The Ultrasound Picture
When I first found out I was expecting, I was flooded with information about doctors appointments and upcoming ultrasounds. When I found out I was expecting twins, the list of ultrasounds grew longer. They wanted to watch me very closely they said. After having one ultrasound, I was starting to consider myself lucky to have so many opportunities to watch them grow.
After my first ultrasound I remember a couple of people asking me to see the pictures, they wanted to know what they looked like. I asked, 'Didn't they have ultrasounds when you had your children". I asked my mom if she ever got the chance to see me during my nine month stay in her belly. She said no, she didn't. She had a scare when she was pregnant with me, she almost fainted. She was taken to the emergency room and it was there that she was able to heart my heart beating, but that was it. And that was the only time. (I then told her I get to hear my babies heartbeats every 3-4 weeks)
Ultrasounds were invented in 1957, and continued to advance over the years. in the early 1980's they would perform ultrasounds, but only in very rare high risk situations. That continued well into the 90's. (Even then, the picture wasn't very clear.) Most pregnant mothers went the entire 9 months without ever knowing what was going on inside of them. High risk pregnancies had the pleasure of having one, (and if they were lucky two ultrasounds performed.) Today, all mothers get two ultrasounds. One to determine how far along they are if they are unsure, and then one is performed at 20 weeks, where they measure everything. The babies bones, their brain, there hands, the size of their heart and arteries, even their lips to ensure they do not have cleft lip. They will also be able to tell whether you are having a girl or a boy! If you are considered high risk, you can get as many as 5-8 ultrasounds performed. Even more amazing, you can even order pictures! (So you can show off your baby to the world before they are even born!)
As I brought home picture after picture of our twins, my mom was amazed at how much technology has changed in the last 28 years. Imagine her surprise when I took her to a 3D ultrasound! That's right! Now you can visit 3D ultrasound clinics, where for a fee, you can see your baby 3-D! Not just a black and white profile of bones, the 3D image actually allows you to see their hands, their legs, their face! If you are lucky, you can even watch them suck their thumb, grimace, or smile. And at the end of it, you get a disk full of images. This way you can easily share them on facebook or upload them to foto depot and get prints made!
I consider myself pretty lucky to be able to experience all of these wonderful ultrasounds. Not only do I get to share the photo's with my whole family, but we also know that each baby is growing and progressing just as she should be.
Isn't it amazing how far we have come? We don't just have to settle for belly shots anymore.