A big topic of discussion among pregnant women and their significant others is “finding out.” This refers, of course, to whether you’re going to find out the sex of the baby (for the record, I still feel uncomfortable referring to a fetus as a baby, but it seems weird and technical to call it a fetus) before he or she is born.
It seems that there are two predominant camps: those who want to find out so they know what to buy for the kid and those who want to be surprised at birth. As usual, I fit into neither.
I was all about finding out as soon as possible. Usually, this happens around 20 weeks if you have the “anatomy scan.” We were able to find out way back during week 12, because I had CVS. That’s crazy early, and I thought this was awesome.
I didn’t want to find out so we’d know whether to buy a bunch of blue or pink shit for the baby. I hate that kind of thing, and I refuse to buy or even register for any boy-specific stuff. Of course, I’ll get the kid little Denver Nuggets, Chicago Bears, and Iowa Hawkeyes outfits (remember, as a White Sox and Cubs couple, we’re abstaining from baseball gear), but I’d do that for a girl. Trust me.
I’ll also get him all kinds of sports equipment, but I’d do that for a girl, too. I’m really into sports, and it’s only natural for me to want to pass that on to my kid, if he’s interested. That said, I’ll also expose him to art, music, literature, writing, cooking, and anything and everything that he might possibly learn to love one day. I have no idea what he’s going to be into, and I want to give him as many good, constructive options as possible.
So I didn’t want to find out the sex because it will have any effect whatsoever on how I’ll treat the kid. As far as I’m concerned, boy and girl babies need the same things, and my behavior as a parent should be the same for either.
I wanted to find out because, as I’ve very quickly learned during this pregnancy, I want to know as much about this kid as I can and I want to know it as soon as possible. I guess I’m impatient like that, which doesn’t bother me. It’s awesome to already know that I’m going to have a son, and it’s so nice to be able to refer to him as “he” instead of “it” — it’s amazing how much closer I feel to him now that he’s not an “it.” It’s awesome to see boy kids, whether they’re little kids or teenagers, and think wow, I’m going to have one of those. It kind of blows me away.
Of course, there are some boy-specific things we’ve had to consider, like circumcision and preventing pee spray during diaper changes. But I think that the overwhelming majority of parenting is the same whether you have a girl or a boy. The big life lessons are the same whether you’re male or female — treat people with respect and the way you want to be treated and all that.
As for the second camp, the people who want to be surprised at birth, honestly I find some of them a little smug. If you want to wait, cool, but it’s a little tiresome when people are all pleased with themselves for waiting for the surprise. Let me tell you, finding out at 12 weeks is no less of a surprise than finding out at birth. Unless you’re psychic, it’s a surprise no matter when you find out. And you should never assume that everybody who wants to find out is doing it because they have backass gender ideas and want to start molding their little manly man or fairy princess from day one.
One more reason I’m glad we found out when we did: our anatomy scan was mostly fine but revealed pyelectasis, which is dilation of the kidneys. It’s likely this will go away on its own and will result in no problem to the kid. At worst, he might need surgery after birth — but chances are good that it’s nothing. This condidion is much more common (and, as I understand it, less of a big deal) for boys than for girls. So if I didn’t know the sex, I’d probably be more worried about it than I am.
Also, this makes us need only one name. I’m pretty sure we have it and it’s awesome.