28 week ultrasound update

Hi friends! Hope you had a wonderful weekend. Ours was a great time spent together, but Friday morning was a mix of positive and not-so-ideal news at my ultrasound appointment. I figured I’d share an update with you all since so many of you offered to send well wishes, prayers and happy placenta moving vibes to me. Thank you so much for all of your love for our family and this little beeb. It makes my heart so warm, and means a lot to us. <3

When the tech first began the ultrasound, she checked the baby’s location (she’s head down instead of transverse now, so that’s awesome!) and the placenta right away to see how it was doing. She said that it looked far enough away that I likely wouldn’t need an internal ultrasound (halle.freakin.llujah), and that everything looked healthy and beautiful. I instantly felt a huge sigh of relief, and couldn’t wait to call or text the Pilot, who was at work for a meeting. I always love getting ultrasounds, and could have watched our baby dance on the screen all day. We checked out her spine, her brain, the chambers of her heart, her heart beat (a strong 141), the blood flow to the umbilical cord, and the tech took a variety of measurements. She was very sweet and gentle, and definitely took her time getting the measurements and letting me see our sweet growing baby.

Ultrasound pic

(She took this amazing 4d image! She was pressed up against me -that’s what the darker spots are- but I was amazed at the detail!)

Then, she went back to the heart.

She took more measurements and a lot of image captures, and of course, didn’t really tell me what was going on. I felt in my intuition that something wasn’t quite right because the tech went from being super chatty to intensely focused and quiet. 

The doctor came in to talk to me, and let me know that the placenta looked great and I was cleared to return to full activities and Orangetheory (though, let’s be real, I’m not going to go back after 2 months off and at almost 30 weeks pregnant. I’ll just wait until little miss is here to make my return). He then went on to say that our baby has Ventricular Septal Defect, or VSD, which is a mild heart defect. Essentially, the blood between the two lower chambers is supposed to be separated, and a small hole is currently allowing blood to flow from the left to right side. It can cause a heart mumur, but over time, could cause the heart and lungs to work harder and lead to cardiac issues. It’s all dependent on the size of the hole. He said that sometimes this resolves on its own (and could even resolve itself before birth), and sometimes they need to go in and patch the small hole. The doctor assured me that this wasn’t caused by anything I’ve done, and there’s nothing we can really do to fix it. It’s a matter of waiting, monitoring and taking necessary steps from there.  I’m no longer a candidate for a birth center birth because the baby’s heart will need to be continuously monitored, but will be able to deliver with a midwife and our doula in labor and delivery. The baby will need an echocardiogram shortly after birth, and it will need to be monitored until it either resolves itself or if they decide they need to patch the hole.

We feel very blessed that the baby is otherwise very healthy and everything seems to be going well so far. At the same time, it was a bit overwhelming and scary to receive this type of news, especially since I was alone at the appointment. I sat in the car and cried in the parking lot until I could call Tom and tell him what was going on. I also texted Katy, because I remembered that her daughter was diagnosed with the same condition and it has thankfully repaired itself. It hit me pretty hard how much I love this little baby already, and while worrying won’t help anything, I couldn’t help myself. Now I’m focused on remaining hopeful that it will resolve itself, researching the condition so I’m familiar with the terminology and potential outcomes, and giving thanks that in the grand scheme of things, it’s something minor and can be fixed if needed. We have a fetal echocardiogram awaiting approval so we can get her heart checked by a specialist to determine the size and next steps we’ll need to take. 

Just wanted to share a little update with you all. Thank you again for all of your love and prayers and for being so wonderful.


Gina and the familia

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  1. Jacqueline on July 27, 2015 at 6:28 pm

    Hi Gina!
    I have been along time reader of your blog. I wanted to share with you I was born with an ASD and VSD as well as some other complications… I am now a completely healthy 30 year old living a great life and career! Technology for these procedures now if needed are amazing! Praying for you, your family and your little one! Jacqueline

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:48 pm

      that is so wonderful to hear! happy you’re doing so well <3
      thank you for the prayers, too! xo

  2. Julia on July 27, 2015 at 6:28 pm

    Hi Gina, I rarely comment, but wanted to say I am sending good thoughts and prayers your way! We were blindsided when my 5 month old daughter was born with a rare genetic disorder and a laundry list of medical issues related to it, so I am all too familiar with the heartache and worry over a baby you just want the best for. Maybe your low placenta was a blessing in disguise, so you were able to have the extra ultrasound and time to prepare yourselves for the tests and cardiologist visits. As scary as it was in the weeks following my daughter’s birth, I know this for sure – she is so loved, and we think she is amazing! I’m sure you will feel the same about your baby girl, and if she has your love, she has everything she needs 🙂

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:48 pm

      thank you so much for your comment, thoughts and prayers. we really appreciate it! so sorry to hear that you’ve felt that worry, too. hope that everything is going well for you all now <3
      you're totally right about the low placenta being a blessing in disguise. i've been thinking about that a lot over the past couple of days.
      thank you again for the kind comment and lots of love to you.

