This is our gender un-reveal! That’s right. We aren’t finding out what we’re having. This seems to be a choice that elicits strong reactions from most people. Here are a few popular ones:
“Oh my God, how can you NOT find out? I would dieeeee.”
“Good for you! That’s the best way to do it.”
“But what about the nursery?! How will you know what to buy?”
And then there’s the restrained, “Oh, interesting…”
Before I get into talking about why we’re making this decision, I want to say I have no judgment about other people’s choice to find out or be surprised. I think both ways are awesome cuz I mean, you’re growing a fricken human. How cool is that?! It’s a completely personal choice, and I respect whatever choice someone makes.
The truth is, I didn’t know what I’d want to do before I got pregnant. I always thought the surprise would be cool, but as someone who really likes to plan things, I didn’t think I’d be able to hold out. I also worried I wouldn’t feel as connected to the baby if I didn’t know what I was having. A funny thing happened, though, the second I saw that positive pregnancy test. I knew I wanted to wait.
We had gone through so much on our journey to conceive this baby that I could have cared less in that moment whether it was a boy or a girl; it was a baby, and that’s what I had been praying for all that time!
As my pregnancy has progressed, there have certainly been moments when both Zak and I have wanted to cave. Recently, when we had the anatomy scan, the ultrasound tech told us to look away when it came time to check between the baby’s legs.
“You mean all I have to do is turn my head a little and I could know?” Zak said.
“Stay strong, babe.” I implored.
Afterwards, I looked over at the tech and hated her a little bit for knowing something about my baby that I didn’t.
Zak says that if it weren’t for me, he would have found out the first second we could have possibly known. He jokes that he’s gotta plan out this little one’s life, but if this journey has taught us anything, it’s that things don’t always go to plan.
1. The best laid plans. So our first reason why we aren’t finding out has to do with this idea of plans. A very wise friend of mine told me that she had all these ideas of what it would be like taking her little girl to dance class or her boy to baseball practice, but the child she ultimately got, a boy, wanted nothing to do with baseball or sports at all for that matter. She said, “Your job as a parent is to take who you’ve been given and help it grow into the best version of itself. All the plans you have in your head are will be out the window in about 2.2 seconds.” Makes total sense to me.
It’s hard not to have expectations about what life with our little one will be like; the daydreaming is so fun, but I am also trying to remind myself to be open to whatever possibilities this child brings. Not knowing the sex of the baby helps keep me present and keep me grounded in this.
It’s also pretty cool that for nine months I get to know my baby’s personality through its kicks and movements as just “my baby,” rather than as my little boy or little girl.
2. The guessing game is fun. There are so many old wives tales out there. And everyone thinks they are a pregnancy soothsayer. Some people are bothered by everyone trying to predict, but I think it’s fun. Here are a few I’ve heard a bunch: If you’re carrying low, it’s a boy. If you’re craving sweets, it’s a girl. If you don’t get morning sickness, it’s a boy. If the heartbeat is over 140, it’s a girl. If you hold your ring over your belly with a piece of string and it moves back and forth, it’s a boy. But if it moves in a circle, it’s a girl!
We tried an elaborate one called the cabbage test. The cabbage test is where you boil cabbage in some water and then collect the purple water after it has boiled for about ten minutes. Then, you mix equal parts cabbage water and mother’s urine together. If it gets darker, it means you’re having a girl. If it becomes a lighter lavender color, it’s a boy (I know, it’s counterintuitive to our gender norms). Oh…and there’s the Chinese calendar, of course!
Here are my results:
Carrying low: boy
Craved salty at first but now I’m craving sweet: inconclusive
No morning sickness: boy
Heartbeat in the low 160s: girl
Ring on a string test went back and forth: boy
Cabbage test turned lighter: boy
Chinese calendar says: girl
Truth be told, everyone has a 50/50 chance of being right…or wrong! What I can’t stand are the “I told you so” people. I’m gonna get up on my little soap box here for a second. I’ve watched a lot of reveals where, almost without fail, the first thing out of people’s mouths is “I told you so.” Why is this the reaction? It’s just funny to me. You literally had a 50/50 shot. When this baby comes out of me, whether you predicted boy or girl, keep your “I told you so’s” to yourself.
3. There are hardly any good surprises left in life. Living in this information age, we can know just about anything. That leaves most of the surprises we end up getting in life to be bad ones. This is one of the few truly beautiful surprises life has left to offer, and I’m going to take advantage of it.
4. Push motivation. This is a HUGE one for me. Anyone who complains about not knowing the sex needs to remember that they’re not the ones pushing a watermelon through a dime-sized hole. If not knowing provides me with a little extra push incentive, they should be cheering me on! Obviously the baby is coming out no matter what, but to me, having that little extra surprise at the end feels like really good motivation to get through the pain.
5. It ultimately doesn’t matter. The minute this baby arrives, everyone says I will experience a love like I’ve never known before. I know this will be true. It won’t matter if it’s a boy or a girl, it will be our baby, and that will be enough.
Okay, so now the big question is…is Baby K a boy or a girl? What do you think?