When I was about 8 weeks pregnant with my second son I went to my OB/GYN for my first trimester screening and ultrasound. I had been feeling a little under the weather a week before my appointment and had been running a low fever for about 3 or 4 days. It was nothing that I was concerned about because by the time my appointment came around I was feeling better. I mentioned to my doctor that I had been sick the prior week and that I also had been experiencing a rash that was covering my body.
At my first appointment they did blood work and due to the rash they also decided to run my liver function tests just to be on the safe side. Once the results of that test came in my life felt like it was spinning out of control. My LFT's were extremely high and I was referred to a high risk OB for further testing. She seemed to think that it was just a fluke since I was feeling so much better but she drew more blood to be safe. She told me that she was going to test me for Hep A and C since I had been vaccinated against Hep B and that she was also going to check me for CMV. She assured me that I more than likely did not have it since it was so rare and told me not to go on the internet and look up information on it because it would only scare me. Following her advice I went on with life as normal.
A few days later I got THE phone call. It was my doctor calling (which is never a good sign) to tell me that I did in fact have CMV and that it was a primary infection. I had no idea what any of that meant since I had not looked it up. I had never heard of CMV and listened as she told me that the infection was probably gone from my system with no ill affects but that my baby may have gotten it from me. She told me that since I contracted the virus in my first trimester my chances of passing it along were between 40 and 50%. My heart sank as she told me what to expect if the virus had infected my baby. Deafness, blindness, cerebral palsy, never be able to walk, maybe not even crawl or hold up his own head. I thought I was going to be sick when she told me that if I did pass on the infection most doctors would advise that the pregnancy should be terminated.
There I was, 10 weeks pregnant faced with the most devastating news any parent can be given. I felt scared for my little peanut growing inside me. All I could think about was all of the things that he would never do in life. I thought about my 15 month old and hearing him laugh. Would my baby ever be able to hear that? Would he ever be able to DO that? Then the waiting game began. For 6 weeks I cried and prayed everyday hoping for the best but fearing the worst. I work as a sonographer so I had mixed emotions on whether or not to look at the baby. I was scared that the more I looked at him the more I would be connected to him and then what if something happened to him and I lost him? At the same time I wanted to look for the ultrasound signs of CMV. I would have my co-workers peek in on him to see if they saw calcifications or a decrease in growth but he always seemed to be right on track.
After 6 weeks of waiting I finally went in for my amnio. I was so nervous but in my heart I felt like God was telling me that my baby was going to be fine and to trust in Him. After the amnio I was told it could take up to a week to get back my results so I was surprised when my phone rang 3 days later. It was the nurse (not the doctor) calling to tell me my results were in!!!!!!! I had NOT passed on the infection to my peanut! I was so happy and relieved to know that my baby was healthy!
I will never take for granted the fact that I was one of the fortunate ones and every time I look at my beautiful baby I am reminded of the struggles that so many parents face due to this devastating infection that so little of them ever knew about. You are all stronger than you will ever know and I look up to each and everyone of you! God Bless you all.
- Shared by his mother, Rose