I cry when I find out we’re having a boy. And not in the good way.
I have felt all along that I don’t really have a preference. All things being equal, I guess I lean a little toward a girl, but it feels minor, like it would just be easier because I am a girl and I would get it. C, however, wants a girl like WHOA. He is convinced it’s a girl from early on (based on exactly nothing), and I spend a lot of time reminding him that there IS a chance it might be a boy. I want to prep him, to make sure he is at least considering the possibility. You know. The FIFTY PERCENT possibility.
The day of our 20-week ultrasound (which is, I guess, when fetus nethers are big enough to be visible) is like Christmas morning. We are SO excited, and everyone is waiting on the news. As the tech moves the wand around, she seems perplexed. Our tiny person is not giving up the goods. The modest little thing has its legs crossed, no naughty bits in sight. In between attempts, she tells me to cough, drink cold water, walk around the office, and jump up and down, all in an effort to get it to move. After about a half hour of this–stand up, do some acrobatics, feel like a dipshit, and try again, the view opens up a little. She says, “I’m 90% sure it’s a girl. But just so we’re positive, go downstairs, get some breakfast, and we’ll try again.” A word of advice. If you are an ultrasound technician, DO NOT SAY SHIT LIKE THIS.
A GIRL! We are thrilled. I will never forget the image of C skipping (yup) down the hospital hallway. We get coffee. We come back up, I lay back down, she whips out the wand again, and there they are:
One look at those tiny, blurry testicles and my heart sinks. I plaster on as natural a smile as I can muster, holding back tears and so surprised at my response that I don’t know how to process it. As soon as we get to the car, I burst into tears. I cry all the way to my office. I try to sound upbeat when I call my parents, my best friends, my brother. I am unsuccessful.
I spend about a week grieving this news, and feeling like an asshole because of it. There are people, I know, who would happily take ANY baby they could get. Who would happily take this very baby boy and be overjoyed. What kind of ungrateful person am I? I have a healthy baby growing inside me, and I am sad about the clothes I won’t get to buy, the pink I won’t get to shellac my house with, the late-night mother-daughter talks I won’t have.
It isn’t until I pick C up from a rehearsal at a middle school one night that I start to feel better. There has been a dance, and the kids are pouring out the doors waiting to be picked up.
As I’ve told many pregnant friends since then, there is NOTHING like a thirteen-year-old girl in a sequined tube dress and four-inch heels to make you happy to be having a son.