"In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps."

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Our Trip to the Doc in Moscow and a Burning Question Answered

We spent almost the entire part of this last week in Moscow!  The main purpose of this trip was so that I could visit my Doctor in Moscow, and Nick also had business so he came along with us.  I wrote earlier that planning this was quite stressful, however when everything was sorted out, it ended up not being stressful at all.  Nick’s company is being amazing and are not only paying for my flight and hotel, but they are also paying for Isla to be able to come with me since she is so small.  We also received an email from HR saying that they will also cover my plane ticket home for the birth!  This was unexpected, and I am very thankful for it.  There was just a little delay because they wanted to see how much insurance would cover first, but once everything is said and done, the only thing we have to pay for is meals in Moscow. 

I haven’t spent more than a single evening in Moscow since our trip there last May. Although Nick is kind of over Moscow at this point, I am definitely NOT!  We get to stay in a beautiful hotel with a delicious breakfast buffet and eat out every meal, what’s not for a Momma to love???

Here we are on the plane, heading to Moscow!

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Daddy doing business one day while we ate lunch with him!  Nick and I are really feeling like grown ups these days Smile, we even wore blazers on our trip...

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Isla kept sticking olives on her fingers and going “Where’s Isla’s finger???” Haha. The waiter hated us.

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We found a great playground within walking distance to our hotel, which was really nice. We spotted it on our way back from our favorite Moscow eatery, the Starlight Diner (American style ‘50s diner with great burgers), and we headed over there.  When we were about 100 ft away Isla finally spotted it and shouted “playground”, and laughed and clapped her hands.  It was ridiculously cute.

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We only had two full days in Moscow, one of which was mostly taken up with my Doctor’s visit, but one day Isla and I went to Metropolis mall and walked around. It felt like heaven!  They had a lot of stores that I shop at in the states.  I bought Isla a couple of toys, and I went to the Body Shop and bought some “cooling” products for my miserably hot-at-night pregnant feet.  They do not work.  We also found a great indoor playground for Isla, so I will definitely be going back the next time have a place for her to play.

Here we are on our way to the airport to leave.  I could have used a few more days… Sad smile.

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The Doctor’s Visit

So if you are the kind of person who gets uncomfortable with talk about the OBGYN and all of the things that are covered in a visit to the OBGYN, please skip this section and move onto the next section to find out everything you ever wanted to know about 2 Baby’s Gender.

I found out before I went to Moscow that my Doctor would be French.  I can promise you that I never in my wildest dreams expected to have a Frenchman inspecting my downstairs region, so I was a little bit nervous before heading there.

I also want to add something that I haven’t talked much about on the blog, and namely that Russian women are gorgeous.  I mean hot-to-trot beautiful! The most beautiful women I have ever seen, and I’ve lived in Venezuela (women there are overrated IMHO). 

If you can help it, avoid being a woman in Russia.  And really try not to be a pregnant woman in Russia!  Unless you are Russian and are already a knock-out of course. There’s these crazy Asian hybrid Russians and tall Amazonian blonde Russians and all of them can make a short, chubby American momma feel quite frumpy, especially since they are all dressed to the nines.  You know how you see pregnant celebrities and they have this little bump and no extra weight and you wonder… how the heck did they do that?  Well that is every. Pregnant. Woman. In. Russia. Period. Exclamation mark!  There’s a man that works with Nick whose wife only gained 12 lbs!  And the baby was like 7lbs! Its nuts.

Well it appears that only the cream of the beautiful Russian woman crop get to visit French Doctors in Moscow.  So I sat in my squalor, watching supermodel after supermodel walk in the door.  And I had actually been feeling kind of cute for the first time in several months that morning… well I was quickly reduced to an oily skinned, frizzy haired heap.  There was one Amazon who walked in with the biggest, perkiest chest I have ever seen, which might not have been so noticeable except that half of it was hanging out!  I couldn’t NOT stare at it.  When I commented to Nick, bless his sweet, sweet, loving husband heart, looked totally innocent and asked “Well was it the size you noticed or the fact that it was hanging out?” like he had no idea what I was talking about.  Anyway, its not an easy thing to be the ugly girl in the room when you have to get naked in 10 minutes!

Anyway so I finally made it into see Dr. French, and he was older and short and pretty fat, which should have put me at ease, since I was nervous he would be a Don Juan type, but it didn’t.  We didn’t really hit it off and had several communication gaps, but he seemed nice enough, and in true French fashion he commented on Isla and how beautiful she was (note, nothing about me, HA!), and that if we had another bee-you-tiz-ful little girl we would be doing quite well!  Whatever that means… but I know he meant it nicely.

Here is big difference (or so I’ve heard and now I believe!) between the French and Americans is that the French care little for modesty.  With Isla, when I didn’t need to have a vaginal exam, I lay on a table without stirrups, and they used a sheet to cover up my unmentionables.  Instead Dr. French hopped me up on a chair with no place to lay my legs straight and proceeded to pop them into the highest stirrups I had ever seen.  At one point, his sweet nurse brought out a sheet and I thought she was going to cover me up, but to my horror, walked away, leaving my exposed and vulnerable!  All this just to examine my belly.