  3. Bree on July 27, 2015 at 6:30 pm

    Sending thoughts your way for you and baby. A close friend of mine whose daughter just turned 2 (and is 6 weeks older than mine) found out after she was born about a hole in her heart. They were told similar things as you were and that they would just monitor it. Turns out she has not needed surgery. She still has a small hole, but is living a perfectly normal, healthy 2 year old life! Hugs.

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:47 pm

      that is reassuring to hear! thank you <3

  4. Sarah on July 27, 2015 at 6:35 pm

    Sending you and your family positive thoughts and best wishes. Will be praying for all to work out on its own for your healthy baby girl! Hang in there.

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:46 pm

      aww i hope so! thank you <3

  5. Kara on July 27, 2015 at 6:47 pm

    I am lifting you and your family up in prayer. Pray for that little girl by name, Gina. God will hear you.

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:46 pm

      thanks, kara!

  6. Britt@MyOwnBalance on July 27, 2015 at 6:48 pm

    Oh wow. I am sure that news was very tough to hear. My thoughts and prayers are with you Gina and the little one. I’m sure she will be healthy and vivacious and the perfect partner-in-crime for Olivia but I can only imagine how much this is worrying you. All the best to your fam!

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:46 pm

      thank you, friend <3

  7. Shellie on July 27, 2015 at 7:04 pm

    Wishing you, your little babe, and your family well! Thoughts and prayers to you and your baby girl.

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:46 pm

      thanks, shellie- we really appreciate it!

  8. Christina on July 27, 2015 at 7:11 pm

    Sending you prayers and well wishes!

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:45 pm

      thank you, christina <3

  9. Michelle on July 27, 2015 at 7:16 pm

    Sending you prayers & positive thoughts.

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:45 pm

      thank you, michelle!

  10. Yaara Leve on July 27, 2015 at 7:32 pm

    OMG Gina! Just catching up now on your news! I’m so sorry about this stress. It sounds like the baby is doing fine though and thank G-d is healthy. It’s good that you caught this early and that she can be monitored. Sending you well wishes and I hope that mama and baby continue to do well.

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:45 pm

      thank you, yaara- i really appreciate it!

  11. Kelly on July 27, 2015 at 7:36 pm

    Sending prayers your way! Our daughter was born with VSD and an overall heart defect called Tetralogy of Fallot. If you have any questions or need any support feel free to ask me. I also have a blog about our daughter who is now a healthy and thriving 2 year old! 🙂

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:45 pm

      thank you, kelly! happy to hear she is doing so well!

  12. Erin @ Her Heartland Soul on July 27, 2015 at 7:44 pm

    Sending so much love your way! I’m sure everything will work out!!

  13. Erin on July 27, 2015 at 8:16 pm

    Saying prayers for you and your baby.

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:44 pm

      thank you, erin!

  14. Katie O on July 27, 2015 at 8:47 pm

    Oh Gina, I’m sorry! Sending good vibes and praying for the baby’s heart to heal before birth. Lots of love from norcal!

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:44 pm

      thank you so much, katie

  15. Stephanie on July 27, 2015 at 9:02 pm

    This same thing happened with my first daughter…I now have 3 🙂 I remember the ultrasound tech taking a long time on her heart and my husband and I knew something was up. They told us the exact same thing you were told. I was so upset and over the next few weeks spent SO MUCH time researching and over thinking everything. After a few weeks the hole completely closed on its own! I remember wishing I wouldn’t have wasted so much time worrying so I’m hoping my story will help give you a little more peace about it. I will be praying for you and your little one 🙂

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:44 pm

      wow, that is amazing. so happy to hear it resolved for you!! fingers crossed ours does the same
      thank you for the prayers, too!

