It’s a boy! A muddy puddle loving, handsome, mini-version of my very own husband…an actual boy! Finding out the gender of our currently cabbage sized future child was something that we had never really questioned. Being a super organised person myself, I wanted to know exactly what I would be needing and what to buy, before our little bundle arrived. Rowan (my husband), also decided that he would like to know; for him it was more about bonding and being able to visualise what is going on in that ever-growing stomach of mine.
Finding out the gender of your baby has becoming more common in recent years, although I do still meet lots of parents who don’t find out and their argument is very strong. Simply put – it is the biggest surprise you will ever have, and one of the few mysteries of nature that remain in this world we now live in, where everything is instant and predicted! I actually TOTALLY agree with this, however my desire for getting everything ready and wanting to do things like buy outfits and decorate the nursery, outweighed that decision and so off we went for what would then be our fifth scan to date.
I toyed with the idea of waiting until 20 weeks, when the scan would be clearer and the gender more obvious, but excitement got the better of me and four weeks after our official 12 week scan, we took ourselves off to BabyBond in Wimbledon for the big reveal. At the beginning of our pregnancy, I had no real idea of whether I either wanted or thought, I was having a boy or a girl. I am possibly one of the world’s most girliest girls; my whole life has been surrounded by pink accessories, fluffy bunnies (literally!), and anything pastel – but my preference for a boy or a girl has never really been something I had thought about (at least I didn’t think so). I always just wanted a baby.
From when the bump started showing, every single client, friend or family member I bumped into told me I was definitely having a girl. My first trimester symptoms apparently also matched those of expecting a girl too – so I must admit I had started to think along those lines for a few weeks in the run up to the scan. I would be lying if I said I hadn’t also bought my baby niece the cutest rabbit dress for Christmas from mini Boden, and also bought an extra for our future child “just in case”. Perhaps subconsciously there had been some kind of desire for a girl, but I have also spent years joking that three boys would make up a great little football team, and dreaming of Rowan taking them all off to Rugbytots on a Saturday morning whilst I had “Mummy” time (not that I have thought about having babies much!!!!)… ha!
When we arrived at the clinic, we checked in and the receptionist clearly stated that although we were there for a gender reveal scan, there was no definite answer at this stage and to make sure that we realised that. This had been part of my reason for coming to an earlier scan, as I have met several clients who have been told they were having one gender, and decorated a whole nursery in pink only to find out it was a boy – so I was adamant I would have at least two scans to find out! One being the private early scan, and then the second being the NHS scan at 20 weeks.
And so it began – the best thing about having a scan post 12 weeks was that it was not necessary to have a full bladder! This nearly killed me on the previous scan and I didn’t enjoy the scan as much as I could have, for fear of bursting. This time around it was much more relaxed and we heard the baby’s heartbeat almost straight away, which was super reassuring. Then the big question came, did we really want to know? After both agreeing yes, the sonographer started rooting around until finally she said with a very definite tone “it is 100% a boy – and he is definitely not shy!”. Cue Daddy proud moment!
What followed was a very strange gush of excitement, with a small tinge of sadness at saying goodbye to the idea of having a girl. As I mentioned, I genuinely hadn’t really had a preference up until then – however as she told us it was a boy, I had the tiniest prick of a tear in my eye for the girl I was told by everyone I was having, but followed by the most enormous “uh oh – here comes trouble” excitement. We looked at each other and exchanged only a few words initially almost like we were in shock (Rowan had also been guessing girl), but of course feeling genuinely happy about our new little addition to our family.
My original plan had been to keep the gender a secret for four weeks until the 20 weeks scan, which would hopefully then confirm the sex for us and we would then have this amazing gender reveal party with pink or blue cakes and balloons (the fantasy). However, the reality was given we were told “100%” it was a boy, the first thing we wanted to do was call our families and let them know. I remember it well, as it was voting day and we had to run in and vote between facetiming parents and then celebrated by hitting Byron Burger (because of course boys love burgers!) where I treated myself to a glass of red wine too!
From an organisational point of view, I should have really waited still to confirm the sex before spending all my hard-earned money on cute, and old-fashioned baby boy clothing that arrived in those weeks that followed. Luckily though, the NHS scan did confirm that he was indeed still looking like a boy! When she asked us at the beginning, we had decided not to tell her (my psychology background was informing me that if we told her it was a boy, she would look for it being a boy and so on…), we wanted to be 150% sure! I did though keep saying things like “oh look at him”, and find myself saying “or her, or whatever” to try and make it less obvious that really, we already knew! I am not sure we did a good job of being convincing first time parents who had no clue on the gender, but the sonographer didn’t let on if she had already sussed us. Which she probably had, as after our reaction she did turn and ask “are you ok?”.
Now I have only experienced having a baby boy so far, so I wouldn’t know anything about expecting a girl, but there have been some strange emotions cropping up every now and then when thinking about the little man we have created! At first and throughout, it’s been the feeling of extreme excitement and just being hugely grateful that the baby has got this far (26 weeks now!). He is alive and well (and kicking like a boss this week!), so all is good. Then there have also been moments of almost feeling like he is more Rowan’s baby than mine, because it will be a mini him – harder to see myself in a little boy I think?
Sometimes I find myself talking to my dog Loki, and saying things like “it’s me and you Loki, all girl’s together” (bizarre or normal?!?), I have also had thoughts on how this impacts relationships with parents, mother in-law, and what sort of relationship it means I have with him – given I only know about being the eldest daughter and how that goes. I guess knowing in advance gives you more time to focus on these things, whereas finding out at birth means you just thrown yourself into it…
With hopefully the best combo of Mummy and Daddy’s best bits, I am sure this little guy will be a little legend, who will grow to love pink scatter cushions and how girly his Mummy is, whilst finding out all about mechanics and how things work from his Daddy. Team Pink or Team Blue, knowing in advance, or not until birth…there is nothing more exciting than just knowing that you are bringing a little mini person into this world!