One Month to Blastoff

It has been awhile since I posted about Baby Ocho.

Things have kicked into high gear around here with weekly appointments, tests, and scans. Ocho will join us in exactly one month. I am scheduled to arrive at 5:00am on October 14 for an induction. Thankfully, my sister is an early riser and will scramble me out of bed and out the door.

I didn’t pick the day. It was assigned by my care team at the hospital. The Pediatric Cardiology Team wants Ocho at 39 weeks. The Maternal Fetal Team wants me delivered at 38 weeks. The Neonatology Team wants the baby on a Wednesday, when all the necessary personnel are available for a worst case scenario. So, they are splitting the baby (pardon the pun) and delivering me at 38½ weeks on a Wednesday.

Let’s hope the Mother Goose rhyme is wrong and that Ocho will not be “full of woe”.

Two weeks ago, all of my care was transferred over to the hospital where I will deliver and the children’s hospital where Ocho will have the cardiac surgeries. I am so grateful for the team of people taking care of me. I spent close to seven hours at the hospital for my first appointments. Linda is my care manager and arranged all the visits. I met with the MFM OB, another pediatric cardiologist, several nurses, the genetic counselor, the social worker, and the lab. All the ducks are lined up in a row and a comprehensive plan is in place.

They pulled a team over from the hospital to perform another cardiac echo. The pediatric cardiologist (Dr. C) confirmed the diagnosis of right dominant unbalanced AV canal defect. But there was some good news. Dr. C’s measurements of Ocho’s left ventricle were better than Dr. G’s measurements. Dr. C is my new favorite.

After 30 weeks gestation, imaging isn’t as reliable in utero. As the baby grows larger, there is more shadowing which makes measurements more difficult. At this point there is not much further information we will receive. We have to wait until Ocho is born and testing is performed directly on the little one’s heart. We will then have a better idea of what the future holds.

The Maternal Fetal Medicine OB is focused as much on my risks as Ocho’s heart condition. Truth be told, I hadn’t considered some of these risks. I always assumed that I will be fine. And I think that I will be. But my age and the number of deliveries put me in a much higher risk category.

Speaking of age, when I checked in to the office last week, I was standing at the receptionist’s counter with another pregnant mom. My curiosity peaked when the nurse asked this mother’s date of birth. I listened intently. The woman said May 4, 1988. Gulp. I was graduating 8th grade and getting ready to start high school in 1988. I am a geezer. At least in this part of the hospital.

My kids enjoy my weekly weigh-ins. I feel like a prize fighter continuously punching up a division. We are in heavyweight territory now. There’s no need to go into specifics, but let’s just say I am putting up some impressive numbers. I usually text the kids the latest number and they have a field day.

But Josephine took it to another level while I was at the hospital last week. She began sending me the names of animals who weigh as much as me. Much to the amusement of the doctors and nurses who kept hearing my phone ding.

South American Fur Seal

Rocky Mountain Goat

Warthog

I told her to knock it off and get back to her English class. But the texts kept coming.

Male Cougar

White-Sided Pacific Dolphin

Newborn Elephant

And then she found some new comparisons during her lunch period.

You weigh like 33,704 table tennis balls.

You weigh like 61 masks of Darth Vader.

You weigh like 910 blueberry muffins.

Love that girl!

When I left, Linda handed me a folder full of information, including a summary report of all the concerns and issues surrounding this pregnancy. It’s lengthy. The report begins, “Kathleen is a pleasant 46 year old who is currently 32 weeks 4 days”. Isn’t that lovely! I’m pleasant. Good thing I was on my best behavior that day.

Unfortunately, Michael has not been on his best behavior, at least when it comes to driving. Apparently he mixed up driving 55 with the 35 mph posted speed limit. Which was a slight problem for the sheriff.

When Michael looked closely at the ticket and noticed the traffic court date, his heart sank. He told me sheepishly and waited for my reaction.

Because it’s October 14.

Sometimes you just have to laugh.

14 thoughts on “One Month to Blastoff

  1. Kathleen, your blog keeps life in focus for me. Faith and gratitude are critical! You exemplify them. Love and prayers.

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Like

  2. I love your pictures, you look beautiful as always. Baby Ocho will bring such joy into your lives, may God bless this beautiful baby and all The Rauch family.

    Like

  3. You continue to amaze me. Pleasant is hilarious to me for some reason. 910 blueberry muffins was my favorite.

    God bless you and Ocho. Susan

    On Mon, Sep 14, 2020 at 3:00 PM The Refillable Glass wrote:

    > Kathleen Rauch posted: ” It has been awhile since I posted about Baby > Ocho. Things have kicked into high gear around here with weekly > appointments, tests, and scans. Ocho will join us in exactly one month. I > am scheduled to arrive at 5:00am on October 14 for an induction.” >

    Like

    • Wish I could stop by your office and catch up over a box of muffins! Blueberry would be best. It would be pleasant, wouldn’t it?

      Like

  4. Kathleen you look beautiful happy and healthy. I little large around the middle. Bet you cannot reach the sink to do dishes Good excite
    Baby 👶 look like he/she is ready to come to the world. I think and pray for you. Feast day for arrival is feast of St Teresa. Love your blog. Feel like baby ocho is our baby. Hope you didn’t eat that many muffins these past months
    You are in good hands from up ABOVE. We all love you and feel we are part of all the Rauch’s
    Thank you. ❤️ dorothy

    Like

    • Thank you, sweet Dorothy. Baby Ocho belongs to many people, including you. You’ll be the only Great Aunt Dorothy s/he will have!

      Like

  5. Kathleen, thank you so much for your blog, which is keeping me updated about your precious baby. Also, it’s wonderful to hear about your other seven babies, grown up. Josephine learning to drive! Amazing!

    In high school I gave a speech about our roughly 7 vehicles that the Rauches had. After that I was often selected to tell family stories in class. At the time our family owned 2 hearses. OK, my brother bought them used. Used for what, you may ask?

    We are continuing in prayer for your precious Ocho, all your family and your medical team. God is holding you tenderly in the palm of His Hand.

    Much love, Aunt Jan

    On Mon, Sep 14, 2020, 4:00 PM The Refillable Glass wrote:

    > Kathleen Rauch posted: ” It has been awhile since I posted about Baby > Ocho. Things have kicked into high gear around here with weekly > appointments, tests, and scans. Ocho will join us in exactly one month. I > am scheduled to arrive at 5:00am on October 14 for an induction.” >

    Like

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