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14w1d - Before each ultrasound of this still-new pregnancy, I emailed pleas to a tiny group of friends and family:

 If you would, please, think of us tomorrow morning at 11, when we’ll get a glimpse of the new baby.

I’d like to say my aim here was to surround myself with their sweet intentions. Their good will would help create a forcefield of positivity and wholeness and unfettered love, all expressly focused on this bitty being.

In actuality, though, I was creating a posse. A gang of my most trusted people, all chosen because they would not let me see something I didn’t want to on that blurry sonogram screen. They would keep me safe from any unsavory news from the radiologist, from my midwife, from the lab technician, who each had the individual power to call this whole pregnancy off.

These inner-circle people were Sharks, cunningly fending off the potential Bad News Jets. My bouncers, sorting out the riffraff in line who threatened to spoil our good time. Metaphysical bodyguards. Vikings. You get it.

They would not let me endure any sh*t.

And oh, they performed! These beloved folks got us through those excruciating moments of unknowing and worry, as I lay on the exam table next to my partner, the Mister, us squinting at … my bladder? My ovaries? Oh, the baby! Squirming away, performing its in-utero hurkeys as I felt nothing. Us staring, incredulous to be here, watching this him or her or whatever do a little triumphant dance for us both to see, a confirmation that we had, indeed!, been spared any heartbreak, been protected by our good people this time.

Because, truth be told, we were full-up on heartache, the Mister and I. We were seasoned watchers of a still sonogram screen, having been in that stark room twice before in the previous year, as the wand probed my belly and came across the thing no newly pregnant couple wanted to hear or see, especially not twice:

Nothing at all. No heartbeat. No still-full sac. “I’m sorry,” said whoever had been jabbing the wand. “I’m so, so sorry.”

But now, here we were: Grateful, teary, laughing with the midwife as she complimented the baby’s strong heartbeat, reassuring us that everything looked fine, really. There was no cause for concern. She had to tell me twice before I’d stop asking, “Really? Really-really?”

 And so here we are, swinging open the doors to the second trimester, finally accepting the reality that this pregnancy is sticking around. Of course, we know that these early triumphs don't preempt any future concerns. But for now, we’ll call off the posse and settle in to having truly reconceived.