Babe’s Anatomy

by Alison Friedman in Mommy's Musings, Pregnancy

Last week, we made the trek down the 405 to Beverly Hills to see a perinatal geneticist who focuses on fetal orthopedic and genetic disorders brilliant doctor. We were referred to Deborah Krakow by our regular OB, Dr. Fiiiiiine, because Mama was born, in case you didn’t know, with extra toes on my feet. Yes, the nurses counted and my mom plotzed — six toes on each foot, known as a genetic disorder called polydactyly. Look, if you’re going to be born with some kind of abnormality, a couple extra tootsies is not such a bad deal. But, Dr. Fiiiiiine wanted to rule out that the polydactyly wasn’t part of a greater classification of genetic disorders, so to Dr. Krakow we went.

Our 20-week anatomy scan was much more detailed and comprehensive than if we would have gone to the usual perinatologist that Dr. Fiiiiiine usually works with. This means we got to have a 20 minute session with the sonographer who measured every bit of Baby Friedman and confirmed, yet again, that she is all girl. Whew! It was fascinating to watch her examine every organ and point out many of the important areas. We’re starting to get really good at identifying fetal body parts: Alison and Bryan Friedman, M.D.


The sonographer was like the warm-up act. She got us all excited and in the mood and then in walked the Real Deal. The Big Cheese. The Big Shoo.

We weren’t sure what to expect from Dr. Krakow. She teaches at UCLA and has been on the forefront of many big research papers and journals, so we knew she had the brains. But we didn’t know what her bedside manner would be like. Not only was she brilliant, but she was so easy to talk to, like an old friend, and kept a very casual and light vibe in her ultrasound room. That’s our style! We cracked jokes and she bonded with Bryan about the marketing scam that is 4D ultrasounds (no such thing as 4D. It’s just movement, and as Dr. Brilliant said, just “bullshit marketing.” A woman after our own heart!). When she took a look at Baby Friedman’s vagina, she was delighted to see a “good looking hoo-ha.” Her words. Not mine. Love. (This brings me to the question: what is a good looking hoo-ha? And how do women of the world acquire such glowing reviews? Is there more to what we already know? As far as I know, I’m not supplying a Brazilian aesthetician and jar of hot wax up inside there).


I digress.

Dr. Brilliant also got down to business to check out what we were really there for. She counted every single digit and their corresponding bones to confirm that Baby Friedman has…

drum roll…

10 fingers.

and 10 toes.

Despite the 50% chance that our daughter would inherit my freaky feet, Bryan’s half helped to negate the acquisition. Also, Dr. Brilliant said that usually, genetic disorders like this one can skip a generation. But what about the fact that my grandparents and great grandparents walked through life with the appropriate number of digits? Well, the gene could start with me. Who knew I was such a trend setter? Except it’s in genes and not jeans. Not even designer ones.



After all the nerdy, clinical stuff, Dr. Brilliant had fun on the ultrasound machine and got some cool shots of our daughter in 3D and 2D images. It was cool to see her face and watch her little hands and feet put on a show. Our daughter likes to tap dance in utero (and I’m currently feeling her perform right now) and wave her hands like she’s practicing for Miss America pageants.

And then there’s that face. Sigh.




I have to admit, I’ve been struggling to find my connection with her because up until recently, our baby’s movements could not be felt and our few views into her womb world were anticlimactic. But seeing her move around and look like a very mini person was absolutely breathtaking. And I feel like I got to know her very well in those 40 minutes in Dr. Brilliant’s exam room.

Bryan and I left that appointment feeling great about this pregnancy, our relationship together as soon-to-be parents, and the future our daughter has. We have 19 or so weeks until we get to meet her, but we already feel like she’s such a great part of our lives.

  1. Rachel
    3/28/2011 9:51 AM

    Can I just say that the comment about your daughter’s “hoo haa” is hilarious. Hilarious. I am so glad you are so blunt and believe in sharing everything.

  2. Charlotte
    3/27/2011 9:56 PM

    Alison, you and Bryan are going to be the best parents and that little girl will be the luckiest little one around. The two of you are so special and have bonded with the little one already. You will witness what a miracle children really are. The good, bad and the ugly…they are still miracles. I love how you are documenting all of this. She will love reading it one day.

  3. Atrisha Newton Biesterfeld
    3/27/2011 3:10 PM

    Sound slike a great experience! I am happy for you and Bryan. Parenthood is truly an amazing blessing in life!

  4. 3/26/2011 5:23 AM

    Wow – Alison – what a great blog! Thank you for sharing such wonderful thoughts and pictures of your beautiful daughter. I cannot wait for you to experience the joy of Motherhood. It has been my most rewarding purpose in life, for the last 24 years. You will be a great Mommy! SO happy baby Friedman is anatomically fabulous! She will be even more fabulous the first time you hold her in your arms. Talk about true love….It doesn’t get any true-er.
    Sending you lots of warm hugs and love!