Needless to say.  I miss my American Doctors.

It is important to mention that he had a 4-D ultrasound machine right there, and I think he plans to do an U/S almost every visit, which should be really cool!

And as I was leaving he gave a pregnancy manual, translated from French for me to read throughout the pregnancy.  This ain’t my first rodeo, so I didn’t plan to read it, but after perusing a few sections, I realized that there are other benefits to reading about how the French do pregnancy!

Here are a few snippets from the French manual -

On Fashion – “Your clothing must be perfectly fitted without constraining your motions while remaining elegant.”

On Marital Relations – “Not contraindicated. On the contrary, some positions may be recommended in principle towards the end of pregnancy. Although individual variations are very diverse, libido and sexual pleasure tend to enhance in pregnancy.”

On getting fat – “Although your appetite will strengthen starting from the second trimester, you will have to fight your desire for food and understand that there is no need to eat for two.”

In other words, starve yourself, stay elegant, and make lots and lots love while pregnant.  I can assure you the pregnancy manual from my OB in the states said none of those things!!!

Our Million Dollar Question

So finally I am getting around to the question that many people have been asking, namely are we going to find out the sex?  Well Dr. French did give us the option to find out while we were in the office, and here’s how it went down…

At first I really wanted to find out 2 Baby’s gender, and Nick sort of wanted to find out the gender.  However as time went on, Nick got less and less enthused about finding out.  He was pretty adamant that he had one amazing little girl, and he would be tickled pink (pun intended) to have two.  I on the other hand, firmly want a little boy.  Its not that I think boys are better.  On the contrary, its because I think little boys and little girls are so special in their own unique way that I have always known that I wanted both. 

If Isla had a been a boy, then I would have wanted 2 Baby to be a girl.  Some people just always want their family to be a certain way.  I have a friend that always wanted either 2 boys or 2 girls so that they would have a buddy.  However what she got was one girl and one boy, and of course she’s delighted!  I do know that I have little control over it, and I hope that it goes without saying that I will certainly not be sending my second little pretty princess back if 2 Baby is a girl! Smile We also want at least 3 so we have more opportunities.

However, I wanted to find out so that I didn’t spend more time than I needed wondering pink or blue, and even as Nick lost his desire to find out the sex of the baby early, mine did not waver.  But something happened as I lay there in that absurd gyno chair, legs in stirrups, my unmentionables exposed and my weird little French doctor rubbing goo all over my belly… I started to remember Isla’s birth, and how long it took and how rewarding it was to hear after 9 long months of waiting and the hell of her 30 hour labor and delivery, the “It’s a girl!”, and all I could think was “There is nothing special about this. I do not want to find out this way.” 

And that was that. I no longer have even the slightest desire to know what 2 Baby’s gender is until the day of his or her birth. Sometimes I feel like there’s so little mystery left in the world, and waiting and finding out the way God intended is such an incredible, special feeling, and there’s no way having some stranger announce the first and probably most defining aspect of 2 Baby’s identity can even come close.

I just hope my mother can forgive me Smile.

Anyway, to soften the blow of not finding out for those inquiring minds… I wanted to leave you with this – a picture of our perfect little 2 Baby, such a miracle from God.

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Girl or boy, this is one beloved little 2 Baby!

***For the record, my mom thinks 2 Baby “looks” like a boy in this picture!


  1. Stori,

    I told Justin that he should have gone in O & G engineering! I am so glad that Nick's company id being so generous with yall!! What a blessing!

    We waited with each of our babies, and I agree, it felt like such a fun reward after 9 long months. You are right, there are no surprises left in life. So it's fun to let this one last!

    Either way, we are praying for your sweet family and a safe and healthy 2 Baby!


  2. I say boy, too! Although, I seem to be loosing my touch with guessing lately :(

  3. Elizabeth!!! Your life is so cool too. I covet it sometimes! Thank you for your prayers.

    Jessica - I know! What's up girl??? Get it together, there are people depending on your powers of gender divination! :)

  4. this post is awesome! I don't think I've said yet, but I LOVE "two baby" . . . I mean I think I actually do love your second child, b/c why wouldn't I, but I really love his or her nick name. I'm glad you got to see a fancy french doctor . . . what a different experience. I am pretty sure the european standard (though I guess technically you aren't in Europe are you?) is an u/s at every prenatal visit. but the mental image I have of the exam chair and stirrups (not with you in it) is a bit frightening.--good luck with that!

  5. I am so excited to hear all about what you think about the fun anticipation of the big gender reveal on Birthday:) let Nick call the gender when the baby is born!!! I will never forget the sound of Matthew saying "ITS A.....GIRL" and "ITS A BOY...YESSS" When ours were born!!!! I assure you that it IS a special feeling as you suspect. So glad all is well, but sorry they are not very modest. I would be terrified. LOVE!!!


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