The ultrasound tech asked us, very casually, if we wanted to know the gender of the baby. We had already decided yes. I was convinced it was a girl. G was convinced it was a boy.
It was a boy.
When I heard this news, I started crying, a low sob that made me embarrassed. How could I admit that I wanted a girl? The correct line is always, “I just want a healthy baby.” But I was so sad. Her name would be Eleanor Grace, named for my grandmother. I already had the name, way before the baby.
And then the ultrasound tech said another thing and I stopped crying immediately. “I’m just going to get the doctor. I can’t see all four chambers of the heart.”
This is when I was supposed to cry, when the medical professional tells you that something terrible is potentially wrong with your baby. But there were no more tears.
The doctor arrived and soon located all four chambers of the baby’s heart. In fact, everything looked good. Our moment of panic was over. My husband was beaming: our first child was going to be a boy.
After a particularly awful labor, that baby boy was immediately taken away to be suctioned and while he cried, while I was lying on the hospital bed and couldn’t move, it didn’t matter that he wasn’t a girl. All of the sudden, my whole world was there in that room, with my husband and crying son.
Our second baby was also a boy. I didn’t cry when I learned the news. I simply said I wanted a healthy baby.