...

  2. Anonymous7:37 PM

    How come I am much bigger than you at 12 weeks???? And for the paranoia, I am not a doctor but I am definitely in the same boat than you!

  3. The pants are hilarious. I haven't learned the half of The Very Bad Things That Can Happen, but I do know I feel the same so far. Good luck!

  4. Michelle,

    You are truly hilarious. The pants, the secret handshake and encoded medallion - water came out of my nose. Also, I am really thrilled that we happen to be pregnant at the same time.

    I have been your loyal blog-reader since 2006, and I have a favor to ask you:

    I am 15 weeks pregnant and a fourth year medical student, making my baby due....July of my intern year. I seem to remember you were in a similar position when Cal was born, having just switched programs. If you could lie to me and tell me that it will all be awesome, that would be great. Thank you!!!


  5. Anonymous8:55 PM

    Monster dong. Excellent word choice. I almost choked on my oatmeal.

  6. okay, so my new wildandcrazy fantasy is to look like Michelle Au at sixteen weeks pregnant in the morning, all while not being pregnant at all.

    I imagine about 4 months from now I'll stop feeling envious.

    Looking forward to the findings, you little monkey you. ♥

  7. Anonymous12:50 AM

    16 weeks pregnant and you have a "Monster dong"...Secret handshakes.....haha...You are the funniest person alive.

  8. Anonymous9:45 AM

    So glad you're back! Your writing is funny and refreshing. Monster Dong! That made my day :)

  9. Rachel11:57 AM

    Congrats Dr Au! I'm so excited to hear about the new baby. Love your blog btw - thanks for sharing the intricacies of your life with us!

  10. Anonymous9:05 PM

    I totally know what you mean about the secret doctor handshake and being busy worrying about all the awful things...my son was born in the middle of gen surg residency.
    what crazy lives we all live :)
    best wishes!

  11. so now im intrigued... any way we can get a am versus pm belly pic comparison?!?!

  12. Anonymous9:57 PM

    SO, no pressure here, but we are all dying to know if you found out the gender!

  13. Anonymous10:48 AM

    ha! i am both an OB resident AND found out I was pregnant while on a NICU rotation. That is definitely the worst combination ever. I'm feeling the little avocado (apple, orange, whatever is equivalent to 17 weeks) move now, so that gives me some measure of reassurance; however, it's a daily battle to combat the anxiety and just enjoy the pregnancy.

    Also, amen on the bloat. I doubt the people who quizzically raise an eyebrow when comparing the size of my bump with the gestational age want to hear about the, ahem... GI changes associated with pregnancy.

  14. "Monster dong" -- You totally made my morning.

  15. Anonymous2:18 PM

    Congrats! As a pediatrician involved in heme/onc, just want to put a plug in for PUBLIC cord blood banking- available in Atlanta, and especially important for minorities and those of mixed race. Check it out and consider: http://marrow.org/Get_Involved/Donate_Cord_Blood/How_to_Donate/Where_to_Donate.aspx

  16. Anonymous2:26 PM

    I hope everything is okay! We haven't heard from you since the Wednesday doctor's visit.

  17. Anonymous6:19 PM

    Congrats! I was wondering where you were...missed reading your entries.

  18. "(They are from one of our outpatient orthopedic surgery centers, if that explains anything.)"


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