NOTE: I thought long and hard about actually writing this post. I hemmed and hawed thinking about how it might come off and might be upsetting to some readers. The last thing I want to do is upset anyone, but in the end, this blog is for me. I intended it to be a record of my thoughts and feelings as I dealt with infertility and now pregnancy. As such, I feel I would be remiss in not writing this post because it has been at the forefront of my mind for days now, which means that it is meaningful enough to me to document. I apologize in advance if anyone is upset, but please understand that these are my thoughts and I can’t really control how I feel. As always, I welcome comments, but if you don’t have anything nice to say, please don’t say anything at all.

I’ll be completely honest. Both Mark and I had hoped for a boy. The reasons why are numerous and I won’t go into a lot of details, but we both really hoped for a boy. Though we wanted a boy, we both figured that we would have a girl, not because of any intuition, just because it seemed like that’s what would happen. As pessimistic and awful as it sounds, after all that we had been through to get pregnant and all of the things that went wrong along the way, we figured that we would end up with the opposite of what we wanted. A “things never go the way we expect them to” kind of mentality, I guess. I tried to prepare myself for that possible outcome, but try as I might, I still had it stuck in my head that we would have a boy.

In my mind’s eye, I always pictured our family with a little boy. Long before we started trying to get pregnant I always thought that we would have boys. Obviously I was very aware that the odds were just as good that we would have a girl versus a boy, but it just never really clicked with me that we would have a little girl. In fact, I was so confident that we would end up with a boy, I bought a handful of little boy clothes at a garage sale last summer before our first IVF cycle.

At an appointment a few weeks ago, I asked the doctor about my prior bleeding episodes and asked if he thought that since I’d been spot free for a couple of weeks that I was done bleeding completely. He humored me and offered to do an u/s to check on it. During the u/s he asked us if we were going to find out the sex and if we wanted to know that day because he thought he caught a glimpse of something. We said yes, but our baby didn’t want to cooperate anymore and both the doctor and u/s tech were unwilling to tell us what they saw since it was such a quick glimpse at an early stage. I left the office disappointed that we were teased like that, but feeling pretty confident that it must be a boy. To me it seemed that boy parts would be much more easily recognizable at a quick glance than the three lines that indicate girl. I talked to other women about it and they all agreed that it was probably a boy if they “saw something.”

Any progress that I may have made in trying to prepare myself that the baby was a girl, which was minimal at best, was completely shot at that point. I would catch myself referring to the baby as “he” and looking at nursery ideas for a little boy. I found myself gravitating towards the boy sections at department stores, adoring all of the cute little boy outfits and imagining our baby wearing them. I was sure that we were going to have a little boy.

On Friday, as I lay on the u/s table, those three lines came up on the screen and absolutely took my breath away. I choked out the words “It’s a girl, isn’t it?” and tried to maintain my composure. I was inexplicably on the verge of tears. I couldn’t even look at my husband, knowing that I would completely lose it if I did. The rest of the u/s was a blur, but I managed to keep it together. We were sent back out to the waiting room, where I sat in shock looking at the u/s pictures until we were taken back to an exam room. We found ourselves alone in the room waiting for the nurse practitioner and I tried to put on a brave face. I looked over at my husband and asked him if he was disappointed. He said he wasn’t and that he was just excited to know so we could start planning. I told him that I was disappointed and I couldn’t hold back the tears anymore. They came in an uncontrollable flood.

It seemed so irrational to me, to be crying over the gender of my baby. All we ever wanted was a family. There were no gender conditions on our dreams of having children. So why was I so upset? Without realizing it, my vision of our family with a little boy had slowly become a dream, and while our dream of having a baby appears to be coming true, an unconscious, yet no less significant, dream appears to be dying. In all likelihood, this baby will be our last. I cannot put myself though all that we went through emotionally to get to this point again, it’s highly unlikely that we will be able to afford adoption in the near future, and the chances of us conceiving naturally are close to zero. We will probably never have the little boy of my dreams. And not having a boy is by no means a bad thing, it just takes time to adjust. I have no reservations whatsoever about having a girl, it’s just not what I expected.

After our appointment, we got in the car for a four hour drive and spent a good chunk of the time discussing room ideas and little girl names. When we arrived in our destination city, we went to a consignment sale and picked out our very first gender specific purchases for our little girl. We called the grandparents-to-be and told them they were going to have a granddaughter. Little by little, it’s becoming a reality to me. Last night I grabbed all of the little baby clothes that we’ve purchased along the way and threw them in the wash. The vast majority are gender neutral, but as I was pulling them out of the washer and putting them in the dryer, I’d come across a pink sleeper, or a little pink sock and think “these are for our baby girl.” This time the thought took my breath away in an entirely different, and good, manner.

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