If I had known what the ultra sound room looked like, I would have insisted on a time in which my mom and the boys could have come. It was roomy with chairs for six with a big flat screen hanging on the wall, hooked to the ultra sound machine. It was impressive. Baby delivering was lucrative.
As we started it, the doc asked, “So what do we want?”
The Husband: A Girl!
The Doc: Then I’ll call her a she until we know.
I rolled my eyes and concentrated on the blurb that turned out to be my baby. And the little stinker was kneeling. The med student engaged us in conversation where we mentioned we had two boys already.
Med student: What do they think?
Me: Well, the two year old has no idea what train wreck is going to hit him. The four year old is pretty excited. First he wanted a girl. But then he wanted a bald baby. So if it’s a bald baby, it has to be a boy. He decided we’ll name him Kevin. Or Elephant.
Med Student: Kevin? Like from Up?!
Me: I guess so.
Doc: It looks like Kevin is going to be a good name. More socially acceptable than Elephant.
The Husband: Are you sure?
We stared at the screen as she moved the instrument around for a good picture of the boy parts.
Doc: Well, I checked several times to make sure that wasn’t the umbilical cord. But that defiantly looks like boy parts.
Yup. They sure did.
We watched in silent as she studied the heart and head, explaining what we saw. Tears formed in my eyes, but I forced them back.
As we left the office with all the pictures, The Husband turned to me.
The Husband: I’m really disappointed. I totally thought this was a girl. What are the odds? Don’t worry, babe, we can always adopt or try again.
Me: I think this will be the last pregnancy. I don’t know if I can take more vomiting and peeing my pants. I’m a little disappointed too. But we really have to rush because I have to make chicken and dumplings at my mom’s.
I told my family as I prepared dinner. Then when everything was cooking, I called my BFF, who rambled on about her day until I mentioned I went to the doctor.
BFF: Damnit. I should have called you. It’s on my calendar! Well?!
Me: It’s a boy.
BFF: Oh, honey!
Me: I know. It’s ok. I only wanted to cry a little bit.
And then I cried. I cried for five minutes straight. As my BFF told me it was ok to be disappointed, that it didn’t mean I was a bad mom or that I wouldn’t love the baby any less, it was ok. I stopped.
Me: So I’m a mom of a troop of boys.
Me: It’s going to be fun.
And I felt better as we talked.
I always pictured having a daughter, even as a child. But what do I need a girl for? Someone who would bake and cook with me. I never wanted to be in the kitchen when I was a kid, unless it was baking. My brother learned to cook at my mother’s side. I learned after I left the house. Did you know there’s a wrong way to eat a tomato? Someone to shop with me? I hate shopping, except with certain people. In college someone would drag me to the mall, and I would sit with the boyfriends (with a backward nod and How’s it going) as I nearly died of boredom as the girl tried on thing after thing. Play faeries with? Actually the boys love Tinker Bell. They love my little pocket toys and my faeries. I guess I’ll be buying the Tinker Bell movies for Christmas. Doing a little girl’s hair? I hate doing hair. As a little girl, I would cringe as my mom put the dead hair she pulled out of the brush in my hands, and that was after begging and sobbing not to make me hold it. To teach someone to wear make-up? I only wear make-up at grown up events.
As I talked to the BFF, I told her what I (and she) believed. God gives us what we need; not what we want. How easy would it be to raise a feminist girl? A tomboy and princess all rolled into one? Easy. (So says the woman without daughters.) But I have to raise feminist boys. Boys that will go through a stage that girls are yucky, a stage where girls are stupid, a stage when girls are just to mess around with. I get to crack heads and teach manners. I have to be stronger to prove women are strong. I also have to bone up on my sports skills so they know exactly how a girl throws. (In my peak, I could throw a softball with one bounce from the back of centerfield to home plate.) I have my work cut out for me, but I plan on raising the good guys that any mother would be proud to call son one day.
I think I cursed myself. I said on some radical feminist blog that it’s an adult that makes a toy gender specific. What makes a car a boy toy? What makes a doll a girl toy? Then I turned around and told my pen pal that I couldn’t find any craft kits for boys because they were all about making jewelry and spa stuff. My pen pal asked, “Wouldn’t your boys love making sparkly jewelry?” Damnit. Yes, they would. Just like Tornado E would be thrilled with a Tinker Bell doll. And wings.
As my BFF and I began to end our conversation, she giggled.
BFF: The Husband was sweet to be disappointed. But I think he wanted you to have a girl because he thinks the boys are for him. (pause for breath) What he doesn’t realize is they are all for you. Besides boys are closer to their mothers.
I smiled. She was right, as usual. Didn’t I just read a book about this?
That night as The Husband crawled into bed, he tried to cheer me up because he hadn’t realized I was so over being sad.
The Husband: Babe, you’re going to one protected woman.
I smiled as I pictured myself surrounded by three strapping boys.
Me: Don’t you forget it.
The Husband: Hey, I’m one of them!
Sure, you are.
Thank you to all the wonderful people who commented on A Dark Secret. You rock my world and made me feel so much better. I’ll answer everyone later today, but I thought I would get this up for my East coast readers.