We think our little squirmier is a girl. I am conscientiously saying "we think" because I understand these things are never 100% until delivery. And I don't want to forget that, since I know already it would be a bit of a shock and an emotional shift if we found out we were wrong.
The ultrasound technician said she thinks we're having a girl. From my untrained eye, I agreed. I also understand from Kristie that the heartbeat can suggest if a baby is a boy or girl: girls have higher heartbeats. I asked my doctor about this, and she said she had done a study: babies' heartbeats range from 110 to 160. (They beat extra fast in order to get all the oxygen they need.) A heartbeat of 150 has a 90% chance of being a girl; a heartbeat of 160 has a 95% chance of being a girl. Our little one has a heartbeat of 150. So, we think she's a she!
We have a name picked out for our girl. We are keeping this a secret. The reasons for this are obvious to me: 1) we'd like something to announce when she arrives 2) we don't care for any input on our decision 3) we don't need any criticism about what we've decided; people won't say anything bad about the name of a born baby, but they will give their opinion about your hypothetical name. Two things baffle me: 1) adults who don't understand these reasons and are so irritated about us being "all secretive about it." 2) kids who think that if they beg us we will cave and tell the name.
Being pregnant is an interesting experience. Mostly, I'm excited and I'm loving it. I love reading about it and learning about my baby. I love talking about it and I love hearing other women's stories. I love just thinking about it, and I can amuse myself for countless minutes just looking at my belly and feeling her kicks. But every once in a while I'm hit with the startling fact that I'm pregnant, and I'm overwhelmed: it's not stopping; I keep growing; there is a little person inside of me; my life will never be the same; something that I've wanted to happen to me & wondered if it would happen to me nearly my whole life is happening to me.
Being pregnant and starting a family is way more intense than being engaged and getting married. I was told this before, but now I know why it is true. When I was engaged, I knew the man I was going to marry. I knew the date we'd be married, and we went through it together completely. My identity did change a bit, and I had to work out being a wife and how that affected being a girl friend and a daughter. Of course there were things I didn't know, but mostly I felt in control of the situation.
When pregnant, there are about a zillion more unknowns. I'm going through this with Garrett, but in many ways, he can't experience it as I do: for one, he doesn't experience the hormonal emotions (ok, sort of he does, but not for himself)...for two, he doesn't have the physical reminder constantly before him. We don't know this person is who is joining our family. (This is largely why I wanted to know if we're having a boy or girl: there are already plenty of unknowns.) I know she is from us, but I don't know who she'll take after, or what little personality is developing in there. I don't know if she'll be difficult or easy, timid or outgoing. There are so many more things to worry about. She may not be healthy, she may come before she is due. I don't know what kind of life God has in store for her, if it will be long or short and if He'll draw her to Him at a young age or old.
When I was in my first trimester, I worried a lot about losing her. Even though I barely knew her, I was attached. I thought that worry would be gone when we passed into the second trimester. I was dead wrong: instead I had only grown more in love with her and knew that losing her would hurt even more. I realized that the fears will never end--they'll just grow as she grows. I had to give them up or go crazy. I think a mother must have to keep letting go of her fears, day after day.