Scanning for Trouble

I was working as a midwife when I found out I was pregnant with my first child. I had no idea how far along my pregnancy was and allowed myself the excuse that, as a midwife, I needed to know when I was due so that I didn't book anyone whose due date was too close to mine. So, off I went to my 'dating scan', excited at the prospect of seeing my little baby on a screen.

The scanning process turned out to be a rather invasive one. Being so early on in my pregnancy the ultrasonographer told me I'd need a trans-vaginal scan - immediately my romantic notions of 'seeing' my unborn child were diminished (this, by the way, was the only 'internal examination' of any sort that I had throughout all three of my pregnancies and births). But the worse was yet to come... My tiny unborn child had no heartbeat. "The size of your baby suggests an age of 5 1/2 weeks, by which time we would usually be seeing a beating heart," the ultrasonographer plainly informed me. "Come back for another scan in 7 -10 days and we'll check for a heartbeat again."

Read More