July 6, 2011
For weeks now I’ve had the little card picked out. It’s been sitting on my desk and I’ve been looking at it’s blank whiteness. I’ve been imagining what it would be like to read either word on that card. Boy. Girl. It was too hard to imagine either one so I’d clear my head and get back to work. Then I’d find my eyes drifting over to it again.
Doug and I have chosen different routes with our kids in terms of finding out their gender prior to birth. With Asa we just didn’t know until he was born and that was really fun. Then, with the next two boys we just had them tell us right there in that tiny little room. It was a little claustrophobic for me. My head was reeling from the thought of the baby’s forming brain and pumping heart, and I was holding my breath that she would say that everything was ok. There is nothing like seeing those little hands and feet swimming inside you. There is no feeling like the worry you feel for your child, even before it is born. Please be ok. Please be healthy.
This time we decided to have the ultrasound technician write down our news on my little card and not tell us there. I wanted to leave the room thinking of nothing but the health of my baby and I wanted us to have the space we needed to absorb the news. Outside. Alone. Just the two of us.
The day of our ultrasound came too fast. I wasn’t quite ready to know. Part of me really wanted another boy. I think four boys would be so incredibly fun. It’s hard to imagine our house with anything but boys in it. It’s just who we are as a family. Then there’s the part of me that, admittedly, has always wanted a daughter. I wanted to experience that difference. I wanted my boys to know what it’s like to have a sister. I wanted to have the same relationship with a daughter that I have with my mother.
The funny thing about pregnancy is that in addition to all the other physical changes you are going through, you are also highly emotional. Sometimes it’s not a good combination. I cried on the way to the doctor’s. I cried out of worry for my baby. I cried for the excitement of whatever we were told. I cried for the loss of whatever we were not going to get this time. I cried because I’ve been so incredibly blessed already with my three beautiful boys.
During the ultrasound we held hands. We squeezed hands when we saw the baby flip over completely. She said that it wouldn’t sit still for her picture. Of course it wouldn’t. None of my kids do. Doug mouthed the word “boy” to me and we both smiled.
We left the hospital with our sealed envelope in hand. We were ecstatic that the news was all good. Everything looked great. The baby was growing perfectly. We are so fortunate and we do not take that lightly.
We sat in the park and looked out at the water. I handed the envelope to Doug and said “you first”. I looked away. I couldn’t do it. He was quiet and I snuck a peek at his face. His mouth was open. He handed the card to me and here is what it said: