I’m laying on the bed in the ultrasound room, my belly exposed and covered in goo. The lights are dim and the room is big and comfortable. The bed is even like a real bed. You see, we’re not at a doctor’s office. We’re at a stand-alone, 3D ultrasound office. One of those places parents go when they just have to get a golden 3D picture of their baby before the little one arrives.
When the topic first came up, I made fun of the whole concept. There’s no medical reason to go (in fact they make you sign a form saying that you understand that they won’t make any diagnoses). It’s all vanity and craziness. So I said.
Then we discovered that we could find out the sex of the baby as early as fifteen weeks, instead of waiting for the medically indicated ultrasound at twenty weeks. We could know as early as three days ago if we were having a boy or a girl. Suddenly, I wasn’t talking smack anymore. I wanted to go.
So that’s how I found myself looking at my little baby on Saturday night, laying on a bed while we watched the ultrasound unfold on a big screen TV in front of us. The tech spent the first minute or two just getting in position: finding the baby, getting the best angle, etc. But we were there for one reason only: to find out the sex. So she didn’t waste any time.
“Are you ready to find out?” She was young and perky, but not in an annoying way. I liked her. But I couldn’t bring myself to answer her.
Instead, we just nodded, David holding Adeline and trying to get her to watch.
I thought the tech would tell us, but instead she started typing. The words came up slowly on the big screen, one letter at a time.
“It’s” she typed, and I held my breath, “a” . . .
I don’t know why, but when the word came up, I couldn’t even read it at first. Somehow, I just couldn’t believe it.
I’m having a boy!
I’m excited and relieved to know. We’re already talking names. But it’s more than that. There are emotions I never felt with Adeline.
For one thing, I have a big sister and I love being sisters and I kind of wanted that for my kids. I kind of wanted another girl. Not to mention, I have NO IDEA what to do with boys. I was telling myself that this time around wouldn’t be as bad because at least I’d know what the hell I’m doing. But this throws a wrench in that equation. I have to deal with a little penis. I just. I don’t know.
My sister tells me boys are crazy and that I’m in for a surprise. My friends with boys say the same thing about how wild their boys are. And yet the science I read tells me boys aren’t really that different, although they become more and more different as they’re shaped by the different expectations and responses of their parents and society.
And therein, I think, lies my real fear. Can I treat a boy just as neutrally as I’ve treated my little girl? I’m afraid I won’t be able to. I’m afraid I’ll saddle him with expectations from the beginning, expecting him to be a “little man”. When all I really want to do is just let him be himself.
“Him”. God, I can’t get over it.
I’m having a boy!!!!