I read a blog post yesterday about expectations of having children, people expecting you to want a girl after a boy and a boy after a girl and it really made me think.
Ever since I announced I was pregnant last April, everyone assumed we ‘hoped’ for a little girl. Sometimes people have preferences, you can’t deny that. I really wanted a little boy first time round. Truth is, Scott really did. He really wanted a little girl but I didn’t actually mind at all. Infact, I was really expecting a little boy and wanted another one. I loved the name we had chosen for our ‘boy’, whilst we waited, we were team yellow. Throughout my pregnancy my inklings towards the baby being a girl or boy changed day to day, the pregnancy was similar, I had sickness but the cravings were so different. Of course we did all the wives tales and I looked at the skull theory because I was excited about our baby and wanting to know, everyone loves a surprise and I love waiting but I still wanted to know what my baby was, like I wanted to know what they would look like, smell like, weigh etc.
We had a growth scan at 34 weeks and the sonographer referred to our baby as a ‘she’. Naturally, I totally lost my s***! She claimed it was a slip of the tongue and hadn’t seen but now I think she did know and it was a slip of the tongue by announcing accidentally. The poor woman wanted to ground to eat her up! In no way, did I feel any different towards my bump. My excitement remained and I could not wait to meet my little person.
Once our baby arrived and was delivered, I held them in the pool, the cord was really short so the baby stayed low down in the water. Squealing in delight at the arrival on our little person, the little person was the spitting image of her brother. We didn’t even look. We presumed our baby was another boy and the delight was pure. The midwife reminded us to ‘check’ after referring to our baby as a ‘he’ and our baby was infact a little ‘she’.
My feelings did not change. We still had a beautiful, healthy baby, who I loved and adored with every inch of me.
Then the announcement came. Almost everybody replied with:
“Awww, perfect, one of each!”
I found this comment so insulting and the more I heard it, the angrier I got. The only thing perfect about my two children, other than everything because they are mine, is that they are both healthy. It makes no difference of their gender and it still doesn’t. I am sure as they get older the balance of boys and girls will shine through, but currently it makes absolutely no difference. I do need some girlyness in my life, don’t get me wrong, there is nothing better than being farted in the face and constantly cleaning the toilet seat and generally being harassed by my 4 year old but the idea of spa days and nail painting makes me daydream for hours. I was never that girl, I am now, but I wasn’t as I grew up so I can’t expect Emeline to be the same. The fact that I sit painting Jenson’s nails also makes me laugh, screw you stereotypical expectations!
The ridiculous comments continued and I am so pleased people are happy for us, don’t get me wrong, but it just wound me up that people were so naive and I guess a little insensitive, I am also not sure why I felt so defensive about it. I have people close to me who struggle to conceive and infertility is also close to home so I know not to take it for granted. It got worse with some comments, such as:
“You are so lucky to have a boy and a girl”
I did snap at that, no, I am lucky I can have children and I am so lucky that so far, they are healthy and bloody gorgeous.
“Wow, you’ve done it the right way, a boy and then a girl for him to look after.”
I can guarantee this girl will hold her own, especially if she is like her Mummy! Who even knew there was a right way to have children? It’s like you have a choice!
Immediately, it is assumed that we will not have any more children because why would we?! We have a boy and a girl!! I actually couldn’t say whether we would have anymore as there are a million other things to think about but I also feel I want to as the perfect ‘2:4’ family drives me insane and I don’t want to be on that pedestal!
Each and every single child is a blessing, a beautiful gift that I will be forever grateful for, I love my two, more than anything and I know that a mum of 28 boys or 28 girls would feel exactly the same. I know everyone is different and some feel disappointed but long term, how could you be? Most parents are proud of their children for who they are and love them for that exact reason, not because they are a girl or boy!!