"Do you want to know what you're having?"
I could barely stop myself as the 'YES!' threatened to gush out, giving me no time to prepare for the answer.
"You know?" I asked lamely, stalling for time, as if the ultrasound technician was playing a cruel trick on me.
Last time around we barely found out what variety we'd be having by the end of the third trimester. Ittbit lashed out violently at the wand of power even before the woman behind the monitor ever reached for the jelly. She drew up her legs and hid from view, refusing to play nice.
But this kid, it would appear, has no problem showing off.
Still my head wanted more time. I wanted to consider all the possibilities Thing 2 would offer, and all the implications that could come into play. I wanted more time to wonder and less time to plan.
A girl would mean they could share her Taj Mahal-sized bedroom, clothes and a bond that only sisters can know. A boy would mean food in the house would FINALLY get eaten and The Dad would no longer feel adrift in a sea of XX chromosomes (even the two dogs are female).
But a girl could mean the potential for hurtful comparisons and competition. And a boy would mean our lopsided house would have to yield its pitiful guest bedroom (a place we laughingly refer to as a guest prison for its cell-like size and windowless views) to the second born. In other words, the kid will get robbed.
Not the least of my concerns was the first born's own desire to have herself a sister in the second born.
From the moment I told her she was going to be a big sister she’s been talking about her sister. I've reminded her that it very well could be a boy, and she gives me the look of concern; like any moment someone in a white coat is going to come and take me away. "No. I'm having a sister."
Time was ticking away. For the lady in the lab coat only milliseconds had passed, but for me it seemed an eternity. I had to know. I couldn't endure some notation on a report, filed away in a folder with my name on it, hidden from me. I loathe surprises.
"Yes! Yes! I want to know."
She turned the screen a little more in the direction of my craning neck and pointed. "Those are definitely boy parts."
I can barely describe the emotions that swept through me. I was unexpectedly elated, worried and nervous. I spent the rest of the day wondering how was I going to tell Ittybit?
Just come out with it. Honesty is the best policy.
"Honey, I found out today you're having a brother."
Her eyes exploded into tears. "But I don't want a brother," she wailed.
I scooped her up and told her the upside. "Oh honey, a brother is a wonderful thing. It's really better than a sister. You won't have to share your room, you won’t have to share your best girl toys. It will be wonderful, you'll see."
"But I don't want sister either," she cried. "I don't want a brother OR a sister."
"But honey, remember we talked about this?"
"Yes, but I wanted a BABY."
"Well that's good, because that's what we're getting. I promise."
And with that she stopped crying and smiled.
"Oh, OK. Can I have some more peanut butter?"