  16. Gina on July 27, 2015 at 9:34 pm

    Thank you for sharing this update with us. Praying everything is resolved naturally for little one <3

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:43 pm

      thank you, name twin 🙂

  17. Annie on July 27, 2015 at 9:38 pm

    Thanks for sharing… sorry to hear this! Sending you lots of energy and positive thoughts.

    • Fitnessista on July 27, 2015 at 9:43 pm

      thank you, annie. i appreciate it <3

  18. Bev on July 27, 2015 at 10:40 pm

    Our son also had the hole in the heart and it really shook me up to after our ultrasound! By the next ultrasound it was gone and he was born healthy. Sending prayers your way! 🙂

  19. Niki on July 27, 2015 at 10:57 pm

    I’m so sorry to hear this! Sending lots of hugs and happy, healing thoughts to you and baby! Xx

  20. Rose on July 28, 2015 at 2:10 am

    Aw I loved the photo and I’m sorry to learn about the diagnosis! Take care of yourself! Everything will turn out okay, even though right now it’s not 🙁

  21. Mila on July 28, 2015 at 2:50 am

    Ugh! My heart lurched reading this — mostly that it is so hard *not* to worry.

    Sending good thoughts your way!

  22. coco on July 28, 2015 at 2:52 am

    all the best wishes for your family! You’re such a strong and beautiful woman.

  23. lissy on July 28, 2015 at 3:03 am

    Sorry to hear your appt wasn’t 100% positive. A friend of ours, his daughter was also diagnosed with a mild heart defect before birth, but she turned out fine as well. Modern medicine is great, but it also causes a lot of unnecessary worrying. Hope it resolves itself and she comes out super healthy 🙂

  24. Lee on July 28, 2015 at 3:27 am

    My daughter was born in February and we found out after the delivery that she has Down syndrome and an AVSD that would require surgery. She’s 6 weeks post-op and doing so well. Sending prayers your way for your beautiful baby <3

  25. Amanda P. on July 28, 2015 at 4:01 am

    She is one lucky baby to have you as a mama. Already loving her so much! All will work out. Sending lots of love and light.

  26. Jenn krieher on July 28, 2015 at 5:20 am

    Many prayers to you, your family, and your sweet little baby. Sending happy and healing heart vibes to the baby 🙂 Regarding your labor and delivery, I understand how it can be difficult to change from your original intention/vision of how labor would go. But you make your own path and you’ve always made strong and beautiful paths. Hugs to you, mama.

  27. Arden on July 28, 2015 at 5:50 am

    Lurker here. Sending you lots of prayers.


  28. Lindsey @ Simply Lindsey on July 28, 2015 at 5:53 am

    I’ll be praying for you guys and your sweet little one!!

  29. Julia@yogawinehappiness.com on July 28, 2015 at 6:37 am

    Sending positive vibes your way! I hope it resolves itself!

  30. Alicia on July 28, 2015 at 6:59 am

    I have b/g twins who are 10 months old. Our baby boy was diagnosed with TGA and a VSD at 20 weeks. He had open heart surgery at 5 days old due to the TGA. His VSD closed and he is the sweetest craziest little dude. He is crawling all over and you would never know what he went through.

    It is really hard when you get a diagnosis begore birth but it is also great that all the right people can be ready. I am sure your little one will do great and may not even need any interventions. Light and love to you.

  31. Carrie on July 28, 2015 at 7:01 am

    Praying for you and the family, Gina.

    A friend of mine was born with a heart defect and had to have surgery when he was older, but he went on to qualify for state multiple times in cross-country and to run track and CC in college! Pretty amazing!

  32. becca on July 28, 2015 at 7:08 am

    Gina, I’ve been a long time follower and wanted to tell you that I was born with VSD. Mine healed up on it’s own by the time I was a year old, and until it did they checked on it routinely to make sure it was healing. It hasn’t affected my life at all – I am an avid runner and love working out and pushing my heart rate up. I also had to see a cardiologist for an unrelated issue a few years ago and when they had to do an ultrasound they confirmed again that my VSD is completely healed and not leaking. I know it’s scary but i’ll be sending all the positive vibes I can that your little one has the same experience I did. Hang in there!

  33. Alana on July 28, 2015 at 7:14 am

    Sending the best vibes your way!!!

  34. cait @ piece of cait on July 28, 2015 at 7:20 am

    sending lots of love and positive prayers your way xo

  35. Sherri @ Adventures of Love and Marriage on July 28, 2015 at 7:46 am

    My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  36. Char @ Nutritiously Fit on July 28, 2015 at 7:54 am

    Oh Gina, I hope it repairs itself and I can only imagine how tough that must have been alone. I do love your perspective and your positivity alone will make this situation ok. Thanks for sharing the more personal stuff and I’m thinking of that baby of yours!

