The heartbeat.
April 17, 2012

Yesterday was my first midwifery appointment, so I pawned my daughter off on my unsuspecting (and infinitely patient) sister.

Sometimes people comment on this blog about how patient I seem, which just goes to show that blogs are really a miniscule snapshot of reality.  My family scoffs at this description of me.  Among the Schlothan clan, the name “Sarah” is synonymous with “IMPATIENCE PERSONIFIED” (also: “ridiculously opinionated” and “really bad at remembering punchlines”) and my sister’s name is synonymous with “saint.”

So I basically cobbled together a spare change of clothes and slingshot my kid at my saint of a sister and then I climbed in the car and drove to the birth center, where I proceeded to spend an hour and a half talking about my medical history and how NO, REALLY, I don’t drink.

It’s that fuzzy feeling in my throat, you know?  I hate that feeling.  I didn’t even drink at my wedding because I wasn’t about to have that fuzzy feeling in my throat ruining a big day.  No, siree!  I toasted the day with apple juice.

In fact, if you LIKE drinking then I highly suggest you go out of your way to make friends with someone like me who does not.  Hello!  DESIGNATED DRIVER!  Why do you think my husband married me?!

It occurs to me now that my name may also be synonymous with BORING AS HELL.  But I digress.

So yesterday, I woke up and I nursed Charlotte and I worried about the baby.  I prepared breakfast and I worried about the baby.  I gave Charlotte a bath and I worried about the baby.  I showered and dressed and I worried about the baby.  We brushed our teeth and I worried about the baby.

I swept the living room and I worried about the baby.  We had a picnic snack and I worried about the baby.  I drove to the birth center and I worried about the baby.  I talked about my medical history and I worried about the baby.  I peed in a cup and I worried about the baby.

And then FINALLY, I was instructed to lay back on a bed and unzip my pants and that long-awaited moment came when a magic wand covered with jelly the temperature of ice in Siberia was placed on my belly and…WHOOSH WHOOSH WHOOSH WHOOSH.  Suddenly it was all worth it: the morning sickness, the weeks of fear, the months of waiting, the grief following our miscarriage, the incessant worry, everything.

Laying there, listening to the thunder of my child’s heartbeat, was perfect.  Absolutely perfect.

** Charlotte is two years and eight months old.  I am eleven weeks pregnant.

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  1. By on April 17, 2012

    So very happy for you Sarah!!!

  2. By on April 17, 2012

    This was so beautifully written! I’m really happy for you and your family!

  3. By on April 17, 2012

    Dearest Sarah,

    Your name ACTUALLY means God’s Princess. A bit of a stretch from boring as hell…..:) So. :)

    And you made this Sarah cry this morning. Thank you for treasuring even the earliest memories and moments with all of your children.

    Yay babies!!!

  4. By on April 17, 2012

    There’s nothing like that sound in the whole world. Especially when the sound is your own baby.

    I second Yay babies!!!

  5. By Gracia on April 17, 2012

    Loved reading this on a very very tough day for me. Love it :)

  6. By on April 17, 2012

    You are patient.  You’ve waited a long time for this baby.

  7. By Carolee Kingdon on April 17, 2012

    Sarah, you just made me remember the first time I heard my child’s heart beat.  Up until then he was just a whole bunch of inconvenient symptoms.  Dr. Johnson asked me if I wanted to hear my baby.  Can I?  And, she put the stethoscope to my ears.  Suddenly, he was real and I was instantly in love.  A miracle was going on inside of me!  Even after 41 years, I have not forgotten.  Thank you, Sarah, for sparking a milestone memory.

  8. By on April 17, 2012

    I cannot wait to hear that sounds. My husband and I have been TTCing for 6 months, with no luck :/
    Isn’t funny how people do not believe you that you do not drink! I am the same way! I don’t drink and I didn’t drink at my wedding. Everyone was convinced I was pregnant. haha My husband always jokes that one of the main reasons he married me was so he could have a permanent DD…. haha.

  9. By on April 17, 2012

    I know this very exact feeling.  And I couldn’t agree more.

    I cried for three days after hearing this one’s heartbeat after our loss.  It just keeps getting better and better.

  10. By Courtney @ Bundle of Wonder on April 17, 2012

    So sweet :)  Glad your littlest one was able to put your mind to ease.  And you’re not boring as hell.  You’re one of the most intriguing and interesting people I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting.

  11. By Karen on April 17, 2012

    Your post was a perfect way to start my day! Grow, baby, grow… you’ve got a wonderful family waiting to meet you!

  12. By on April 17, 2012

    LIke you, I know the devastation of not hearing that sound. So, I totally feel the joy you are expressing. I am so happy for you.

  13. By on April 17, 2012


  14. By Lindsay on April 17, 2012

    I don’t drink, either. No one ever believes me, especially not at the doctors office. We toasted with ginger ale at our wedding—haha.

