Tuesday 23 November 2010

Is it a boy or girl?

It can be difficult having a baby in a foreign country, especially in a country where the language is still not fluent for you. I may have been living in Italy now for a little more then four years, but I am still no where near fluent. Yes, I can get by, I am understood by most people but I am not fluent.

A few weeks ago I went for an ultrasound to check babies growth. Bel fidanzato had to work so I went with his mother and our sister in laws mother. We went to a different hospital from the usual, but it seems to be the case that in hospitals the doctors don't want you to actually see the ultrasound screen...The screen was positioned facing as far away from me as possible, so I was trying to push myself up to I could get a better look. The doctor kept telling me to lie back down and that he would tell me what was going on. He didn't of course, and I gave up trying to look since it became evident that I wasn't going to get a glimpse and even if I could then I would not have seen anything. Baby was moving around in what I assumed was an agitated state as the ultrasound wand was bothering him. The doctor then stopped pushing and lightly brushed my stomach to get the measurements he needed and nothing more.

Now, whilst he was ignoring me, he was calling out measurements to the assistant who was writing them down. I gasped, shocked when they called out 'femmina.' (female)
'But it's a boy!' I cried after hearing that my little baby boy was indeed a little baby girl.
'Who said anything about the sex.' said the assistant not so nicely.
'Um, you said femmina...'
'Femur, not femmina.' She sourly clarified.

Oh, ok so they were talking about the length of his thigh and not his sex. Oh...having a baby in a different country, in a different language can be stressful!

For this reason I was very happy to begin the first of my 10 session prenatal class today. The hospital arranges a course and even though I'm sure I'll forget everything they teach us, I wanted to try and pick up some useful vocabulary for the delivery itself. I know the word for push in Italian, but birthing wise that's about it! I was pleasantly surprised by the first session. It was great to meet other pregnant women and to find out that some of my ailments are their ailments too, some of my concerns were theirs and some of my crazy thoughts were not so crazy after all. My twin sister told me that in Australia you can visit the birthing suites before actually giving birth, and I was convinced that here, at the public hospital they would offer no such thing - but I was wrong! I'm looking forward to next week and hearing more about why we should bring chocolate into the delivery room. Yep, I think I'll enjoy the next 9 sessions.


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Lisa Chiodo said...

Femur, not femmina!! very funny, I can so relate to your dilema (not through having a baby in Italy) but through experiencing Italian Hospitals when my back went out. I was put in the geriatric contagious ward and that was an experience!! Wishing you all the best with your prenatal classes.. ciao Lisa

LindyLouMac said...

Sorry I should not laugh as I could feel your panic, but I am sure you think it is funny in retrospect. Sounds like you will enjoy the antenatal classes and maybe make a friend or two in the process.

Sarah Elizabeth said...

The idea of having a baby in Italy terrifies me for this very reason. My Italian is by no means fluent either and when there's technical language involved I'm lost (I don't think that labour is covered in any Italian language course!) I will be counting on you for advice when we decide to start a family! Good luck! x x

Leanne was in Italy now in Australia said...

Hi Cheri Passell,
Thanks :)

Hi Lisa Chiodo
You were put in the geriatric contagious ward!!!! i don't believe it - now that would have been an experience...how funny!

Hi LindyLouMac,
You can laugh, I think it's funny now, but at the time I was so shocked since I've got 'boy' things for the baby now!

Hi Sarah Elizabeth,
I'll give you any advice that I can when you decide to have a family :)