When I was pregnant with Mac, I had several doctors guesstimate what his birth weight would be. Most were clear that theirs was just a ballpark figure; none used an ultrasound to back up any claims.
On the day I delivered, though, a doctor literally felt my stomach (not quite like rubbing Buddha's belly, but close) and told me newborn Mac would weigh "between 7 and 8 pounds."
If I had to guess, I'd say three-quarters of babies are born in that general weight range.
Sure enough, our Mac was born 12 days early weighing 7 pounds and 10 ounces, squarely in the range the doctor predicted. He felt so proud to have been correct!
While my course of treatment and delivery were not affected my doctors' guesses as to Mac's size, I have friends with different experiences. One petite coworker was given a c-section after an ultrasound indicated her baby might be over 9 pounds. Hours later, after what she considers an "unnecessary c-section," her daughter was born weighing barely 6 pounds.
On the other hand, a friend was allowed to go a full week past her due date with the idea that her small (read: 6-ish pounds) baby needed more time to fatten up. When he arrived, he was well over the 9 pound mark.
Anecdotal evidence aside, I wasn't surprised when a friend posted the link to an article indicating how rarely ultrasounds accurately predict a baby's size.
I've always known that guessing a baby's weight is an art, not a science. I imagine doctors take into account the birth weight and current size of each parent, plus the size and weight gain of the mother and the growth pattern of the baby so far.
For the record, I was long (21.5") and lean (5 pounds, 4 ounces), born four full weeks early. Bradley was just as long and born full term, right around 9 pounds.
Mac was born on his own schedule, fully cooked - and I'm so thankful for that. I'm also beyond thankful that his delivery day wasn't affected, either through a recommended c-section or in any other way, by an inaccurate weight guess.
This isn't intended to be a preachy post, just a reminder of what we all know: you know your body and your baby best. Ultrasounds can indicate things, but they can't confirm weight down to a tee. Well, not until they invent an itsy-bitsy scale they can plop right under your tummy to determine your bundle's exact weight.
I trust and listen to my doctors, but I also appreciate that they included my and Bradley's thoughts into their determinations. And that most of them didn't treat their pre-delivery guesstimates to be spot-on predictions of what would come to be.
Moms and moms-to-be, have you had any experience with this? Eerily accurate or totally off-base guesses at your little ones' size?