    What a beautiful post and an amazing feeling…I remember the first time we heard Ethan’s heartbeat. Awww. A sound you’ll never, ever forget. Love this. <3

  15. By Sarah Christensen on April 17, 2012

    Samantha and Lindsay - YES!  Nobody ever believes it!  EVER!

    Although admittedly I did try drinking a handful of times in college.  I never even got drunk - I just didn’t like it.  So.  That was that.  I took on the role of babysitting supremely drunk friends until they felt better =P

    The closest I’ve ever come to actually thinking a drink made sense was when Charlotte went through her month-long hitting phase.  But I just couldn’t get over the idea of that warm feeling.  I really dislike that feeling lol.

  16. By Amber on April 17, 2012

    I very much wish that I didn’t like drinking—life would be so much easier that way! But alas ... I love drinking wine. It is a happy thing for me.

    YAY to having that beautiful heartbeat in your head now <3 <3 <3

  17. By heather on April 17, 2012

    That first heartbeat, the first time you hear it that is, that is the most amazing thing. Everything is okay and that baby is doing just what it is supposed to be doing. I’m so truly happy for you guys.

    And not drinking is an excellent thing. I used to be a heavy drinker and I kicked it in the butt and mygod life is better without that fuzzy sick feeling. :)

  18. By Sarah S on April 17, 2012

    Awww…congratulations! There is nothing in the world like hearing that sound for the first time. Simply AMAZING. Best wishes for a smooth and uneventful pregnancy, it is such a miraculous thing our bodies can do.

  19. By Laura Bishop on April 17, 2012

    First of all- Congratulations!!!!!!!! I am so happy for you and your family with this awesome little blessing on it’s way!!!!!!!!!! And yes, hearing the heartbeat each time is SOOOOOOO amazing and reassuring!!!!
    And I laughed so hard when I read about how your family perceives you and your sister because it’s the same way in my family. Just because I am more opinionated, (more careful and conscience in my mind) I’m labeled the difficult one among other things. She’s the “easy” one but whatever- they don’t understand because THEY are not super-heros like us. duh. :) It takes a bit more blood and guts to be a super-hero.

  20. By Sarah Christensen on April 17, 2012

    Laura - OMG, my opinionated-ness gets me in trouble sometimes, though.  Okay, alot.

    To be fair, I’m probably over opinionated =P My siblings and I are all stubborn as mules and we’re all firm about our beliefs, I just happen to be the most insistent about vocalizing mine lol.

  21. By elizabeth Mackey on April 17, 2012

    Happy day! That truly is a wonderful sound isn’t it?!!

    Very happy for you Sarah.

  22. By missjoules on April 17, 2012

    Sarah, I am so very happy for you and your family! his post (and your announcement) have made my eyes well up somethin’ fierce, and I think that Robin is a bit old now for me to claim that “I just had a baby so I’m a bit hormonal.“

    I also do not drink! Which my midwife seemed difficult to believe because over here there is much more of a drinking culture than I ever experienced in the states. Sometimes I have about a tbsp of wine with dinner with my husband, and I fill the rest of the glass with water which is the only way I can drink anything at all. And he laughs at me. Even smelling strongly alcoholic things makes me pull me nose away quickly and grimace. I thought I was the only one!

  23. By Jadzia@Toddlerisms on April 18, 2012

    Congratulations!  I was SO relieved when my last baby was born, because all I did was worry.  All nine months.

  24. By Molly @ Little Stories Everywhere on April 18, 2012

    Ah, worry. We are besties, especially during pregnancy. I would tell you not to worry, but as a champion worrier I know that it’s impossible. The silver lining is that I have found a delicate balance between worrying and still enjoying. Is that encouraging? Probably not. But…it’s honest:).
    So excited for you!

  25. By Sarah on April 18, 2012

    love that sound!!! Yay for your whole family! And I think Most of us “Sarah’s with an H” are opinionated and loud about it!!

  26. By Sara on April 18, 2012

    Beautiful written. It amazing how much worry starts to happen the minute that pee stick turns positive!

  27. By on April 18, 2012

    For anyone who suffers from anxiety, having an irregular heartbeat is a fairly common experience- which doesn’t mean it’s something patients easily grow.

    pizza by the slice houston

  28. By on April 19, 2012


  29. By Ellen on April 21, 2012

    Sarah I am so, so, so happy for you guys!!!!  I can only imagine the worry and everything else you feel right now, but I sincerely hope and believe that those moments of joy overshadow everything else. 

    I had Ada at a birth center and absolutely loved it—looking forward to you sharing your experiences with us :)

  30. By on April 21, 2012

    I am a little behind, congratulations, wonderful news! So glad the appointment went well.





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