Nobody knows…

Standard

…but Brian.

Here’s the gist of our slightly unusual decision about finding out the gender of Potato. Initially, neither Brian or I wanted children. I did a slow, but thorough 180 starting almost two years ago. What clinched it was a conversation with my older sister after she got pregnant with Little E. She said, “I never really wanted kids. So I told God if he wanted me to have kids, He’d have to change my heart about it. And He did.” To read a FANTASTIC (recently nominated for honorable mention) essay in her own words about transition to motherhood, click here. I ended up praying a similar prayer and God has answered resoundingly.

Now I wanted kids, and Brian still wasn’t so sure. But after much discussion he agreed. (Turns out his dad also really didn’t want any kids initially, so it must be a Keefer male trait). My feelings have oscillated between “I am CRAZY! There is no way I want one of THOSE things following me around and spewing foul substances out of every oriface.” and “I’ve handled cleaning up floor and cabinet covering splatter diarrhea from a full grown Irish Wolfhound for three days straight coming off of night shifts picking up a wide variety of people covered in equally noxious…stuff. I can SO be a mom.” Brian has been pretty stoic and more focused on how to budget. (Side Note: I love his straightforward, logical, not easily excitable self! It allows me to bounce off the walls all I want without worrying about forgetting or messing up something important.) Having made the decision to be a dad, he has proceeded with Brian like planning, actively researching and voicing an opinion on everything baby.

Well I decided I didn’t want to know the gender of the baby until birth. It seemed like fun, I saw no reason to know ahead of time, we had a boy and a girl name picked out, we knew it wasn’t going to be twins, and I figured I’d stock up on some pretty cheap, generic onsies for those first few months anyway after hearing the catastrophic poop stories of my niece that ruined more than one outfit.

I think it was after the first OB appointment around 9 weeks, Brian and I were in the car and he said something like, “You know, it might be easier for me to prepare for the baby if I knew the gender beforehand.” A simple statement that meant a great deal. This was already one of the largest undertakings of his life, there were already a thousand unknowns of parenting he couldn’t plan for, knowing at least the gender would give him a way to mentally and emotionally prepare as much as he could for the soon to be life-changing addition to our family. By asking him to wait until the very last possible minute to know the gender, I was essentially asking him to put all his meticulous research and planning aside and fly by the seat of his pants like I tend to do for everything (planning for me is a HUGE stressor, for him it’s a coping method).

It was a pretty easy choice after that. He’d find out, I wouldn’t. He could tease me for the next several months and I could mock attempt to weasel the gender out of him. More importantly, he could take time to prepare himself to meet this new little person. I am LOVING not knowing. It’s great. I’m really liking this whole pregnancy thing (except when I feel bloated or slow running) and I have no issue with talking and poking and laughing at my little Potato completely unaware of its gender. It makes no difference if it’s a girl or a boy. I can’t wait to find out…at the end, but right now I’m enjoying the anticipation.

An unexpected side effect: I knew my siblings (on both sides) might be a little impatient to know the gender news and slightly miffed that Brian is the only one who knows, what I didn’t realize was how entertaining the bribes would get for Brian to spill the beans! In their defense, Brian might have taken more enjoyment than I anticipated in doing a little taunting, especially to my fiesty, impatient younger sister. Sorry Rachel… Potato loves you regardless!

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7 responses »

  1. You are much more patient than me!! I was weaseling my way into my ultrasound appointments early just to find out as soon as possible! 🙂 We ended up picking out Harper’s name and decided to keep that a secret from everyone and I loved it!!! Of course there were a few people (cough cough inlaws) that were ticked we were keeping it a secret, but I wanted to plan a special way to tell them instead of just well telling them! We got fortune cookies made with her name in them for everyone to open at my baby shower at 35 weeks and it was so fun! I’m not so sure the people who were urked by our method were impressed, but everyone else surely was! Surprises are fun to me! I’m sure it’s fun for him to know, and to be excited about your reaction to meeting the baby and finding out! 🙂 Yay for fun!!

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    • The fortune cookie idea is so cool! And Harper is a neat, unique name, I think it IS fun to keep at least a few things a surprise until later on 🙂 I really wanted an ultrasound early (those first few weeks were torture! I didn’t tell the public I was pregnant till 12 weeks because of miscarriage risk) and I managed to get one at around 9-10 weeks. I was so relieved to see my Potato squirming around like crazy. I get another ultrasound in 8 weeks, I can’t wait!

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  2. That’s a great story! How cool that you both now so desire a child! 😀 We will not be finding out with the next one (but we did find out with our other 3) so it should be interesting!! I’d never be able to do it if my hubby knew though! You are strong!!!! But I bet that’s fun. 🙂

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    • Oooo, leaving the fourth child a surprise? Awesome! I’m really enjoying the not knowing and just enjoying being pregnant, it really isn’t that hard for me to not know even though Brian does. He’s usually pretty terrible with not waiting to give me gifts on specific days so instead of getting gifts on Christmas or my birthday I just get random ones all year long. I tried to make him wait until the “special day” because I like the anticipation but it was killing him, he just had to show me what he got. This is the one time that I’m like NOPE, this is one “gift” you are waiting on telling me about! It works out well for both of us 😀

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  3. I agree that you are far more patient than I was. We actually found out kind of early. I’ve thought about waiting until the ‘mass exodus’ to learn the sex of one of the next kids… but Z is not the iron trap that Brian is and I know he wouldn’t be able to wait or keep the secret from friends and family. You go mom!

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    • hahaha welllll you could always make it so NEITHER of you knew. Z can’t tell a secret he doesn’t know 🙂 Don’t give Brian too much credit, I think one of the main reasons he hasn’t spilled the beans is because he is thoroughly enjoying holding it over people’s heads! 😀

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