**This is part of a series of posts I wrote when pregnant, but before we announced publicly.**
127 is the most beautiful number.
My betas continued to look awesome, and our first ultrasound was perfect. Everything was measuring on track, as opposed to last time when I tracked a bit behind. Looking back, there were a few little signs that were screaming "warning" at us, but we had no idea what we were looking at. So long as the nurse told us everything was fine, it was.
This time, everything leading up to the second ultrasound was looking great. Better than great. But we kept our breaths tightly held. No amount of "perfect" or "beautiful" could calm us. We knew all too well that we needed a heartbeat.
We counted down the days to the ultrasound. Two days before, I woke up at 5 am, symptoms totally gone, and wondered, and panicked. I never did get back to sleep that day.
On the day of, we barely concentrated on work, and we left early so we could get to the appointment.
I felt nauseous all day. Was this morning sickness or just nerves? My husband did his best to convince me he wasn't worried at all, so I shouldn't be either. He's usually a terrible liar, but this time he was the picture of calm.
As I sat in the room waiting, I was shaking. I could barely speak when the ultrasound tech came in. But a few seconds into the ultrasound she exclaimed, "There's a heartbeat". I started sobbing happy tears and my supposedly calm husband let out a giant sigh of relief. A machine malfunction and a switch of rooms later (way to keep us in suspense technology!) we learned the heart rate was 127. Given that they had hoped to see it between 80-110, 127 is incredibly strong. (Of course I asked if it was too high - it's not). And then we got to see the little heart beating on the screen.
At this point, we were ready to call my sisters-in-law. If you heard a loud noise around 5pm on August 12th, that was my one sister-in-law screaming. Up until now the announcements to a few close people (mainly, parents) had been wary. We smiled a cautious smile, and people said words of hope and encouragement. But this was...well, the exact opposite. This was pure happiness, in the form of the loudest screaming I've ever heard. Her reaction made both me and my husband tear up. In a process that has stolen so many moments of unbridled joy, this gave us back one of those moments.
We know we are not out of the woods, but this was a huge step. As I texted to a friend, "Shit just got real."
Oh, and that nausea? That was no nerves. It hasn't gone away since.