Aw, thanks so much to all of you for your kind and congratulatory comments on my last post. I had wondered if the style of it might be too silly or too much, but I’m glad everyone seemed to enjoy it. You guys know how to make a girl feel good. 🙂 And it will be something so nice to return to in the years ahead, when I long to remember the joy and magic in that day. I’m glad I was able to successfully capture it and share it with every one of you.
And I’m not even sure I can adequately express what it means to me to learn that we have another little girl on the way. I am completely over-the-moon.I am ashamed to admit that I had hoped Skittle is a girl, ashamed because I know so many of you would give anything to have any child, regardless of gender (just as I would have). And ashamed because I feel that after trying so hard, I don’t have the right to hope for Skittle to be anything than exactly what God meant for this baby to be. And I do want Skittle to be exactly who she is, even if that person is someone who is more boy than any boy I might one day have.
But alas, I guess I am only human. Regardless of my infertile ovaries, I have plans for the future still, dreams of what shape our family will take. And while I do truly know that any shape will be beautiful, I have always wanted a house full of little girls. A house full of princess paraphernalia, pink party dresses, stuffed animals and baby dolls. A house full of giggles and laughter, of pigtails and headbands, of hugs and kisses for my husband from Daddy’s Little Girls. I want a sister for Cupcake, someone whom she can grow up with and bond with and understand. I hope they can share all the moments that I missed out on as a child because I had no siblings and I hope that they can be there for each other as sisters and best friends after Honey and I are both gone (a long, long time from now). Being Cupcake’s mommy, too, has inspired me to want more girls because I have so loved mothering this beautiful child. Over the weeks and months, there has been some grief in seeing my little girl grow up and wondering if I will ever get the joy of raising another girl from infancy, and now I know that I will. I’m such a girly girl myself and feel so comfortable being the mommy of girls, this just felt like the safer choice. And speaking strictly in practical terms, I am glad that I won’t have to fork over a lot of money for another baby wardrobe. We have nearly every one of Cupcake’s outfits that she has ever worn and, while I certainly will not be able to resist buying a few special items for Skittle, it is nice to know that we have all our bases covered and need only buy what we want to and what we can afford.
In a nutshell, that is why I wanted another girl — and why I am beside myself with joy after learning that Skittle is indeed a she. My husband, too, was hoping for this (he was even on Team Pink!), but his glee over our news has been a bit more subdued. The day after our party, we traveled three hours to attend my niece’s baptism and I was still on a high after seeing that pink cake less than 24 hours before. On the drive, I could not stop myself from bouncing in my seat and giggling and saying to him, “We’re going to have another girl.” He would always give me a small, quiet smile when I said that and one time, I asked him, “Why aren’t you more excited?!” His response: “Well, having a little girl doesn’t change my level of excitement for the pregnancy.” I loved him for saying that, but it got me thinking… Was I more excited because Skittle is a girl and not a boy? Would I have been disappointed if our cake was blue? I started to feel some guilt over that, some sort of worry that maybe my love for this baby is purely conditional. Sometimes, I still feel that way, even though I have since decided that it’s truly a non-issue. I know that, had our Big Reveal gone the other way and the inside of that cake was blue instead of pink, I would have been just as thrilled, but in a different way. Raising a little boy is different than raising a girl — everyone tells me so — and so are the emotions that are tied to that. And that’s okay.
And I do still hope that, one day, we will have a boy in this family. A sweet, rambunctious, bouncing baby boy that his sisters can dote on. I have always thought I’d have a son — and I have a small collection of baby boy clothes that I have purchased over the years (including while I was in London last October) to prove it. But for now, I am so, so happy that Skittle is a girl. I will admit to this, though: I feel an even bigger sense of responsibility now that I know that she is. I am a fan of Dr. Phil and he always says that the same sex parent is a child’s biggest influence. For my two little girls, that parent is me. And while I do believe that I am a good and decent human being who is always respectful to others, and works hard, and never forgets to send a thank you note, and gives so much of herself to those she loves, and is generous and independent, I think there is still a lot of work I have to do. I’m shy. I’m timid. I don’t often stand up for myself or speak my mind. I have a pathetic body image. I am so insecure. And I do not want my daughters to learn any of that from me. I want them to be strong. I want them to have the confidence and self-worth that I never have. I guess this is why parents always say that their children have made them into better people, because we are all trying to be the parents that we think our kids deserve to have.
In the end, I believe it will all work out in the best possible way. Our family will take the exact shape that it should. I, as a mother, will do the very best that I can, which will have to be enough. And our daughters, and any other children God decides to give to us, will become exactly who they are meant to be, and they will each be incredible in their own beautiful and special ways. Maybe this is too Polyanna optimistic, but such a belief system has not led me astray yet, and so I will hold onto it.
I do also want to add this: I still think of all of you. Whether you are still in the trenches, hoping and praying for a(nother) BFP, or somewhere in the middle of a pregnancy or the parenting of your first child, I think of you. I know I am incredibly lucky to be expecting a second child. That is, in fact, the feeling that has been overwhelming me over the last week: gratitude for my blessings. To have a second baby girl on the way feels as though I have won the lottery and it never escapes me that so many of you are still hoping for your first. And even if you’re holding that first child in your arms right now as you read this, I expect it is never far from your thoughts that this may be your one and only chance. You may not get another. I remember what that is like, and how and scary and sad and lonely it can be, the sort of sorrow it can evoke. You are not forgotten. And I can only hope and pray that, one day, each of you will see your family take the very shape that you hope for, too. xo