  37. Carrie W on July 28, 2015 at 8:11 am

    What a beautiful little face! Sending you guys love and healing vibes.

  38. Stephanie @ Whole Health Dork on July 28, 2015 at 10:08 am

    Hi Gina! I’m so sorry to hear this. It must be hard to hear news like this. I worked at Children’s Hospital Boston (#1 in pediatric cardiology!) and the VSD babies and kids always did great. On the spectrum of pediatric cardiology issues it’s usually one of the most mild. I don’t say this to minimize the impact of the diagnosis, but to let you know that there are great treatments and it won’t necessarily have to affect her life at all. Sending love your way!

  39. Erica on July 28, 2015 at 10:09 am

    Thinking of you Gina!! I’ll be sending good thoughts and prayers to you and your little girl. Miss you (and your Zumba class ;-)) XOXO – Erica

  40. Danica @ It's Progression on July 28, 2015 at 11:13 am

    I imagine this would be pretty scary news to hear. What’s great, like you said, is that your baby is otherwise growing healthy and strong! I’ll certainly keep her (and you and your family) in my prayers, that things will work themselves out. I’m glad you have Katy (and other commenters here) to talk about the condition with. It’s always so powerful to have an understanding support system!

  41. Cassie T on July 28, 2015 at 11:20 am

    I’m so sorry that you are dealing with this, but it sounds like you are doing amazing and focusing on the positive! Your baby girl is lucky to have you and such a loving family already! Hugs!

  42. Kate on July 28, 2015 at 12:26 pm

    Gina, I’m sorry to hear this, though it sounds like you and baby are in good hands and prepping for good care. Sending healthy thoughts and prayers. Take care of yourself and that baby! Kate

  43. Nicole on July 28, 2015 at 12:33 pm

    I never commented before but just wanted to say best of luck with everything on your journey and continue to focus on the positive which is a healthy baby overall. Your family is beautiful (Liv is literally the most adorable girl ever just sayin) and the baby girl will fit right in! xx

    • Fitnessista on July 28, 2015 at 10:58 pm

      thank you so much, nicole <3

  44. masala girl on July 28, 2015 at 3:01 pm

    as with everyone else, i was want to share the best of luck with you! no matter what happens, you’re a great momma & she’ll be iin the best hands. stay strong! <3 <3 hope all goes well with the birth! <3

  45. Mo on July 28, 2015 at 3:02 pm

    I’m so sorry to read this Gina. Sending love and prayers to you, Tom, Liv and the baby <3

  46. Lisa G on July 28, 2015 at 3:25 pm

    Will be praying for you all. And sending positive thoughts.

  47. Tracey on July 29, 2015 at 5:36 am

    My daughter (now 2) had the same thing! I made myself sick worrying about it so much and in the end it repaired itself 🙂

    • Fitnessista on July 29, 2015 at 10:37 am

      amazing! i hope ours does the same

  48. Liz on July 29, 2015 at 5:52 am

    Everything will work itself out!! Best of luck to your family and I’ll keep you all in my prayers juuust in case 🙂

    • Fitnessista on July 29, 2015 at 10:37 am

      thank you so much!

  49. Stephanie M on July 29, 2015 at 9:15 am

    Hi Gina! I am just returning from vacation and catching up on my fave blogs. I wanted to say that I am sending some prayers up for your little one! God will watch over her. My 26-year-old cousin had a severe form of VSD show up on the ultrasound. At her birth, there were a large team of doctors ready to whisk her into surgery to close up the hole. When they checked the x-rays or whatnot before surgery, they found that the hole had closed up completely, just before birth. It was a true miracle. Don’t forget that miracles happen every day! Can’t wait to see this sweet girl’s face in just a few weeks!

    • Fitnessista on July 29, 2015 at 10:27 am

      thank you so much for the prayers <3 that is beyond AMAZING. praying that something similar happens for us! xo

  50. Liz on July 29, 2015 at 1:21 pm

    Ugh, I am sorry about the news you received. It sounds like there are a lot of positive cases out there that turn out just fine which is promising! Scary nonetheless though. Never fun to deal with pregnancy scares – I have my own that popped up this week and trying to stay positive but it’s hard at times! I’m with ya! xo

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