Gender Reveal Blues: Not What You Hoped For?
You wait 20 very long weeks to find out the biggest news of your life: Will you be having a boy or a girl? If you're like me, you couldn't hardly stand it! Ah, the suspense! And then, suddenly you hear the doctor say "It's a boy!" or "It's a girl!", and it's as if you know this little guy or girl inside you in a whole different way. You're not having a baby, you're having a daughter, or a son, and that makes being a mom in just a matter of months that much more real.
Autumn Reeser—who I love, love, love from The O.C., Entourage and No Ordinary Family—just announced in a totally adorable gender reveal photo, complete with baby blue balloons, that she's expecting a son! She's due November 24 (just four days before Thanksgiving—now that's something to be thankful for!). Already the proud mom to son, Finneus, 2, it does beg the question: Was she just the teensiest bit bummed when she found out she'd be having another boy?
I've known women who've exclaimed to friends, family and anyone who would listen, "I want a girl!" or "I want a boy!" as soon as they found out they were pregnant. Others play it cool when asked what they're hoping for, by replying: "I'll be happy either way as long as my baby's healthy." That's true, but only to a point (For my first—a boy—it was totally true when I said I didn't care either way, but like Autumn if I have a second, I'll be pulling for a girl).
Most of us—whether we admit it to ourselves or not—have preconceived notions of what we want to have: some moms dream of having little girls they can shop, gossip and get mani/pedis with; others want a sweet and doting mama's boy, while dads may dream of having a mini me to throw around the football with, or a little princess who can wrap daddy around her little finger.
Especially after you already have one child, the natural inclination is to want whichever sex you don't already have. As one of my friends would say, "I want a pair, not a matching set." (Way to turn your kids into objects! But I get the point.) But what if you don't get what you want? It's ok to be sad. You had already envisioned your whole life with your future baby: going wedding dress shopping with your little girl, or skydiving with your rough-and-tumble boy, crying at her college graduation, cheering him on at his first Little League game. You're allowed to mourn that life that will never be. But then you have to move on. You can't let it consume you. It's time to get excited about the baby you're having, because it's going to be as equally amazing, with just as many spectacular memories to be made together.
So getting back to my original question, Was Autumn at all disappointed she was having another son? According to her website, maybe just a tad. She says, "The pregnancy has been following pretty much the exact same pattern as my first, and although it would have been nice to balance things out with a girl, I wasn't surprised to find out we were adding another awesome little man to our mix."
I think we can all learn from her example, and not proclaim one way or another whether we want a boy or a girl. I like that she took the positive approach—especially since there's a digital trail her son could find one day. You don't want the poor kid to think he wasn't wanted. That has a lifetime of therapy written all over it!
TELL US: Would you be just the tiniest bit bummed out if you found out you were having a boy? A girl?
Image of Autumn Reeser courtesy of Shutterstock.